6 Reasons to Head to the Delaware Beaches Before Memorial Day

Here’s how to make the most of the coast before summer crowds arrive.


Now that it’s officially spring, day trips to the Delaware beaches become even more tempting. Here are six reasons to head south before Memorial Day crowds flock to the coast.

1. You can find a seat at Agave

Once the tourists descend, you might wait up to two hours for a seat in this Lewes hotspot. But on a recent Monday evening, we bellied right up to the bar without a wait. Try the chicken enchilada, which is wrapped in a banana leaf and covered in a rich mole sauce made with raisins and chocolate. Of course, you can’t go wrong with a margarita.
137 Second St., Lewes • 645-1232

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Agave’s menu covers classic Mexican fare.//photo by
Pam George

2. You can land a downtown parking space

Admittedly, this is easier to do if you’re playing hooky during the week. Metered parking goes into effect in May—visit each town’s website for exact dates. Remember that in Rehoboth and Dewey, you’ll need a pass to park in residential areas during the season.

3. You can take advantage of off-season dining specials

Many restaurants offer specials like half-price wine nights, burger nights or a percentage off the check to entice off-season crowds. When summer begins, most of these specials will disappear until fall. SoDel Concepts‘ 11 restaurants, for instance, stops their specials on May 19.

4. You can get into recently opened restaurants

The Pines in downtown Rehoboth Beach and Chaps Pit Beef on Route 1 are two new spots that will be jamming come June. Chaps, born in Baltimore, is a Guy Fieri favorite. Also consider the Vineyard Wine Bar & Bistro, which reopened after recovering from a fire, Gilligan’s newly opened second location in Milton and Cuvee Ray Wine Bar & Restaurant, which reopened for the 2019 season with a bar menu for the Rehoboth Avenue side of the restaurant.

5. You can still wine and dine

Wine events typically come to halt when restaurants are catering to the summer crowds. For one last salute, check out the annual Teller Wines Expo & Benefit on March 30 at 1 p.m. This year’s event, which features more than 100 wines, will be held at St. Jude’s Parish Life Center, right off Route 1. Proceeds benefit the Rehoboth Film Society.

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6. You can walk the beach or boardwalk without a crowd

You might need a jacket, but at least you won’t have to navigate around a hoard of surf fishermen or corn hole games. Dogs are allowed on the Rehoboth Beach Boardwalk until May 1.

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