How to Celebrate the Holidays in South Jersey

Christmas is a fantastic time of year. South Jersey just beams with the holiday spirit. What a better place then to spend it here with your family and friends.

Here are a couple of my favorite sights to see during this beautiful time of year. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.

Christmas Lights

This is always a holiday favorite— driving around and looking at the Christmas lights. You would pretty much have to be a Scrooge for you not to like them. I mean, really.

We did this all growing up. The best part now is that, due to technology, we now have easy to use interactive maps to help guide us to the best Christmas light displays.

Check out Courier Post Online for their awesome map.

christmas lights

Holiday House Tour

Holiday Hour Tours have been around forever. Though they are making quite a comeback in the recent years.

These features beautiful walk-thru homes that really bring the season to life. Many of these homes are historic in nature adding to the Christmas-esque affect.

Many of these towns feature Holiday House Tours. One of my favorites is the Haddon Heights Holiday House Tour. Google Holiday House Tour followed by the town you hope to visit to see what is available in your area.

holiday house tour

Mt. Laurel Living Nativity

Even if you aren’t religious this is a great production put on by a great community. It tells the story of Jesus from the beginning of Creation to Jesus’ leave to heaven.

At the end of the tour you are given the opportunity to warm up with some hot chocolate and cookies.

The quality of this nativity speaks volumes. It is a beautifully orchestra ministry that is a gift from this church.

I have been several times and I can’t tell you how much this means to my Christmas season. It is a perfect start to the holiday. The Mt. Laurel Living Nativity does it right.

mt laurel living nativity

Dicken’s Festival- Medford, NJ

Looking for a festival of sorts? Check out the Dicken’s Festival in Medford, NJ. Here you will be able to experience a mid-century era and how it was celebrated in their time.

You will see a choir of carolers in the streets.  Hot apple cider is given out to all who are there.

Browse the beautifully decorated shops for the perfect holiday decor for your home.

This usually runs the first weekend of December so don’t miss out! Check the Medford Towship website for upcoming information.

This year's Dickens Festival will be Saturday along Main Street in Medford.


Of course, the shopping. What would the holidays be without being able to find that perfect gift for the one you care about most.

Shopping in South Jersey is always available whether it’s gifts for your husband, your boss, or your cat. Cherry Mall, like I have mentioned before, has the mall. It is surrounded by so many stores that will hopefully have what you need.

If not, Philadelphia and New York City are only a short distance away. Either one of those awesome cities are filled with stores to help your shopping needs while also getting your in the holiday spirit.

cat tree

6 Best Beaches in South Jersey

New Jersey is known for it’s fabulous beaches. With many available in just South Jersey it was a no brainer to make a full blog post about them.

No 2 beaches are the same in South Jersey. They all each have their own individual style and attractions that they bring to the table.

If you can, visit as many of them as you can. It will be a great experience for you as you enjoy New Jersey in all it’s glory.

Atlantic City

If you are a fan of Boardwalk Empire you don’t want to miss this beach. It’s rich in history as well as in attractions.

With it’s multiple casinos and spas like Tropicana, Bally’s, and Hurrah’s you will be able to find a great place for your time and money.

If casino’s aren’t your style there is plenty of shopping and attractions as in the area. The boardwalk is definitely a favorite along with the Steel Pier.  Let your inner child come out as you ride the Ferris Wheel or roller coaster right over the Atlantic Ocean.

But one thing you definitely need to stop and see is Lucy the elephant. Being 6 stories high and a national landmark, no one will really believe you’ve been to Atlantic City unless you get your picture next to Lucy.

atlantic city

Ocean City

Ocean City is my personal favorite. It’s a classic beach and boardwalk.

After you spend a beautiful day on the soft, white beach, hit the boardwalk with some evening fun. With so much to do you will run out of time to get them all done.

With some of the famous Manco&Manco pizza (but let’s face it, all pizza is amazing on the boardwalk) save room for some soft serve ice cream or water ice.

After that, enjoy an evening miniature golfing or ride the coasters at Wonderland pier.

Before you leave for the day go ahead and grab some Shriver’s fudge and salt water taffies for the drive home.

ocean city

Sea Isle City

I have very fond memories of Sea Isle City. My great aunt owned a beautiful home about a block from the beach. Waking up every morning to the sound of the seagulls and smell of the water is a fond memory for me.

This is a much calmer city compared to others. If you are a no-fuss type of person, this may be the beach for you.

You never have to worry about overcrowding while you are relaxing on the beach. Bring the kids to watch the sunrise over the ocean. They enjoy a beautiful morning with shovels and buckets.

sea isle city

Stone Harbor

Stone Harbor is another beach with a slightly different feel from the others. It’s slightly more upscale with small hometown feel.

Placed between Wildwood and Ocean City it is a great in-between beach city if you plane to visit both.  Stone Harbor also happens to be a much more pet friendly beach with times for beach walking with your pets posted on the entrances.

For fun on the water, kayaking and surfboarding are available for rent from several different places.

Before leaving stop by Springer’s homemade ice cream which has been around since the 1920’s.

stone harbor


This next city is one for fun. If you are one that enjoys thrills over anything else with a little bit of beach on the side Wildwood may just be for you (hence the name WILDwood).

With multiple attractions including waterpark, themeparks, miniature golf, and many water sports you will definitely sleep well every night with everything you do during your day.

