New Jersey is known for its fierce rivalry with its neighbor just across the bridge in New York, but there is no competition when it comes to the excellent student activities this state has to offer. From fascinating museums with interactive exhibits to historical landmarks that will never be forgotten, New Jersey provides the perfect balance of learning and fun.
The first boardwalk in the United States, Atlantic City Boardwalk, is known as the “lifeline of the coastal city.” Visitors can enjoy its casinos, hotels, retail stores, restaurants and amusements including historical sites such as the Boardwalk Hall and entertainment venues such as the House of Blues and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum. Students can also take a walk on Steel Pier, a 1,000-foot long amusement pier. The pier offers an Observation Wheel and a helicopter ride which shows off the Jersey Shore, plus other amusements and restaurant options. Cape May has stunning beaches where students can swim, sunbathe or fish. They also have the opportunity to tour local history at its museums and lighthouses such as Cape May Lighthouse, Colonial House or Cape May Fireman’s Museum.
At Monmouth Battlefield State Park in Manalapan, students can see the site of one of the largest battles of the American Revolution. The park preserves the rural landscape of hilly farmland and visitors can go on a hike, picnic, horseback ride or visit the restored Revolutionary War farmhouse. Six Flags Adventure in Jackson is perfect for any thrill seeker or students looking to let off a little steam. With the tallest and fastest rollercoaster in North America, Kingda Ka, and numerous other amusement rides and roller coasters, the fun never ends.
Exciting Educational Endeavors
New Jersey State Museum in Trenton is one of the oldest and largest museums in New Jersey. It offers four museums in one, with sections that explore archaeology and ethnography, fine art, natural history and astronomy in its planetarium. The most decorated battleship, Battleship New Jersey in Camden, is the perfect opportunity for hands-on learning. Students can board the ship, lay on the bunks slept in by sailors, sit in the admiral’s seat and climb the 16-foot gun turret— all while learning the ins and outs of an immense battleship. At Hackensack Riverkeeper Eco Cruises students can go on education and fun pontoon boat excursions. On this exciting ride students will learn about river preservation, environmental advocacy and the importance of the estuary ecosystem.
Liberty Science Center in Jersey City has exhibits that deal with robotics, energy and the environment. Students can learn from the world’s largest IMAX theater and the museum’s numerous exhibits and displays that relate to science and technology. A special program offered by the center called Live From Surgery gives students the opportunity to view a surgery in real time and discuss the procedure with the surgical team. The Thomas Edison National Historic Park allows students to look into the life of one of America’s most famous inventors. Located in West Orange, this park offers tours of Edison’s former home and laboratory. Holding more than two million gallons of water, the tanks at Adventure Aquarium in Camden are home to an assortment of aquatic creatures. Students can study over 6,000 species of animals, view the 40-foot suspended Shark Tunnel and see a hippo up close and personal in the world’s only aquarium that holds them.
Uniquely New Jersey
For those with a sweet-tooth, Carlo’s Bake Shop in Westfield is a premier stop. Home of Cake Boss Buddy Valastro, students can sample some of his many delicious treats and sweets. At Hudson County Culinary Center students participate in a variety of engaging programs. These programs focus on the culinary arts and teach students skills such as cognitive reasoning, self-discovery and cooperative thinking through its hands-on learning process. Ellis Island was once America’s largest and most active immigration station, processing thousands daily. Now a museum, visitors can learn the stories of their American counterparts who helped to create the melting pot identity that makes up the United States.
Students can dive into a story at Storybook Land in Egg Harbor Township. At this 20-acre amusement park, visitors are introduced to family-friendly themes and rides that originate from children’s classic tales for learning and fun. Finally, a trip to New Jersey would be incomplete without a visit to the prestigious university that presides there. At Princeton University students can walk the greens, take a tour and learn more about what life on a college campus is truly like.
New Jersey is the perfect place for student travelers looking for student-friendly activities. Make sure to check out the locations listed here; they are premier locations for fun and educational activities. This state has adventures that accommodate everyone’s needs from historic landmarks to towering roller coasters, which are sure to keep students entertained. If you’ve visited New Jersey before, tell us about your trip below!