10 Scenic Places To Hike In New Jersey

10 Scenic Places To Hike In New Jersey


Most of us know what it feels like to sit around with friends wondering, "What can we do that doesn't cost money but will be a fun way to spend the day?" Despite the fact that many of us spend our days snacking while binge watching Netflix, one great (and free!) summer activity is exploring the hiking trails around the area. Although the term "hiking" might seem intimidating to some people, there is an abundance hiking trails throughout New Jersey. If you find yourself looking for something to do on a nice summer or fall day, check out one of these remarkable hiking views!

1. Mount Tammany - Knowlton Township, NJ

  • Time: 3 hours
  • Difficulty: Strenuous
  • Distance: 3.5 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, forests

Being that this park is near the Delaware Water Gap, hikers always enjoy a beautiful scene of the water all-year-round. This particular hike hoops around Mount Tammany, which provides people many panoramic views throughout the trail. This trail also allows hikers to walk alongside the scenic and pleasant Dunnfield Creek.

2. Sunfish Pond - Hardwick Township, NJ

  • Time: 3 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 5 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, glacial pond, Appalachian Trail

This trail is especially scenic in the Fall as the leaves are changing colors and the water looks fresh and blue. There are certain rocky areas throughout the trail that make hiking a tad more difficult, but with a trekking pole or even just a stick, those rugged terrains will be much easier to overcome.

3. Pinwheel Vista - Vernon NJ

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 7.4 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, boardwalk, wildlife, wildflowers

This particular hike can be very easy in some sections, such as the flat terrain on the lengthy boardwalk. However, some sections can be difficult due to the rocky scrambles and steep elevation gain. Hikers enjoy seeing turtles and many types of birds throughout the trail, especially near the pond areas around the boardwalk.

4. Ramapo Valley County Conservation (Lake Loop) - Mahwah, NJ

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance: 3.8 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views

This easy hike is perfect for those who enjoy taking long walks across a semi-flat terrain. The trail loops around Ramapo Lake and provides various perspectives of this beautiful body of water. Due to the fact that this trail lies in the middle of a large conservation, it may be somewhat difficult to differentiate between the many trails that the park offers. Because it can be confusing to navigate, it is advised to bring a map of the park along with you throughout the hike.

5. Beaver Brook Trail - Marcella, NJ

  • Time: 3.5 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 6.2 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, pond, wildlife

If you enjoy seeing pure nature and wildlife, this is the perfect trail for you. Hikers have seen coyotes, bears, and beavers wandering in the forests of this park. There is also a plethora of beaver lodges and dams throughout the park. The terrain is known to be rockier than the average hiking trail, so make sure to wear proper footwear.

6. Norvin Green State Forest (Stonetown Circular) - Ringwood, NJ

  • Time: 5.5 hours
  • Difficulty: Strenuous
  • Distance: 9.6 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, reservoir, historic sites

Due to the rugged terrain and long distance, this hike is one of the most difficult ones in New Jersey. The peaks of the Windbeam, Bear, and Board Mountains offer a beautiful view of two scenic reservoirs. Hikers may choose to take on a shorter path by only climbing one or two mountains. This trail is popular for it's super lush and green forests. During the Revolutionary War, soldiers used many areas in this forest as a reliable hideout.

7. Bearfort Ridge - Hewitt, NJ

  • Time: 3.5 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 6.8 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, streams, swamp, secluded lake, Hemlock Forest

The rocky scrambles in this trail make the hike moderately difficult and time-consuming for some people, but the view is worth the wait! Surprise Lake offers a beautiful view for hikers in the middle of the trail, which encourages them to continue onto higher elevation for an even better view. On the way back, hikers may choose to take a woods road for a flatter (but more slippery) terrain.

8. High Point State Park - Sussex, NJ

  • Time: 4.5 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 7.9 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, farmlands, forests, monumental views

High Point State Park offers the highest point in New Jersey and has views of Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey from the peak of its historic monument. Many families choose to park their cars closer to the monument and do a shorter hike. In the summertime, children are often swimming and playing in Lake Marcia.

9. Terrace Pond Loop - Hewitt, NJ

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 4.3 miles
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, forests, pond

The rock formations and scrambles in this trail provide a great view of the forest while the lake is a peaceful and serene place to relax and enjoy a mid-hike snack. There are many cliffs around the perimeter of the the forest that people use to jump off into the lake. During a hot summer day, many hikers enjoy taking a swim in the crisp, fresh lake water.

