Things to see and do in New Jersey

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Whether you’re on the East Coast for a weekend or a whole year, the Garden State AKA New Jersey, has many attractions. From Princeton University, Atlantic City, to Cape May and Jersey Shore, there are lots of things to do and see in New Jersey. Here are just a few of my favorite places to visit:

  1. Princeton University on Nassau Street – As part of the au pair program you have to complete educational components which means you have to study at an American accredited college/university. I was lucky enough to study English Language and Linguistics at Ivy League Princeton University! It was an amazing experience. But did you know that you don’t have to be a student to visit the college? You can enjoy a stroll around the university on Nassau Street or head down to Palmer Square and visit House of Cupcakes on Witherspoon Street to taste a little piece of heaven!
  2. Atlantic City – Do you love the nightlife? Then Atlantic City is THE spot to be! It has everything – clubs, casinos, shopping outlets, and even the beach! If you’re looking for an inexpensive weekend away or the affordable version of Las Vegas, Atlantic City is a perfect getaway location.
  3. The Jersey Shore – Remember the MTV reality show that focused on the party people from Jersey Shore? Well it actually exists and there’s more to it than drama! From Point Pleasant, Manasquan, to Long Beach Island, Cape May, and Island Beach State Park, why not take a road trip with your au pair friends along the Jersey Shore and sun bathe on the beaches? It’s a great location to beach hop during the summer. You can even rent beach houses in the winter with cheap deals.
  4. Grounds For Sculpture – Are you a fan of Marilyn Monroe? Do you love museums? Can you appreciate contemporary art? Grounds For Sculpture is a park and museum combined into one attraction based in Hamilton, NJ. They have famous art sculptures such as, The Girl with the Peal Earring, Marilyn Monroe, and other notable sculptures. It’s a place you can visit with your au pair friends and a perfect day out with your host kids.
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  5. Shopping – Macy’s, JC Pennys, Victoria’s Secret, and Bath and Body Works are a just a few of my favorite stores. There are tons of shopping malls in New Jersey but some of my favorites have got to be Quakerbridge Mall, Cherry Hill Mall and Freehold Raceway Mall. Once that $195.75 checked into my bank account every Friday, I would spend most of it at any one of these malls.
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  6. America consists of various different cultures, lifestyles, religions, and ethnicity. But what do they all have in common? Food, of course! One of the best things about being immersed into the American lifestyle is the variety of different foods available. From Asian, Mexican, Indian, and Italian cuisines, New Jersey is packed with some of my favorite restaurants and diners. Ask some of your au pair friends or host parents for the best diners in town.
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  7. Mercer County Park – This was one of the many places my LCC hosted our au pair monthly meetings and it’s one of the first places I made other au pair friends! Enjoy a picnic at this park or go boat sailing for a few dollars. If you love the great outdoors, you’ll love Mercer County Park.
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  8. AMC Movie Theatre – When I was an au pair, I noticed that a lot of movies came out first in America than they did in my home country. So I felt incredibly lucky to watch movies before they appeared in theaters in England (my home country)
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  9. If you’re feeling really adventurous and love riding roller coasters, Six Flags Great Adventure is a massive theme park with rides for everyone! If you’re looking for an inexpensive version of Disney Land, why not visit Six Flags in Jackson with your au pair friends? It’s also another great place to visit with your host family.
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  10. Cape May County Park & Zoo – Do you love animals? Are you looking for a day out with your host kids? Cape May Zoo is a fantastic and easily accessible zoo to visit. It’s open 364 days a year which means you can visit during the Winter and what’s the best part about visiting this zoo during the cold season? It’s completely free! There’s no admission fee in November but make sure you check out their website before you go.

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If you know of more attractions in New Jersey, use the comments section to tell us all about them!


I am an ambitious and dedicated writer. I have completed my BA in English Literature and Education Studies. Upon completing my degree, I traveled to New Jersey as an au pair where I met my fiance. Currently, I reside in England and work as a Copywriter whilst inspiring au pairs to experience a life-changing adventure!

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