23 Cool Things to Do in Trenton NJ

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Planning to explore New Jersey’s capital city?

Get ready to discover some of the best attractions, fun activities, and delicious eats you can find with our list of cool things to do in Trenton NJ.

Trenton provides a well-rounded experience for both residents and visitors alike.

If you’re into arts and history, you can find museums, historic landmarks, and structures, as well as galleries showcasing exhibits related to the state’s cultural heritage and local artworks.

For those who want a bit of adventure, the city offers recreational spaces for picnics, walks, and enjoying scenic views. 

And don’t miss the mouthwatering delights, fresh produce, and artisanal products you can enjoy here.

If you’re looking to visit nearby towns and cities, you can even take a less than 30-minute drive to Princeton and find fun stuff to do there. 

For more places to go throughout the state, you might want to check out our list of NJ state parks, New Jersey beaches, and Jersey Shore towns.

Things to Do in Trenton NJ

Let’s start our list of things to do in Trenton by checking out downtown first. 

Then we’ll explore both the south and north areas of the city before wrapping up with nearby towns that have more fun activities.

Old Barracks Museum

If you are considering what to do in Trenton or where to start, head to the Old Barracks Museum first.

Step back in time at the Old Barracks Museum (101 Barrack Street), where Revolutionary War history comes alive. 

This colonial-era building dates back to the French and Indian War, and is the last-remaining American home to house British soldiers during this pre-Revolutionary war.

During the Revolutionary War, this large building served as a gathering place for the British until the famous crossing of the Delaware on Christmas night 1776, and from that point forward it served as a prison for British soldiers as well as a hospital for American soldiers.

In addition to a fascinating museum that guests are encouraged to browse at their leisure, Old Barracks offers interactive exhibits and engaging reenactments, giving visitors a glimpse into the life of a soldier during that crucial period in American history.

Patriots Theater at the War Memorial

Next to the Old Barracks Museum along the Delaware River, The Trenton War Memorial is a beautiful Roman-style building modeled after the prominent government buildings in Washington, D.C., designed to serve as a memorial to the fallen soldiers of World War 1.

Inside the Trenton War Memorial is the Patriots Theater (1 Memorial Drive), a 1,800-seat theater that hosts many events, including musical acts as well as stage productions, making it one of the premier things to do around Trenton.

Browse the event calendar to see what is coming to this historic building, or just spend an hour marveling at the beautiful architecture contained inside.

Trenton War Memorial New Jersey

New Jersey State House

Embark on a guided tour of the New Jersey State House (125 W State Street) to learn about the state’s government history and architecture.

This is the third-oldest state house in continuous use in the country, originally built and put into operation in 1792.

There is plenty to see in this uniquely-designed historic government building, most notably the governor’s office as well as the chambers for both the New Jersey Senate and the General Assembly.

New Jersey State House in Trenton

New Jersey State Museum

The New Jersey State Museum (205 W State Street) provides an educational experience for those curious about the state’s natural and cultural history and should be near the top of anyone’s list of things to do in Trenton New Jersey.

The different exhibits around the museum offer distinctly unique pieces of history and art, including local archaeology, fine art, Modern American history as well as native history.

The exhibit entitled New Jersey’s Original People showcases the largest and most informative collection of artifacts from the Lenni Lenape Native American tribes, dating back more than 10,000 years and ranging from ancient tools to  

Highlights include archaeological artifacts, interactive science exhibits, and a planetarium that offers captivating celestial shows 8K Ultra-High Resolution.

Passage Theatre Company

Catch a live performance at the Passage Theater (165 E Front Street), a historic venue in the center of town that specializes in live performances that are both socially relevant and personally moving.

Many of the seasonal shows that come through Passage Theater share a theme of social impact, challenging our collective understanding of different cultures and how we all interact.

In addition to the moving performances, there is also a PlayLab, in which young independent writers can bring their work to Passage Theater, and the team at Passage works with them to turn an idea into a show or turn a first draft into a finished piece of work.

The Passage Theater has a clear connection to Trenton, sharing in and celebrating the history and culture of the town.

Café Antonio Bistro & Bar

Indulge in authentic Italian cuisine at Café Antonio Bistro & Bar (107 E Trenton Avenue, Morrisville, PA 19067), a beloved fine-dining restaurant located immediately across the Delaware River.

