Bethany Beach Vacation Guide

Bethany Beach

Robert Kirk/Getty Images

Bethany Beach and Fenwick, Delaware call themselves “the Quiet Resorts”. Located between the Atlantic Ocean and the inland bays in the southeastern corner of Sussex County, the Bethany area is comprised of family-oriented beach towns with lots of amenities and a relaxed atmosphere. With convenient access to beaches, golf, tennis, and area shopping and dining, Bethany is a regional favorite among families.

Bethany Beach Boardwalk

The boardwalk at Bethany Beach is just .38 miles long and is a nice place for a leisurely walk. It is not packed with amusements like the neighboring beach towns of Ocean City or Rehoboth. The town bandstand hosts live entertainment throughout the summer.

Getting to Bethany Beach

Bethany is approximately 130 miles and a three-hour drive from Washington DC in normal traffic. You should expect delays and heavy traffic on holidays and weekends during the summer months. Call (877) BAYSPAN for current information on traffic conditions at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

Driving Directions From the Washington, DC Area: Take Rt. 50 East across the Bay Bridge, Turn left onto Rt. 404 East, Follow Rt. 404 to Rt. 113 South. Turn left onto Rt. 26 East. Follow Rt. 26 east to Rt. 1 (Coastal Highway) to Bethany Beach. For the Fenwick Island area continue on Rt. 1 South.

Bethany Beach Hotels, Bed & Breakfasts, and Vacation Rentals

Although a variety of accommodations are available at Bethany Beach, most families choose to rent a vacation home.

Things to Know

  • The beach is lifeguard patrolled from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day, 9:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. on weekends and 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Lifeguards patrol the beach on weekends through the end of September.
  • Parking is limited near the boardwalk and meters have a two-hour time limit.
  • Trolleys run from the Friday before Memorial Day through mid-September, continuously between 9:30 am to 10 p.m.
  • Bicycles are allowed on the boardwalk between the hours of 6 – 9 a.m. only from May 15th through September 30th.
  • There is a beach curfew from 1 - 5 a.m.
  • Within a half-hour drive, you can visit Ocean City, Maryland or Rehoboth Delaware. Both resort towns are bustling with activity and have plenty of restaurants, nightlife, shopping and amusement venues.