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Beautiful NJ Parks to Visit this Fall

What better time than autumn to explore all the beautiful parks located throughout New Jersey? The leaves on the trees are starting to change colors and there’s a slight chill in the air. It’s the perfect weather to grab a sweater and enjoy time outdoors with your friends and family. Here are our picks for 8 beautiful NJ parks to visit this fall.

Quick Click Guide: Select an NJ Region below to find an NJ Park near you.
| North Jersey | Central Jersey | Jersey Shore | South Jersey |


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North Jersey


Jenny Jump State Forest

Jenny Jump State Forest

Location: 330 State Park Road, Hope
Details: In the mood for a good hike? This 4,466-acre state forest offers 14 miles of trails covering rolling terrain as you head to the top of Jenny Jump Mountain. Enjoy scenic views of the mountain ranges around you, as well as Ghost Lake down below. Camping is available and the United Astronomy Clubs of New Jersey hosts Saturday night stargazing sessions through the end of October.
Why I like it: This area has frequent sightings of black bears, so you just may have an encounter with one at Jenny Jump! Pick up an educational brochure at the park office to learn more about this NJ park.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Paterson Great Falls National Historic Park

Paterson Great Falls National Historic Park

Location: 72 McBride Avenue, Paterson
Details: You don’t have to travel far to find breathtaking views of a spectacular waterfall. Paterson’s 77-foot high Great Falls is one of the country’s largest and well-known waterfalls. The falls are best viewed from Haines Overlook Park on the south and Mary Ellen Kramer Park on the north. Take a self-guided tour or sign up for a guided walking tour, offered daily at at 11:00 am and 3:00 pm.
Why I like it: Kids can join the Junior Ranger program and learn more about the mission of the National Park Service. Pick up an info book at the welcome center of this NJ park.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Swartswood State Park

Swartswood State Park

Location: 1091 East Shore Road, Swartswood
Details: New Jersey’s first state park was established in 1915 and remains a historic landmark today. Centered around the state’s third largest freshwater lake, Swartswood Lake, the park offers outdoor activities throughout the year. This is a great autumn spot for hiking, biking, camping, fishing, picnicking and bird watching. The park has ten hiking trails with varying levels of difficulty, perfect for novice and frequent hikers alike.
Why I like it: Want to stay all night? Rent a campsite or shelter for the evening – there are even pet-friendly campsites available!
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Central Jersey


Horseshoe Bend Park

Horseshoe Bend Park

Location: 178 Horseshoe Bend Road, Frenchtown
Details: Take in views of the Delaware River Valley, wooded forests and rolling hills in this 552-acre park. Hike the 3.3 mile Orange Trail that takes you around the park’s perimeter and past Copper Creek. Each year, the park hosts horseback riding events, dog shows, and astronomy events.
Why I like it: Horseshoe Bend is Hunterdon County’s largest leash-free dog park. Your furry friend can enjoy 7 acres of fenced-in land to run on.
More info: Visit the website or you can give them a call.


Mindowaskin Park

Mindowaskin

Location: 425 East Broad Street, Westfield
Details: It’s not uncommon to pass by a photo shoot taking place in Mindowaskin Park when driving through downtown Westfield. Whether for wedding pictures, family shots, or an engagement session, this small but picturesque park provides the perfect backdrop. Sit in the gazebo to people watch or stroll around the lake to see the ducks and the fountain. There’s also a playground for the kids to enjoy, making this a fun day outdoors for the whole family.
Why I like it: Mindowaskin Park is just steps away from downtown Westfield, a shopper’s delight with chic boutiques and top-notch restaurants.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Natirar Park

Natirar

Location: 2 Main Street, Peapack
Details: This Somerset County stunner, formerly owned by the King of Morocco, is home to rolling hills, wooded trails, fields, and meadows. Bring the whole family and take in the beauty of fall on a relaxing autumn hike. Stroll along the scenic North Branch of the Raritan River on the 1.3-mile Great Meadow Trail or the 1-mile Upper Field Nature Trail. Visitors can also jog, bike or even horseback ride along the gorgeous trails.
Why I like it: Fishing is available in certain areas of Natirar; check the online map for details.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Jersey Shore


Allaire State Park

Allaire

Location: 4265 Atlantic Avenue, Wall Township
Details: Over 200 different species of wildflowers, trees, and plants can be found in the 3205 acres of Allaire State Park. Spend the day observing them all as you hike the trails or kayak along the Manasquan River. Don’t forget to stop at Historic Allaire Village, a living history museum showcasing early 19th century life. Or take a vintage train ride on the Pine Creek Railroad and enjoy the sights of fall.
Why I like it: Historic Allaire Village hosts special events almost every weekend; from its fall flea markets to haunted hayrides in October.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Cape May Point State Park

Cape May Point State Park

Location: Light House Avenue, Cape May
Details: If you’re in the southernmost part of the state, be sure to check out Cape May Point State Park. The 244-acre area has a few easy hiking trails leading through pond, coastal dune, marsh, and forest habitats. There are also concessions, as well as an interpretive center and the Cape May Lighthouse. Walk the 199 lighthouse steps to the top to see a truly stunning view of the Cape May peninsula.
Why I like it: Cape May Point is known as a major migratory route; in other words, you will spot hundreds of hawks passing by each fall as they head south.
More info: Visit the website or you can give them a call.


Wharton State Forest

Wharton State Forest

Location: 31 Batsto Road, Hammonton
Details: The 115,000-acre Wharton State Forest is made up of pinelands and is the largest NJ state park. Hike to the top of Apple Pie Hill (part of the 50-mile Batona Trail) to take in panoramic views of the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Check out historic Batsto Village, a former bog iron and glass making industrial center; or stop by Harrisville, a real 19th century ghost town. Canoeing is also available on the Mullica, Batsto, Wading, and Oswego Rivers.
Why I like it: Take a break at the Atsion Recreation Area, where you’ll find a picnic area, restrooms and a concession stand.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


South Jersey


Cooper River Park

NJ Parks

Location: 5300 North Park Drive, Pennsauken
Details: Walk, run, or bike over five miles of loops to soak in all Cooper River Park has to offer. This NJ park offers nearly 350 acres across Pennsauken, Cherry Hill, Collingswood, and Haddon Township; in addition, the riverside spot boasts hiking trails, bike paths, picnic areas, and a children’s playground. It’s the perfect place for an evening stroll while glimpsing the Philadelphia skyline.
Why I like it: If the weather is favorable, you can rent a canoe or kayak by the hour.
More info: Visit the website or you can click here to call.


Parvin State Park

parvin state park

Location: 701 Almond Road, Pittsgrove
Details: At the edge of the Pine Barrens is Parvin State Park, an environment with both pine and swamp forests. You’ll find over 200 kinds of flowering plants, plus trees like blossoming dogwood, holly, magnolia, and wild azalea.
Why I like it: They allow camping, boating, swimming, picnicking, and hunting here. See the website for details.
More info: Visit the website or you can give them a call.


Tall Pines State Preserve

Tall Pines Preserve

Location: 1705 Glassboro Rd, Sewell
Details: In 2015, a former golf course was converted to Tall Pines, a 110-acre state preserve. The project was a true community effort, launching to prevent the building of a new housing development. Now, the NJ park is a great place for wildlife to thrive and people to enjoy. Hike, jog, bird watch, ride a bike, or just take in the lovely scenery of grasslands, woodlands, and wetlands.
Why I like it: Asphalt golf paths remain from the site’s golf course days; which makes parts of the preserve handicap accessible.
More info: Visit the website.