You don’t need to head to the nearest city to enjoy incredible attractions! New Jersey is filled with fun museums and one-of-a-kind experiences; many of these can be found in our larger cities, but there are quite a few small towns with big attractions. These are just a few of the amazing places you can find in towns with populations of less than 10,000.
1. Sterling Hill Mine And Museum, Ogdensburg, Population: 2,329
Explore an underground mine filled with fluorescent rocks and learn about New Jersey's rich mining history! Sterling Hill provides a truly unique experience that the whole family can enjoy.
2. Popcorn Park Animal Refuge, Forked River, Population: 5,244
This incredible animal refuge is maintained by the Associate Humane Societies and operates as a zoo. Popcorn Park is a sanctuary for abandoned, injured, ill, exploited, abused or elderly wildlife, exotic and farm animals, and birds. Learn about each unique rescue story, support a non-profit and even interact with some of the animals! Above is a photo of Mr. Wiggles, a Squirrel Monkey who was being kept illegally as a pet before he was rescued.
3. Aviation Hall Of Fame, Teterboro, Population: 71
This tiny town is home to mainly industrial complexes, but also offers the private Teterboro Airport and the Aviation Hall Of Fame. New Jersey was a pioneer in the aviation industry and much can be learned at this museum. Visit during an open cockpit weekend for interactive fun!
4. Roebling Museum, Roebling, Population: 3,715
This unique museum is highly specialized, and a favorite amongst engineers. According to its website, "The mission of the Roebling Museum is to document, preserve and exhibit the history of the John A. Roebling’s Sons Company, the Roebling family and the village of Roebling. Its focus is not only on the industrial and technological achievements of the company but on the unique social history of its workforce and the town it created."
5. Historic Smithville, Smithville, Population: 7,242
A popular destination for locals and travelers alike, visiting Historic Smithville is like taking a trip back in time. Enjoy shops, dining, entertainment, frequent events and a bed & breakfast. Though it can get lively, it is always charming!
6. Space Farms Zoo And Museum, Sussex, Population: 2,097
A family-friendly favorite, Space Farms offers an Americana museum, educational programming and the opportunity to interact with animals. The zoo participates in many programs which help to benefit wildlife and endangered species.
7. Clementon Park, Clementon, Population: 4,976
This sizable amusement park offers thrill rides, family rides and a water park!
8. Lakota Wolf Preserve, Columbia, Population: 229
A major attraction in a tiny town, Lakota Wolf Preserve is an amazing non-profit that allows visitors to get up close to magnificent wildlife. This wolf preserve is the largest in the Northeast and is also home to foxes and bobcats.
9. National Guard Militia Museum, Sea Girt, Population: 1,811
This interesting museum chronicles the history of the New Jersey National Guard, including their role in the battle of Normandy.
10. Lucy The Elephant, Margate, Population: 6,342
This beach-side attraction brings in big crowds. Guests can even tour the inside of this six story elephant, built over a century ago for use as a hotel.
New Jersey has so many amazing attractions. What others can you think of that are located in tiny towns? Let us know in the comments!