New Jersey Museums for Every Interest
Whether you’re into art or science, history or sports, you’ll find a museum in New Jersey that is sure to wow you. We’ve gathered some of the top spots by interest below for your next cultural outing.
Founded in 1909, the Newark Museum of Art is the state's largest museum, offering outstanding collections, exhibitions, programs and educational resources in its multi-building campus in the heart of Newark's Downtown/Arts District. The Museum is also a stunning example of amazing architecture. Re-designed by world-famous architect Michael Graves, the Museum has garnered the American Institute of Architects’ Honor Award.
About an hour's drive from Newark is the New Jersey State House in Trenton, one of the oldest state houses in continuous use, featuring a majestic gold leaf-covered dome and a dramatic rotunda. Make sure to take the FREE, guided tour for a detailed account of the history, art and architecture of this impressive space. Before making the trip, be sure to review the latest visitation policies here and reserve your tour time by calling 609-847-3150.
Classic & Contemporary Artwork
With more than 12,000 works of art, the New Jersey State Museum in Trenton is a must-visit destination for those looking to experience an array of works: paintings, prints, drawings and more. This comprehensive museum especially shines when displaying the works of American artists. Of course, art is just the start! You can also explore archaeology & ethnography, cultural history, natural history and special exhibitions.
Other can’t-miss spots for fine art lovers include the Montclair Art Museum, Hunterdon Art Museum, Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University in New Brunswick and the Noyes Museum of Art, Stockton University.
Boasting a collection of more than 20,000 pieces, a research library and archives, the Museum of American Glass in Millville has one of the most comprehensive collections of American glass in the world. While you’re there, make sure to check out the Historic American Glass collection to learn about Southern New Jersey’s long heritage in glasswork and see professional artisans at work in the Artist Studios at WheatonArts.
History buffs will find no shortage of historic attractions, museums and battlefields in New Jersey. Visit the Cornelius Low House in Piscataway, which is one of only a few surviving structures from the 1700s Raritan Landing Colonial port community. Museum admission is FREE and open to the public year-round.
Also built in the 1700s, the structure for the Old Barracks Museum in Trenton once served as quarters for British regulars during the French and Indian War. Today it offers tours and interpretations of American Colonial life.
Or become transported back to the 1800s as you explore the living history museums at Historic Cold Spring Village in Cape May and The Historic Village at Allaire, open seasonally in Farmingdale. Then get even more ideas for unique historic sites in New Jersey.
Aircraft enthusiasts can take their pick of aviation museums up and down the state. The Aviation Hall of Fame & Museum of New Jersey in Teterboro houses everything from the first American hovercraft, helicopters, airplane models and more – online reservations can be made here. And be sure to check out where 1,500 pilots received advanced fighter training in the Thunderbolt during the 1940s at the Millville Army Air Field Museum.
Locomotive lovers won’t want to miss the Whippany Railway Museum (open seasonally in Whippany), where they can view unique pieces with ties to New Jersey history. From steam locomotives to historic coal loaders to cabin cars, there’s so much to see and explore.
Space & Stars
Travel to faraway galaxies – or at least feel like it – when you visit the Planetarium at the New Jersey State Museum in Trenton. The Planetarium features 360 degrees of viewing, customized star talks and reclining seats for a truly out-of-this-world experience. Check out the latest schedule of planetarium shows. Can’t get enough of our solar system’s twinkling constellations? Be sure to turn your gaze upward in the country’s biggest planetarium at Jersey City’s Liberty Science Center.
Baseball fans will love the memorabilia, educational programs and character-focused exhibits at the Yogi Berra Museum & Learning Center in Little Falls. While you're there, see photographs and artifacts that document the inspirational life of the greatest winner in baseball history. Then honor local legends across every aspect of pro athletics – including football, hockey, tennis and more – at the All Sports Museum of Southern New Jersey.
Museum Mavens: Be sure to check out the official website or social media pages of your intended attraction for the most up-to-the-minute details before you go. In some cases, advance reservations may be required. Need help planning your getaway? Download our free travel guide for everything New Jersey.