Located at the foot of the Ramapo Mountains and surrounded by no fewer than 4 different state parks, Mahwah is a natural oasis amid the urban deserts of the East Coast sprawl. Less than an hour’s drive from the Big Apple, Mahwah offers city-slickers a great opportunity to tune into the sweet sounds of nature. Whether for a weekend fishing excursion, a rustic camping trip, or a trek along the gorgeous Ramapo range, a visit to Mahwah is bound to leave you and Mother Nature on good terms.
Things to see
If you’ve ever wondered why New Jersey was called the Garden State, head to Skylands, the region’s famed botanical enclosure. The garden spans an impressive 96 acres, which means visitors could realistically frolic among the thousands of multicolored flowers for days.
It’s to infinity and beyond at the Lower Hudson Valley Challenger Learning Center. Not everyone can afford a flight to space but this center near Mahwah city offers the chance to be an astronaut for a day. All you need to do is jump into a spacecraft simulator and blast off!
Literally 5 minutes’ drive from Mahwah, the town of Suffern is a quiet location that is home to several cultural and historical sites. Enjoy a show at the Lafayette Theater or learn more about the region at the Suffern Village Museum. Whatever your fancy, this town makes for an enjoyable weekend away.
It’s not surprising that Mahwah, and the downtown area in particular, is quite the landmark. The cultural appeal of the city, and the natural beauty of its surroundings, makes for a great vacation. Visit Mahwah’s local museum one day then put on your hiking books the next day.
Hotels in Mahwah
Mahwah spans a large area that has managed to come up with a good mix of low-key accommodations and more upscale digs. Here, you’ll find everything from small bed-and-breakfasts to five-star hotels.
While the appeal for most visitors to the city is the chance to have a close encounter with something more natural than a city block, there are opportunities to have a good old splurge at a local hotel spa.
Where to stay
Downtown Mahwah is the place to be. Not only is it filled with cultural and historical landmarks and a wide range of accommodations, but it’s perfectly located for travelers who want to engage in outdoor sports. The Ramapo mountain range is only a short drive away, while state parks are around the corner.
If you like the small-town feel without the sense of adventure and have a calling for the outdoors then Suffern is probably for you. This small, cozy, and pretty historical town is the prefect base for large families looking for a quiet getaway.
Ramsey is a borough of New York that’s mostly residential yet popular with visitors who frequent the region every season. Holiday homes are a big deal here, although one-time travelers will find some good spots to lay their heads as well.
How to get to Mahwah
Mahwah is placed such that it’s equidistant, timewise, from Newark International Airport, La Guardia, and not much more hassle to get to JFK International Airport, providing a number of options for arriving in the area by plane.
But most visitors are from New York City and other urban areas in New York or New Jersey, looking for some escape from the concrete jungle. HWY 17 is the most obvious route, taking at least an hour.
Or you could hop on a New Jersey Transit train from New York City’s Penn Station to Mahwah Station or catch a bus with Short Line Bus services.