Fantastic New Jersey Fall Activities to do with Kids this Fall!

Posted on: September 23rd, 2020 by

Get out! Have fun! Enjoy the best New Jersey Fall Activities

Fall is such a fantastic time for family fun in New Jersey. It’s still warm enough for a drive in movie on a Friday night or a beach day after a day of distance learning. This year, amusement parks are staying open later to make up for days they couldn’t be open earlier in the summer. Plus many will get decked out in their Halloween best. New Jersey farms open up with corn mazes, pumpkin patches, hayrides, and apple picking. And with so many of us not doing the traditional school day there’s no reason to not get away for some family fun with one or more of these New Jersey fall activities.

Now more than ever families are looking for things to do with their kids. Either our kids have been stuck in the same seat all day at school or glued to a screen with one Google Meet after another, either way they need to get out and enjoy some fun non-school activities with you. But who wants to have to search each NJ attraction to see if it’s open? And then there’s all the fall activities in New Jersey we don’t even know to look for.

We KNOW you need help finding fall activities in New Jersey for the kids to do that are fun and engaging. Moms, dads, grandparents, caregivers, we know how hard it is to balance everything, especially right now. It was a lot to have parents go from having their kids in school to having them home ALL DAY to now having this strange kind of school year!

We’re here to help. Start with this list of New Jersey fall activities and know that as we discover more ideas for great fall family fun in New Jersey, we will add it to this listing, constantly keeping you up to date on things to do with kids in New Jersey and our region.

No matter what adventures you choose this fall, our wish for you is that you have the best of times with your loved ones while on them.

Outstanding Outdoor New Jersey Fall Activities

Let’s start with New Jersey’s outdoor fall activities. A lot of these outdoor New Jersey attractions have indoor buildings. Even though those buildings might be closed right now, the grounds are still fun to explore with kids.

Plan for fall foliage adventures

I admit it sometimes I’m not up for a long drive across the state or out of the area, but that all changes during the fall. During the fall, I’m telling the kids to get off their phones in the car. I’m hoping my husband will do the driving. Then, the boys and I just gaze at the beauty of the trees along New Jersey’s roadways.

It’s quite fascinating to see the fall foliage and the changing colors of the trees and leaves. It’s like we didn’t remember how many shades of red, orange, and purple exist until we’re reminded by New Jersey’s changing trees. I’m always amazed to find a rainbow of leaf colors so close to each other. One tree can have leaves of purple, but then on one side the leaves are bright red and on the other they are pale orange.

Image of New Jersey Peak Fall Foliage Forecast as of 9/23/2020.
Photo Credit New Jersey Forest Service New Jersey Peak Fall Foliage Forecast as of 9/23/2020.

New Jersey’s Forest Service reminds us that the time has come to start planning your fall foliage adventures throughout the State of New Jersey and New Jersey State Parks, Forests & Historic Sites.

Each Friday during the fall season they will post an updated graphic on their Facebook page and give you suggestions for which one of our state parks and forests have the best foliage of the week.

Walk through the zoo

Explore New Jersey Zoos! One thing I love about our zoos is that they are open to the public, yearround. So even if the indoor buildings are still closed for now, there’s still so much to see and explore. Plus it’s always fun to see how the animals react to the changes of the season, different types of weather, or different times of day. Take a look at what you need to know to visit New Jersey zoos this fall.

Cape May County Park & Zoo

The Cape May County Zoo is open daily from 10 am to 4:30 pm. Learn more about the Cape May County Zoo by visiting their website. Keep in mind, while admission is free donations are greatly appreciated, especially because they had to be closed for so many weeks. A few rules to keep in mind when visiting the Cape May County Zoo.

