Just because we’re halfway through summer doesn’t mean you’ve lost your chance to plan a nice getaway for the family. What’s even better is you can do so without making a huge dent in your wallet.

A recent survey was conducted by FamilyDestinationsGuide.com to find the most affordable family-friendly vacation destinations throughout the United States.

'Affordable’ does not mean ‘inferior or ‘second-rate’” points out Rose Ackermann, of FamilyDestinationsGuide.com. “The budget-friendly travel sphere is bursting with choices, offering everything from breathtaking outdoor experiences to cultural immersion, charming local accommodations, and gastronomical delights that won't break the bank.

Newcomb Hollow Beach in Wellfleet MA on Cape Code MA.
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FamilyDestinationsGuide used an online panel survey of 3,000 adults based on age, gender, and geography to be sure various demographics were represented.

The top two destinations were awarded to our neighboring state, New York, with the second place going to Coney Island, and Long Beach taking first. Good for NY, but what about those of us looking for a staycation?

Of the top 175 family-friendly destinations, five are right here in the Garden State, so you don’t even have to travel out of state for your cost-effective getaway.

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These are the most affordable family destinations in New Jersey for Summer 2023.

7️⃣5️⃣ Wildwood

The iconic Wildwood Boardwalk stretches for two miles and is lined with affordable amusement parks, arcades, and shops, providing endless entertainment options for families on a budget.

Memorial Day Weekend Marks Start Of Beach Season On East Coast
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Just be sure that you "watch the tram car, please."

Memorial Day Weekend Marks Start Of Beach Season On East Coast
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6️⃣1️⃣ Cape May

After soaking up the sun and catching waves at the beach, families can check out the Cape May County Park & Zoo, which offers free admission.

Cape May County Zoo (Photo: Cape May County Zoo Facebook Page)
Cape May County Zoo (Photo: Cape May County Zoo Facebook Page)
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Regis, the new kangaroo at the Cape May County Zoo - Photo: Cape May County Zoo
Regis, the new kangaroo at the Cape May County Zoo - Photo: Cape May County Zoo
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Baby ring-tailed lemur born at the Cape May County Zoo
Baby ring-tailed lemur born at the Cape May County Zoo (Cape May County Zoo)
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The town's historic district features affordable eateries, shops, and the Cape May Lighthouse, which offers stunning views at a reasonable admission fee.

Photo by Ryan Stone on Unsplash
Photo by Ryan Stone on Unsplash
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1️⃣6️⃣ Point Pleasant

In addition to the beautiful beaches, families can enjoy outdoor activities such as fishing from the beach or taking a stroll along the boardwalk, which offers fun-for-all-ages attractions like mini-golf courses and amusement rides.

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TSM Jersey Shore
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Jenkinson's Aquarium is a popular spot for families, offering a memorable opportunity to get up close and personal with a variety of marine life.

Inside Jenkinson's Aquarium.
Bill Doyle photo
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Inside Jenkinson's Aquarium.
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Inside Jenkinson's Aquarium.
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1️⃣1️⃣ Ocean City

Families can have a comfortable and cost-effective stay through accommodations such as beachfront hotels, budget-friendly motels, and vacation rentals.

Ocean City
Ocean City (Chris Coleman, Townsquare Media NJ)
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Ocean City boasts pristine beaches that are free to access, providing endless opportunities for swimming, sunbathing, and building sandcastles.

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Families can enjoy outdoor activities such as biking along the boardwalk, beach volleyball, and exploring the nearby dunes and nature trails.

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Ocean City's dining scene features cheaper options, including family-friendly restaurants, seafood shacks, and ice cream parlors.

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And finally, the most cost-effective vacation spot in NJ according to FamilyDestinationsGuide:

6️⃣ Asbury Park

Families can spend sunny days at Asbury Park’s pristine beach, enjoying the sand, surf, and various water sports. The iconic boardwalk is a must-visit, offering free entry and an array of affordable eateries, souvenir shops, and lively entertainment options.

Jersey Shore Beaches Open For Season On Memorial Day Weekend
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Mike Brant - Townsquare Media
Mike Brant - Townsquare Media
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Asbury Park provides a range of accommodation options, including cozy beachfront hotels and vacation rentals, ensuring a cozy and budget-friendly stay.

Erin Vogt, Townsquare Media
Erin Vogt, Townsquare Media
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Hopefully this gave you some ideas for places you can travel to on a budget this summer. Click here for the complete list from FamilyDestinationsGuide.

For those already planning your next trip, do you know if a 'must drive' road in America is part of your route? Keep reading to find out.

See the Must-Drive Roads in Every State

If you're going to out state and want to try various fast food chains from other regions, here are some ideas:

From coast to coast: The 20 best regional fast-food chains to try

From burgers to subs and even creamy milkshakes, these tasty fast-food chains, compiled by Stacker, are a must-try on your next road trip.

LOOK: Explore the iconic buildings from every state

From colonial homesteads to mansions by the ocean, iconic buildings define every state in the country. Stacker compiled this list of notable examples from historic and government reports and news articles. 

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5's Kylie Moore. Any opinions expressed are Kylie's own. You can follow Kylie on Instagram.

Click here to contact an editor about feedback or a correction for this story.

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