Monday, January 16, 2012
South New Jersey Travel Guide Dining and Other Information For Southern New Jersey Plus Things To Do South Jersey Fun
A Travel Guide With All The Best Kept Secrets In the Garden State
Sponsored by A_Guide_To_South_Jersey.com
When traveling to South New Jersey it is good to investigate the many places to see before embarking on your travel voyage. There is so much to see and do in the Garden State. There are museums, historic places, wineries, restaurants/eateries, family attractions, arts & music events, spiritual attractions, sporting events, shops, businesses, environmental tours, state parks and forests and agri-tourism/farms. New Jersey especially South New Jersey has a great deal to offer any tourist or resident looking to explore the Southern Region. Everything in this article will be organized based primarily on the counties of Atlantic, Camden, Cape May and Cumberland Counties. The South Jersey Region is made up of seven counties: Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, and Salem. We will also share some attractions from the Greater Philadelphia Area as it is close enough to travel to and there are a world of opportunities.
According to Wikipedia the South New Jersey Region is everything surrounding the Greater Philadelphia Area as opposed to Central and North Jersey which is adjacent to New York City. South Jersey is the area of New Jersey that is nestled between Philadelphia and Atlantic City, two Commercial Centers or Resort Areas for South Jersey Travel. While these two metropolitan areas have a lot to offer, there is a great deal to do while traveling between the two major cities. Beginning with Camden County and traveling south there are many attractions and events to attend.
Camden County, South Jersey has the Camden Adventure Aquarium, The New Jersey Battleship, Camden Waterfront, Camden Riversharks (NJ’s Minor League Baseball Team), and Susquehanna Bank Center (Year-round amphitheater offers major concerts, Broadway productions, family entertainment). The City of Collingswood and Haddonfield have a great deal to offer in Arts & Music Events for the Southern NJ region. Cherry Hill has the Garden State Discovery Museum, the Goodwin Holocaust Museum, the Cherry Hill Mall and the Flying Fish Brewing Company. In the city of Camden there is the Walt Whitman House, Campbell’s Field that hosts the Camden Riversharks, and the Camden Children’s Garden which offers a four acre interactive Garden featuring themed and educational exhibits. Camden’s Adventure Aquarium is home to nearly 200,000 square feet of sea life and wildlife. Visitors can explore the West African River Experience featuring hippopotamuses, crocodiles, porcupines and more than 20 species of African birds in a free-flight aviary, be surrounded by sharks in a suspended 40-foot walk-through tunnel, discover the wonders of the deep sea in the Jules Verne Gallery, visit the brand new 4D Theatre and have an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to 'Swim with the Sharks.' Open daily, 9:30 am - 5 pm including holidays; call for extended hour days. The Walt Whitman House features the home of American poet Walt Whitman that contains an extensive collection of writings, photographs and memorabilia. It is a National Historic Landmark 856-964-5383.
The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area encompasses nearly 70,000 acres of breathtaking scenery along 40 miles of the Delaware River, which winds through the Appalachian Mountains. Kittatinny Point Visitor Center, Exit 1, I-80 W, Columbia, 570-828-2253. The Pinelands National Reserve is truly a special place. It's classified as a United States Biosphere Reserve and in 1978 was established by Congress as the country’s first National Reserve. It includes portions of seven southern New Jersey counties, and encompasses 1.1-million acres of farms, forests and wetlands. It contains 56 communities, from hamlets to suburbs, with more than 700,000 permanent resident. New Jersey Pinelands Commission 15 Springfield Rd. New Lisbon 609-894-7300. In the way of Family Attractions in Camden County there is Clementon Amusement Park & Splash World Waterpark. It features a Sky River Rapids slide with three sets of slides and three huge splash pools. There is also six lanes of competitive head first mat racing 856-783-0263.
Cumberland County just south of Camden County has three major cities: Bridgeton, Millville and Vineland. It is conveniently located between Philadelphia and Atlantic City almost halfway in between and in close proximity to the Jersey Shore. There are several attractions such as the Bayshore Discovery Project, the Cohanzick Zoo, Woodruff Museum of Indian Artifacts, the Bridgeton Southern All Sports Hall of Fame, the Glasstown Arts District, Millville Army Air Field Museum, Wheaton Arts & Cultural Center, Riverfront Renaissance Center for the Arts, NJ Motorsports Park and the newly restored Landis Arts Theatre.
The Bayshore Discovery Project is located in Bivalve, 2800 High St. 856-785-2060, it is a restored schooner called AJ Meerwald NJ’s Tall Ship restored for sailing trips and museum tours. Environmental and history educational program as well. The schedule of trips usually begins mid April when the weather clears and runs until late August. The Cohanzick Zoo is NJ’s first zoo with over 1,100 acres within a city park. It is home to over 200 birds and mammals from around the world. The Woodruff Museum of Indian Artifacts is located 150 Commerce St., Bridgeton, NJ. There are more than 30,000 artifacts from the Leni Lenape Indians 856-451-2620. The Bridgeton Southern All Sports Hall of Fame is on Burt St & Babe Ruth Dr., 856-451-7300. This museum is dedicated to individuals and teams of all sports in the region of Southern NJ. Photos, equipment, scrapbooks and other memorabilia are housed.
