When you’re in Newark, New Jersey, you can easily take public transit to New York City. By booking a Newark vacation rental as a home base, you can enjoy the best of both New Jersey and New York during a single weekend. Venture to a small New Jersey city to spend your days golfing or kayaking. Cross the state border from Newark to see what upstate New York has to offer. When planning your weekend getaway, start with this list of seven exciting destinations accessible from Newark.

montauk beach sunrise

1. Montauk, New York

A vacation rental in Montauk, located three hours from Newark, offers you seaside views and outdoor attractions to appeal to every member of your family. One of the biggest draws of this city is the seal watching along the shores of Montauk Point State Park. Go for a stroll along the beaches, and take a dip in the ocean with access from Hither Hills State Park that is also home to a 40-acre pond. When you want to learn more about the history of this New York town, stop in at the Second House historical college from the 1900s or visit the 1797 lighthouse to grab a selfie. Thrill the museum enthusiasts with tours of the Montauk Oceans Institute and Surf Museum or the Montauk Indian Museum.

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2. Ocean City, New Jersey

Book a vacation rental on the barrier island of Ocean City to wake up each morning to views of the beach and boardwalk. Ocean City offers fun in the sun for families and singles alike with carnival rides at Gillian’s Wonderland Pier and Morey’s Pier, as well as bike trails throughout town with rentals from Bob’s Bike and Surrey Rentals. Soak up the Italian culture of this New Jersey town when dining at Manco & Manco Pizza for lunch or dinner. Players of all ages can get in 12 holes on the links of the Ocean City Municipal Golf Course, and the artistic types can browse masterpieces from local artists at the Ocean City Arts Center.

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3. Saratoga Springs, New York

Rest and relaxation is on the menu for your weekend getaway when you choose Saratoga Springs as your vacation destination. This laid-back college town with a bohemian vibe offers plenty of cultural activities, such as theatrical performances at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center and tours of the New York State Military Museum. After a three-hour drive from Newark, take advantage of the colder temperatures when snow skiing on Willard Mountain, or make a splash during the warmer seasons with kayaking adventures with rentals from the Kayak Shak. This New York city is also famous for its avid horse racing competitions held at the Saratoga Race Course.

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4. Atlantic City, New Jersey

Find big fun in the big city of Atlantic City during your weekend getaway. Take a leisurely walk along the Steel Boardwalk to see the sights, then get a family photo in front of Lucy the Elephant, an elephant-shaped building that dates back to the 1880s. If you’re feeling lucky, take the adults to the numerous casinos the city is known for, including the Tropicana and the Borgata. This popular New Jersey city, located two hours from Newark, is also home to the New Jersey Korean War Memorial, open for tours over the weekend.

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5. Fire Island, New York

Plan your next weekend in Fire Island, New York, and admire the beautiful coastline that makes you forget about the hustle and bustle of the big city. Located two hours and 20 minutes from Newark, Fire Island is a mecca for outdoor adventures with 25 miles of ocean and shoreline as well as maritime forests and lush dunes. Opt for an adventurous weekend canoeing the Great South Bay with rentals from Long Island Boat Rentals, or get in some downtime with a fishing excursion on the bay. The Otis Pike Fire Island High Dune Wilderness provides you with miles and miles of hiking and biking trails when you want to get in some fitness with spectacular scenery.

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6. Lake George, New York

Imagine the peace and tranquility of a weekend getaway in Lake George, where you can make a splash in the lake or take sight-seeing boat cruises with Lake George Shoreline Cruises. This lively city, located three hours and 15 minutes from Newark offers plenty of adventurous attractions, too, such as access to the Six Flags amusement park or zip lining at the Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course. Hike the trails to see the majestic waterfall at Shelving Rock Falls, or have some fun in the sun building sandcastles with the kids at the Million Dollar Beach before retreating back to your beachfront vacation rental.

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7. Cape May, New Jersey

Make the two-and-a-half-hour trek to Cape May, and find yourselves in a small city that sits on the southern tip of the state. Spend a day at one of the sandy beaches soaking up the sun, or treat the kids to a day at the Cape May County Zoo to see exotic wildlife. The golfers in your crew can get in 18 holes at the Cape May National Golf Club while enjoying the bright sun and scenic views. When it’s time to wind down in the afternoon or evening, relax on the patio of the Willow Creek Winery before making your way back to your cozy vacation rental.

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