If you’re looking at that picture above and thinking it doesn’t quite look like New York, you’re right. That’s Jersey City.
So many maps of New York City leave New Jersey off the map. It’s given many New Yorkers the idea that there’s nothing west of the Hudson worth checking out, causing them to miss out on amazing views, great neighborhoods, and fantastic real estate deals.
You don’t have to be a local to take advantage of Jersey City.
People rave about the views from the Brooklyn Heights Promenade. These people have not been to Jersey City.
Painting or Reality? 😜🤗 Huhuu ihr Lieben, wir durften heute das Hotel wechseln und sind nun im #hyattregencyjerseycity. 2009 habe ich genau hier meinen ersten New York Urlaub verbracht und habe nur gute Erinnerungen an dieses Hotel. Die Aussicht ist einfach der Wahnsinn😍😍Damals sah die Skyline allerdings noch ein wenig leerer aus als heute. Darum konnte ich natürlich nicht widerstehen und habe vermutlich ca. 1000 Bilder gemacht 😂🙈🙈 #fotojunkie. Kennt ihr das, wenn ihr ein und das selbe Motive immer und immer wieder fotografieren müsst? Weil es einfach zu schön ist, um nur EIN Foto davon zu machen? 😂😂😂 Oder geht's nur mir so? 😂 #jerseycity#hyattregency#skyline#oneworldtradecenter#worldtradecenter#manhatten#newyork#hudsonriver#hudson#travelling#cabincrew#flightattendant#stewardess#crew#hotel#happygirl#traveller#view#unbelievable#blogger#youtuber#behappyandtravel
People love the MTA subway, but there are some serious perks to the PATH system, too. It runs between 6 am and midnight, connecting Jersey City with Manhattan.
The much smaller system doesn’t have the tentacle reach of the MTA, but it’s much more reliable and there’s zero chance you’ll be lost for hours or end up in the wrong borough. There are schedules online and in the station.
The trains will take you to the World Trade Center, Christopher Street, 14th Street, 23rd Street, and 33rd Street.
You can also take the ferry from Paulus Hook to the World Trade Center, Wall Street, Midtown,
My favorite Jersey City neighborhood is Grove Street. It has the classic brownstones, boutiques, hip bars, and charming cafes you expect to see in NYC. It really has everything a proper Brooklyn neighborhood has, including a Barcade and Two Boots Pizza. Torico might be the best ice cream spot in the US. There are several good spots to get cocktails, including Dullboy.
Paulus Hook is a sleek new urbanist paradise of high rises on the waterfront. If you want marina access and the Manhattan skyline, this is your spot. Don’t worry, there are still plenty of spots to grab a bite and a pint. It’s also home to the Zeppelin Hall Beer Garden and the Museum of Russian Art.
Pavonia Newport is a weird place. You could stay in a highrise on the waterfront and have no idea that you’re on top of a microcosm of Americana. The Newport PATH station spits you out into a mall. The mall and parking deck are open whenever the trains are running, since it stands between the train station and the charming tree-lined streets of Pavonia. If you head north out of the station, you end up in a suburban wasteland of horrendous traffic, enormous parking lots, and a Target. You know you want to go to the Target.
While not part of Jersey City, Hoboken is along the PATH line and is another incredibly charming city. The Hoboken PATH station leaves you at the waterfront. Follow Sinatra Drive (named for Frank Sinatra, Hoboken native) or Washington Street to enjoy the views and the city.
The Statue of Liberty
Don’t want to wait for hours for the ferry to the Statue of Liberty in the sweltering sun? Take the 20-30 minute walk from downtown Jersey City to the ferry terminal in Liberty State Park.
This walk takes you past the Colgate Clock, the end of the Morris Canal, to the Empty Sky 9-11 Memorial, the abandoned Central Railroad of NJ Terminal, and a selection of bars and restaurants. You can’t beat the views, even before you get on the boat.
Liberty State Park is also home to the Liberty State Science Center. It’s not my favorite science center in the US, but it’s worth a detour if you’re nerdy or have kids in tow.
While all three NYC airports have bad reputations, Newark is generally considered the best of the worst.
You can reach Newark airport (EWR) by hopping on the PATH and transferring to either bus routes 62 or 67. You can also take a cab for about $40.
Where you’re staying
Hotels in NJ are cheaper, period. They’re also nicer than the hotels you’ll find in most of Brooklyn or Queens, simply by virtue of being newer. The apartments available are also nicer and more affordable.
As always, make sure you’re near a PATH station — or at least the light rail.