At the end of the night enjoy one of the many Irish pubs, lounges, and night clubs to keep the night lasting all night long.


Cape May

To finish off the NJ coast is Cape May. At the very bottom of the state is a beautiful city that is rich in color with it’s attractive homes and light house.

This is a great city for wildlife. Enjoy pet watching both on the land and in the bay.

Once you get your fill of that head over to the ocean side and keep an eye out for whales and dolphins. This is popular spot to watch them since there is so much surrounding water and it does tend to be a little quieter.

This city is a retiree’s dream with the golf course that are available. The beautiful point of this peninsula offers breath taking views perfect for scoring a hole in one.

Finish your evening with a nice glass of wine from the several wineries that Cape May is known for.


7 Fun Things To Do in South Jersey

South Jersey is a beauty all on it’s own. On one side you have the shore while on the other side you are backing up to the city of Philadelphia. Everything in between is a great mixture of culture and fun.

Fun can be anywhere from free to costing a little bit of money. Either way you are making some awesome memories.

I have put together a list of a few favorite things I do enjoy in South Jersey. I could probably write pages and pages about what is awesome, but I went ahead and narrowed it down to 7 for you.

1. Pine Barrens

The Pine Barrens are very unique and beautiful. While driving past the various cranberry bogs and possibly a couple of blueberry farms you come across beautiful, peaceful rivers woven throughout the Pine Barrens.

There are several places along these rivers that offer canoeing and kayaking on these rivers. You don’t want to miss it! This would be a perfect activity after a busy day in the city. Relax and let the iced tea resembled river take you around the bends.21green.600


2. Jersey Shore

Of course this was going to be mentioned. You can’t very well visit New Jersey without visiting one of its famous beaches.

With it’s soft, pure white sand along yourself to relax as the waves beat against the beach. The ocean is wild and free but also offers a smoothing sound along with the seagulls flying about.

If you decide to visit one of the boardwalks, let Ocean City, NJ be your choice. Lots of options for shopping and eating. You can’t really beat a delicious pizza in the evening after a beautiful day on the beach.


3. Cherry Hill Mall

If shopping is what you do best the Cherry Hill Mall is the place for you. After beating out most of the area competition the Cherry Hall Mall offers a large variety of stores as well at eateries, both within the mall and around the area.

Many people from Philadelphia hop on over to the Cherry Hill Mall as it’s the closest in the area with so many options.

For all you that don’t prefer shopping, don’t worry! Head on over to the Lowe’s Cinema across the street for all the latest movie showings.

cherry hill mall

4. Six Flags

Six Flags is always an option when visiting the area. With over 10 amazing coasters– several of them being record breakers, you don’t want to miss the thrills this park possesses.

Along with the awesome coasters there are several other thrill rides available for those of you that aren’t coaster enthusiasts.

Within the park there is also a children’s area for those looking for a family day. These rides are completely appropriate for younger aged children but will be a blast for the entire family.

If you visit in the summer, be sure to check out Hurricane Harbor— Six Flags sister waterpark! Opened from end of May to beginning of September you will be able to cool off with all the numerous water rides available on site!


5. Historic Downtowns

Perhaps you want a low-key day and would much rather stay around town to enjoy the nightlife. Many of the area’s downtowns offer beautiful dining.

Medford, Marlton, Haddon Heights, Audubon, each offer that small downtown feeling everything from high class dinners to the local ice cream shop.

These areas are so rich with history that it will make for an enjoyable evening no matter what your plans are.


6. Cape May Zoo

We are going to head a little south to Cape May. Cape May itself is a beautiful area, rich in history and lovely in landscape.

One of the best features of Cape May is the zoo. The zoo itself is free, donations keep it that way. It offers a wide variety of animals ranging from the lion to zebra.

The zoo is opened year round though be sure to check the hours when you are visiting as they change from season to season.

After you are done visiting the zoo head on over to the park across the street for a picnic and some fun. It’s a beautiful landscape with lots of fun things to do!


7. Camden River Front

Finally, the Camden River Front. Once a city known for high crime rates, slowly but surely it has been turned into a beautiful area for fun.

2 of the major highlights along the Camden River front is the Camden River Sharks and the Adventure Aquarium.

The Camden River Sharks are a minor league baseball team. There you not only get to enjoy a classic baseball game, but all great food, and fun things to do without the high ticket price of major league games.

At the Adventure Aquarium journey in to one of the best aquariums in the country. Known for it’s breathtaking sea scape and varied of sea life you will be able to see up close and personal. You don’t want to miss the large gorgeous tank filled with all your favorite marine life– including sharks!


Enjoy Your Visit!

No matter what you end up doing I sure do hope you enjoy your amazing trip to South Jersey. No matter what you do in the area it will always be good because it’s a beautiful and fun part of the country.


Hi All!

My name is Paul Smith and I live in South Jersey. I plan to use this blog as more of a how-to journal for those that live in South Jersey or plan to visit. Hence the website PaulSmithSJA (South Jersey Attractions)

I love this area of the country. I have lived in many places during my life and there is nothing quite like New Jersey living. It’s a great place if you are looking to move to this area.

Everything from the Jersey Shore to the City of Philadelphia— follow me on this journey as I explore my favorite spots.

Go ahead and follow my blog for all the up to date posts so you don’t miss a moment!


Paul Smith