  • Everyone over the age of 2 years old is required to wear a face covering when visiting to protect each other and their susceptible animals!
  • Adhere to social distancing guidelines when visiting.
  • Don’t visit if you are feeling ill or running a fever.
  • The Reptile House and Aviary will remain closed at this time.
  • Admissions into the Zoo will be limited to maintain a light manageable crowd every day and to make sure everyone can distance themselves responsibly. They are keeping track of their capacity with an automated capacity counter at our entrance and exit. They know how many people are in the Zoo at all times. They won’t let it get so crowded that people won’t be able to socially distance.
  • Playgrounds will be open and the park is available for pavilion rentals and recreation.
  • The Cape May Zoo created a smaller one-way loop so guests don’t have to walk the entire Zoo if they don’t want to.
One way signs mark the trails at the Cape May County Zoo, still a great fall activity in New Jersey.
One way signs mark the trail at Cape May County Zoo.

Space Farm Zoo

This family-owned zoo began it’s 93rd season in 2020 and is run by third and fourth generation relatives of founder Ralph Space. It has 500 animals from 100 different species. This September Space Farms Zoo is open daily 10 am – 5 pm. The last entrance is at 4 pm. The buildings are open. Masks required in all buildings and restrooms. Masks not required in the outdoor zoo area when able to properly social distance. Learn more about the Space Farms Drive Thru farm. Buy tickets here.

frog at playground at Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange NJ

Turtle Back Zoo

The Essex County Turtle Back Zoo is open with timed tickets only. The Zoo will be open daily from 10 am to 4:30 pm. Tickets are only valid for date and time specified. You have a 30-minute time frame to enter the Zoo after the time specified on your ticket. Learn more and reserve your tickets at their website. Read more about this North Jersey zoo in our review of Turtle Back Zoo.

Cohanzick Zoo

The Cohanzick Zoo is now open every day 10 am until 3 pm. Admission is still free. The following safety guidelines are in place:

  • Masks are REQUIRED for ages 2 and up. Please do your part to protect our small staff and our animals (our primates and cats are especially vulnerable to the virus). Wear your mask during your entire visit. If you feel out of breath or overheated, kindly walk out to the parking lot for a break.
  • Restrooms will not be open at this time.
  • Please keep a social distance of at least 6 feet from other guests.
  • Zoo foot traffic will be ONE WAY. Please don’t double back. Follow the signs & arrows.
  • At this time, high contact areas are CLOSED. Please respect the barriers. The gorilla and other photo spots are closed.

Read more about this South Jersey zoo in our review of Cohanzick Zoo.

Cohanzick Zoo Selfie
Sadly this gorilla is off limits for now.

Popcorn Park Zoo

Like other New Jersey zoos the Popcorn Park Zoo has reopened. They are open daily 11 am to 5 pm. Admission into the zoo stops at 4:15 pm. Social distancing guidelines are in place. Masks are required in the booth to enter and recommended in the zoo. Learn more at their website or read our Popcorn Park Zoo review.

Popcorn Park Zoo, peacocks
Popcorn Park Zoo

Bergen County Zoo

The Bergen County Zoo is a “New World” zoo, exhibiting wildlife from North and South America. You have the unique opportunity to view such rare and unusual species as Baird’s Tapirs, Andean Condors, American Alligators, Golden Lion Tamarins, South American Pampas, and many others. The Zoo reopened on September 4, 2020, and is now open daily.

  • 10 am – 12:30 Morning Session
  • 12:30 – 2:00 Zoo closed for cleaning session
  • 2:00 – 4:30 Afternoon Session
  • Zoo Closes at 4:30 pm

Learn more at the Bergen County Zoo website.

Pose with sculptures

This past weekend my boys and I had our first visit to Grounds for Sculpture. What an experience! Grounds for Sculpture is a museum, sculpture garden, and arboretum where art and nature are always at play. The indoor museums are currently closed but outdoors there are nearly 300 contemporary sculptures located across 42 landscaped acres. Everywhere you look there is something to see and if you blink you might miss it.

A teen dances with a sculpture at Grounds for Sculpture a wonderful New Jersey fall activity.

Bring your phones or cameras fully charged because you won’t be able to resist taking lots of pictures.