The Glass Arts District is in downtown Millville 800-887-4957 It highlights the city’s heritage as a glass center. There are many exhibits, galleries featuring regional artists from NJ, Philadelphia and New York City. The Millville Army Airfield Museum is located at Millville’s Airport. 1 Leddon St.856-327-2347. The Museum preserves the airfield’s history as the first defense airport and the site where more than 10, 000 service personnel along with 1500 pilots received advanced fighter training during WWII. In fact, Millville Thunderbolts are named after the P-47 Thunderbolt fighter plane built in Millville during WWII. The Wheaton Arts & Cultural Center features an exhibit oriented glass museum in Millville, New Jersey. Spectators can watch as glass blowers construct paperweights and other wares made from blown glass. 1501 Glasstown Road, Millville,NJ 800-998-4552.
The newly built NJ Motorsports Park lies in Dividing Creek just outside Millville at Buckshutem Rd. or Rt. 670 856-327-8000. The raceway features two separate world-class road courses, a first class karting track, ATV and Tri Oval courses in addition to a clubhouse, restaurants and lodging. The Landis Theater Performing Arts Center seats 750 patrons and includes an elevator to the luxurious mezzanine. An expanded stage and fly area can accommodate all types of performing arts productions. The back stage expansion provides support areas for the Theater including dressing rooms, bathrooms with showers, rehearsal space, theater support area, and a Green Room. Additionally, The Theater lobby can accommodate corporate and community events. It has now been restored to a modern day Arts Theater.
While there are many attractions and events to attend in Cumberland County, the area is also part of the NJ Coastal Heritage Trail Route. NJ’s coastal, natural and cultural areas begin in Perth Amboy and continue South to Cape May and West to the Delaware Memorial Bridge. There are five regions of the Coastal Heritage Trail Route beginning with the Sandy Hook Region, the Barnegat Bay, Absecon, Cape May and the Delsea Regions. It emcompasses the entire State along the Eastern Shore of the Jersey Shore Areas and West into Cumberland, Cape May and Salem Counties. The Delsea Region includes many small towns and cities in Cumberland and Salem Counties. Salem, Greenwich, Millville, Fortescue, Port Norris, Woodbine, etc. The city of Newport is part of this Trail Route and offers natural outdoors. Just outside Cumberland County in the county of Salem in Pennsville, NJ, lies Fort Mott which was part of a coastal defense system designed for the Delaware River in the late 1800s. The fortifications seen today at Fort Mott were erected in 1896 in anticipation of the Spanish-American War. Today, visitors can wander through the old batteries following interpretive signs with detailed descriptions of the fort. Just beyond the fortifications is the Delaware River. The shoreline offers good spots for walking and picnicking. The NJ Coastal Heritage Trail Welcome Center accommodates displays defining Fort Mott’s place in history and the environment. A historic site in Cumberland County along the Coastal Heritage Trail is in Greenwich where a monument was erected in 1908 in the old market place on Ye Greate Street to commemorate the burning of a cargo of British tea December 22, 1774.
If you are into outdoor sports and like canoeing and kayaking then the Maurice River and its tributaries offer a splendid trip throughout Cumberland County. Al & Sam’s Boat and Kayak Rental located at 2626 Weymouth Rd. just outside Vineland in Newfield offers everything you need to traverse the waterways. Millville has the largest man-made lake in the State and is usually the end to any canoe trip. Great for sailing Union Lake offers incredible natural winds providing you the speed to sail.
Atlantic and Cape May Counties and the Greater Atlantic City Area has much to offer in attractions, events, theaters, arts & music, environmental, shops, sports and more. The Winding River Campground, Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum, the famous Steel Pier, the Walk Atlantic City Outlets, Atlantic City Cruises, Storybook Land, IMAX Theatre at Tropicana, Cape May Park & Zoo, Historic Towne of Smithville, Edwin B Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, Lucy the Elephant, Cape May Whale Watch and Research Center, and the Cape May Lewes Ferry.
Just outside Cumberland County is the Buena Vista Camping Park, 775 Harding Hwy. (Rt. 40 & Rt. 54), 856-697-5555. They are a full service campground with a water slide. There is also Country Oaks Campground in the town of Dorothy, 13 S Jersey Ave, 609-476-2143
Beginning with Winding River Campground located off of Weymouth Rd. just outside Mayslanding NJ offers a wonderful array of outdoor activities including tubing, canoeing, kayaking, swimming, and volleyball. 6752 Weymouth Rd, 609-625-3191. It is a full service campground with a wonderful tributary stream for any small boating adventure. Estell Manor Park & Nature Center, 109 Rt. 50 also known as Veterans Park 609-645-5960 has hiking trails that wind past tidal wetlands and uplands. It contains environmental displays and has a wonderful nature center with all sorts of reptiles and snakes. Then there is the Edwin B Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge with over 43,000 acres of coastal habitats for migratory birds. Located in Oceanville just off of Great Creek Rd., 609-652-1665.
