The Wonders of New Jersey: Top 10

  • 1 Pinelands National Reserve Blueberries...cranberries...crisp pine forests...mysterious groves of dwarf trees...tree frogs and the Jersey Devil all love the Pinelands—or the Pine Barrens as many people call it. This is the first National Reserve in the United States, encompassing approximately 1.1 million acres (22% of New Jersey's land area). It is the largest body of open space on the Mid-Atlantic seaboard between Richmond and Boston. In 1983 the area was designated a U.S. Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO and in 1988 it was recognized as a International Biosphere Reserve. Scores of tea-colored man-made lakes dot this unique landscape, which is blessed with orchids, carnivorous plants and pygmy pines. 39 species of mammals, 299 Bird, 59 reptile and amphibian species and 91 fish species have been identified as living within the Pinelands including 43 animal species listed as threatened or endangered by the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. Multiple counties in South Jersey.

  • 2 Cape May More Victorian than Queen Victoria, Cape May is the oldest seashore resort in the United States. Cape May is host to 20 million visitors annually, and according to the National Historic Landmarks program, "With over 600 summer homes, hotels and commercial structures, this venerable seashore resort has one of the largest collections of 19th century frame buildings remaining in the United States." The Cape May Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts operates the Emlen Physick Estate, a Victorian house museum. Visitors can take a walking or trolley tour of the Victorian homes or spend the night in one of the beautiful bed & breakfasts. Don't be surprised to see dolphins jumping out of the water where the Delaware Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean. Congress Hall is another centerpiece that deserves a visit. The Washington Street Mall offers shoppers an outdoor pedestrian shopping experience. Cape May is a year-round resort, becoming a charming Christmas village in the winter. Other gems of Cape May architecture include: The Albert Stevens Inn; Angel of the Sea Hotel; Ashley Rose Victorian Inn; Beesley House; Belvedere Condos; Celtic Inn; The Chalfonte Hotel; Congress Place; Delsea Hotel; Dormer House; Dr. Henry L. Hunt House; Fairthorne Bed & Breakfast; Franklin Hughes House; The Goodman House; The Henry Sawyer Inn; The Inn on the Ocean; The Inn of Cape May; John Wesley Inn; The Joseph Hall House; Judson Bennett House; King's Cottage; Leith Hall; The Linda Lee Bed & Breakfast; Mainstay Inn; The Mason Cottage Bed & Breakfast; Mooring Guest House; Morning Star Villa; Poor Richard's Inn; Prickly Pear Cottage; The Stockton Cottages; Sugar Plum Cottage; Summer Cottage Inn; The Queen Victoria Bed & Breakfast
  • 3 Atlantic City Boardwalk The longest boardwalk in the world. Built in 1870, it is also the world's first boardwalk. According to Forbes, the Atlantic City Boardwalk is the 25th most visited tourist destination in America. The Steel Pier is the home of an amusement park. The Garden Pier is now home to the Atlantic City Historical Society and an Arts Center. The New Jersey Korean War Memorial is located along the boardwalk. Also, most of the casinos in the city are located along the Boardwalk. Atlantic City.
  • 4 Princeton University One of only eight colleges in the Ivy League and the number 1 ranked university in the United States according to U.S. News and World Report. Notable landmarks include the Firestone Library, Nassau Hall, Lake Carnegie, Princeton Stadium, Prospect Gardens, and the newest wonder is Frank Gehry's Lewis Science Library. From July to October 1783, Princeton University was the capital of the United States and Nassau Hall was home to the entire American government. Perhaps the best way to enjoy the University is to just take a simple stroll through the campus and enjoy the ivy-clad gothic buildings, sculpture and gardens. Princeton Boro and Princeton Township.
