While New Jersey does have one of the most dense concentrations of railways and roadways in the nation, we’re not all highways and train tracks. The Garden State has an abundance of natural beauty, and one of the best ways to enjoy it is a multi-day road trip. This particular trip focuses on the northern portion of the state, looping through several counties including Sussex, Warren, Bergen and Passaic. While a fun jaunt any time of year, I think it truly stands out in the fall. Start planning now for your autumn adventure.
High Point State Park
The highest point in New Jersey, High Point offers stunning panoramic views. There's beauty every direction you look, and reaching the summit is easy. While you can hike your way up, you can also drive and park at the peak.
Another lovely spot you can just drive up to, visitors can score spectacular views from the elevated platform. It towers over 200 feet and is best viewed after a rainy day or two.
Worthington State Forest
Located in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, you can access the river from here. Our mountains may not be the highest, but they sure do look impressive from the water. Be sure to bring your boat (canoe/kayak) or rent one nearby.
Stay: The RoseMary Inn
After your day in nature, lavish yourself in luxury. This B&B in Columbia has dozens of 5-star reviews on TripAdvisor, and they're well deserved. Enjoy views of the Kittatinny Mountains, a picturesque pond and a delicious 3-course breakfast.
Great Falls National Historical Park
This natural oasis in the heart of Paterson offers several hiking trails and amazing views from all angles. I snapped this shot from a distance, but visitors can cross a bridge near the falls for a unique perspective.
Palisades Interstate Park
A truly magical place, this is one of my favorite parks in New Jersey. Visitors will delight in all that can be found here including a stunning tower (the Women's Federation Monument) and manor ruins (Cliffdale Manor). You'll find several hiking trails and scenic views of the Hudson River. The park is free to visit, offers boat access at the Alpine Boat Basin and even has a snack shack.
Ringwood State Park
Besides the magnificent man-made mansions, you'll find a beautiful botanical garden, hiking trails and Shepherd Lake. Enjoy flowers or foliage, depending on the season.
Waywayanda State Park
Popular among boaters and fishermen (and women), visitors can camp here, and even hike a 20-mile stretch of the famed Appalachian Trail. There are a variety of landscapes and the Bearfort Mountain Natural Area is a haven for hawks.