A boy poses with a sculpture of a man at Grounds for Sculpture.
There are so many sculptures to pose with at Grounds for Sculpture.

Tickets must be purchased in advance and many days sell out weeks ahead of time. To learn more and find a date you can visit, visit their website. Also visit our Library Museum Pass blog post. There you can find libraries that participate in a program that allows library card holders to check out museum passes at no charge.

Monet's Bridge at Grounds for Sculpture inspired by a Monet painting
Monet’s Bridge at Grounds for Sculpture inspired by a Monet painting

Drive through a safari

This is one of those New Jersey fall activities that is indoors and outdoors. Drive through the outdoor Six Flags Great Adventure Safari through the inside of your car.

Six Flags Great Adventure Drive Thru Safari bear

Not even the rain, nor the closed windows could keep us from getting great pictures from our delightful experience at the Six Flags Great Adventure drive thru safari when we visited last weekend. The safari is still available daily through September 28, 2020. After that it will be open during select weekends (Fridays-Sundays) and possibly holidays until November 1.

Six Flags Great Adventure Drive Thru Safari elephant

If your kids are on a hybrid schedule or are doing virtual/remote learning and you can pull off a visit during a typical school day that’s the best time to go. Read more about the Six Flags Great Adventure safari from our article. Visit their website for tickets. Or take a look at this Facebook post to see more of our pictures.

Six Flags Great Adventure Drive Thru Safari yak

Enjoy a dinner out at sunset at New Jersey restaurants

New Jersey restaurants were given permission to open for outdoor dining midway through the summer. From local mom and pop restaurants to popular restaurants on the boardwalk, there’s probably a restaurant near you that offers outdoor dining. Grab a sweatshirt and time it right and enjoy an outdoor meal with your family as the sun is setting. Limited indoor seating is available at some NJ restaurants.

outdoor dining at the Seaport Pier in Wildwood

Before you head out for outdoor dining in New Jersey, read this first, 13 Rules for Dining Outside in New Jersey.

Smell the roses at New Jersey Gardens

One of the New Jersey outdoor attractions we started enjoying more of last year were New Jersey gardens and arboretums. Botanical gardens and arboretums across New Jersey are a fun way to get outside in the fresh air and share in unique experiences with you family. 

a treehouse from the Hunterdon County arboretum
Hunterdon County Arboretum

There are quite a few gardens and arboretums around the state. New Jersey botanical gardens and arboretums, give families opportunities to get exercise as a family while also discovering new flowers and create new memories together. Every few weeks something different is blooming. It’s a must do New Jersey fall activity. 

A babbling brook at Reeves - Reed Arboretum
A babbling brook at Reeves – Reed Arboretum

Here’s a few of our favorite arboretums, you can find a full list here, New Jersey gardens and arboretums

  • Linwood arboretum – Completely outdoors at Belhaven & Wabash Avenues, open every day dusk to dawn, free admission.
  • Reeves – Reed Arboretum in Summit. Arboretum grounds will be open to the public 7 days a week from 1 pm to 7 pm; however all buildings are closed. I remember admission being free, but a donation of $5 per person was preferred.

Cruise around the creek

Did you know you can book your own private Tuckerton Seaport Creek Tour? Yes, you can reserve a private Creek Tour with captain and tour guide for just $30 (up to 8 passengers).

Creek Tours (50 minute ride) will be running on Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays in September and October at 11 am, 12 noon, 1 pm, 2 pm, 3 pm and 4 pm. On Saturday, October 10 or Sunday, October 11, there will be additional boat trips:

Tuckerton Seaport LBI Ferry to Beach Haven
Tuckerton Seaport Ferry

Additional Tuckerton boat cruises are available.

