46 Best Things To Do in New Jersey this Spring

Step back in time at Field Station: Dinosaurs, New Jersey's dinosaur-themed adventure park. Photo courtesy of the venue
Step back in time at Field Station: Dinosaurs, New Jersey's dinosaur-themed adventure park. Photo courtesy of the venue
3/24/24 - By Margaret Hargrove

With the arrival of spring, it's time to trade in those clunky boots, mittens, and winter coats for fresh air, parks and playgrounds, spring getaways, and New Jersey farm fun. Get outside to take advantage of all of the great, seasonal things to do that the Garden State offers.

Read on for dozens of fantastic spring activities to enjoy with your family. Looking for more ideas? Check out our Spring Fun Guide, where new events, activities, and outings are added throughout the season.


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Best Things To Do in New Jersey with Kids in Spring 2024

1. Go to Diggerland

If your kids love construction vehicles, check out Diggerland, which opened for the 2024 season on Saturday, March 16. Drive, ride, and operate heavy machinery at this construction-themed adventure park. There are some new things for kids under 36" to do this year, too.

2. Ride an Old-Fashioned Train

Hop aboard the train in Flemington or Phillipsburg to ride the rails with the Easter Bunny or take a spring excursion.

3. Play Outside

Frolic outdoors at some of our favorite parks and playgrounds.

4. Visit Alstede Farm's Easter and Springtime Family Festival

See baby animals, visit the Easter Bunny, and try the scavenger hunt at Alstede Farm's Easter and Springtime Family Festival from Saturday, March 23 through April 7, 2024, except March 31.

5. Visit a Farm

Visit lambs, chicks, calves, and other baby animals and barnyard residents at one of NJ's family-friendly farms and petting zoos.

6. PYO Berries

Strawberry season starts at the end of May, so grab a basket and pick your own berries—and more—at a host of local farms.

7. Enjoy EGGstravaganZOO

Spy oversized eggs in the walking paths, try the HOPstacle course, and participate in the Easter Scavenger Hunt during the Easter EGGstravaganzoo at the Cape May Zoo on Friday, March 29 through Sunday, April 7, 2024.

8. See Cherry Blossoms

Check out the beautiful cherry blossoms in Branch Brook Park. Its popular annual festival returns from Saturday, April 6-Sunday, April 14, 2024.

9. Explore Duke Farms

Break out the bicycles and take the family for a scenic ride through the gorgeous grounds of Duke Farms. Note that this private park limits weekend visitors, so guests must sign up for a free parking pass in advance online on Saturdays from April through October.

10. Visit the Stirling Street Fair

Hit the pavement and enjoy this year's entertainment at the Stirling Street Fair on Sunday, April 21, 2024.

11. Go Stargazing

Find the best places to go stargazing in NJ to celebrate National Astronomy Day on Saturday, May 18, 2024.

12. Visit a Nature Center

Visit one of NJ's awesome nature centers to learn about local flora and fauna and head outside to look for signs of spring.

13. Go to Cape May's Spring Festival

Head to Cape May for the family-friendly Spring Festival, from Thursday, May 16 to Sunday, May 19, 2024.

RELATED: New Jersey's Liberty State Park: A Perfect Family Day Trip

reeves reed arboretum daffodil day nj spring break staycation Best Things To Do in New Jersey with Kids this Spring:
The hills come alive with daffodils at Reeves-Reed Arboretum in April. Photo courtesy of the arboretum

14. Experience Daffodil Day

Experience the splendor of spring at the Reeves-Reed Arboretum's Daffodil Day on Sunday, April 14, 2024.

15. Enjoy Rutgers Day

Head to New Brunswick on Saturday, April 27, 2024, for Rutgers Day 2024 and enjoy farm animals, food vendors, and special activities for kids—all FREE. 

16. Observe Earth Day

The whole family can head outdoors and stretch their legs as the Monmouth County Park System celebrates Earth Day with a variety of events in its parks Saturday, April 20, 2024.

17. Explore a New Town

Be a tourist in your own state with a day trip to one of NJ's charming towns, like Montclair and Summit.

18. Go to a Renaissance Fair

Travel back in time at the Smithville Renaissance Faire on Saturday, April 20, and Sunday, April 21, 2024. The historic village is transformed into an English Renaissance town, complete with dukes and duchesses, sword fights, and knights. Or, get tickets to the NJ Renaissance Faire, which runs weekends from May 18 to June 9, 2024.

19. See Kip's Castle

Take your little prince or princess on a real-life adventure to Kip's Castle Park in Verona. Built in 1905, the replica of a medieval castle is a whopping 9,000 square feet and has amazing views of the NYC skyline.

RELATED: Easy Spring Break Getaways for New Jersey Families

Watchung Reservation Sensory Trail girl on trail nj spring staycation Best Things To Do in New Jersey with Kids this Spring:
Explore the Watchung Reservation Sensory Trail in Union County. Photo by Margaret Hargrove

20. Hike the Watchung Reservation

Walk the Watchung Reservation Sensory Trail, the first of its kind in Union County, and according to park officials, the most extensive sensory trail in the U.S.

