They say, “The best things in life are free.” No kidding! Here are some great and FREE places that are kid-friendly to see this summer of 2014!
1. Batsto Village, Wharton State Forest
Take a tour of the museum and learn about the ecology of the pine barrens..then tour the grounds and saw mill. Bring a picnic lunch and hike portions of the Batona Trail.
2. The Palmyra Cove, Palmyra
Learn about the Delaware River in the free museum and pursue the small art gallery. Learn about the “baseball mud” used in the MLB, tour the trails and see various flora and fauna on the property.
3. The Cape May Zoo
Probably the most-popular zoo in the area (besides Philadelphia’s). The kids will have a blast!
4. Enjoy A Beach Day in Wildwood
The Wildwoods welcome over 9 million visitors a year making it the number one family resort at the Jersey Shore. Wildwood beaches are growing at a rate of 100 feet per year, making this Jersey Shore beach one of the few places on the East Coast where the shoreline is not diminishing.
5. The 3 Forts Ferry Tour
*Forts are Free, but ferry is not..
This is my most recent adventure.
Tour Fort Delaware on Pea Patch Island in the middle of the Delaware River. It’s an amazing fortress with a moat and holds a ton of history.
Fort Mott in Pennsville
Includes a children’s play park and Finns Point National Cemetery. Plus, tour the fort grounds.
Fort Dupont over in Delaware City is still an “active” complex for military personnel.
All three of these forts can be enjoyed via the ferry on the weekend. The kids will love it!! Bring a picnic lunch.
6. The Hancock House in Hancock’s Bridge In Salem County
Tour this historic home. Learn about the Revolutionary War and the infamous “massacre” that occurred here.
7. Ann Whitall House, National Park
Learn about this brazen woman and how her home turned into a Revolutionary War hospital. She aided the injured during the battle of Red Bank at Fort Mercer. There is also a children’s play park here.
8. Walt Whitman House
Tour the noted and beloved poet’s home who captured the heart of millions worldwide in Camden. See how he lived and learn some great history.
9. Kayak the Wading River in the Pine Barrens
Or just “hang out” this summer on some of the beautiful sandy beaches along the river. Trust me, it is magical!
10. Woodstown Historic Walking Tour
Take a stroll around historic Woodstown (just google for the map) and then take the kids to Cream Valley for ice cream afterwards and visit the Cowtown Flea market.
11. Kirby’s Mill, Medford
Walk along the historic mill grounds and learn about local history, visit the many buildings on site. Enjoy the tranquility.
12. Creamy Acres Farm, Mullica Hill
A lot of folks don’t realize that the animals are free to see here. Enjoy seeing goats, chickens, pigs and of course the cows that give this place its “creamy” namesake.
13. Historic Walnford, Upper Freehold
Another beautiful mill village along the Crosswicks Creek (some consider this South Jersey and others Central Jersey) this is a gorgeous place to see.
Visit this small beachy town along the Delaware Bay. See birds galore. Enjoy the day fishing or relaxing on the free beach. The sunsets are to-die-for. Fortescue is improving!
They recently dredged a beach in front of the Fortescue Grille and up the street where they had the horseshoe festival. There are talks about putting back in the boardwalk!
Stop at the Fortescue Grille offering great food and a nice deck to enjoy those sunset views while you dine!
15. Bayshore Discovery Museum, Port Norris
Free admission to this Cumberland County museum. Learn about the Delaware Bay, its history and unique ecology.
16. Sunset Beach, Cape May
Search for Cape May diamonds and watch the sunset at the southern-most tip in South Jersey.
17. Howell Living History Farm, Lambertville
A great experience for the kids to learn about a historic working farm as things were done in the old days. Also, see plenty of animals and tour the grounds on a horse drawn wagon. When you are finished take a drive north along Rt. 29 towards Frenchtown…New Jersey’s scenic byway. It’s gorgeous!
18. Higbee Beach, Cape May
Grab the dog and kids to this popular and unofficial “dog beach” along the Delaware Bay. Enjoy its quiet and rustic beauty and listen to the birdsong of the various migrant birds.
19. Soupy Island, West Deptford, NJ
This place has always been free. Enjoy swimming in the pools ( lifeguards are on duty), sliding down the 100 year old slide and take a ride on the carousel.
20. The Forgotten Warriors Museum, Rio Grande
Take the kids to this free museum to learn about the Vietnam War. It is a special and unknown gem in South Jersey and a must-see.
21. Estell Manor Park, Mays Landing
Enjoy the acres of beautiful trails and visit the ruins of a munitions factory and/or glass factory that once resided on these gracious grounds.
22. Spend A Day Exploring Greenwich (Cumberland County)
Tour all the historic homes and visit the Tea Burners Monument.
23. Smithville Park, Eastampton Twp
Visit this historic bicycle factory turned county park and Smithville mansion.
24. Rancocas Nature Center, Westampton
Learn about history along the Rancocas, tour some of the native gardens and trails.
25. The Palace of Depression, Vineland
See this amazing work-in-progress come to life. It’s truly magical.
You could spend hours here.
26. Discover Historic Downtown Haddonfield
Also, visit the legendary Hadrosaurus Foulkii site! One of the first intact dinosaur discoveries in the world!
27. The Cohanzick Zoo, Bridgeton
The Cohanzick Zoo sits in a city park consisting over 1100 acres. Over 200 animals are exhibited here. Including their most prized possession of the rare white tigers.
Bring a picnic lunch and sit on the lovely grounds surrounding the park. There are bathroom facilities on the premises. Kids love the place. It is smaller than most zoos in the area, but you can’t complain it is free.
28. Maurice River Bluffs
I have been here a few times and it is a wonderful place to connect with nature. There are many things to see (like bald eagles), a drawbridge, lookout area and ruins. Nicely maintained hiking trails and I have seen many families enjoying themselves here.
The only thing not free that is listed is the 3 forts ferry…However, all the forts are free to visit. Also, if you can donate to any of these free sites…Please do!
My son and I have enjoyed all these great sites! Best of all, have a wonderful summer!
Until our next adventure, my friends! -The Yummygal