New Jersey March 01, 2017
12 Incredible Trips In New Jersey That Will Change Your Life
With spring just weeks away, it’s time to start planning some outdoor adventures. While traveling can be great, there’s also plenty to be found in the Garden State. It’s easy to take all that we have for granted, so be sure to set aside some time to explore. These 12 destinations will make your day and maybe even enrich your life.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
1. The trip inside a giant elephant.
We're probably all familiar with Lucy, the massive mammoth in Margate. A fun sight to see, touring inside this 6-story former restaurant is even more amazing. Built in 1881, Lucy has also served as an office, tavern and guest cottage over the years. Built as part of a real estate promotion, she's often considered the world's first roadside attraction. To learn more about Lucy, click here:
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2. The trip to see a giant gravity defying boulder.
Tripod Rock is a glacial erratic found in Kinnelon's Pyramid Mountain Natural Historic Area. A glacial erratic is a piece of rock that differs from the size and type of rock native to the area in which it rests. It is carried by the melting of glacial ice, sometimes for miles. If this doesn't make the boulder unique enough, it is balancing on top of three smaller rocks at a fairly steep angle. Tripod Rock measures around 19 feet long and 10 feet wide, weighing about 140 tons. It is elevated about 18 inches from the ground. You can find it on a scenic 3-mile loop hike. Learn more here:
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3. The trip to an epic boardwalk.
There's so much to do on Point Pleasant Beach besides the beach. Jenkinson's Boardwalk has the best rides and games and their aquarium is perfect for family fun. Not just a summer destination, the arcades and aquarium are open year round, though thrill rides (including carousels and coasters) are only open seasonally. Don't miss seafood at The Shrimp Box while you're here. Learn more here:
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4. A trip through time in one of New Jersey's oldest cities.
According to the town's website, Burlington was first founded in 1677 as part of West Jersey. However, there is archaeological evidence that suggests Swedish immigrants may have colonized the area decades earlier. There is a thriving historic district along High Street and the town offers many treasures from the past and present. Enjoy over three dozen historic sites including the oldest Episcopal Church and the oldest continually operating pharmacy in New Jersey. To learn more, click here:
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5. The winery resort trip.
This gorgeous resort in the Pinelands features an 18-hole golf course, outdoor pool, two restaurants and one of the oldest wineries in America. Spend a night at the luxurious hotel or just visit for a magnificent meal or winery tour. Your guided tour costs just $10 and includes a tasting and etched wine glass. To learn more about this beautiful resort, click here:
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6. The trip to a fairy tale garden.
Leonard J. Buck Garden in Far Hills is truly breathtaking – something you might spot in another world. This is is one of the nation's premier rock gardens, with towering boulders dotting the landscape. Enjoy winding waterfront pathways and wildflowers each spring. They also offer great special events; visit for maple sugaring on March 4th, 5th, 11th or 12th. The event is free, with a $1 suggested donation. To learn more about the gardens, check out:
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7. A trip up in the air at a balloon festival.
The QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is the largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America. Enjoy over 100 unique hot air balloons and consider taking a ride at sunrise - it's spectacular. But this festival isn't only about balloons. The festival offers live music by big name acts (the Jonas Brothers performed in 2007), family entertainment, crafters, vendors, food, fireworks and much more. To learn more about this festival in Readington, click here:
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8. The day trip to New Jersey's most charming town.
It's almost impossible not to love Cape May. The charming seashore town offers beautiful beaches, an abundance of history, spectacular architecture, a fantastic dining scene, unique shops and so much more. One of the best ways to enjoy this island (yep, it's a manmade island) is through a trolley tour. To learn more about Cape May, click here:
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9. The one-of-a-kind theme park that the whole family can enjoy.
Diggerland is a construction-themed amusement park with attractions for guests of all ages. Kids can operate modified construction equipment and adults can ride the real thing. They've also got action-filled live shows and one of the tallest ropes courses in the world. To learn more about the park, click here:
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10. A trip underground to a breathtaking rainbow tunnel.
New Jersey is the fluorescent mineral capital of the world and the Sterling Hill Mine is one of the best places to experience that up close. Take a tour of the mine, which is home to an unforgettable rainbow tunnel and then head above ground to the museum. Learn all about New Jersey's geology and take home a mineral with you when you go. There's also another, lesser known tunnel - the Trotter Tunnel is open only on special occasions and private tours are conducted by former miners. To learn more about Sterling Hill, click here:
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11. The quintessential wild and crazy Atlantic City trip.
Or not so crazy. There's plenty to do in Atlantic City besides party and gamble. You'll find live music, fine dining, free beaches, spectacular spas, museums and even an aquarium at historic Gardner's Basin. Atlantic City is also home to New Jersey's tallest lighthouse, scenic boat tours and frequent festivals. Don't forget the mix of high end and outlet shopping! Learn more about Atlantic City here:
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12. A magical trip to some of the most beautiful sculpture gardens in the world.
Grounds For Sculpture in Hamilton is definitely a world-class attraction. This is definitely one of the most magical places in all of the Garden State with 42 acres of lush greenery and incredible artwork. In addition to the massive outdoor sculptures, there are six indoor galleries, two cafes, a gift shop and the most amazing French restaurant. Walk through tunnels of trees while taking in over 250 pieces of pure brilliance and keep an eye out for the peacocks. To learn more, click here:
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These unforgettable trips will leave a lasting impact on your life. Make memories to last forever while enjoying some of our state’s most unique, exciting and beautiful places. What other New Jersey destinations would you add to this list?