    from CarbonNYC                               from zbtwells
  • 5 Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area Part of the National Park Service, and shared with Pennsylvania, this vast park preserves almost 70,000 acres of land along the Delaware River. It is the 16th most visited tourist destination in America, according to Forbes. On the New Jersey side you can visit the following: Peter's Valley Craft Education Center. Walpack Valley Environmental Education Center. River Bend Group Campground. Millbrook Village. Watergate Recreation Site. Depew Recreation Site. Mohican Outdoor Center. Upper Yards Creek Reservoir. There are several beautiful waterfalls, including Factory Falls and Buttermilk Falls. Mount Tammany is considered by many to to have the most beautiful view in New Jersey from its summit 1,527 feet high. 
  • 6 Island Beach State Park The largest reserve of undeveloped barrier island in New Jersey and one of the largest in the United States. The park contains close to ten miles of sandy beach, an extensive shoreline along Barnegat Bay, dense maritime forests, rolling sand dunes, and tidal marshes. Island Beach is also home to semi-friendly foxes (Don't be fooled, they just covet your McNuggets. They are foxes after all), ospreys and more than 400 species of plants. Berkeley.
  • 7 Six Flags Great Adventure and Wild Safari/Hurricane Harbor Great Adventure has some of the highest rated roller coasters: Kingda Ka, the world's highest roller coaster (also, until recently, it was the world's fastest); El Toro; Nitro; Superman: Ultimate Flight; The Dark Knight; Bizarro—the first floorless roller coaster in the world (originally named Medusa). Fright Fest is a Halloween-themed festival held in October. Hurricane Harbor is a 45 acre tropical themed water park, which includes: Hurricane Mountain water slide. Bada Bing, Bada Bang, Bada Boom! water slide. Boreas, Eurus, Zephyrus and Nortus water slide. Blue Lagoon Wave Pool. Cannonball, Wahini and Jurahnimo Falls water slides. Discovery Bay for little children. Jackson.
  • 8 Liberty State Park You can access the ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. Liberty Walk is a riverside promenade that stretches 1.3 miles, almost the entire length of the park. Liberation Monument by noted sculptor Nathan Rappaport. Liberty Landing Marina. New York Waterway ferries connect passengers to the North Cove Yacht Harbor in New York City and Sandy Hook in Monmouth County. Interpretive Center (designed by celebrity architect Michael Graves) and the Salt Marsh Natural Area. The historic CRRNJ Terminal was built in 1889. More than 8 million immigrants first stepped foot into the mainland of the United States through this beautiful building on their way to an American future. The Columbus Monument was a gift from Italy to the United States as part of the Columbus Quincentennial Celebration.  Jersey City.
  • 9 Sandy Hook A barrier peninsula approximately 7 miles in length, Sandy Hook is a part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. The prime attractions are the beaches, but history buffs can tour old Nike missile sites, visit Battery Potter and Battery Gunnison, learn at the History House on the restored Officer's Row and climb Sandy Hook Lighthouse. Surf fishing is a popular with anglers, and night fishing passes are available for purchase. There is a 5 mile long multi-use pathway for walkers, bikers and rollerbladers. Birding opportunities include Plum Island, the Spermaceti Cove boardwalk, Horseshoe Cove salt marsh, North Pond and the New Jersey Audubon Society Sandy Hook Bird Observatory. Middletown.
  • 10 Delsea A large region of various protected lands and small, isolated communities with a maritime history. Delsea straddles the northeast shore of Delaware Bay. Salem, Cumberland and Cape May counties.

