If you’re planning a visit to the New Jersey area, or even if you live and work there every day, you probably know that viewing an online map of New Jersey will quickly show you all the great things there are to do in the area. Even if you have a limited budget, you’ll be surprised at the many options available in New Jersey for little or no cost. During times of financial hardship, you may have thought that your days of having fun in New Jersey were over. Think again! Here’s a great list of 10 Free things to do in New Jersey to get your creative juices flowing:
1 High Pointe State Park. For a breathtaking view of the mountains and valleys of the New Jersey Appalachian Trail, visit High Point State Park. Properly named as the tallest point in the entire state, this is a great place to enjoy an afternoon out in nature.
2 New Jersey Shoreline. During the off-season months, you can access many New Jersey beaches for free. For starters, try these beaches: Wildwood, Atlantic City and North Wildwood. Believe it or not, there are over 200 more spots all up and down the coastline. Even with cooler temperatures, you can body surf in a full suit, or you can just walk along the ocean and enjoy the cool ocean breeze.
3 Atlantic City Historical Museum. Open daily from 10am to 4pm, the Atlantic City Historical Museum is absolutely free to the public. With beautiful exhibits, a fun little gift shop, and educational video presentations, this is a great little stop to learn something new about this famous city.
4 Howell Living History Farm. This great little spot in Titusville NJ is an historic farm that is restored as if it still exists in the year 1900. Want to build a barn, bake a loaf of bread, or ride in a buggy pulled by horses? You can play with farm animals, help sweep out the barn, or, if you’re lucky, you may even get a chance to deliver a baby lamb! Admission is free to the public.
5 New York Skyline Photo Ops. For a great view of the city day or night, head over to Weekhawken New Jersey, a diverse community with a rich history full of beautiful parks and ballfields. Find a place to stop and then look across the Hudson river. There you have it - a beautiful view of the New York skyline.
6 Atlantic City Summer Concert Series. Visit the Atlantic City Public Library for the popular tradition of summer concerts. All shows start at 1pm on many Saturdays throughout June, July and August, and the tunes keep on rocking until dusk. Grab a picnic and enjoy some great music at no cost to your family.
7 Cattus Island County Park. The main attraction here is almost 300 acres of unspoiled nature, hiking trails, beautiful boardwalks, and natural wetlands. A great spot for bird watching, you can also go cross-country skiing, fishing, or crabbing. You can also walk the nature trails, enjoy a picnic, or view the many scenic overlooks throughout the park.
8 Jersey-Atlantic Wind Farm Tours. The Atlantic City Utilities Authority (ACUA) holds free open house tours every Monday and Friday at noon all throughout the summer. No appointment is needed to enjoy this no cost educational tour of the fascinating Jersey-Atlantic Wind Farm.
9 Cape May County Park Zoo. Believe it or not, visitors can spend an entire day at this zoo for absolutely no cost! Open daily from 10am until 4:45pm, and Wednesday nights until 7:45pm, the Cape May County Park and Zoo includes a beautiful park, hundreds of animals from all around the world, picnic areas, hiking trails, biking paths and a playground.
10 Cape May Diamond Hunting. Visit Sunset Beach to find thousands of ocean-polished stones that have landed on the sand after a long journey at sea. With all sizes, colors and varieties, you’ll be sure to spend an enjoyable afternoon searching for many gems, including the famous quartz stones known as “Cape May Diamonds”. These beautiful clear gems can be professionally polished and cleaned to look nearly like genuine diamonds! Find yourself a bunch of diamonds to make your own jewelry or put on display in your home.
This list is just a small sampling of all the many no-cost things you can do in this wonderful state. With a little creativity and a good map of New Jersey, you will be sure to come up with your own ideas. The best thing about these free entertainment options are the added bonuses of education, being out in nature, spending quality time with loved ones, and having a NJ experience that is uniquely yours.
Article courtesy of Charlie Withers of the Two Guys Wine Blog. When not traveling the globe tasting wine, Charlie divides his time between a beachfront home in Hermosa Beach, CA and a Vaction home in Phoenix, Arizona. Follow him on Twitter @twoguyswine