From savory pasta creations to mouthwatering desserts, this restaurant is a culinary delight that will satisfy every time.

Calhoun Street Bridge crossing the Delaware River from Trenton New Jersey

Trenton Free Public Library

If it’s a rainy day and you are looking for things to do in Trenton with kids for a couple of hours, head to the Trenton Free Public Library (120 Academy Street).

The kid’s section at the Trenton library is immense and impressive, featuring colorful murals on the walls and a wide array of stories for all age brackets.

There are also storytime hours and kids activities that will expand your child’s play while encouraging group play with new friends.

For history buffs, visit the Trentoniana Room for a complex and thorough selection of historic documents related to Trenton, including photographs, maps, and historic newspapers.

Old Mill Hill Historic District

Explore the charming Old Mill Hill Historic District, known for its well-preserved 19th-century architecture.

Walking through the cobblestone streets and admiring the historic homes originally built in the early 1800s provides a glimpse into Trenton’s rich past.

Guests looking to browse the historic architecture should look into events such as garden tours or holiday house tours, in which the neighborhood is opened up in various ways for the public to admire.

Artworks Trenton

An artistic hub for the city of Trenton, Artworks Trenton (19 Everett Alley) features local artists in exhibits that range from all kinds of traditional and modern art.

Located in the center of town, Artworks encourages local artists to expand their creative abilities and showcase them to their communities, whether it’s a traditional paint showcase or a multimedia exhibition.

Browse the upcoming exhibits or regularly occurring events to see what may interest you most.

William Trent House Museum

The William Trent House Museum (15 Market Street) is a must-stop in terms of places to visit in Trenton for any history lovers, as it was not only the home of the town’s founder, but it is the oldest building standing in Trenton.

Guided tours provide insights into Trenton’s past and the prominent figures who once inhabited this historic residence.

There are events for everyone, including concerts, art classes, history exhibitions, and re-enactments of the most important historic events that have occurred in and around this home.

Covello’s Pizza

Locals and visitors alike flock to this humble but universally-beloved pizza shop.

Every town has its ‘best pizza,’ which is often different for every person and often ends in a heated debate.

That is not the case in Trenton.

Covello’s Pizza (308 S Broad Street) has been serving slices to the Trenton community since 1983, and at this point has entirely established itself as the place to go when you are looking for a hot, flavorful, and entirely satisfying slice.

CURE Insurance Arena

Keep an eye out for the schedule of events at the CURE Insurance Arena (81 Hamilton Avenue), a large multipurpose venue that hosts everything from hockey games to concerts.

Cure Arena is the largest venue in Trenton, hosting events with over 10,000-seating capacity, including the historic New Jersey college basketball rivalry of Rutgers vs. Princeton

Trenton Social

Trenton Social (449 S Broad Street) offers a vibrant nightlife scene with live music, craft beers, and inventive cocktails.

This laid-back spot is perfect for mingling with friends or enjoying a night out, located in the center of the rejuvenation district of the city where many of the sports stadiums are located.

Whether it’s after a baseball game or in the middle of a stroll along the Delaware River, Trenton Social is a great bar in Trenton to gather with friends and share some drinks and food.

In addition to the wine bar and selection of drinks, there are also popular dishes including the Filet Mignon Sandwich and the Zen Chicken.

Close-up of four small beers as a sampler

Trenton Thunder Ballpark

Baseball enthusiasts can catch a minor league game at Trenton Thunder Ballpark (1 Thunder Road), home to the Trenton Thunder, a team that was previously in the minor leagues but is now in a new league called the MLB Draft League.

The locals in Trenton pride themselves on their 30-year-old stadium, filling the 6,400-seat stadium on a regular basis.

Join in on the energy around Trenton’s local team while savoring beautiful views of the Delaware River at one of the best Trenton attractions.

Guatepan Bakery

Considered one of the best bakeries in Trenton, Guatepan Bakery is a great local spot featuring delectable baked goods including cookies, pastries and cakes.

