Hike amidst the soaring hemlock trees along the river at Hacklebarney State Park. Photo by Rose Gordon Sala
Hike amidst the soaring hemlock trees along the river at Hacklebarney State Park. Photo by Rose Gordon Sala

Spring Break Staycation: Fun Things To Do With New Jersey Kids

If ever there was a year we deserved an amazing spring break, 2021 is it! This is the year to make up for lost time, but you don't need to get on a plane to have an epic vacation. Skip the long airport security lines—and germs—in favor of enjoying a spring break staycation right here in New Jersey.

Most New Jersey school districts are closed somewhere between Monday, March 29, and Friday, April 9. Luckily, you don’t have to go far to make the most of your time off. The Garden State is home to museums, playgrounds, zoos, and other fun zones just a short drive away. Plus, our Event Calendar is full of great events taking place during that period.

Read on for more than 35 fun things to do with kids during a spring break staycation. You can also find great nearby getaways in our Day Trips Guide and more seasonal entertainment in our Spring Fun Guide.

Editor's note: While we are trying to promote safer activities that occur outdoors or with social distancing guidelines in place, please keep your family and others safe by always wearing a mask and practicing social distancing. If you arrive at a venue that appears too crowded, try using the “nearby” search feature on our Event Calendar to find something else to do.

Baby animals are spring break companions at Alstede Farms
Meet the spring babies animals at Alstede Farms Springtime Family Festival.

Family-Friendly Events to Enjoy During Spring Break in New Jersey

1. Get in the spirit of spring with the Easter Bunny, hayrides, egg hunts, and more at Alstede Farms Easter and Springtime Family Festival, which runs daily from Saturday, March 27-Sunday, April 11.

2. Catch a seasonal train ride with the Easter Bunny.

3. The hunt is on: Gather treasures at a local Easter egg hunt.

4. Experience Broadway singers, art exhibits, a laser show, and more from the comfort of your car during Cruise: An Artistic Drive-thru Experience in Atlantic City from Friday, March 19-Monday, April 5.

RELATED: 40 Spring Activities for New Jersey Kids

Hudson Play Sports Camp Boy climbing ropes
Check out a spring break camp at HudsonPLAY.

5. If you're looking for structured activities, check out these spring break camps with sports, crafts, theater, and more.

6. Score a spring goodie basket while remaining in the car at a spring festival drive-thru in Edison on Thursday, April 1.

7. In honor of April Fool's day, learn tricks in nature at a guided hike Wednesday, March 31, and Thursday, April 1).

8. Kids can take art classes at the Hoboken Historical Museum on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. FREE

RELATED: Here's When Amusement Parks Open for the Season in New Jersey and Pennsylvania

Storybook Land Two Easter Bunnies
The Easter Bunny stops by Storybook Land for some Easter Weekend Fun!

9. Become part of a fairytale when Storybook Land hosts Easter Weekend Fun from Friday, April 2-Monday, April 5.

10. Stroll through Palmer Square on the weekends, and try to catch up with the Easter Bunny through Saturday, April 3.

11. Drop by Jakes Branch County Park Nature Center for FREE nature crafts from Monday, April 5-Friday, April 9.

12. Cattus Island hosts themed nature walks every weekend. Search for osprey nests Saturday, March 27, and Sunday, March 28, or signs of spring Saturday, April 3.

RELATED: Sea Life Aquarium, Legoland Discovery Center Set to Open May 4 at American Dream

Six Flags Safari Drive-Thru Giraffe
The Six Flags Wild Safari Drive-Thru Adventure takes explorers on an exhilarating, interactive animal adventure.

Anytime Spring Break Outdoor Events

13. Make it a thrilling week of rides and attractions when Six Flags Great Adventure makes its seasonal debut.

14. While you're there, visit the wild inhabitants of the Safari Drive-Thru.

15. Stroll the boardwalks of the Jersey Shore for treats, exercise, and ocean breezes; many beaches are admission-free through Memorial Day weekend.

16. Check out Liberty State Park for a well-rounded day trip or visit one of the other parks and playgrounds we've profiled.

RELATED: Hop Aboard These Easter Bunny Train Rides for New Jersey Kids

Visit Keansburg during a spring break staycation
Keansburg and other amusement parks reopen in time for spring break.

17. Go amusement-hopping along the Jersey Shore with the season openings of Jenkinson's, Playland's Castaway Cove, and Keansburg.

18. Visit furry friends at the Turtle Back Zoo, which is open with reservations, or stop by the FREE Cape May Zoo and Bergen County Zoo.

19. Venture through 42 lush acres of outdoor artwork at the Grounds for Sculpture.

20. Break out the bicycles and take the family for a scenic ride along a family-friendly bike trail.

RELATED: Spring Break Camps for New Jersey Kids in 2021

girl at the touch table Watchung Sensory Trail
Watchung Reservation's Sensory Trail lets little ones use their senses. Photo by Margaret Hargrove

21. Take a short and touchy-feely stroll through Watchung Reservation's Sensory Trail.

22. If walking is more your family's speed, check out these dozen easy hikes perfect for little legs.

23. Welcome spring at one of New Jersey's excellent nature centers, including Great Swamp, where you can hit the trails.

24. Plan a day trip to explore one of the Garden State's charming towns, including Princeton, Millburn, and Montclair.

RELATED: Easter Bunny Pictures and Brunches for New Jersey Kids in 2021

Explore the Reeves-Reed Arboretum during spring break
Let your little ones wander the grounds and gardens at Reeves-Reed Arboretum.

25. New Jersey's lush arboretums offer year-round, outdoor fun; Cora Hartshorn and Reeves-Reed boast a roster of family-friendly events.

26. Book a tee time at a mini-golf course.

27. New Jersey State Parks are open and ready for guests to explore; favorites include Hacklebarney, Allaire, and High Point.

RELATED: New Amusement Park Rides Coming to the Tristate Area for Summer 2021

Spend spring break scaling the infinity climber at the Liberty Science Center
Spend spring break scaling the infinity climber at the Liberty Science Center.

Anytime Spring Break Indoor Events

28. Check out can't-miss exhibits, including Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood, Beyond Rubik's Cube, and the Infinity Climber at Liberty Science Center.

29. American Dream is the perfect staycation locale, featuring Angry Birds Not So Mini Golf, Nickelodeon Universe theme park, Big Snow, and DreamWorks Animation Water Park.

30. While outdoor water play may be a few months off, have a splash at indoor water parks in and near New Jersey.

31. Rides, games, food, and Top Golf are on tap at iPlay America.

32. Junior ninja warriors can get physical at these obstacle courses, ninja gyms, and aerial arts spots.

33. Have an aquatic spring break adventure at Camden's Adventure Aquarium and Jenkinson's Aquarium in Point Pleasant Beach.

34. Head over to the Morris Museum or another family-friendly museum for a day of educational fun.

35. Have a ball at a New Jersey bowling alley.

36. Get crafty over break at these 20+ indoor art studios offering drop-in classes, virtual workshops, and take-home crafts.

37. Indoor play spaces offer an active escape from the house.

This post, originally published in 2018, has been updated. Photos courtesy of the venues

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