  • Interested in bird watching? Join Lead Tour Guide Carly for an early morning, 2-hour guided tour focused on local birding along Tuckerton Creek and the Bay. BYOB (bring your own binoculars!).
  • Not a morning person? Join the Tuckerton crew for a relaxing night on the water. The sunset sail will leave from the Lighthouse Dock at 4:30 pm, making its way out into the Bay to capture the perfect sunset view on the way back in by 6:30 pm.
Tuckerton-Seaport-LBI-Ferry-at-Sunset-3

Reservations are filling fast! Make a plan to get here before the season ends this October. Visit the Tuckerton Seaport website for more information and to book your reservation.

Get lost in a corn maze

Who doesn’t love a fun scavenger hunt around a corn maze? There is nothing like on a crisp fall day piling the family into the car and exploring a local farm’s corn maze. We love to see who can complete it first and taking family photos while we are “lost” in the maze. Find one near you with our guide to New Jersey Corn Mazes.

Sahls-Father-son-Farm-zoom-background-inside-corn-maze

Go back in time at battlefields in New Jersey

Ever since we visited the battlefields of Fredericksburg Virginia, my youngest has been fascinated by battlefields. The cannons, forts, lookout towers capture his imagination and he can’t help but have a pretend battle with his brothers. In New Jersey, we have a few state parks with battlefields. The bonus of visiting in the fall, less crowds.

  • Fort Mott State Park
  • Monmouth Battlefield State Park
  • Princeton Battlefield State Park
  • Washington Crossing State Park
Climbing walls of Battery Gregg at Fort Mott
Click to read about our visit to Fort Mott State Park.

Pick pumpkins at a New Jersey farm

There’s just something about the fall and picking pumpkins, I love it. I’ll visit Sahl’s Father Son Farm over and over, each time picking up more pumpkins. Some we decorate. Some we carve, and some we cook down for pumpkin puree to use in recipes. If you’re looking for a New Jersey farm that sells pumpkins visit our guide to the BEST New Jersey Farms for Picking Pumpkins.

2 kids pick pumpkins at New Jersey farm

Spending an hour or so with your kids on a farm is a great outdoor activity and helps your kids appreciate where their food comes from. Make it better by coming home and baking up some yummy treats. Find a New Jersey farm near you by visiting our directory of New Jersey farms.

Pluck some apples

While you’re shopping New Jersey farms for pumpkins don’t forget to visit the Best Farms for Apple Picking in New Jersey. There is nothing quite like going to a New Jersey apple orchard and gathering your own crop of apples. Melanie’s kids love running through the rows of trees, filling their basket with apples. They love eating apples right from the tree and all the yummy things you can make with apples.

mother and son enjoy an apple from a NJ apple orchard

Shop a Farmers Market

New Jersey is the garden state! No where is that more clear than at New Jersey Farmers Markets. Many of these farmers markets continue into the fall. If you can get directly to a farm, get to a farmers market.

Farmers' Market produce pic

Not only do farmers markets provide us a way to get fresh and healthy produce, that may be limited in grocery stores, but they also provide us a way to support New Jersey’s farmers. For a listing of farmer’s markets near you visit our listing of New Jersey Farmers Markets.

Find a waterfall

The most majestic waterfall in New Jersey has to be the one at Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park. I truly wish I loved closer because I would be there ALL THE TIME. Not only are the waterfalls at Paterson Great Falls National Historic Park truly majestic but they are also quite significant when it comes to waterfalls on the East Coast. The Paterson Great Falls are the second largest waterfall east of the Mississippi. How fortunate are we that they are ours to share in New Jersey?!

Paterson Great Falls National Park
Paterson Great Falls National Park

Even if you’ve been to the Great Falls, if you haven’t visited in fall, DO IT! Get a different view as the leaves change around the waterfall.

You can learn more about the Paterson Great Falls through TWO articles we’ve written: Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park & The Day With No Falls! and Earning Paterson Great Falls Junior Ranger Badges.

There are other waterfalls in New Jersey that you can learn about through this article on NJ Hiking.

