Spring will be starting very soon, and for us, this means that we really want to head outside. Since I have a family that loves to hike, we always try to find different places to go. There are some places that you may not have known about, but they are definitely worth the trip. If you are planning to take a family hike, be sure to plan ahead. Take along plenty of water for everyone, and perhaps you can even pack a lunch. Since most of the New Jersey parks charge a fee, I thought it would be a good idea to list those places where you can hike for free. Let’s face it: Not all of us have money to spend on activities during the week for our kids. So hiking for free in the spring is definitely the way to go.
Hacklebarney State Park
This park is truly a great place to visit. The trails are long and interesting, but you can make the walk as long, or as short as you like. When you reach certain points along the trail you will find picnic tables where you can stop and have lunch. They also have charcoal grills found close to the tables. It really is a great place to spend an afternoon with the family. The park is located at 119 Hacklebarney Rd. in Long Valley, NJ. Of course the best part is that currently there is no entrance fee into this park. It’s also a great place for taking pictures of the family on the hike. If you were considering taking along the family pet, they are welcome in the park as long as they are on a leash, and kept fully under your control.
Little Brook Sanctuary
This is a great place to hike if you want to see plenty of wildlife on the trail. Spring is really a great time to visit since you will have an opportunity to see all of the birds, and flowers starting to bloom.
This trail is located at Stevens Lane, in Bernardsville, NJ. You can click on the link above to get directions to the trail.
Duke Island Park
This park is located on Old York Road, Bridgewater, NJ. A lot of families like to go bike riding along the many trails in Duke Park. However, I have enjoyed walking on the trails. There is so much nature to see; make sure you bring along a camera to take pictures of all the beautiful flowers. When you first arrive, be sure to stop by the visitor center to see what activities they may have for the day. Some of the activities will cost you a small fee, but hiking on the trails is free.
Voorhees State Park
This park is located at 251 County Road Route 513 Glen Gardner, NJ. They are open every day from 8:00am to 4:00pm. They have a total of 7 trails that you can hike on with the family. Take the time to see which trails are best for your families level of hiking. Of course the scenery along the walk is really what makes this trail stand out to most.
Middlesex County Greenway
There is a great trail that you can hike through several different towns. You can also bring your dog along on the trails as you hike. The beginning of the trail starts in Metuchen New Jersey. They are still in the process of expanding the trails, but if you are new to hiking this may be the perfect option for you.