Fenwick Island is one of a group of beach towns known as, “Delaware’s Quiet Resorts.” With a year round population of just 379 (2010 Census), the town was previously unincorporated land between South Bethany and Ocean City, Maryland.
In July 1953, responding to local demand for incorporation to prevent the relentless high-rise development of Ocean City from creeping north into Fenwick Island, the Delaware General Assembly passed an act to enforce incorporation of the town of Fenwick Island.
Situated on a peninsula of land extending south from Cape Henlopen State Park at Lewes to Ocean City, Maryland. Fenwick Island sits in quiet contrast to the lively sprawl of Ocean City, Maryland to the south, the summer wildness that is Dewey Beach, and the busier, and somewhat urbane Rehoboth Beach, both to the north. Named after Thomas Fenwick, a planter from England who settled in Maryland, Fenwick Island lay in the part of Delaware which was claimed by Lord Baltimore and his heirs during the Penn-Baltimore border dispute.
Local legend has it that Cedar Island in Little Assawoman Bay was a spot for pirates to bury treasure. Regardless of the truth of the legend, the Delaware coastal area was well known as a place for pirates to hide from the law.
Fenwick Island boasts a popular Farmers Market Monday and Friday, 8am-noon from late June through Labor Day.
Fenwick Island is a very popular vacation rental location. The beach is quiet and the town sleepy. Those famously low property taxes and lack of sales tax enjoyed by Delaware makes Fenwick Island a popular, convenient alternative to the nearby Ocean City, Maryland.