Discover a castle

Last summer we discovered one of the most beautiful locations to visit in New Jersey, Kip’s Castle. The view of the castle is impressive. If you didn’t make it there this past summer, make a plan to get there this fall.

Originally referred to as “Kypsburg” it took over three years to build in the early 1900’s.  The County of Essex became it’s most recent owner in 2007 and integrated into it’s offerings of outdoor films and concerts. Under normal circumstances visitors are permitted to tour the first floor of the castle.

From the Essex County Park’s website, “Kip’s Castle is a magnificent 9,000 square foot mansion that replicates a medieval Norman castle. The estate spans eleven acres of land on the ridge of First Mountain, resting in both Montclair and Verona townships, and provides spectacular views of New York City.

Kip's Castle in Essex County New Jersey
The beautiful scenery makes a great backdrop for family photos.

Kip’s Castle is located at 22 Crestmont Road in Verona. The grounds at Kip’s Castle Park are open from dawn to dusk seven days a week. There is a small parking lot visitors can use while they tour the grounds. Admission is free.

Seek out diamonds

Diamonds can be found on the Sunset Beach of Cape May. This is one of those Cape May fall activities that I’ve heard about from friends but still need to do with my boys. It sounds so fun! Now with the summer crowds gone we’ll have more space to go treasure hunting.

Small pieces of quartz, rounded and smoothed through hundreds of years traveling down the Delaware River are underfoot on this Cape May beach. When polished, these quartz rocks look like diamonds-hence the name “Cape May Diamonds.” Hunting for diamonds is a tradition for many families that visit Cape May on vacation.

social distancing at the Jersey Shore beaches a father and child wade in the water

Dip your toes in the water at the beach

While we’re talking about diamonds on the beach, one of the most loved New Jersey outdoor fall activities by locals is visiting the beach. Come October most New Jersey beaches won’t have lifeguards on duty but they also won’t require beach badges. The crowds will be gone. While we don’t suggest swimming no one says you can’t dip your toes in the water or build a sand castle. You can learn more in our guide to New Jersey beaches.

Watch a movie under the stars

Over the summer how we’ve watched movies with our families changed. New Jersey movie theaters are starting to open, but drive in movies are still open! If you haven’t experienced this with your family, I definitely recommend it.

screen for drive in graduation

There have been several ways to see New Jersey drive in movies this summer. Many will be open for the fall. Learn more about each option in our article, New Jersey Drive In Movies.

Journey on a mural tour

Did you know that Atlantic City has over 60 murals? I have traveled into Atlantic City quite often attending events and finding things to do in Atlantic City with kids and I can not believe I did not know that. I mean sure I knew there were a few Atlantic City murals, but I had no idea there were murals up and down nearly every street in Atlantic City.

A month into the pandemic, when most things were still closed, I was determined to get out of the house and find something to do with my boys. That’s when I discovered Atlantic City murals. I spent the next week creating a Self Guided Atlantic City Murals Tour than you can do by car or bike.

Hike at a New Jersey State Park

Was there a New Jersey State Park you wanted to get to this summer but couldn’t because it was always filled to capacity. Try now. With less families visiting from out of the area and the park beaches starting to close it may be easier to get into that park.

After sitting on a beach to watch the waves, hiking is my second all time favorite outdoor activity in New Jersey. We have so many hiking trails in New Jersey, but I usually prefer hiking at New Jersey State Parks. Not only are the trails usually marked out well, there’s also park rangers available should I run into a problem. Plus you don’t usually need to worry about where to park or use the bathroom.

boy on bridge of a hiking trail

Take a look at our 25 Things to Know About New Jersey State Parks to help you determine where to start hiking at first. Or visit our 70+ Places to Hike in New Jersey for even more hiking options.

Hang out with the animals at the Funny Farm

Tucked away in a very quiet part of Mays Landing is the Funny Farm Rescue Animal Sanctuary, an animal rescue open to the public on Tuesdays and Sundays.