In Margate, the famous Lucy the Elephant, a National HIstoric Landmark approximately 65 foot high and located at 9200 Atlantic Ave, 609-823-6473. The Noyes Museum of Art, 733 Lily Lake Rd., 609-652-8848 in Oceanville displays a growing collection of American fine and folk art along with many exhibits. If you are into shopping then Atlantic County has the Towne of Historic Smithville & Village Green, 1 N New York Rd. (Rt. 9) & Moss Mill Rd. 609-652-7777. Historic Smithville has over 80 shops with an array of unique gifts. Hamilton Mall 4403 Black Horse Pike, 609-646-8326 has more than 140 stores including some restaurants as well as an international food court. Then there is The Walk in Atlantic City with over 50 outlet stores with name brands like Adidas Outlet Store, Aeropostale, American Eagle Outfitters, Banana Republic Factory Store, Bare Feet Shoes, Bass, Calvn Klein, Coach Factory Store, DKNY, Ecko Unlimited, Espirit, Fossil, Guess, Gap, Izod, J. Crew, Kenneth Cole, Lacoste, Liz Clairbourne, Nautica, Nike, Nine West, Old Navy, OshKosh, Pac Sun, Perry Ellis, Polo, Reebok, Rockport, Skeechers, Timberland, Tommy Hilfiger, Under Armour, Van Heusen many more.
Apart from shopping there is a great deal to see in the way of historical sites in Atlantic City, NJ. Beginning with the Civil Rights Garden on Pacific & Dr. Martin L King Blvd. A powerful tribute to the architects of the Civil Rights Movement. There is also the NJ Korean War Memorial, Brighton Park & Boardwalk, dedicated to ensuring that future generations remember veterans. There is the Absecon Lighthouse on 31 S Rhode Island Ave., 609-449-1360. Built in 1857, this 171 foot lighthouse is NJ’s tallest. The lighthouse hosts educational programs, weddings, guided tours, events and much more. Lastly, there is the Atlantic City Aquarium at Historic Gardner’s Basin, 800 N New Hampshire Ave. 609-348-2880. More than 18 aquarium exhibits including our 25, 000 gallon tank featuring fish of the mid-Atlantic. Live dive feeding daily.
Atlantic City Cruises takes voyages out along the Atlantic Ocean to see dolphins. There is also availability to book private parties. The Steel Pier offers family rides, games food and fun. Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum offers museums and attractions in multiple countries focusing on odd and amazing things. It provides videos, details about exhibits, and their history. The Imax Theater at Tropicanna provides your senses with the most powerful and involving movie experience yet created. Its Academy Award winning IMAX technology brings images to life like no other. Experience an arm chair adventure that will take your breath away...literally! The IMAX Theatre Atlantic City provides you with a larger-than-life escape putting you in the heart of the action! Storybook Land depicts themed park rides based on children’s stories; a wonderful sight during the Christmas Season. Morey’s Piers and Beechfront Waterparks in Wildwood NJ offers waterslides and water adventure rides along with amusements and even a Tiki bar for adults. Morey's Piers & Beachfront Waterparks
3501 Boardwalk Wildwood, NJ 08260 Phone: (609) 522-3900.
Then in Cape May County you have the Cape May-Lewes Ferry that provides transport with or without your vehicle to Lewes Delaware to enjoy tax free shopping in Rehoboth Beach. There is also the Cape May Park & Zoo with over 85 acres of beautifully maintained exhibits and 250 different species of mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles and over 550 animals. Cape May County Park & Zoo, 4 Moore Rd. - DN 801, Cape May Court House NJ, 08210, Telephone: 609-465-5271. Cape May Whale Watcher offers whale watching and dolphin watching in Cape May, NJ. There is also horseback riding if that is of interest in Cape May at Hidden Valley Ranch 4070 Bayshore Rd. Cape May 609-884-8205.
New Jersey received its name as the Garden State for all the produce that is produced on NJ’s many farms. As mentioned earlier it is also home to the Pine Barrens, the heavily coastal plains with a variety of pine trees. Due to a great deal of natural environments, NJ has over 90 State Parks and Forests. About 9 are within Atlantic, Cumberland, Camden and Cape May Counties or within the surrounding area. The majority offer camping, swimming, boating, fishing, hiking and hunting.
Here is a list:
Bass River State Forest, 762 State Rd, New Gretna, 609-296-1114
Belleplain State Forest, County Rt. 550, Woodbine, 609-861-2404
Cape May Point State Park, Lighthouse Ave., Cape May Point, 609-884-2159
Fort Mott State Park, 454 Fort Mott Rd., Pennsville, 856-935-3218
Island Beach State Park, Rt. 35, Seaside Park, 732-793-0506
Lebanon State Forrest, Rt. 70, New Lisbon, 609-726-1191
Parvin State Park, 701 Almond Rd., Pittsgrove, 856-358-8616
Penn State Forest @ Bass River State Forest, Lake Oswego Rd., New Gretna, 609-296-1114
Rancocas State Park @ Lebanon State Forest, PO BOX 215, New Lisbon 609-726-1191
Wharton State Forest, Rt. 542, Hammonton, 609-561-0024