Top Newark Attractions
Welcome to Newark! Whether you’ve lived here all your life, are in town for school or work, or are visiting to see what all the buzz is about, you’re sure to find something fun, inspirational, and exciting to do. From history to sports, from arts and culture to food, Newark is bursting with charm and plenty of sights to see. Of course, Newark has far more to explore than just a few items listed here. So think of this list as scratching the surface of your Newark adventure.
Without further ado, here are the must-see Newark attractions.
The massive electrical switching station designed by David Adjaye (who also designed the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in DC) doubles as an impressive art wall. In all, 14 international artists, including six artists from Newark, created massive sculptures, mosaics, and works of art that are attached to the façade.
New Jersey’s premier performing arts center has welcomed more than ten million visitors and provided educational programs for more than 1.5 million children and their families. It’s been visited by two U.S. presidents and the Dalai Lama, featuring such icons as Diana Ross, Tony Bennett, Jerry Seinfeld, and Sting on its stages, and has even been the setting of such television productions as America’s Got Talent and Black Girls Rock!
The museum celebrating all things GRAMMY-worthy -- the only one of its kind on the East Coast -- is housed in the Prudential Center. Not only does it celebrate Jersey-bred musical legends, but it also features interactive experiences that are fun for adults and kids alike!
Newark’s most famous neighborhood, the Ironbound is conveniently located near Newark Penn Station. This multicultural community is a bustling shopping district with more than 170 restaurants. The site of many festivals and other events throughout the year, make sure to make a stop at Casa d’Paco, named one of the top 50 restaurants in America.
Prepare to fall head over heels as you visit the beautifully appointed galleries of the Newark Museum. Known as the state’s largest museum, with more than eighty galleries to explore, it boasts the largest collection of Tibetan art outside of Southeast Asia. Don’t miss the Buddhist altar that was consecrated by the Fourteenth Dalai Lama himself in 1990.
Branch Brook Park is a scenic 360-acre park that is the home of America’s largest collection of cherry blossoms. Each April more than five thousand Japanese cherry blossom trees burst into bloom and turn the park pink and white! What’s more, this park boasts the gorgeous Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart as its backdrop. Cathedral Basilica is not only the fifth-largest cathedral in North America but home to the largest stained-glass window in the world.
Be part of the Passaic River’s revival by taking a boat tour along seven miles of Newark’s riverfront. Available from June through September, not only can you view the city from a different vantage point, but you’ll also learn a lot along the way! Cap your two-hour tour with a leisurely stroll along the bright orange boardwalk at Riverfront Park, built from planks of recycled plastic.
Go for a drive down McCarter Highway, and revel in the colorful splendor of the second-longest mural in America, Gateways to Newark. Best when viewed during the day, the 1.39 mile-long mural features the mural work of eighteen acclaimed artists.
Jimenez Cigar Lounge is known far and wide for its authentically vintage feel. With more than twenty types of hand-rolled cigars to choose from, pair your stogie with a craft cocktail and head out to the back patio during the warmer months.
Get a glimpse of history when you visit Newark Symphony Hall, which dates back to 1925 and is on the National Register of Historic Places. On the second Friday of each month, Symphony Hall turns into a flashy fun time courtesy of the long-running Soul Line Dance Party. Featuring line dance lessons and the hottest R&B and soul tunes, it’s a guaranteed good time.