Easy access to arts and culture is part of what makes city living so fulfilling. And in Jersey City, you’re just a day trip away from the best museums that New Jersey has to offer.
If you’re ever wondering, “what is New Jersey known for?”, we’re excited to tell you about the states and history museums. New Jersey state is filled with historic sites, entertainment, art, and more. One day you can be touring a historic coastal landmark and the next you’re enjoying cocktails with dinosaurs and a view. Whether you’re a history buff or an art aficionado, the best museums in the Garden State are closer than you think.
In this guide, we’re exploring 8 of the best museums in New Jersey that you can visit by day, and be back home in time for happy hour with your friends by evening.
#1 Newark Museum Of Art
As the largest art museum in New Jersey state-wide, the Newark Museum of Art is home to ancient and modern artifacts from around the world as well as large collections of American masters including:
- Georgia O’Keefe
- John Singer Sargent
- Edward Hopper
In addition to the classics, the NMOA presents contemporary art exhibitions tied to their mission to foster and encourage inclusion and community.
#2 Liberty Science Center
Located just a quick 2 miles from Common at Le Leo in Liberty State Park, the Liberty Science Center is home to the Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium.
With a whopping 89-foot dome, the planetarium is the biggest in the country and boasts a resolution of 88 million pixels and a rocking sound system that can produce 30,000 watts.
Be sure to hit up the adults-only LSC after-dark events, which include themed dance party nights and drinks with dinosaurs and a view of the Manhattan skyline.
#3 Morris Museum
Part historical museum and part performance venue, the Morris Museum in nearby Morristown provides a unique culturally immersive experience.
You’ll find art-centric films, jazz, and theater performances alongside an eclectic permanent collection that includes:
- A Native American gallery
- Model trains
- Mechanical music
The Morris Museum is also the only Smithsonian Affiliate in the state of New Jersey.
#4 Princeton University Art Museum
Located on the scenic campus of the historic Ivy League institution, the Princeton University Art Museum holds a trove of international art and antiquities on rotating display that makes it one of the most treasured art museums in New Jersey.
You’ll come across a sizable collection of century-spanning artwork, which includes:
- Renaissance paintings
- Greek and Roman antiquities
- Modern art
While you’re there, explore the campus and its beautiful, historic architecture.
#5 Battleship New Jersey Museum & Memorial
If you’re a history buff, the Battleship New Jersey Museum in Camden is a must-visit. Touted as the “world’s greatest battleship,” the New Jersey is the most decorated battleship in America.
You can tour the bunks, the bridge, and the captain’s quarters, and even explore the gun turrets. This can be a great family-friendly opportunity to explore one of the United States battleship museums.
Self-guided tours are available, or you can try one of their more focused experiences like a Saturday gun salute or an adults-only twilight tour complete with cocktails on the deck.
#6 Monmouth Museum
If you can’t decide between art, history, or science, the Monmouth Museum’s unique blend of artifacts and exhibits might just tick all your inquisitive boxes. Located in Lincroft and one of the largest privately owned museums in the state, the “Institute of Ideas” is a cultural center for lifelong learning.
It’s home to one of North America’s largest collections of 18th-century sewing clamps known as “sewing birds” and presents an annual emerging artist series to showcase the talent of New Jersey artists.
#7 Cape May Lighthouse
When you want a quick break from the excitement of city living at Common at The Agnes, escape to New Jersey’s stunning ocean coastline.
Nestled in Cape May Point State Park, you can explore miles of nature trails before climbing to the top of the historic Cape May Lighthouse for breathtaking views of the Jersey and Delaware coasts. The lighthouse features several special events, including:
- Lighthouse full moon climb – Ascend the lighthouse’s spiral staircase and learn about the lighthouse’s storied history.
- Stairway to the stars lighthouse climb – Reach the top of the lighthouse to view the many constellations that fill the seaside sky.
- Lighthouse challenge – This two-day event encourages New Jersey residents to visit the state’s treasure trove of museums and lighthouses, gifting participants commemorative t-shirts and trinkets.
Make a day in Cape May with a visit to the nearby Historic Cold Spring Village and some lively fun on Wildwood’s beaches.
#8 Thomas Edison National Historic Park
Take a trip to West Orange and go back in time when you visit Thomas Edison’s perfectly preserved laboratory and mansion home. Part of the National Park system, the historic site offers a glimpse inside the life and work of the famous inventor.
The manor house in Llewellyn Park features Eastlake-style furnishings and modern (for the time) amenities like flush toilets. Edison’s lab was a hub for many of his later experiments and research, including electricity and motion pictures.
Get Your Culture On With Common
From New Jersey State Museum and Liberty State Park and science center to Montclair Art Museum and more, there’s plenty to explore. You can also explore all the New Jersey events, beaches, and New Jersey nightlife it has to offer. With two convenient Jersey City locations, you’re never far from the cultural pulse of the state when you make one of our coliving spaces your home. And with the easy living and attainable price point, you’ll have the freedom and flexibility to learn and explore in New Jersey’s many museums and cultural institutions.
Find your next home in Jersey City with Common. Our beautiful coliving spaces offer quality furnishings and state-of-the-art amenities to complement the friendly community atmosphere. Common at The Agnes in the West Side features a pool and fitness center, while Common at Le Leo in Journal Square boasts a furnished rooftop deck for residents.
Join the Common community today.
- Battleship New Jersey. Visit. https://www.battleshipnewjersey.org/visit/
- Cape May MAC. Cape May Lighthouse. https://capemaymac.org/experience/cape-may-lighthouse/
- Liberty Science Center. Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium. https://lsc.org/explore/planetarium
- Monmouth Museum. About Us. https://www.monmouthmuseum.org/about
- Morris Museum. Permanent Galleries. https://morrismuseum.org/on-view/permanent-galleries
- National Park Service. Thomas Edison National Historic Park New Jersey. https://www.nps.gov/edis/index.htm
- Newark Museum of Art. Mission & Governance. https://newarkmuseumart.org/about/mission-governance/
- Princeton University Art Museum. History. https://artmuseum.princeton.edu/about/history