Tour the six-story elephant-shaped building, which was built in 1881 and is now on the National Park Registry of Historical Landmarks
What You'll Get
Choose Between Two Options
- $11 for admission and a tour for two adults ages 13 and up ($17 value)
- $17 for admission and a tour for two adults and two children ($25 value)
Visitors take a tour of the six-story-high novelty building Lucy the Elephant. On the tour they learn about the elephant-shaped building’s history and unique architecture, as well as climb a spiral staircase up to the howdah on the elephant’s back. There, visitors get a 360-degree glimpse of the shore.
Read how Lucy the Elephant became a Jersey Shore icon by avoiding its own demise.
The Fine Print
About Lucy the Elephant
In 1881, arriving by water or rail, visitors to the Jersey Shore met a rather startling sight: an elephant, trunk lowered in a feeding position, towering six stories high. The elephant–shaped building, nicknamed "Lucy," was designed to attract prospective real-estate buyers to Margate, New Jersey. The brainchild of the elephant, James V. Lafferty Jr., actually had designed three gigantic elephants, but by 1969, only a derelict Lucy was left. Thanks to the dedicated Save Lucy Committee, which formed in 1970, the landmark—now listed on the National Park Registry of Historical Landmarks—reopened in 1974.
Constructed from wood and metal, Lucy weighs 90 tons; her ears each weigh 2,000 pounds alone. Every 30 minutes, guided tours enter the spiral stairway in her hind legs, which climbs through her insides up to the howdah on her back. This perch affords a stunning 360-degree view of Josephine Harron Park and the surrounding shore, where beachgoers sunbathe, splash in the water, and struggle to pay the mortgage on their sandcastles.