The Wonders of New Jersey: 11 - 20

  • 11 Barnegat Bay 
  • 12 The Jersey Devil The earliest legends date back to the Lenni Lenape Indians, but the traditional folklore begins with Mother Leeds in the early 1700s. It was said that Mother Leeds had 12 children and, after giving birth to her 12th child, stated that if she had another, it would be the devil. Well, be careful what you wish for. Some people call it the Leeds Devil. And yes, the hockey team was name after the Jersey Devil.
    Jersey Devil Philadelphia Post 1909.jpg
  • 13 Seaside Heights Boardwalk Amusements include Casino Pier with its Jenkinson's Breakwater Beach Water Park, Funtown Pier, Belle Freeman Carousel, Also, there is the Dr. Floyd L. Moreland 1910 Dentzel/Loof Carousel. This century-old antique carousel, located on the Casino Pier, is a historic and artistic jewel with 35 moving horses, 18 stationary horses, 2 camels, 1 lion, 1 tiger and 2 chariots. Seaside Heights.
  • 14 Wildwood Boardwalk 1.8-mile boardwalk. Morey Piers and Beachfront Water Parks. Splash Zone Water Park. National Marbles Hall of Fame. Deep Sea Fishing. Parasailing. Friday night fireworks during the summer.
  • 15 Palisades Interstate Park 12 miles long and half-a-mile wide at its widest, with 2,500 acres of protected cliffs overlooking the Hudson River and New York City. Shared by New Jersey and New York, the land in the NJ Section was the first that the Commission acquired after its creation in 1900 by the states of New York and New Jersey. There are 30 miles of hiking trails to make your feet hurt.
    Palisades Turkey Vulture, P9180061.JPG by Anita363 "Palisades Turkey Vulture,"...from Anita363
  • 16 Meadowlands Stadium The New JERSEY Giants and the New JERSEY Jets are the main attraction and 50/50 owners of Meadowlands Stadium. There is seating for 82,500, including 10,005 club seats and approximately 218 luxury suites. The stadium will host the 2014 Super Bowl and possibly the World Cup if the United States is a host in the future. East Rutherford. 
  • 17 Rutgers University The state university of New Jersey is one of the Colonial Colleges (the nine institutions of higher learning in the colonies founded before the American Revolution), Rutgers is the 8th oldest college in the United States. Landmarks include the High Victorian Gothic Kirkpatrick Chapel. New Brunswick, Piscataway and North Brunswick.
  • 18 High Point State Park The highest elevation in New Jersey at 1,803 feet. As if the highest point in the state was not enough, there is an obelisk monument atop the mountain which was built to honor war veterans. Montague.
  • 19 The Meadowlands 30.4 square mile Meadowlands District, where nature fights for its life against Hudson and Bergen Countys' pollution and encroachment. Pontoon boat tours are available from the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission, and launch from River Barge Park in Carlstadt. Canoe and walking tours are also popular.  Southern Bergen County and Northern Hudson County
  • 20 Prudential Center Home to the New Jersey Devils hockey team, Seton Hall college basketball and the New Jersey Ironmen indoor soccer team. Also, major concerts, WWE wrestling, Cirque du Soleil and comedy shows. Newark.


The Wonders of New Jersey: 21 - 30

  • 21 NHL New Jersey Devils Three Stanley Cups for New Jersey. Newark.