10. Palisades Interstate Park - Alpine, NJ

  • Time: Varies based on trail (between two to six hours)
  • Difficulty: Easy, moderate, and strenuous trails available
  • Distance: 12 miles (entire park)
  • Dogs: Allowed on leash
  • Features: Views, rocky terrain, forest, Hudson River views

This lengthy-trail offers many different possible routes to take, the longest being twelve miles long. However, most people choose one path to hike depending on the views they wish to see along the way. The Palisades Interstate Park offers incredible views from its sharp cliffs. The entirety of the park includes lush forests, which means that there is always a scenic route in sight! Hikers enjoy the Hudson River views from the Shore Trail. If you're feeling adventurous, you can check out the rocky scrambles of the Giant Stairs in the Northern section of the park.

Popular Right Now

The 10 Best Things About Rhode Island

Who said RI is not Awesome!

With Rhode Island being such a small state people wonder what is so great about it. There are so many attractions that lead people to "Little Rhody" from the Newport Mansions to the RISD Art Museum. RI's beautiful beaches are also a plus for the locals who live here year round. But what is the best things about Rhode Island? With so many great things to choose from here is what I thought was the best things Rhode Island has to offer.

1. Del's Lemonade

With its numerous flavors and iconic cup imagery Del's is a Rhode Island staple. My personal favorite is mixing watermelon and lemon together!

2. Caserta's Pizzeria

Located on Providence's historic Federal Hill. If you are looking for a good slice of pizza Caserta's is the place to go.

3. Providence

It is basically the smaller version of Boston! No really, and that is where the city gets all its charms from.

4. Scarborough Beach

Forget Newport, this is the prime place to catch some waves. Personally, I think the water is better and Narragansett tends to be a litttle less touristy.

5. PPAC (Providence Performing Arts Center)

When you are too poor to catch a Broadway show so you go see the national tour instead. PPAC has become an awesome venue in recent years with lots of different plays, musicals and dance troupes coming to perform.

6. The Cliff Walk

Preferably after the tourist season because then you can actually walk on it. The Cliff Walk offers some breathtaking views and a little adventure.

7. Waterfire

There are a lot of Waterfire's during the summer and early fall so you can always catch one. Plus, it is free and provides great pictures.

8. Party Pizza

Some make think it is a disgrace to pizza everywhere, but it is still good. Nobody really understands why party pizza exists, but we never question it. Especially, after you stuff five pieces into your mouth.

9. Crook Point Bascule Bridge

It has become somewhat of a local monument for the locals. My friend and I always do a bit of site seeing around here.

10. Allie's Donuts

Home of the Donut Cake! Allie's makes probably the best donuts around here and that is not an understatement.

And there you have it! While, I think these are 10 best things about Rhode Island there is obviously so much more. If anything RI's quirky local eateries, beautiful landscape, as well as up and coming attractions are what make it special. Rhode Island has so many things to offer it is hard to choose. Personally, I think the food is the best, but my New York/New Jersey friends beg to differ.

Cover Image Credit: wwp.greenwichmeantime.com

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7 Places To Visit Within Walking Distance Of SCU

Brunch and markets and museums, oh my!



1. Santa Clara Farmers' Market

This is one of my favorite things to do on Saturdays! From 9 am to 1 pm, head on over to Franklin Square for live music, good food, and tons of organic fruits and veggies. Pro Tip: The breakfast burritos are to die for!

2. De Saisset Museum

Love art? Well, we have a wonderful gallery right on campus! The museum holds tons of exhibits, from photography to painting to sculpture. Plus, they have a California History exhibit that is permanent, so you can always go see it!

3. Beat the Lock Escape Room

Ever been to an escape room? Now's your chance! Franklin Square has an awesome escape room that you and your friends can do. Can you beat the lock?

4. Carmelite Monastery and Garden

If you're looking for somewhere to study, read a book, or just lay down and enjoy the weather, this is one of the most beautiful gardens in Santa Clara. It is encased in a big pink wall, so you don't have to worry about street noise! Perfect for a day in the sun.

5. Sara's Kitchen

Brunch is my favorite meal, which is why I have spent a lot of time trying to find the best brunch spot in Santa Clara. Well, I am pleased to tell you that I've found it. Sara's Kitchen has good service, and even better food! (S/O to Sara's omelets, I dream about those things)

6. Jasmine Fine Thai Cuisine

Honestly, Franklin Square has some overlooked gems. If you're looking for the best Thai food in Santa Clara, look no further! Jasmine has awesome food and service, and it isn't too hard on the wallet. The best combination for a college student!

7. City Plaza Park

If you want a place off-campus to play frisbee or lay in the grass, this is the place! It's a small park a couple blocks away (that also has a library!). The perfect place to get away from the SCU bubble.

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