There’s so much more to New Jersey than its mid-Atlantic location, sandwiched between New York City and Philadelphia. The state is bursting with write-home-about attractions and one-of-a-kind towns—from Princeton’s ivy-covered campus and the world’s first boardwalk to the oldest operating lighthouse and Thomas Edison’s storied laboratory. Add in 130 miles of Atlantic shoreline, top-rated amusement parks, fine and performing arts, jackpot bells and whistles, and noteworthy historical landmarks, and you’ll discover why New Jersey is the ideal touring destination!
Whether your group is seeking extreme thrills or learning experiences disguised as play, New Jersey has you covered. Six Flags Great Adventure is the crown jewel of the state’s amusement parks, boasting rides for every age (and level of bravery!), live shows, and shopping. American Dream houses every type of pleasurable pursuit you can imagine under its ultra-expansive roof—including the Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park, which happens to be the Western Hemisphere’s largest indoor amusement park. Looking for edu-tainment opportunities? Liberty Science Center and Adventure Aquarium are two absolute must-sees.
Treat your group to a sun-and-sea vacation along 130 miles of soft, sandy beaches. The Sandy Hook Unit of Gateway National Recreation Area delivers a unique blend of history and recreation. Splash in the waves, jam to live music, and pose in front of Instagram-worthy art murals in Asbury Park. Spread a blanket across your own swath on the extra-wide beaches and marvel over mid-century Doo-Wop architecture in The Wildwoods. Or excavate Cape May “Diamonds” and admire the “Painted Ladies” in Victorian Cape May.
Arts & culture scene
Breathtaking masterpieces loom largely under clear, blue skies at Grounds For Sculpture, a distinctive outdoor art park. Sit back and let world-class performers dazzle your group at NJPAC. Explore exotic collections from around the globe at the Newark Museum of Art. And gaze upon artifacts that embody the wonders of science, history, and the arts at the New Jersey State Museum.
High-rolling & high-horsepower energy
Atlantic City’s crowd-pleasing casinos are a jackpot for gamblers, foodies, and music and comedy fans. Favorites lining its famed boardwalk include Caesar’s, Hard Rock, Tropicana, and Bally’s. And don’t miss the city’s gaming and entertainment destinations tucked away from the boards— including Harrah’s and Borgata. Further north, Meadowlands Racing showcases the excitement of live harness racing, around-the-globe simulcasting, and FanDuel Sportsbook betting.
From the distant past to recent memory, New Jersey offers a nearly endless array of historical sites. Your group can marvel over military relics at the Old Barracks Museum or experience what it was like to serve aboard the much-decorated Battleship New Jersey. Glimpse into the industrial revolution at Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park or stroll a perfectly preserved 19th-century company town at Historic Cold Spring Village. Finally, groups can pay their respects to those lost to us not so long ago at the reverent Empty Sky 9/11 Memorial.
A mouth-watering melting pot
For innovative dining that showcases an aromatic blend of authentic international options, New Jersey delivers deliciously. The multi-cultural cuisine is a representation of the diverse ethnicities that populate the state and is a favorite among Garden State locals and tourists alike. Italian, Japanese, Indian, Cuban, Portuguese, and fusion specialty restaurants can be found in every region. And the options continue to grow—literally. Many New Jersey farms are now cultivating ingredients used in Asian, Latin American, and Caribbean fare. A glimpse at New Jersey’s bounty of crops reveals exotic peppers, squashes, eggplants, and greens alongside traditional corn, world-renowned tomatoes, and cucumbers. Of course, the state’s farm-to-table cuisine and diner culture are not to be missed, either!
Planning ahead: seasonal sensations
The brilliant transformation of New Jersey’s lush green summer trees to the vibrant hues of amber, orange, and deep crimson happens each autumn. The month of October is the perfect time to host a fall foliage tour and discover the state’s great outdoors as its palette of colors transforms the landscape, from the mountains to the farmlands. Then, even before Thanksgiving turkeys are carved, Victorian Cape May is illuminated with the Christmas spirit. From Nov. 17, 2023, through Jan. 1, 2024, this seaside destination will exude a Dickensian charm to wrap visitors in the warmth of the holiday season through festive decorations and joyous happenings.
Make it a multi-day journey! New Jersey offers a wide variety of accommodations, ranging from budget to luxury, with competitive rates in comparison to its big-city neighbors. For assistance in planning your group tour, go to visitnj.org/travel-agent-and-tour-groups-resources.
Photos provided by New Jersey Division of Travel & Tourism