  • 22 NFL Giants Three Super Bowls for New Jersey/New York. East Rutherford.
  • 23 NFL Jets East Rutherford. 
  • 24 Ocean City Boardwalk The Travel Channel gave Ocean City the title of "the No. 1 family beach community in the country." Surfer Magazine named it one of the Top Ten American Surf Towns. In 2008, Frommers named it one of its Top Destinations. There are two and half miles of boardwalk with eight blocks of family amusements. You may want to enter one of city's famous contests, such as the Miss Crustacean Beauty Pageant, the Twins Contest or the Hermit Crab Day festival. At the Music Pier, concerts are performed throughout the year and it is also home to the Ocean City Pops. I do wish the town would change its name though, so not to be confused with Ocean City, Maryland. Ocean City.
  • 25 Lambertville Founded in 1705, this cozy, old river-town is the Antique Capital of New Jersey. Carriage rides, restaurants, coffee shops, art galleries and a view of the scenic Delaware River and Lambertville's Pennsylvanian sister city, New Hope, on the opposite shore. The architecture of the town is anchored by Federal and Victorian buildings. Lambertville Station is a restored 1800s train depot which is now an inn and restaurant. There is the 1816 Marshall House, home to the Lambertville Historical Society. River Horse Brewing Company offers tours and tastings. Also, the Delaware and Raritan Canal cuts through town, offering visitors the opportunity for a nice stroll along its tow path. Lambertville.
    Still Night (144/365) by Wondermonkey2k "Still Night (144/365)" from Wondermonkey2k
  • 26 Horse Country
  • 27 Grounds for Sculpture The best art museum in New Jersey. 35 acre sculpture park and museum featuring famous and up-and-coming artists. Rats restaurant is a destination in and of itself. Also, the Grounds host a variety of concerts. Hamilton.
  • GroundsForSculptureBigHead
  • 28 Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park
    The longest waterfall in New Jersey, the Great Falls drop 77 ft. The National Park designation occurred in 2009. Prior to that it was a National Historic Landmark District. Alexander Hamilton was fascinated with the potential of the great falls, and together with the Society For The Establishment of Useful Manufactures helped to make the district around the falls an early American industrial success story. Colt Mill is also located on the site of the park. This is where Samuel Colt first created his repeating firearm in 1836. Paterson.
    photo By Zainub
  • 29 Battleship New Jersey The most decorated battleship in U.S. Navy history is now a floating museum. According to the official web site, "tours cover many areas, including the Bridge, the crew’s mess, the communication’s room and the big 16” guns. Exhibits include 'New Jerseyans on the Big J', 'A Sailor’s Life', 'Keepers of the Sea' and more." Camden.
  • 30 The Borgata/The Waterclub This impressive $1.1 billion casino hotel features 2,000 rooms and boasts the largest poker room in Atlantic City. The 2,400 seat Borgata Event Center hosts major concerts while the Music Box is home to the nightly Comedy Club. Guests can be pampered at Spa Toccare. The Waterclub offers 800 additional rooms and has a pool theme. The Sunroom Lounge has two outdoor pools. There are also two indoor pools. Immersion is a spa which also features a 75 foot infinity-edge pool. Atlantic City.


The Wonders of New Jersey: 31 - 40

  • 31 Wharton State Forest From the New Jersey DEP web site: "Throughout Wharton are rivers and streams for canoeing, hiking trails (including a major section of the Batona Trail), miles of unpaved roads for mountain biking and horseback riding and numerous lakes, ponds and fields ideal for wildlife observation. Bald eagles, red-tailed hawks, marsh hawks, ospreys, great blue herons, swans, screech owls, great-horned owls, bluebirds, hummingbirds, purple martins, goldfinch, turkeys, beavers, river otters, fox and deer are only some of the wildlife the alert visitor can see." At 122,463 acres, this is the largest tract of preserved land in New Jersey. Parts of Atlantic, Burlington and Camden counties.
  • 32 New Jersey Performing Arts Center Prudential Hall (2,750-seats and the largest of the three NJPAC venues) has been named "one of the world's greatest concert halls" and "the nation's most glamorous theater." Victoria Theater (514-seats) and the intimate Chase Room also offer cultural entertainment opportunities. Newark.
  • 33 Edison National Historic Site West Orange.
  • 34 The Blueberry New Jersey is the birthplace of the cultivated blueberry. The town of Hammonton is known as "The Blueberry Capital of the World." Elizabeth C. White gets the credit for "inventing" the blueberry. And finally, the anti-oxidant rich blueberry is the official fruit of New Jersey. So the next time you are cramming your purple-stained maw with blueberry pie, think fondly of New Jersey as your dessert slides down your gullet...for it is New Jersey that made such a feast possible. 
  • 35 Long Branch Oceanfront Pier Village and a long walkway along the Atlantic Ocean. Long Branch.
  • 36 Caesar's Atlantic City The show-stealer of this hotel/casino is The Pier Shops at Caesars with three levels of upscale shopping, restaurants, nightlife and a water and light show at the tip of the structure, jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean from the Atlantic City Boardwalk. If you get exhausted eating and buying things, you can waddle over to the Qua Baths & Spa, with its Roman bath, treatment rooms and an outdoor rooftop pool. Atlantic City.
  • Fountain Show, The Pier Shops at Caesars, Atla...Image by Bogdan Migulski via Flickr
  • 37 Harrahs Resort and Casino 113,000 square foot casino, more than 3,700 slot machines and Poker Room, host to the World Series of Poker. The Pool is a tropical themed indoor pool which becomes a night club after dark. Red Door Spa was chosen as Best Casino Hotel Spa by SpaFinder magazine in 2008. The Waterfront Tower expansion was completed in 2008. This addition to the resort is breathtaking at night due to its enormous brightly lit animations on the sides of the tower. Atlantic City.
  • 38 Ellis Island Ah, you know Ellis Island! A small part of the island is an enclave that belongs to New York. Jersey City.
  • Ellis Island With Off-Limits Bridge Connecting it to New Jersey
  • 39 Mountain Creek Skiing. Snowboarding. Snow Tubing. Cobblestone Village. Diablo Free-Ride Park. Mountain Creek Waterpark. Open Air Gondola Rides. You might choose to stay at the luxurious Appalachian Hotel or Black Creek Sanctuary. Vernon. 
  • 40 Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge More than 43,000 acres of coastal habitats preserved for migratory birds. An excellent site for birdwatching and nature photography.


