Winter may have fallen on us here in Bergen County but we can’t let the cooler weather keep us cooped up inside indefinitely. We aren’t bears - so sleeping all winter isn’t an option; we still need to get outside and continue on with our lives. The holiday season is a great time for familes and friends to get together, and what better way to spend some time together than to bundle up, throw on a scarf and enjoy the state’s beautiful natural environment. We present to you the top parks in Bergen County just waiting to be discovered and explored by you and your family this season.
Ramapo Mountain State Park
This state park takes up upwards of 4,268 square miles near Mahwah, New Jersey. The rugged forest area contains 30 miles of trails of varying difficulty. There are two main access points, along Route 202 just south of Darlington Avenue and off Skyline Drive.
Did you know? The Ramapo Valley County Reservation contains a beautiful system of trails that are ideally suited for cross-country skiing in the wintertime!
Palisades Interstate Park
Contained across two states, the Palisades Interstate park takes up more than 100,000 acres in New Jersey and New York states. The beautiful 30 miles of trails run along the Hudson River, along the sheer cliffs. You can catch beautiful viewpoints of the New York skyline from various points on the trail.
Did you know? The two states of New Jersey and New York banded together in 1900 to create the Palisades Interstate Park Commission to stop the defacement of the Palisades by stone quarries.
The Saddle River County Park
This picturesque 6 miles of maintained trail lies of a 577-acre greenbelt that starts within Ridgewood, NJ. This trail follows the Saddle River and weaves in and out of dense wooded areas and more open, riverfront sections. It’s a popular trail for mountain bikers, so watch out for riders speeding down the trails.
Did you know? The sprawling 6 mile linear park trail is actually made up of 5 different and interconnected parks: Ridgewood, Glen Rock, Paramus, Saddle Brook and Rochelle Parks.
Van Saun County Park
Located near the borough of Paramus, Van Saun County Park is a family-focused park taking up nearly 146 acres. The park features its own train, carousel, as well as pony rides and a picnic area. The parks biggest draw is undoubtedly the Bergen County Zoological Park; the popular zoo is home to a range of wild and domestic animals.
Did you know? The zoo runs a number of programs geared toward school-age children such as “Sense”-sational Animals, an introduction to how animals have adapted their senses to survive in their environments.
Fort Lee Historic Park
Positioned squarely in the shadow the George Washington Bridge, minutes from the downtown of New York City, Fort Lee Historic Park contains a painstakingly recreated revolutionary war encampment. At the southern end of the Palisades Interstate Park, the historic encampment features breathtaking views looking down over the Hudson River and the infamous New York skyline.
Did you know? Fort Lee was originally named Fort Constitution and was one of two forts (along with Fort Washington) built by the order of George Washington himself in 1776.