Lewes is one of the thriving beach towns along Coastal Delaware, lately recognized as a retirement haven to rival Southern locales. In fact, few people beyond the East Coast realize that the Delaware Beaches enjoy a mild climate year-round: in January the average high is 45 degrees and the average low is 30; in July the average high and low are 87 and 70.
Many wonderful attractions in Lewes draw visitors and residents alike. Among the most famous are:
Cape Henlopen State Park—Besides the beautiful swimming beaches, of course, you’ll find great fishing supported by a fishing center that’s open 7 days a week from the late spring through the fall. The fishing center sells bait, tackle, food, and camping supplies, while also hosting demonstrations and tournaments. The Park allows camping on more than 150 sites, most with water hookups. You’ll find a Nature Center, hiking and equestrian trails, and the Fort Miles Historical Area.
Local shops & outlet malls—After exploring the beauties of nature, you can explore the beauties of shopping. Aside from the unique shops along Lewes' Second Street, the stores that are available at Tanger Outlets (3 seperate locations between Lewes & Rehoboth Beach) are so numerous, they have to be listed in groups by alphabetical order. From Antiques to Bookstores to Costumes, on down to Swimwear, Toys and Window Treatments, whatever you can imagine, you’ll find it here.
US Lightship Overfalls and National Harbor of Refuge—Overfalls is one of only 17 historic lightships remaining (a lightship being a lighthouse that floats). Designated a National Historic Landmark, it is open for tours by special arrangement. The Harbor of Refuge Breakwater was constructed in the late 1800s, and when its lights were promptly washed away, an off-shore lighthouse was built which endured considerable abuse from the ocean until being fully automated in 1973. Seasonal tours began in 2003.
Zwaanendael Museum—built to resemble the Town Hall in Hoorn, The Netherlands, the museum showcases the “maritime, military and social history” of Lewes since 1631, when it became the first European settlement in Delaware.