Many people only see Newark from its international airport, but New Jersey’s largest city is a fantastic destination of its own. Packed with national historical sites, popular parks and excellent cuisine from around the world, the city has more than enough to fill an itinerary.
One of Newark’s most popular attractions is Branch Brook Park. Famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, designer of Manhattan’s Central Park, designed this urban oasis. See the beautiful park-side Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart. Visit the park in spring to see the blossoms of the United States’ most impressive collection of cherry trees. This 4,300-tree grove is home to Newark’s Cherry Blossom Festival each April.
Stop by Military Park in downtown Newark to explore one of the city’s most significant historic sites. General George Washington and his soldiers camped here while retreating from British forces during the American Revolution. The park also contains significant works of public art including Wars of America, a sculpture by Mount Rushmore sculptor Gutzon Borglum, and an 1898 cannon from the Spanish-American War.
More of Newark’s history is on display at the Newark Museum where exhibits include a preserved 1885 mansion, a large collection of Tibetan art and a planetarium.
For a fantastic Newark dining experience, explore the Ironbound district. The streets of this immigrant neighborhood are lined with restaurants serving authentic cuisine from around the world. While in the district, head to the banks of the Passaic River to take a stroll along Riverfront Park’s gleaming orange boardwalk.
New Jersey Performing Arts Center offers world-class entertainment. New Jersey Devils play hockey at Prudential Center and great events happen nightly. Just over the border you’ll find New York Red Bulls soccer at Red Bull Arena and New Jersey’s largest outlet shopping mall The Mills at Jersey Gardenswhere 18 million shoppers find bargains annually.
Newark’s international airport is one of the largest in the U.S., so the city is easy to reach. Tour the city for a few hours while on a long layover or spend a few days here on a trip from New York City, located 8 miles (12.9 kilometers) east.