Family Friendly Attractions
From exotic animals to roller coasters and Tarzan swings to mountain biking trails, New Jersey's family-friendly attractions are enough to keep the boredom at bay.
At the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, visitors can learn how science and technology make daily life easier. There are numerous exhibition areas designed to appeal to all ages and interests. Be sure to check out the new Minecraft exhibition based on the top-selling video game of all time, Dino Dig Adventure and Skyscraper!, featuring a 9/11 tribute and one of the columns that served as a support in one of the World Trade Center towers.
Ever dined on roasted chicken in a castle while watching a live duel or jousting match? Now you can! Don a paper crown, journey back in time and watch brave knights battle with brawn and steel to protect their queen. It truly is a dining experience unlike any other. The entire family will want to raise a goblet and join in the epic feast at Lyndhurst's Medieval Times.
For a full day of fun, visit Six Flags Great Adventure & Wild Safari and Hurricane Harbor in Jackson. One of America's most popular theme parks, Six Flags boasts countless rides ranging from soaring roller coasters to smile-wide kiddie rides. Want to beat the heat? Spend the day at Hurricane Harbor water park with splashy rides and slippery slides sure to cool you off quick. Six Flags is also home to an exhilarating drive-through safari, situated on a 350-acre preserve featuring more than 1,200 exotic animals from six continents. The journey will take approximately 1.5 to 3 hours from the comfort of your own vehicle.
There is no shortage of adventure at Mountain Creek in Vernon. Carved out of a mountainside, this four-season resort is known for its action-packed water park featuring the world’s tallest double-looping water slide, zip lining, an all-terrain bike park with custom-built free-ride and downhill mountain bike trails and superior skiing and snowboarding in the winter. Accommodations range from cabins to poolside condos and townhomes.
Imagine life with no music, movies, radio or electric lighting. If you have trouble envisioning such an existence, a visit to the Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange may be in order. A marvelous historical site showcasing the innovative mind of one of the world's most prolific inventors, the park is a must-see for those looking to capture a unique chapter of the American experience. Although Edison’s home and some laboratories are not currently open to visitors, guests may visit his library, machine room, music room and more.
For a unique outdoor experience, visit the Meadowlands Environment Center. The entire family will enjoy hands-on exhibits and guided walking tours in this this bird watching hotspot where 285 species have been spotted. And you may have visited zoos before, but surely none like this. The Shore Region's Popcorn Park Animal Refuge prides itself on being a sanctuary to injured, abused and mistreated wildlife, farm and exotic animals.
Atlantic City has long been renowned for ocean-side fun and entertainment, and that remains the case today at the famous Steel Pier amusement park. Offering attractions and amusements for kids of all ages, boardwalk games, flavorful summertime food and helicopter rides—it’s a Jersey Shore tradition. And less than 15 miles west of Atlantic City in Egg Harbor Township is Storybook Land, a mainstay of family fun for more than 50 years. Known for its time-honored rides and kid-friendly games amid impeccably maintained grounds, Storybook Land is filled with reminders of cherished childhood stories and nursery rhymes.
Every Saturday night from Memorial Day through September, there's an experience in Pilesgrove that will make you think you’re in Texas. Don cowboy boots and a cowboy hat, get there early for the flea market and stay for a good ole-fashioned western rodeo. At Cowtown Rodeo, guests are invited to watch real-life cowboys bull ride, barrel race, steer ride, rope bulls and more. This must-see historic rodeo is a treasured piece of Americana that began 90 years ago and is often regarded as the longest weekly running rodeo in the United States.
Located in Wildwood, Morey's Piers encompasses three amusement piers offering more than 100 exciting amusement park rides and attractions, including roller coasters, kiddie rides and two large beachfront water parks. Avoid long theme-park lines and enjoy a classic seaside amusement park with your family. Morey's has enough rides, boardwalk-style games and water attractions to exhaust even the most avid amusement park enthusiast.
Voted one of the top 10 Aquariums in the Country by USA Today, Adventure Aquarium in Camden is the only aquarium in the world to feature hippos and one of only six facilities in the United States to have Little Blue penguins. This acclaimed aquarium is also known for its extremely unique Shark Realm, home of the largest collection of sharks in the Northeast. Visitors can experience shark viewing at its finest while walking above more than 20 sand tiger, sandbar and nurse sharks on an 81-foot Shark Bridge or surrounded by sharks and 200 other sea creatures as they journey through a 40-foot Shark Tunnel.
Find even more to do in New Jersey by downloading a free travel guide or signing up for our e-newsletter. And, as always, be sure to check official websites and social media channels of your destination for all the need-to-know info before you go.