New Jersey is home to some of the country’s most charming destinations. Our team compared the state’s finest cities to find the best of the best. When the dust settled, the following destinations came out on top:
1. Jersey City
Liberty Science Center is an interactive science museum and learning center that’s just as fun for kids as it is interesting for their parents: look out for four floors 12 galleries of hands-on science exhibits, plus an IMAX Dome Theater. Find a refreshment suited to any palate at Zeppelin Hall, a charming Biergarten with over 140 brews on tap, or Torico, a monument to homemade ice cream that offers 65 innovative flavors. Walk it all off and enjoy a view of Manhattan from afar with a stroll, run or cycle along the scenic, beautifully-landscaped Hudson River Waterfront Walkway.
Outdoor enthusiasts are spoilt for choice with an abundance of trails, parks, reservations and canals: go hiking abd biking in the natural spendor of Sourland Mountain Preserve, or for a less strenuous experience, take a paddle along Delaware and Raritan Canal. Pop into Tiger’s Tale for a lunch all the locals love, then treat the kids to miles of play area on offer at the recently renovated Skillman Park. Cap the day at One 53, a classy bistro with an enormous menu and romantic setting.
3. Chester Township
Tucked away in the north of NJ is a small but thriving spot tailor-made for family exploring. The town believes in encouraging community engagement, so expect farmer’s markets, craft fairs, free concerts, holiday tours and even a community garden. The free, guided Chester Hiking Series and floral gardens at Willowwood Arboretum are always a hit, while Kay Environmental Center is home to a flourishing butterfly population. Pick your own apples and pumpkins at Alstede and Riamede Farms, or stop over at Stony Hill Gardens to experience the Stony Hill Maze Fun Park. But that’s not all: for those who enjoy a slower pace, Chester Antique Mall is a superstore rich in furniture, china, pottery, paintings and prints – perfect for the avid bargain-hunter.