New Jersey state parks forego entrance fees this summer

Visitors to all of New Jersey’s state parks, forests, and recreation areas will get a break this summer. Governor Phil Murphy announced Wednesday free entry for all, including those visiting from out of state. The fee waivers begin Memorial Day weekend and do not include camping, programming, or fishing permit fees.

Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Shawn LaTourette announced the waivers at the annual “State of the Shore” address in Asbury Park.

“From High Point State Park in Sussex County to Cape May Point State Park in Cape May County, the state park system provides endless opportunities for recreation – from swimming, hiking and kayaking, to picnicking, exploring nature, and experiencing our rich history,” LaTourette said in a statement.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said he included the fee waiver in the FY2023 budget to encourage tourism, and make the parks accessible to all.

“The fee holiday also promotes access to green, open space; thriving waterways; and the many natural wonders that make us proud to call New Jersey our home,” Murphy said.

Refunds will be available to those who have already bought an annual park pass. New Jersey’s one state-run beach, Island Beach State Park, will open on May 28 with lifeguards on duty. The state’s lakefront lifeguards will start working in mid-June.