Cabin fever can be common in Northeast winters, but if you live in New Jersey, fear not! Here are 10 family-friendly options for indoor (and in-state) fun this winter.
Adventure Aquarium (Camden)
The Adventure Aquarium in Camden is home to more than 15,000 species of aquatic creatures. Among these are hippos, penguins and the only Great Hammerhead shark on exhibit in the country. Your family can visit Caribbean Currents, stop by the Sea Turtle Cove or hang out in the Kids Zone. Don’t miss Penguin Park and Piranha Falls — an Amazon Experience! Daily tickets start at $21.99 for kids and $29.99 for adults. They also have year-long memberships.
iFly Indoor Skydiving
For the thrill-seekers, iFly in Paramus gives you the chance to free-fall in place. Visitors get to experience safe skydiving in an indoor wind tunnel. Great for birthday parties, iFly provides flight gear (safety goggles, helmets and flight suits) and a training session for all guests. They also run STEM-based educational programs and offer All Abilities nights for the special needs community. Prices begin at $89.95 per person for 2 flights.
Indoor Rock Climbing
If your family loves rock climbing, you’re in luck. New Jersey has an abundance of indoor climbing locations perfect for families! Check out The Gravity Vault (multiple locations), NJ Rock Gym in Fairfield, Diamond Rock in East Hanover, The Edge Sports Center in Flemington, Garden State Rocks in Morganville, and more. Prices vary, but all are open to young ages, and many do birthday parties or group events as well.
The Morris Museum in Morristown began as a children’s museum, and continues to provide “engaging exhibitions and programs” in history, art, science and the performing arts. Its current exhibits feature firefighters and model trains, as well as the history of the trumpet and a sound garden. Adults are $10, children $7; kids under 3 are free. The Museum also has its own Bickford Theatre, which features musical performances, children’s theatre, storytelling workshops and more.
Feeling in the wintry spirit? Try out any of NJ’s indoor ice-skating rinks for some seasonal fun without having to brave the cold of an actual frozen lake. There’s Codey Arena in West Orange, Clary Anderson Arena in Montclair, Skylands Ice World in Stockholm, Ice Land Rink in Hamilton, The Arenas at Woodbridge Community Center, and Ocean Ice Palace in Brick, to name a few.
Feeling video-game nostalgic? Play in an old-school arcade at YESTERcades. Their “Golden Age of Gaming” experience includes pinball, arcade classics, and newer console games. With locations in Red Bank, Somerville and Westfield, it’s sure to have something for every gamer in your family. You can pay $8.75 per player per hour, or buy a daily re-entry pass for $25 per player.
Liberty Science Center & Planetarium
This learning center in Jersey City houses 12 exhibition halls, live animals, aquariums, weather simulators, classrooms and labs. The Liberty Science Center sees more than 750,000 guests each year, exciting them about “the power, promise, and pure fun of science and technology.” Plus, it has the largest and most technologically-advanced planetarium in the Western Hemisphere. General admission starts at $23.75 for adults and $19.75 for kids ages 2-12.
New Jersey’s largest museum opened in the Newark Public Library in 1909. Today, the Newark Museum offers extensive art exhibitions from around the world. Their ongoing collections range from Dynamic Earth to Decorative Arts, and the museum has an outdoor garden. Entry is $15 for adults and $8 for children. (Admission is free for kids under 2.) There’s also a planetarium, which is $6 for adults and $4 for children under 12.
This children’s museum specializes in young children (pre-school and young school age). At Imagine That!!! in Florham Park, kids are encouraged to interact with over 50 exhibits and use their imaginations by learning through play. It’s also great for birthday parties and field trips.