National parks in New Jersey are a great way to spend a weekend with your family. These sites are easy to access and offer a wide range of nature and history.
The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is a popular destination for hikers, kayakers, rafters and fishermen. It also offers spectacular views of the Delaware River and waterfalls.
Located in the city of Paterson, New Jersey, Paterson Great Falls is a beautiful natural landmark. It is the second largest waterfall east of the Mississippi River.
The falls are a 300-foot wide, 77-foot high waterway that is home to up to two billion gallons of water every day. As a result, it is one of the most powerful waterfalls in the United States.
Once upon a time, the falls were revered by Native American tribes as a sign of their spiritual power and majesty. Today, the falls are a popular tourist destination in New Jersey.
The waterfall was also a prominent location in the television series, “The Sopranos.” In fact, the shows sixth season included an episode that featured the falls as a backdrop for a conversation between characters. If you’re visiting Paterson, be sure to visit the national park and take in all that this majestic site has to offer.
The Thomas Edison National Historical Park is located in West Orange and preserves the lab complex and home where America’s most innovative inventor lived and worked. During his lifetime he produced many inventions that helped shape modern day life.
The main laboratory building contains exhibits related to his work in electricity and sound. It also houses original Edison equipment.
Visitors can walk around the grounds of the main campus and watch a film about him in the Visitor Center. It’s a great way to learn about the history of this place.
The Glenmont estate is a spectacular Gilded Age mansion where Edison, his wife and their children lived. The house and its library are all original.
The Pinelands National Reserve, America's first national park, encompasses 1.1 million acres, extending into seven counties and 56 municipalities. Its pristine forests and wetlands help clean the air, absorb greenhouse gasses, support its agricultural industry, maintain the ecological balance of coastal estuaries, and provide drinking water for millions of people.
In the park you'll find pitch pine lowlands and hardwood swamps, 850 plant species, and 43 endangered and threatened animal species. You can hike, picnic, swim, and camp in this stunning natural wonderland.
A UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the Pinelands protects rare species of plants and animals that have been pushed to the edge of extinction elsewhere. The region also preserves a rich cultural history, which includes Native American populations, early American industries, cranberry bog iron forging, and military activity.
The Pinelands Commission was established by the National Parks and Recreation Act of 1978 to oversee the protection, preservation and enhancement of the region's unique culture and environmental resources. Members are appointed by the governor, subject to confirmation by the New Jersey Senate, and serve three year terms without compensation.
Morristown National Historical Park honors the sites where General Washington and his Continental Army encamped during two critical winters of the Revolutionary War. The park features four sites, including Ford Mansion or Washington’s Headquarters, Jockey Hollow, Fort Nonsense and the New Jersey Brigade encampment area, as well as a museum and library collection relating to these encampments and George Washington.
The site is also home to 27 miles of wooded trails for hiking. It’s a great way to get in touch with nature and learn about the history of the Revolutionary War.
Morristown’s official website provides information about hours, directions, and a schedule of activities, such as ranger guided hikes and talks. It also features a series of informative videos to help you navigate the historic nature of the site.