5 Family-Friendly Hikes in New Jersey

Take a Hike in New Jersey

Spend time outdoors with your New Jersey family. New Jersey offers some great opportunities for a family-friendly hike and memories for a lifetime.

Grab a backpack, pack a picnic, and put on your hiking boots (well, in my house the five-year-old isn't going anywhere without light-up Spiderman sneakers).

We've picked five family-friendly trails that we hope your New Jersey family enjoys.

Family Friendly Hikes in New Jersey5 Family-Friendly Hikes in New Jersey

1. Fairy Trail (Millburn, Essex County)
Kids love this. There are so many fairy houses to see. This hike couldn't be more family fun! See little stairs leading up to a fairy bench or a fairy house complete with a fairy bed with a seashell headboard. There's a cute sign telling us that fairies like acorns, pinecones, shells, flowers and pretty stones not plastic.  The kids were positive we would find Tinkerbell along the path. Don't be surprised if your kids ask to build a fairy garden at the house after this hike. Access the park from Glen Avenue in Millburn. We used 197 Glen Ave, Millburn in the GPS. See photos of this family-friendly trail in New Jersey.
TIP: This path isn't too far from Turtle Back Zoo so make it a complete family day by adding a zoo visit!

2. Stairway to Heaven (Vernon, Sussex County)
There's a beautiful field of wildflowers, train tracks, boardwalks and a suspension bridge which kids love. This is such a family-friendly trail. Cross "Lover's Bridge" with your spouse and gross the kids out. Climb as a family up the "Stairway to Heaven" rock steps. The boardwalk section is a shorter hike for your New Jersey family at 2 miles. Great views especially in the fall. Learn more about this family-friendly trail with NJ Hiking.
TIP: Bring your camera for a beautiful family fall foliage picture to use on your Christmas card.

3. Pyramid Mountain (Montville, Morris County)
There are many family friendly paths to explore at Pyramid Mountain. We found the trails well-marked. The kids took photos of unique glacial rocks. We took a family photo at Tripod Rock, a 180-ton boulder balanced on three smaller boulders. Great scenic overlook from where we could see the skyline of Manhattan. Use 472 Boonton Avenue in Montville for the address. Learn more about this family-friendly hike.
TIP: Visit the Pyramid Mountain Visitor Center. Not only can you pick up a great map of the trails, but there are kid friendly activities to do.

4. Duke Farms (Hillsborough, Somerset County)
There are 18 miles of paved, gravel, wood-chipped and mown-grass trails and pathways through a variety of habitats at Duke Farms. Print out their Family Activity Sheets and enjoy a bit of a scavenger hunt together. There's even a geocaching challenge consisting of 11 different caches placed around the property. Picnic by the Great Falls. Learn more about the family-friendly trails at Duke Farms.
TIP: Borrow an Eco-kit from the visitor center. The kit contains binoculars, a compass, a note pad, a pencil and a copy of the Duke Farms field guide to help you identify plants and animals.

5. Jakes Branch County Park (Beachwood, Ocean County) 
Enjoy a family-friendly hike on the 0.5-mile Plant Discovery Trail surrounded by gardens. More challenging hikes are available, too. We found the trails to be flat and easy. New this summer is the Play Trail, an enjoyable half-mile circular trail that meanders through the beautiful Pine Barrens and includes six play pockets of environmentally themed playground equipment.  More on this family-friendly park.
TIP: If you aren't up for the hike, just go to the top of the 5-story nature center for breathtaking views of the surrounding Pine Barrens forest.

Photo credit Morris Parks/Pyramid Mountain.

Tags: family hike fall foliage