The Wonders of New Jersey: 41 - 50

  • 41 Horse Country
  • 42 Downtown Morristown Includes Acorn Hall. Morristown.
  • 43 Thomas Edison

  • 44 Stokes State Forest From the official web site of the State Forest: "The crest of Sunrise Mountain is one of the most frequently visited sites in Stokes State Forest. The mountaintop provides a breathtaking view at an elevation of 1,653 feet above sea level. The thin soil and harsh climate characteristic of Sunrise Mountain is a difficult environment in which few plants can survive. Mountain laurel, wild blueberry, pitch pine and scrub oak are among the natural vegetation found throughout the area. The pavilion at the summit was built in the late 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps." Also from the web site: "Tillman Ravine: This cool evergreen forest of eastern hemlock is ideally suited for the steep slopes carved by the rushing waters of Tillman Brook. Several trails wander through this spectacular ravine, providing views of waterfalls and ferns clinging to rock crevices. The area is home to the threatened barred owl and other endangered species." In total, a 12.5 mile section of the Appalachian Trail runs through Stokes State Forest.
  • 45 Brendan T. Byrne State Forest From the official website: "Visitors are greeted by the fresh scent of pines...The Lebanon Glass Works was established in 1851 and was successful until 1867, when it shut down after depleting the supply of wood necessary for the furnace to operate.
    Today, hikers can follow the sandy trails and roads that crisscross the forest, sometimes passing near the remains of stone or brick structures or where large depressions indicate the location of what was once a bustling town. Pure, iron-rich streams flow through acres of swampy land covered with dense stands of Atlantic white cedar.
    Whitesbog Village was an "active 19th and 20th-century cranberry and blueberry producing community. This company town was founded in the 1870s by Joseph J. White. The commercial high-bush blueberry was developed here by Elizabeth White. Once a thriving town and one of the largest cranberry farms in the state, the now silent village is an example of the changes in agriculture in this state. The site is undergoing restoration and is leased to the Whitesbog Preservation Trust, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the restoration of the village. Cedar Swamp Natural Area: Many of the forest communities represented in the New Jersey Pine Barrens may be observed along the trails through the natural area. These include upland pine-oak and oak-pine forest, pitch pine lowland forest and Atlantic white cedar swamp. The natural area supports the federally threatened swamp pink and other endangered plant species."
  • 46 Downtown Red Bank  Red Bank.
    IMG_4666 by tom sullivan A photo of Red Bank's Fourth of July celebration by Tom Sullivan
  • 47 George Washington Bridge Fort Lee.
  • NJ - Fort Lee: George Washington Bridge at night by wallyg NJ - Fort Lee: George Washington...from wallyg
  • 48 Crystal Springs Resort Minerals Resort and Spa. Grand Cascades Lodge. Also, there is The Biosphere, an indoor pool complex with an underground aquarium, water slide, vortex pools and caves, and tropical foliage. There are seven golf courses including Ballyowen. Latour is a four-star restaurant with spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. The restaurant’s wine cellar has a tasting room with two walls of arched viewing windows and a wine storage vault with more than 60,000 bottles. Vernon.
  • 49 Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park Opened in 1834, the Canal was used mostly to carry coal from Pennsylvania. The waterway offers a highway of surprising biological diversity cutting through Central Jersey. Some of the most scenic sections of the Canal are: Along Princeton's Lake Carnegie, Lambertville and Bull's Island.
  • Kayaking the Delaware & Raritan Canal
  • 50 Morristown National Historical Park This park is divided into three sections: 1. Washington's Headquarters Unit features the Ford Mansion, which was General George Washington's headquarters during the winter of 1779-1780. It houses the Washington's Headquarters Museum and is available for guided tours. 2. The Jockey Hollow Unit has nature trails and soldier's huts. Also the historic Wick House. 3. The Fort Nonsense and Cross Estate Gardens Unit features a scenic view, a 1700s flower garden and hiking trails.