The Funny Farm is personally and professionally committed to the well being of abused and abandoned animals. They provide food, shelter, medical care, compassion and love for the rest of their natural lives in a permanent, safe and healthy environment. While doing so the public is encouraged to visit to learn about and show their love for the animals there. Learn more about the Funny Farm in New Jersey.

With horse at Funny Farm Animal Rescue in Mays Landing New Jersey

Bike a new path

From the Jersey Shore boardwalks to the mountain bike trails, there are plenty of places to go bike riding in New Jersey.

teen on bike wearing helmet

One South Jersey bike path we have enjoyed as a family is the Somers Point Bike Path. It is part of a longer trail of 6.5 miles that extends from Somers Point through Linwood into Northfield and ends in Pleasantville. In Somers Point it starts at the Somers Point City Hall at 1 West New Jersey Avenue. Along the way the trail might be called different things, but one thing is for sure. This trail is definitely kid-friendly. The paths are wide enough for parents with a stroller to share it with bikers and joggers.

One of the many shaded areas to sit along the Somers Point Bike Path
Covered pavilion on Somers Point Bike Path

If you’re not local to Somers Point or planning to visit anytime soon plan a day out biking with these 10 great places to ride bikes in New Jersey from Visit New Jersey.

Strap on some skates or grab a skateboard

Traditional indoor roller skating rinks have started to reopen. But while the weather is still cooperating take advantage of trails across New Jersey that allow for inline skating. We also have outdoor skateboarding parks open for skaters. Visit our 100+ Places to Skate in New Jersey for a listing of local places you can skate, roller blade, inline skate, or skateboard.

Kids inline skating in new jersey

Climb a New Jersey Lighthouse

New Jersey is home to 11 lighthouses. As a New Jersey mom of three boys, finding ways to help them burn energy has always been one of my top priorities. So, climbing New Jersey lighthouses with them not only gets them out and about, it also lets us experience the beauty of the New Jersey coastline as a family.

Absecon Lighthouse in Atlantic City
Absecon Lighthouse

Learn more about each of them in our 11 New Jersey Lighthouses to Explore with Kids. Keep in mind, even if the lighthouse is closed, you can still walk around the grounds of them to learn about their history and take in the magnificent structure.

Cruise for dolphins

There are certainly times when you can see dolphins off the coast of the Jersey Shore. However, the best way to guarantee you’ll see dolphins is through one of the dolphin cruises offered in New Jersey. Here’s a few we’ve experienced.

  • Atlantic City Dolphin Cruises
  • Cape May Whale Watcher and dolphin cruises
  • The Cape May Lewis Ferry, yes the ferry. While not promoted as a dolphin watching experience in New Jersey, we have seen dolphins every time we’ve sailed with the Cape May Lewis Ferry.

Yes, it might be chillier but all that means is that you need to dress in layers. It’s another must do activity in New Jersey and if the fall is when you have to do it, go for it.

Things to do in Atlantic City - take an Atlantic City Dolphin Cruises
Looking out for dolphins with Atlantic City Dolphin Cruises

Watch the airplanes

If you are looking for some different type of New Jersey fall activities and your kids love planes, check out these great New Jersey places to watch airplanes take off and land. They provide excellent viewing angles and lots of space for your family to enjoy the thrill of watching beautiful aircrafts in flight.

Best Places to see Airplanes in New Jersey

Journey Across a Bridge

We’ve done this a few times now. It’s a great way to burn off some energy. We walked across the Ocean City Bridge and back. Have you ever done this? I’ve driven across this bridge probably a hundred times. Every time I do I say I’m going to walk across this bridge some day.

boy on Ocean City bridge

With the weather just perfect and my mind determined to walk somewhere I didn’t need to worry about ticks, my boys and I set about to walk the Ocean City bridge. At 2.5 miles each way it was just the right amount of challenge and distance for us. With the sun less intense walking the Ocean City Bridge can be a great New Jersey fall activity.

two boys walking on the Ocean City Bridge pedestrian path

We walked a complete loop by parking at one of the fishing piers. We walked from their all the way into Ocean City, where we stopped for ice cream. Then, we turned around to come back, passing the fishing pier, and getting to the cement gazebo at the Somers Point end before turning around to head back to our parking spot. Click over for more details to Walk Across the Ocean City Bridge.

