10 Free Attractions in New Jersey
It’s undeniable: one of the easiest ways to save money on your New Jersey vacation is to take advantage of free attractions. From wooded parks and hiking trails to sunny beaches and boardwalks, there are plenty of free outdoor things to do in New Jersey, but there are also notable museums and indoor attractions that won’t cost a penny. The next time you visit New Jersey, try this roundup of free attractions.
Cape May County Park & Zoo
707 Route 9 N., Cape May Court House, NJ
Explore more than 85 acres of lush country gardens at this county park, or bring the whole family to the Cape May County Zoo, a free attraction featuring more than 550 animals, representing more than 250 species. You can find lions, tigers and bears (plus much more!) at this exciting kid-friendly destination.
Princeton University Art Museum
Princeton University, Princeton, NJ
Admission is always free at Princeton University Art Museum, where 92,000 works of art showcase an array of styles, from ancient to contemporary. The Princeton University campus also is home to one of the country’s most significant collections of 20th and 21st-century sculpture, presented as public artwork dispersed throughout the walkways and green spaces.
354 Stockton St., Princeton, NJ
Explore the stately halls of historic Drumthwacket, which is not only a house museum but the official residence of the governor of New Jersey. The land was once owned by William Penn, and the mansion itself dates back to the early 1800s, when Charles Smith Olden, a state senator and then governor, lived in the residence. Be sure to make a reservation in advance for the free guided tour. Free parking is also available.
Heritage Glass Museum
25 E. High St., Glassboro, NJ
From antique glassworker tools and hand-blown glass to vintage bottles and paperweights, the Heritage Glass Museum in Glassboro features more than 200 years of South Jersey glass, and it won’t cost you anything to visit. The museum is located in the stately Hollybush Mansion, built in 1847.
Howell Living History Farm
70 Wooden's Lane, Lambertville, NJ
Visit this early 1900s horse-powered farm for a glimpse into a bygone era. Admission is free to the Howell Living History Farm in Lambertville and activities such as summer camp, corn maze trips and hayrides require an additional cost.
The Center for Contemporary Art
2020 Burnt Mills Rd., Bedminster Township, NJ
Featuring a variety of contemporary art exhibits by emerging, established and underrepresented artists in a range of media, The Center for Contemporary Art is a thought-provoking destination for visual arts. Admission is free (with a suggested donation of $5), and classes for a cost are also available.
Twin Lights Historic Site
2 Light House Rd., Highlands, NJ
Officially known as Navesink Light Station, this National Historic Landmark is most commonly known as Twin Lights, due to its dual, nonidentical light towers (one flashing and one fixed), situated 200 feet above sea level. Explore the castle-like structures of this iconic landmark, and take in breathtaking views from the bluffs. While you're here, make sure to check out the photographs and relics on display in the museum.
Bridgeton Hall of Fame All Sports Museum
Burt Avenue Recreation Center, Burt St. and Babe Ruth Dr., Bridgeton
Sports lovers will find plenty of variety at the Bridgeton Hall of Fame All Sports Museum, where men and women of all sports are recognized. Peruse rare memorabilia such as trophies, medals and cups, as well as the Cinncinati Reds bat collection, a Golden Glove from Hall of Fame legend Willie Mays and much more.
Presby Memorial Iris Gardens
474 Upper Mountain Ave., Montclair, NJ
Walking paths lattice across 6.5 acres of breathtaking botanical gardens at the Presby Memorial Iris Gardens, where approximately 10,000 plants representing more than 3,000 differently named iris varieties are on display. Blooming season is typically mid-May to early June, so be sure to catch the peak of this natural beauty. Admission is free, but donations are greatly appreciated.
Empty Sky, 9/11 Memorial
Liberty State Park, Jersey City, NJ
A dramatic tribute to those that lost their lives at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, "Empty Sky" features twin stainless steel walls are 210 feet long, 30 feet high and feature the engraved names of those who perished in the attacks. This memorial is located in lush Liberty State Park, an urban oasis where visitors can see the Manhattan skyline, the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island in the distance. The memorial and park are free of charge to all visitors.