Doesn’t it feel like it went from summer straight to the holidays?

The time is going extra fast right now heading towards the end of the year so there is no better way to prepare for that than to start planning your holiday fun.

The holiday season in New Jersey is so magical.

There are so many different towns you can visit that celebrate and shine this time of year.

Between tree lightings, holiday entertainment, trolley rides, and a visit to Santa, from North Jersey to South Jersey, there are all different kinds of ways to embrace the Christmas spirit.

Village Christmas

If you’re in search of the best town in New Jersey to visit for the holidays, each of these go all out and are close enough to every part of the state so you don’t have to drive far to enjoy them.

Morristown, NJ (Morris County)

They call it the Christmas Festival at the Morristown Green where they transform the Green into a winter wonderland. Morristown has been celebrating in its downtown area for over 100 years and every year, they one-up the last.

There’s holiday music, ice sculptures, a mini train ride around the Green, Santa’s House, an oversized rocking horse, and crafts and activities for everyone in the family. You can even take your photos with Santa.

This celebration kicks off Sunday, Nov. 28 at 5 p.m. with Santa’s arrival and the traditional lighting of the Green, and will end Dec. 18.

Princeton, NJ (Mercer County)

Princeton has more of a sophisticated feel to the holiday season. If Christmas trees are your thing, you’ll want to visit the Morven Museum which features The Festival of Trees with a ton of holiday trees and decorative displays.

Don’t want to travel to Rockefeller Center to get some ice skating in? Princeton sets up its Skating on the Square right in the middle of Palmer Square behind the Nassau Inn. Of course, the festivities aren’t complete without carolers and a visit with Santa.

Asbury Park, NJ (Monmouth County)

Asbury Park is home to the Holiday Bazaar every year. Here you’ll find unique holiday gifts, holiday music and entertainment, workshops, kids’ activities, holiday décor, food, and so much more.

This takes place at the Asbury Hotel and the Grand Arcade of the Convention Hall, but it's been such a huge success in the past that they have expanded to three other locations along the Jersey Shore:

Long Branch: Whitechapel Projects

Atlantic City: Noyes Arts Garage at Stockton College

Atlantic Highlands: Shore Casino at Yacht Harbor Marina

Smithville, NJ (Atlantic County)

Historic Smithville in general is a hotspot for shopping small businesses. It’s a colonial village with restaurants, entertainment, a carousel, train, and paddle boats.

For the holidays, they put up a giant Christmas tree and have a huge Light Show on the Lake. All of the shops are decked out in their holiday décor and they even rebrand their merchandise to the season.

Cape May, NJ (Cape May County)

If any town in the state goes all out for the holidays, it’s Cape May. It’s a beautiful town to visit not just during the warm, summer days but also during the cooler nights, there is no “downtime” in Cape May.

For the holidays, they decorate all of their Victorian-style homes in wreaths, offer breakfast with Santa at Congress Hall, and a ride on the trolley with Mrs. Claus. You can also tour the town and see all of the beautifully, decorated homes, inns, churches, and more.

You can check out more about Cape May here:

Cape May, NJ: 15 wonderful places to visit

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The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5's Morning Show Producer Kristen. Any opinions expressed are her own.

Questions, corrections, or comments? Send Producer Kristen an email at or follow her on Instagram.

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