Tourist Attractions in New Jersey
Although one of the smallest US states and the most rapidly growing, New Jersey is home to many first-rate tourist attractions. From national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty to fine museums and historical sites, New Jersey is a state that is well worth taking time to explore. A good place to start is along the state’s Atlantic Coast, using any one of its quaint harbor towns or resorts – even the entertainment hot spot of Atlantic City – as a jumping-off point.
New Jersey is a popular East Coast vacation destination. From Jersey City, the gateway to Ellis Island, the Immigration Museum, and the iconic Statue of Liberty, to Atlantic City with its glamour on par with Las Vegas, and the Jersey Shore with 130 miles of Atlantic coastline, New Jersey has a special personality all its own. Here is a brief but comprehensive list outlines on the top tourist attractions in New Jersey that travelers won’t find resistible.
Liberty State Park
Liberty State Park in Jersey City is one of the most breathtaking parks in the nation encompassing 1,212 waterside acres. Its exceptional beauty has as much to do with its lush greenery as with its unique backdrop featuring Ellis Island (home to New York’s Statue of Liberty), the Manhattan skyline, and the Statue of Liberty. In addition to its wonderful views of the aforementioned attractions, the park contains many highlights of its own, including Communipaw Cove, a 36-acre tidal salt marsh that has been designated a nature preserve (an interpretive center is on-site).
Atlantic City and Boardwalk
One of the most popular coastal resort towns on the northeastern coast of the US, Atlantic City is best known for its famous Boardwalk and for being the entertainment hub of New Jersey, where visitors go to enjoy a wide array of gaming opportunities. This active and lively city offers a little something for everyone all year round. Located on the Jersey Shore, guests can walk along the iconic Boardwalk featuring rides, games, world-class restaurants, and bars. This four-mile-long promenade was constructed in 1870 and to this day remains the place where the majority of the city’s attractions are found.
Princeton and the Battlefield State Park
Princeton is a city rich in culture and known for remarkable monuments, stunning parks, and quaint old-time shopping villages. A wide variety of museums and internationally acclaimed music and theater performances provide entertainment for all visitors. The small town of Princeton owes its international reputation to its university and associated research institutes, including the Institute for Advanced Study, where Albert Einstein carried out his final work. Established in 1756, the school’s 1,600-acre grounds are wonderful to explore, and one of the best ways to do so is by joining the student-run tour program (tours last an hour). Another famous historic site is Princeton Battlefield State Park, the 200-acre location of the Battle of Princeton of 1777, which resulted in Washington’s victory over the British.
Newark is the second-largest city in New Jersey and offers a wide variety of attractions for those living in or visiting the city. Known for having the biggest collection of cherry blossom trees in the United States, its natural beauty is its biggest attraction.
The Newark Symphony Hall, the fine art collections at various galleries and museums, the stunning architecture, and Grassroots glassblowing appeal to the finer senses. Visitors can take a boat tour along 7 scenic miles of the Passaic River or enjoy one of the Newark Walks, which are a great way to see the city’s public art, monuments, and landmarks
The Raritan River cuts through the picturesque town of Clinton, New Jersey, spanned by an 1870 iron bridge. The view from the bridge is of a 200-foot-wide waterfall. On either side of the bridge are two repurposed grist mills; on one side, the Hunterdon Historical Museum, and on the other, the Hunterdon Art Museum.
The historical museum sits on the 10-acre Red Mill Museum Village and displays over 40,000 historical artifacts. Other highlights of the museum village are the Mulligan quarry buildings, an old schoolhouse, and a log cabin. The stone mill on the opposite side is home to the Hunterdon Art Museum, where visitors enjoy a collection of contemporary art and an active art education center.
Boonton is famous for being a significant link along the Underground Railroad that helped 40,000 slaves escape to their freedom in Canada. Many noteworthy abolitionists vigorously undertook their anti-slavery work from this small town. The town’s immigrant population grew up around Boonton Falls – as impressive as Paterson Great Falls – which powered the iron industry here.
Boonton is also the original home of the classic Boontonware melamine tableware. Today, visitors will appreciate the town’s antique stores, eclectic restaurants, and natural beauty. Grace Lord Park, with its falls, fountain, and gazebo, is the town’s gathering place for summer concerts and other events.