It’s time for the awesome staycation season – that magical time when you stay close to home and explore what’s in your area!
While I was born in western New York, after 10 years of living here in New Jersey I think I’m finally a Jersey Girl. I love living here on on the Delaware River and because we live in Central Jersey we are an hour from Philadelphia and an hour from Northern Jersey/NYC – which means we always have something to do!
Here are some of our favorite places to visit in New Jersey:
Holcomb-Jimison Farmstead in Lambertville, NJ. The Museum is where history comes alive each year from May through October. You will find a Print Shop, Woodworking Shop, Kitchen, 1711 House, Doctor/Dentist Office, timber working tools, Dairy Exhibit, Loom, Blacksmith Shop and Tractor Barn. Each May the Farmstead hosts a Civil War Reenactment that is fun for the whole family!
The Howell Living History Farm is open year round for hands on farming and family fun! Today the Farm exists in its rural setting as both an example of farming as it was practiced in New Jersey in the period 1890-1910 and as a landscape where one can find the remnants of over 250 years of farming practice and life. The Farm has everything from evening hay rides, slopping hogs, and arts and crafts.
Liberty State Park boasts a skyline view of Manhattan and a 2 mile walk along the Hudson river. It also has the historic Central Railroad of NJ terminal which houses much of NJ’s transportation history. You can take a ferry from Liberty State Park to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.
We LOVE the Liberty Science Center! Located within Liberty State park it’s an easy drive and well worth it! The exhibits are hands on and top notch! Young and old can touch, explore and learn about science and the world around us. It’s a great, hands on low key place to visit. If you decide to visit, the science center is reciprocal with other museums so make sure you check that out.
Field Station Dinosaurs is on my list for us to visit this summer. Nestled at the base of a 150 million year old rock formation, the Field Station has over thirty life-sized, realistic dinosaurs that come to life! Since my girls are dinosaur crazed at the moment I can’t WAIT to bring them here. Of course, I’ve been saying this for the past 2 years but this year we ARE going. It’s on the short list!
A perfect family sized zoo is Turtle Back Zoo. Located in West Orange, it was just voted the #1 zoo in NJ by NJ Monthly Magazine. We love visiting the petting zoo and the new Sea Lion Sound which includes a sting ray petting tank! The girls spent almost an hour petting the sting rays – and I was pretty amazed they didn’t fall in! There is a playground, a train and a carousel as well as animals from penguins to black bears.
A few miles away in Trenton, NJ is the New Jersey State Museum, which is 4 museums in one. The Museum has exhibits on Cultural history, Natural history, Fine Art and Archeology. There is also the largest Planetarium in NJ which features both traditional and laser sky shows.
The Adventure Aquarium is one of our favorite spots to visit! Located on the Camden Waterfront it has the distinction of being the most Touchable Aquarium. With exhibits indoors and outside, touch tanks, a shark tunnel and floor to ceiling tanks this is one stop you won’t want to miss! Right now they have an amazing exhibit called Dinosaurs of the Deep, which my girls LOVE.
Also located on the Camden Waterfront is the historic Battleship New Jersey. America’s most decorated Battleship is an exciting museum that you are able to tour. Exploring “BB62” is experiencing history in a whole new way. Not only do you see exhibits of artifacts from the ship’s past, but you are put into the exhibit as you go through the tour route. Sit in the chair from which Admiral Halsey commanded the fleet. Stretch out on the bunks where the sailors slept. Climb into the 16” gun turret and learn how the projectiles were loaded and more!
For train enthusiasts, a stop at Northlandz is a must. The largest indoor model train railway has over 8 miles of track which carry over 100 trains. 40 foot bridges span huge caverns, along with waterfalls, an amusement park and more. Plan on at least 2 hours to get through the entire exhibit – and if you have a stroller bring it because little legs will need it.
For nature lovers, stop and picnic at Washington Crossings State Park or Bulls Island. You can tube along the Delaware River, bike along the Tow Path or canoe the Delaware and Raritan Canal. Please note that most of the state parks are carry in/carry out trash so make sure to pack a bag!
Of course, there is always the Jersey Shore, with stops in Atlantic City and Cape May. New Jersey may be a small state, but we have LOTS of fun activities to enjoy!
A – D
Phoenix, Arizona — Saving For Someday
Fresno, California — Living A Frugal Life
Orange County, California — More With Less Today
San Diego, California — Southern Cali Saver
Denver, Colorado — Bargain Blessings
Washington, District of Columbia — Kidventurous
F – I
Disney World, Florida — The Happy Housewife
Jacksonville, Florida — Saving The Family Money
Orlando, Florida — Coupon Mamacita
St Augustine, Florida — Simply St. Augustine
Tallahasse, Florida — SwagGrabber
Tampa Bay, Florida — LaToyaEdwards.net
Atlanta, Georgia — Pretty Frugal Diva
Dahlonega, Georgia — Kathys Cluttered Mind
Savannah, Georgia — This Mommy Saves Money
Aurora/Chicago, Illinois — A Savings WOW!
Chicago, Illinois — Entertaining Chicago
Indianapolis, Indiana — Chaos Is Bliss
K – P
Lexington, Kentucky — Homeschool Village
Louisville, Kentucky — The Kennedy Adventures
Northern Kentucky, Kentucky — Simply Sherryl
Carroll County, Maryland — Looking at life CreativLEI
Boston, Massachusetts — Maven of Savin
Battle Creek, Michigan — Pichea Place
Grand Rapids, Michigan — Give Me Neither
Metro Detroit, Michigan — Saving Dollars and Sense
Kansas City Area, Missouri/Kansas — Redefined Mom
Omaha, Nebraska — Family Fun in Omaha
Central, New Jersey — Our Good Life
Cincinnati, Ohio — Adventure Mom
Cleveland, Ohio — Kosher on a Budget
Columbus, Ohio — Cleverly Simple
Dayton, Ohio — Savings Lifestyle
Mansfield & Richland County, Ohio — The Traveling Praters
Miami County, Ohio — Something 2 Offer
Northeast, Ohio — Sisters Shopping on a Shoestring
Portland, Oregon — Frugal Living NW
Harrisburg/Central, PA — Family Balance Sheet
Erie, Pennsylvania — Growing Kids Ministry
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania — Moms Need To Know
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — The Coupon High
R – W
Arlington, Texas — Grocery Shop For FREE
Fort Worth, Texas — Coupons and Freebies Mom
Houston, Texas — Melissa’s Bargains
Katy, Texas — Moms Confession
San Antonio, Texas — How to Homeschool My Child
Tyler, Texas — iLoveMy5Kids
Charlottesville, Virgina — How to Have it All
Norfolk, Virgina — The Talking Suitcase
Richmond, Virgina — Vacation Maybe
Seattle, Washington — Thrifty NW Mom
Tacoma/South Puget Sound, Washington — Queen Bee Coupons
Oshkosh, Wisconsin — A Little Bit of This and That