Road Trip New Jersey
Rev up for a fall road trip, using New Jersey's eight Scenic Byways as your guide. These designated routes showcase the state's cultural contributions, rich heritage and natural beauty—plus they offer ideal landscapes to enjoy foliage as it peak. Download this list and plan your journey today! Fuel your road trip with a diner or restaurant break, and turn it into a weekend getaway with a stay at a bed & breakfast, inn or campground.
For turn-by-turn directions and more information, please visit the New Jersey Scenic Byways section of the NJ Department of Transportation website. (Mileage noted is approximate.)
1. Bayshore Heritage
Wind your way along the Delaware Bay to Cape May State Park (via Salem, Cumberland and Cape May Counties) to see New Jersey's beautiful shoreline habitats and experience the state's fascinating maritime history. This Scenic Byway is approximately 122 miles long, but you can easily break it up into shorter drives. Places to stop include Fort Mott State Park, Bayshore Center at Bivalve, East Point Lighthouse and Cape May Lighthouse. Plan a seafood restaurant stop!
2. Delaware River
Meander north from Trenton ("Trent's Town") along the Delaware River and the Delaware and Raritan Canal on New Jersey's first Scenic Byway. The 34-mile route takes you past Washington Crossing State Park, recreational areas, farms and one of the largest flea markets on the East Coast. Of course, fall foliage reflecting on the Delaware River is the key attraction as you cruise through the historic towns of Lambertville and Stockton on your way to Frenchtown. All three offer great dining (many BYOB), shopping and charming B&Bs.
3. Millstone Valley
Time-travel to Revolutionary War times and America’s canal era on this 25-mile Scenic Byway. It loops the Millstone River through Kingston, Franklin and Hillsborough Townships. You’ll see another part of the Delaware and Raritan Canal system that crosses through the center of the state and is ideal for walking, biking, kayaking and birding. And yes, George Washington definitely slept here—you’ll drive by the beautifully restored Rockingham, General Washington’s last wartime headquarters. Include a detour to nearby Princeton to shop and dine.
Enjoy spectacular panoramas of the Hudson River and New York City skyline from lookout points on this 20-mile Scenic Byway on the Palisades Interstate Parkway and Henry Hudson Drive. New Jersey’s section of Palisades Interstate Park, a National Historic Landmark, also includes loads of hiking trails for up-close views. Other stops along the way include Fort Lee Historic Park, Tenafly Nature Center and the State Line Lookout.
5. Pine Barrens
Explore one of the world's most mysterious and unique ecosystems on the Pine Barrens Scenic Byway, a 130-mile adventure (bordered by the Mullica River, Maurice River and Delaware Bay) that is divided into three different routes. Make plans to view wildlife at the Edwin B. Forsythe and Cape May National Wildlife Refuges, stop for a picnic at Bass River State Forest or learn about the area's iron bog history at Batsto Village in Wharton State Forest.
6. Upper Freehold
The 24-mile Upper Freehold Historic Farmland Scenic Byway in Monmouth County showcases the state's agricultural history. You'll see beautifully preserved farms as you motor past charming Allentown, Historic Walnford and the hamlet of Imlaystown. Plan a stop at Working Dog Winery near the Assunpink Wildlife Management Area or check out the Horse Park of NJ.
7. Warren Heritage
Follow the trail of the Lenni-Lenape Tribe on this historic road trip to the quaint town of Hackettstown. The Warren Heritage Scenic Byway takes you 19 miles along Rt. 57, which eventually became an early turnpike to accommodate products going to and from market. It's also the site of New Jersey's first concrete highway! Learn more about the history of the Morris Canal, or enjoy a view (and the excellent trout fishing) of the Musconetcong River at Stephens State Park.
8. Western Highlands
This 23-mile Scenic Byway travels north through Sussex County from Rt. 23 to the border of New Jersey and New York. You'll pass through the Newark Pequannock Watershed and Hamburg Mountain Wildlife Management Area as you head to Wawayanda State Park. Here's your chance to step onto New Jersey's section of the Appalachian Trail or explore attractions in the Vernon area, which include year-round sports at Mountain Creek, and golf, dining and spa-going at Crystal Springs Resort.
Explore more road-worthy destinations at visitnj.org, where you can also download a free NJ travel guide or sign up for e-news from New Jersey Travel and Tourism.