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Emlen Physick Estate, Cape May

4.2
#2 of 12 in Historic Sites in Jersey Shore
History Museum Historic Site
Take a break from the beach by visiting Emlen Physick Estate, a Victorian house/museum designed by notable American architect Frank Furness. Constructed in 1879, the mansion contains 19 fully restored rooms, allowing visitors a peek into the lifestyle of an affluent Victorian family. Designed in the "Stick Style" of architecture--noted for its use of vertical beams on the outside walls--the mansion served as a primary residence for a local physician who was the owner of the first automobile in Cape May. The exterior of the house features oversized chimneys, hooded dormers, and stick-like porch brackets, considered Furness' trademarks. The estate includes a tearoom and gift shop. Check the website for information on a combination ticket that includes the house tour and a trolley ride through the Cape May historic district. With our international travel planner, Cape May attractions like Emlen Physick Estate can be center stage of your vacation plans, and you can find out about other attractions like it, unlike it, near it, and miles away.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
511 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • We did the self guided tour. The home is nice and the staff is super friendly and knowledgeable, but you only get to see the first floor and a few rooms upstairs, so the $12 per person seemed a bit st...  more »
  • The guided tour of the estate is done by very well informed docents. The teahouse on the property is well worth a vist. The gift shop has many unique items for sale and the homemade breads are wonderf...  more »
  • We chatted with the sales person in the Emlen Physick Estate gift shop and she gave us a great tip: buy a Mid-Atlantic Arts Council membership (just $40 for the two of us) and save. We scheduled a tro...  more »
Google
  • Gorgeous home. Amazing tour. Joyce was a very knowledgeable guide. Loved it! Well worth the trip.
  • So beautiful and such an amazing piece of history! They do tours of the inside but buy in advance to hold your spot! The house is HUGE. So much bigger than it looks in pictures plus the entire property holds other houses and pieces of history! It's amazing! A must see if you're in the area!
  • I thoroughly enjoyed my tour of the Physick Estate. It was a step back in time like visiting the setting of some of my favorite novels. Our guide carefully described each room, its contents, and how they were used during the life of Emlen Physick, as well as the history of the estate following his death. I highly recommend this tour.
  • Informative relative to the architectural significance and Cape May history. Tour guide was very knowledgeable and had a genuine fondness for the property. Many original artifacts. Well paced tour.
  • The house is great our tour guide was very knowledgeable. The problem came in the way we were herded through. It was a large tour of 22 people so each room was full, the tour guide did his thing then rushed us to the next room. I personally go to museums to see the stuff displayed not to just hear the stories.

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Where to stay in Cape May

Choosing where to stay on Cape May remains simple because most accommodations lie steps from Beach Avenue (which, as its name suggests, runs along the cape's stretch of sand). Even choosing your style of accommodation is uncomplicated--inns and bed and breakfasts situated inside Victorian houses encompass nearly the entire range of choices. You can opt for a cottage if you prefer self-service. Budget-wise you'll find the most options in the mid-range and higher end, but a few value-driven choices exist too. Book early if you plan to visit in summer.
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