Go fishing

Have you tried fishing with your children yet? New Jersey is home to many excellent waterways, filled with varies species of freshwater fish. In addition to beaches and other fishing piers you may already know of you can read our New Jersey Free Fishing Day post for a listing of other lakes and ponds around New Jersey that allow fishing.

People fishing from the Ocean City bridge fishing pier
The Ocean City bridge offers a few spots, off the bridge, with fishing piers.

Get scared on New Jersey roller coasters

That’s right! New Jersey amusement parks will still be open for fall activities. Many amusement parks will have fall festivals or Halloween events. Social distancing will still be in place. You’ll need to wear masks. Reservations may be required. But you can still count on having a fabulous time.

Casino Pier HYDRUS roller coaster Seaside Heights NJ
The Casino Pier HYDRUS roller coaster in Seaside Heights NJ

If you want more details or need help finding a local amusement park visit our guide to New Jersey Amusement Parks.

Go on a dinosaur hunt

Kids love dinosaurs! In New Jersey, where the first-nearly-complete dinosaur skeleton was discovered we have quite a few places you can see dinosaurs.

Ride a train

We probably have just as many train lovers as we do dinosaur lovers in New Jersey, if not more. There is something magical about trains for kids. Boys and girls alike always stop to stare as a train glides into the station, and think taking a ride on a train is way cooler than hopping in the car. We have rounded up our favorite places to see all kinds of trains in New Jersey to share with you.

Search for stars

While New Jersey does have planetariums where you can see constellations, planets, and cool laser light shows, we also have observatories across the state. New Jersey observatories provide a place where you and the kids can gaze up at the stars away from the light pollution from cities and neighborhoods.

New Jersey fall activities search for stars at a New Jersey observatory

While many New Jersey observatories are currently closed we did find a few that are open and allowing visitors.

Jenny Jump State Forest Observatory in Hope

The United Astronomy Clubs of New Jersey (UACNJ) hosts free public astronomy programs at their observatory in Jenny Jump State Forest in New Jersey. Presentations on astronomy begin promptly at 8:00 pm. (Please arrive early). After the talk they will show you live images of the sky from our telescopes as it gets dark, weather permitting. The sky gazing will end at 10:30 pm.

Admission will be by reservation only. For a schedule of programs visit their website.

Paul H. Robinson Observatory in Glen Gardner

They appear to be open for public viewing Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons through late October. They are limit the number of people inside the observatory to 12 at any given time Saturday evenings or Sunday afternoon. For more information give them a call. The phone number for the Paul H. Robinson Observatory is 908-638-8500.

Peyton Observatory in Princeton

Learn more about the Peyton Observatory on their website.

Feed an alpaca

Yes, you really can feed an alpaca in South Jersey. Learn more about this New Jersey fall activity in the link below.

Get closer to nature

Seek out treasure with pirates

Pirates, sunken treasures, and adventures… who can resist? Talk like a Pirate Day may have passed, but there’s still some time to have a pirate adventure with your kids. Jersey Shore Pirates Pirate Adventures continue on weekends through October. Bring your young pirates aboard the Sea Gypsy for a swashbuckling Pirate Adventure on the Metedeconk River. To maintain safety and social distancing they are limiting capacity for the cruises. Call (732) 899-6100 to learn more.

Pirate ship

Keep checking in with this post for new ideas. Every time I think I’ve listed all of the possible outdoor New Jersey fall activities, I think of a few more. I know this list will keep growing.

Before we move on to indoor fall activities here’s a few more ideas for outdoor fun in New Jersey.