The Wonders of New Jersey: 51 - 60

  • 51 Asbury Park Boardwalk Visit the Stone Pony. Get freaked out by Tillie, the most disturbing smiling cartoon character in the world. Asbury Park Convention Hall. Old Casino Building. Asbury Park.
  • 52 Ocean Grove Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this neighborhood is well known for its abundant examples of Victorian architecture. The land is owned by the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association which leases many of the houses to residents, businesses and quaint hotels. The Great Auditorium, built in 1894, seats 9,000 people. The Aurora, built in 1884, may not be the most colorful Victorian in town, but its delicate scrolled carvings make it one of the most beautiful. Other beauties are The Lullaby, Sea Angel's Dream, Jersey Shore Arts Center, Ocean Grove Gourmet, The Auditorium Bookstore, Nagle's Ice Cream, The Carriage House, The Majestic, Ocean Plaza, Neptune.
  • 53 The Arts Center Ranked among the top five most successful amphitheaters in the country. The winter off-season is an opportunity to host the Holiday Light Spectacular. This is a 2.5-mile slow drive through a forest of Christmas, Channukah and secular lights. Holmdel.
  • 54 Downtown New Brunswick Harvest Moon Brewery, Tumulty's Pub, Old Man Rafferty's and the Frog and the Peach. Just make sure you don't stray too far from the touristy areas, or else you might find yourself in one of New Brunswick's two quality hospitals. New Brunswick.
  • 55 Newark Museum 80 galleries of art and science, a miniature zoo, planetarium, sculpture garden and the Victorian Ballantine House, a restored 1885 mansion that is a National Historic Landmark. The galleries of the museum feature African Art, American Art, Art of the Americas, Asian Art, Classic Art, Contemporary Art and Decorative Arts. There are also the Natural Science Galleries and the Dreyfuss Memorial Garden. Newark.
  • 56 Lucy the Elephant France may have the Eiffel Tower, but New Jersey has Lucy the Elephant. This argument is usually enough to get a Frenchie to shut his frog-eating mouth. Margate.
  • 57 Downtown Montclair
  • 58 Downtown Burlington  Many historically importantant sites, including: Old St. Mary's, the oldest Episcopal church in New Jersey; Burlington Pharmacy, the state's oldest; Burlington Island, the first recorded European settlement in New Jersey, is visible from the waterfront; the Ulysses S. Grant House; James Fennimore Cooper House. Burlington.
  • 59 Liberty Science Center An interactive science museum in Liberty State Park. Permanent exhibits include Nature Unleashed, Skyscraper!, Infection Connection, Communication, Eat and be Eaten, I Explore, Our Hudson Home, Energy Quest, Wonder Why, Wildlife Challenge and Breakthroughs. IMAX Dome Theater and Digital 3D Theater offer entertaining educational films. Jersey City. 
  • 60 Barnegat Lighthouse "Old Barney" is the most famous lighthouse in New Jersey. It is 172 ft. tall and was built in 1857. Barnegat Light.
    Calm Before the Storm....("pink sky in morning, sailors take warning") by Dr DAD (Daniel A D'Auria MD) "Calm Before the..." from Dr DAD (Daniel A D'Auria MD)