Combining incredible natural scenic beauty, with lots of chances to enjoy outdoor recreational activity and long stay camping, there is no better way to escape the pressures of city life than spending a few days in nature.
Whether you are into fishing, hiking, swimming, hunting, canoeing, kayaking or SUP, you’ll get plenty of opportunities to do this throughout the state. Especially if you live near Toms River, which is located close to several prominent public recreational spaces.
In case you were wondering which of these places are the best ones to go to, here’s our list of 5 state parks near Toms River you might want to check out.
Map of State Parks Near Toms River NJ
Below is a map of the state parks in New Jersey covered in this post:
List of State Parks Near Toms River
Not all state parks in New Jersey offer camping accommodation options. But the ones we have outlined below do.
All five of these state parks near Toms River can be reached within less than a two hour drive from the city. So they also make for excellent day trip destinations as well.
1. Allaire State Park
Location: 4265 Atlantic Ave, Wall Township, NJ 07727
At just 20 minutes north of Toms River, the Allaire State Park is right on your doorstep.
Best known for Allaire Village, a historic 19th-century iron making town, and the Pine Creek Railroad, which is a narrow-gauge train ride, this state park also features the mighty Manasquan River.
Meandering its way through the park, this river provides wonderful opportunities for freshwater trout fishing, and is also home to over 200 wildflower species.
For hikers, mountain bikers and horseback riders a number of trails are available through the park which will take you through varying terrain. While deer hunting is permitted in certain sections of it too.
Overall there are 45 sites for tents and trailers within the park, as well as 10 shelters and 6 group campsites.
Facilities here include flush toilets and showers, as well as fire rings and picnic tables.
2. Cheesequake State Park
Location: 300 Gordon Rd, Matawan, NJ 07747
Situated a mere 40 minute drive north from Toms River is Cheesequake State Park.
Spread across 1,610-acres, this state park boasts a huge range of outdoor recreational activities which include five designated walking trails that will take you through forests of northern hardwood and southern pine forests, as well as open fields and both freshwater and saltwater marshes.
At Hooks Creek Lake you will be able to swim when lifeguards are on duty, while canoeing, kayaks, paddleboards and small boats can all be used too. The lake also has great fishing potential for largemouth bass, catfish and sunfish.
On the hill adjacent to the lake sledding is permitted, while the park is also a popular spot for crabbing and deer hunting too. In the winter, both cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are regularly practised as well.
The park offers fifty tent and trailer sites that come with picnic tables and fire rings. There are also flush toilets, shower facilities and a dump station available.
Group camping facilities with upright grills, fire rings and picnic tables are also on offer as well.
3. Voorhees State Park
Location: 251 County Rd 513, Glen Gardner, NJ 08826
Reached via a one hour 25 minute drive north of Toms River you’ll find the Voorhees State Park.
Spread across 1400 acres, this park is notable for its wooded hills, which can be explored through several scenic multi-use trails that are perfect for hiking, biking or horseback riding.
Voorhees also has a parcourse fitness course, which provides opportunities to improve your muscles and cardiovascular conditioning. While its main attraction is arguably an observatory that is managed by the New Jersey Astronomical Association. This gives you a fantastic chance to take in the wonders of the cosmos at night, under crystal clear skies.
In winter the park becomes a haven for sports like cross country skiing and snowmobiling, and is also a terrific spot for wildlife watching all year round.
Camping accommodation takes the form of 30 sites that are set up for tents, RVs and trailers.
4. Parvin State Park
Location: 701 Almond Rd, Pittsgrove, NJ 08318
Situated an hour and 30 minutes drive south west of Toms River, the Parvin State Park lies just 40 miles south of the Philadelphia border.
Flanking the edge of Pines Barren, this park has a picturesque landscape of hardwood forests, pine forest and swamps. Which is perfect to explore via hiking, jogging or biking along its 15 miles of trails. If you come here in the summer you will be able to see over 200 kinds of flowering plants, which include the likes of magnolia, wild azalea and blossoming dogwood.
Centered around two lakes that are great for canoeing, kayaking, SUP and other water based recreational activities, there is also a comely swimming beach here too. Anglers revel in the opportunity to catch bass, catfish, pickerel, sunfish and yellow perch, while hunters have around 330 acres to hunt for deer, small game and turkey.
In terms of camping accommodation there are 54 sites here for tents and trailers, some of which are designated as pet-friendly. Each one has a picnic table, fire ring and lantern hook. Facilities and amenities include flush toilets, showers and a playground.
There are also 18 cabins available too, as well as four group campsites.
5. Swartswood State Park
Location: 1091 E Shore Dr, Swartswood, NJ 07877
At 2 hours north of Toms River, the Swartswood State Park is the furthest from the city in terms of driving time. But it is well worth the drive there for the natural rural surroundings and tranquil setting you will be able to enjoy there.
Covering 3460 acres, the park features a 519 acre glacial lake that is a haven for sailboating, kayaking and canoeing. Fishermen love it too on account of the plentiful sunfish, catfish, bass, perch, walleye and pickerel that is on offer. Swimming is only allowed during the summer months. when lifeguards patrol it.
Several trails run through the park which are perfect for hiking, biking and, in the winter, cross country skiing. While hunting for game like wild turkey, ruffed grouse and ring necked pheasant are also popular.
The park offers several options for camping including wooded or grass sites, as well as group campsites and shelters.
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