21. Experience Nature at Cora Hartshorn Arboretum

Celebrate the season by signing up for an educational program at the Cora Hartshorn Arboretum.

22. Learn About Animals

Learn about all the inhabitants of Jakes Branch County Park Nature Center in a 20-minute live animal talk every Sunday.

23. Head to the Boardwalk

Visit Jenkinson's Boardwalk before the summer crowds arrive. The rides and most amusements open in late March/early April.

24. Rock it Out

Dance at the Grayrock N Roll Spring Festival, where kids can meet farm animals and everyone can nosh on food truck fare. The event takes place on Saturday, April 20, 2024.

25. Watch Sheep Shearing

Experience the Sheep Shearing event at the Historic Longstreet Farm on Saturday, April 27, and Sunday, April 28, 2024.

26. Visit a Water Park

Cool down at one of NJ's best water parks. If you're looking for something more low-key, check out our favorite water playgrounds and splash pads.

27. Fly a Kite

See kites of all shapes and sizes soaring over the beach in Long Branch on Saturday, April 20, 2024.

28. Take a Nature Walk

Take a lovely stroll during a Cattus Island nature walk.

29. Embark on a Bunny Chase

Hunt for clues to find a surprise at the end of Terhune Orchard's Bunny Chase during Easter weekend. Afterward, little ones can make a bunny craft to take home and munch on a bunny cookie.

30. Embrace Bricks

Take your little LEGO enthusiast to Brick Fest, a 2-day convention with exhibits, interactive stage shows, life-sized Lego buildings, a world-record-setting brick mosaic, and merchandise. 

31. Spring Fling

Bounce around the fun KidZone, rock out to live music, and sample delicious treats from food vendors during Westfield's Spring Fling on Sunday, May 5, 2024.

32. Get Spring Thrills

Get your springtime thrills at Storybook Land when the new season kicks off on March 28, 2024, or Six Flags Great Adventure, which also opens on Saturday, March 16, 2024. And opening Memorial Day weekend, right in time for the unofficial start of summer: the Land of Make Believe!

33. Enjoy Ocean Fun Day

See even more of what the Jersey Shore offers during the 2024 Ocean Fun Days at Island Beach State Park and Sandy Hook.

34. Take a Beach Trip

Plan a beach getaway to visit one of many family-friendly shores right here in New Jersey, from Sandy Hook to Cape May.

35. Enjoy South Mountain Reservation

Head to South Mountain Reservation for a full day of family fun, including a fairy trail, paddle boats, mini golf, the Turtle Back Zoo, and the popular pirate playground.

36. See Dinosaurs

See giant, animatronic dinosaurs come to life when Field Station: Dinosaurs reopens Saturday, May 25, 2024, to kick off Memorial Day weekend.

37. Visit LSC

If you visit soon, you can learn about the Science behind Pixar in an interactive exhibit at the Liberty Science Center. Let your imagination fly before it closes on Sunday, May 5, 2024.

38. Experience American Dream

Get combo tickets to American Dream's Nickelodeon Universe and Dreamworks Water Park for a full day of fun (or enjoy the venues separately up to two weeks apart)

39. Get a Sweet Treat

Grab a sweet treat at your favorite local ice cream joint.

40. See Model Trains

Watch Thomas and other trains chug around miniature tracks at the Garden State Annual Spring Model Railroad Show on weekends in late March and early April.

41. Bowl for Free

Kids bowl free at Oakwood Lanes, one of NJ's most family-friendly bowling alleys. Check out the program's signup page for more details about when it will begin in 2024. 

42. The Montclair Literary Festival

The Montclair Literary Festival select dates in late April and early May, It features a full day of free events for children and young adults, including author and illustrator visits, stories, and workshops.

43. See Stars Indoors

Catch a show at one of NJ's amazing planetariums.

44. Try a New Rainy Day Activity

Try a new activity that's perfect for a rainy spring day.

45. Head to the Azalea Festival

Stop and smell the flowers at the Azalea Festival in Hamilton on Mother's Day weekend, where you can enjoy more than 250,000 flowering bulbs, dogwoods, azaleas, and rhododendrons.

46. Visit Wild West City

Step back in time to an 1880s frontier town at Wild West City, where you'll be part of the action along with cowboys, sheriffs, bank robbers, gold diggers, and more. The park opens for the season on May 4, 2024.

This post, originally published in March 2015, is updated annually.

Places featured in this article:

Branch Brook Park, Northern Division

Watchung Reservation Sensory Trail

Cora Hartshorn Arboretum & Bird Sanctuary

Jenkinson's Boardwalk and Aquarium

Grayrock Farm Sanctuary

Sandy Hook Beach