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About LewesWest of Cape Henlopen, Lewes (LOO-is) was founded in 1631 by a group of settlers from Hoorn, Holland. Originally called Zwaanendael, Valley of the Swans, the little colony intended to establish an agricultural and whaling industry, but the Siconese Indians destroyed it within a year. The interruption was brief, however. Promptly rebuilt, the town flourished, surviving pirate attacks, British bombardment in the War of 1812 and the profusion of summer vacationers to its beaches.

The DeVries Monument on Pilottown Road commemorates the 1631 Dutch settlement. Constructed before the exact position of the Dutch fort was determined, the monument later was discovered to be on the site of the fortification's north bastion.

Lewes is the traditional home of the pilots who guide ships up Delaware Bay. This maritime orientation also makes the town a natural site for the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment at the University of Delaware.

Ferries connect Lewes with Cape May, N.J., daily. The 17-mile trip takes 85 minutes. For information write Cape May-Lewes Ferry, Cape May Terminal, 1200 Lincoln Blvd., Cape May, NJ 08204; phone (800) 643-3779. Cape May-Lewes ferry information also is available at AAA Mid-Atlantic, 55 Greentree Dr., in Dover; phone (302) 674-8020.

Visitor Centers Lewes Chamber of Commerce and Visitor's Bureau 120 Kings Hwy. Lewes, DE 19958. Phone:(302)645-8073 or (877)465-3937

Self-guiding ToursBrochures and maps, including a self-guiding maritime trail covering 12 sites, are available from the chamber of commerce and visitor bureau.

Things to Do Fisherman's Wharf Cruises

Fisher-Martin House

Lewes Historical Society

Lightship Overfalls

Seaside Nature Center

Zwaanendael Museum

WINERIES Nassau Valley Vineyards Winery and Visitors Center

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Lewes, DE

Top AAA Diamond Hotels

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Home2 Suites by Hilton Lewes

17388 Ocean One Plaza. Lewes, DE 19958

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Members save up to 10% and earn World of Hyatt points when booking AAA/CAA rates! Members also receive free breakfast at Hyatt Place/Hyatt House with their World of Hyatt membership!

Hyatt House Lewes/Rehoboth Beach

17254 Five Points Square. Lewes, DE 19958

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Sleep Inn & Suites

18451 Coastal Hwy. Lewes, DE 19958

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The Inn at Canal Square

122 Market St. Lewes, DE 19958

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