Liberty State Park, a revitalized urban area in Jersey City, is a departure spot for ferries to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Once an industrial area, the land has always been crucial for arrivals to the Big Apple: The 1,000-acre park has views of the New York City skyline, the Hudson River, and the Statue of Liberty.
Walk, bike, or jog along the park’s many paths or relax with a picnic and enjoy the natural surroundings. Stroll Liberty Walk, a 2-mile promenade looping around the park, and Freedom Way, which cuts through the center, or fish, boat, or kayak on the Hudson River.
Historical highlights of the park include the Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal, which was once a major transportation hub—two-thirds of Ellis Island arrivals passed through here in the late 19th century. Another must-see within the park is Empty Sky, a memorial honoring those who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Statue of Liberty ticketing and departure areas are located by the Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal near the water.
- In addition to outdoor activities, the interactive Liberty Science Center at the western end of the park makes Liberty State Park a great family-friendly destination.
- There is a parking fee if you’re riding the ferry.
How to Get There
Liberty State Park is located off New Jersey Turnpike extension exit 14B in Jersey City. From the World Financial Center in Manhattan, the Liberty Landing Ferry travels to the Liberty Landing Marina in the park. There is also a light rail stop for Liberty State Park; from Manhattan, take the PATH subway to either the Pavonia/Newport or Hoboken stop and then the light rail train to the park.
When to Get There
Liberty State Park is open every day from 6am to 10pm. During the summer, the park hosts concerts and festivals. Its all-day Fourth of July Freedom and Fireworks Celebration includes a huge display of fireworks set off from barges on the Hudson River.
The Liberty Science Center
Located at the northwestern entrance to the park, the Liberty Science Center is an interactive science museum and learning center that boasts exhibits, an IMAX Dome Theatre, and the original Hoberman sphere. An engineering artwork designed by Chuck Hoberman, the sphere looks like a geodesic dome and has spawned a popular toy version.