Incredible Indoor New Jersey Fall Activities

Put put put a round of Indoor Mini Golf

Do you have memories of playing mini golf on the boardwalk this summer? Just because the summer’s over doesn’t mean you can’t make new mini golf memories. All across New Jersey we have indoor mini golf courses.

When we visited Ocean City this summer we discovered a new favorite place to play indoor mini golf, Haunted Golf. At Haunted Golf, we found families enjoying a game of miniature golf, while maintaining their distance from others. At the end of each round of golf the Haunted Golf has golfers put their putters aside to be cleaned before being used again.

We’re currently putting together a list of indoor mini golf course in New Jersey. But until then if you have a mini golf place in New Jersey you love give them a call or drive by, some may be extending their summer hours into the fall.

I alway enjoy seeing the different themes and decor or mini golf courses. Here’s a few indoor mini golf courses to check out in New Jersey.

Indoor Mini Golf locations in New Jersey

  • Haunted Golf – Ocean City Boardwalk
  • DiDonato’s Family Fun Center – Hammonton
  • Angry Birds Not So Mini Golf – East Rutherford at American Dream Opening soon
  • Out of this World Blacklight Mini Golf – East Rutherford at American Dream Opening soon

To cut down on the passage of germs bring exact change and your own pencils, golf balls, and score card. Bring wipes to clean off the golf putters before you get started.

Explore the ocean from inside

With permission granted for museums and indoor attractions to open again New Jersey’s aquariums are eager to welcome you back.

Who doesn’t love exploring an aquarium? There are so many great animals living under the sea, and an aquarium is a great place to check them out. Fish, seals, dolphins, and sharks! What are your kids’ favorites? Find them at New Jersey aquariums.

Adventure Aquarium

Adventure Aquarium is open and advanced reservations are required. The aquariums invites you to explore one-of-a-kind exhibits and over 15,000 aquatic animals, including the largest collection of sharks on the East Coast. Discover the underwater world like never before. Learn about their safety protocols and get your tickets at their website.

Hippos at Adventure Aquarium in Camden New Jersey
@Adventure Aquarium

Atlantic City Aquarium

Unfortunately, the Atlantic City Aquarium is still closed. No reopening date has been announced yet.

Jenkinson’s Aquarium

Jenkinson’s Aquarium is open daily. Since June of 1991, the aquarium has been dedicated to educating the public on all aspects of marine life and conservation. Each exhibit is designed to promote awareness of the animals, their habitats and conservation. They are thoughtful and engaging. They strive to provide guests with a unique and memorable experience through creative exhibits as well as innovative educational programs. We’ve definitely had many wonderful memories there. Tickets will be available for purchase at Guest Services. Learn more at the Jenkinson’s Aquarium website.

Jenkinson's Aquarium

MORE Ideas for Indoor New Jersey fall activities coming soon!

Need more ideas for safe activities for kids in New Jersey?

Take a look at these articles on safe things to do in New Jersey with kids.

New Jersey Drive In Attractions

Want to get away for a safe vacation?

Click over to read about Amazing New Jersey Staycations to Try With Kids. Also take a look at our guide to how to Take a Staycation with an RV Rental in New Jersey.

Posted in: All, Things to do in Central Jersey, Things to do in New Jersey, Things to do in North Jersey, Things to do in South Jersey

Jennifer Auer is the hyperlocal mom blogger who runs Jersey Family Fun. From New Jersey, this mom of 3 boys just can’t sit still! Her husband likes to say she’s a work-at-home mom who never stays home. Jennifer started traveling as a child and hasn’t stopped since. Instead of letting her husband and boys slow her down, she brings them along! As her boys transition from tweens to teens there’s still so many places she wants to discover with them both across the U.S. and internationally. She has been a Jersey Girl for 35+ years, and a Jersey Mom for 15+ years and a New Jersey mom blogger for 10 years, although she'd much rather be referred to as an influencer or just by name. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a focus on Entrepreneurship from Bryant University in Rhode Island.

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