In addition to their wide selection of baked goods, Guatepan also offers Latin-American dining, with authentic highlights such as the Desayuno Tipico Guatepan, a Guatemalan breakfast dish with double-fried eggs over tortillas with black beans, platanos, and sausage.

Come for an artisanal cupcake from their famous bakery, and if you are feeling adventurous and have the time, take a seat and try some authentic Latin-American dishes.

Cooper’s Riverview

Located in the trendy shopping district along the river, Cooper’s Riverview (50 Riverview Plaza) has American dining as well as a bustling nightlife scene that draws late-night crowds all week long.

Take in the scenic views with a great selection of drinks and a mouth-watering menu.

In addition to the restaurant during the day, Cooper’s becomes the premier club in Trenton at night with live music or DJs throughout the week.

John A. Roebling Park

John A. Roebling Park (711 Broad Street, Hamilton Township) is a large natural preserve immediately outside of the town, a blend of trails and marshlands neighboring the Delaware River.

There is plenty to do at Roebling Park, including hiking trails and picnic spots as well as a playground for the kids.

The marshlands offer plenty of water activities, including kayaking and canoeing with great options for fishing.

Cadwalader Park

A perfect spot for outdoor relaxation, Cadwalader Park (36 Parkside) offers lush greenery, walking paths, and a picturesque pond.

Originally built in 1887, Cadwalader Park is Trenton’s oldest park as well as its largest at over 100 acres.

Families can enjoy picnics, playgrounds, and even concerts during warmer months, making it one of the most exciting and diverse free things to do in Trenton.

Trenton City Museum at Ellarslie Mansion

Art enthusiasts looking for things to see in Trenton will appreciate the diverse collection of local and regional artwork at Trenton City Museum (299 Parkside Avenue), in addition to the engaging exhibits and events.

Housed within the elegant Ellarslie Mansion in Cadwalader Park, the museum showcases diverse artistic styles and themes, celebrating the city’s creative heritage.

Be prepared to spend an afternoon in this gorgeous estate, as there are enough galleries and special exhibits to take hours savoring.

Stacy Park

Enjoy a delightful stroll along the Delaware River at Stacy Park (1399 Riverside Drive), a small park with an ample amount of riverfront benches and artwork.

The highlight of Stacy Park is a bridge that is more of a visual attraction than it is a helpful functional bridge.

‘Shaky Bridge,’ as termed by the locals, was first constructed by John A. Roebling, the designer of the Brooklyn Bridge, and gifted to Trenton as a visual showpiece in this quaint riverside park.

Trenton Farmers Market

For those who appreciate locally grown produce and artisanal foods, the Trenton Farmers Market (960 Spruce Street, Lawrence Township) is a must-visit Trenton activity.

This vibrant market offers fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, baked goods, and more, showcasing the region’s agricultural bounty in the oldest farmer’s market in the state of New Jersey.

Many farms in the surrounding area contribute to this bustling market, including Terhune Orchards and Pineland Farms, each with varied assortments of fruits, vegetables, and artisanal cheeses.

Vegetable at Farmer's market.

Rockville Climbing Center

Take the kids to the nearby Rockville Climbing Center (200 Whitehead Road, Hamilton Township) for a day of high-energy and high-altitude adventure.

If you are looking for fun places to visit near Trenton, Rockville should be on your list, with one of the largest and most complex rock-climbing arenas in New Jersey, boasting rock walls of many different shapes and sizes.

If you feel comfortable with climbing, you are free to get right to climbing once all of the safety equipment has been properly installed.

If you are a beginner or if your children are looking to climb for the first time, there are courses available for kids of varying ages that will help them get started on easier walls.

Grounds For Sculpture

A short drive from Trenton in the town of Hamilton, Grounds For Sculpture (80 Sculptors Way, Hamilton Township) is a sprawling outdoor sculpture park and art museum that merges nature and creativity.

Visitors can explore sculptures by renowned artists while strolling through beautifully landscaped gardens, where art and the natural world blend in a massive and immersive space.

There are plenty of events available on a regular basis, including plant studies, nature walks, and wellness group exercises.

Final Thoughts

We hope you’re able to plan the perfect itinerary with this list of activities in Trenton.

Please feel free to let us know in the comments how you enjoyed one of the places mentioned here or if you have more recommendations that we missed.

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