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Mid-Atlantic: A mariner’s dream

Courtesy Delaware Tourism
Rehoboth Beach, Del.
Less than 30 miles up the Coastal Highway from Ocean City, you cross the border into Delaware and reach Rehoboth Beach, the town named by AARP in 2006 as one of the best places in American to retire. Its mile long boardwalk, built in 1873, has small boutiques and excellent restaurants that make it hard to resist.

On the north end of the island where the Delaware Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean is Cape Henlopen State Park. The 3,000-acre park offers six miles of beach and rolling dunes and a World War II observation tower.

War planners created Fort Miles to protect Philadelphia. Guided tours look at the threat during World War II and allow a tour of Battery 519.

Groups can visit the original Dogfish Head Brewpub, now a popular craft-beer maker that started in a pub on the main strip of Rehoboth Beach, and tour its brewery in nearby Milton.

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Ocean City, Md.
The famous three-mile-long boardwalk in Ocean City has been around since 1900, but it wasn’t always available to pedestrians year-round.

“For years, the boardwalk planks were taken out during the winter and weren’t returned until spring,” said Donna Abbott, communications manager at the Ocean City Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Fortunately, the boardwalk is now open year-round for visitors to people watch, stroll, shop or catch a sunset. During the spring and summer, a tram runs the length of the boardwalk, giving visitors a free ride and the chance to take in the sights as a passenger.

Right on the boardwalk, the Life-Saving Station, is a museum packed with interesting information about storms, sea life and the history of life-saving equipment.

Outdoor activities include year-round birding at Furnace Town Living Heritage Museum, kayak ecotours of the back bay or a relaxing narrated history cruise on the Atlantic.