Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Phillipsburg, NJ

  • Published 2023/02/28

Phillipsburg, New Jersey, is a historic town with a promising future, located halfway between New York City and Philadelphia.

Phillipsburg has the best of worlds, with a picturesque environment with undulating hills, wooded areas, and rushing waters of the Delaware River.

Incorporated in 1861, Phillipsburg was named after pioneer settler William Phillips and developed from a sleepy farming community into a hub for shipping and transportation.

Phillipsburg is a community in Warren County where small to mid-sized businesses grow and enhance the area’s beauty, culture, recreation, and tourism.

Experience the pleasure of living in a close-knit society of families and friends while taking advantage of urban living in a rural setting.

Discover the best things to do in Phillipsburg, New Jersey.

See the Roseberry House

Exterior of the Roseberry House

Jerrye & Roy Klotz, MD, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Roseberry House, also known as the Roseberry Homestead or the Walter Gess House, is a rough-cut stone Georgian-style house built around 1765 through 1783.

It is said to be the oldest structure still standing in Phillipsburg.

John Roseberry purchased the land in 1787 after it had been taken from John Tabor Kempe, an American Revolution Loyalist.

The Roseberry House is a two-and-a-half story, five-bay house with an attached one-and-a-half story stone kitchen, three chimneys, and a big cooking fireplace.

Despite being included in the State and National Register of Historic Places, it fell into disrepair and was boarded up for over a decade.

Fortunately, the Phillipsburg Area Historical Society (PAHS) helped prevent the historic home from being destroyed.

The Phillipsburg Area Historical Society manages the Roseberry House.

Take a Site Tour of the Phillipsburg Railroad Historians Museum

Take a site tour of the Phillipsburg Railroad Historians Museum, featuring a variety of railroad exhibits as well as restored engines, to learn more about the local history of railroads.

The Phillipsburg Railroad Historians Museum is a local railroad museum that includes a research library and a gift shop.

Phillipsburg Railroad Historians was incorporated in 1990 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit to preserve Phillisburg’s extensive railroad history.

The museum was built as a vast collective effort by the founders and volunteers, from acquiring the property for the museum to building railroad tracks and structures to collecting rolling stock, engines, and more!

A site tour includes riding on the renowned Centerville & Southwestern mini-railroad trains.

The Phillipsburg Railroad Historians Museum is open to the public free of charge.

Enjoy the Delaware River Railroad Excursions

The Delaware River Railroad Excursions is the only operational steam engine in New Jersey, which will take you along the Delaware River!

The breathtaking scenery and the variety of each train that the Delaware River Railroad Excursion offers will delight kids of all ages.

Train excursions include A Day Out With Thomas, The Polar Express, the Corn Maze Train, the Easter Bunny Train Ride, The Great Pumpkin Train, the Mine Train, and The Warren County Winery Train.

Each ride offers both kids and adults a terrific learning opportunity in addition to being engaging and fun!

Enjoy the ride of the Delaware River Railroad Excursions every summer weekend, as well as on selected days during the fall and winter.

Book Tee Time at Harkers Hollow Golf Club

Harkers Hollow Golf Club is a public golf course where you can book and enjoy a tee time!

Harkers Hollow Golf Club was bought in 2017 by three resident golf professionals (PGA and GCSAA) and one former club member.

The new owners renovated this old private club; experience the course and other amenities for yourself!

After a play of golf, don’t miss dining at their restaurant Uniontown Bar and Grill, which serves lunch and dinner seven days a week.

Members and guests can enjoy the Harkers Hollow Golf Club’s semi-private pool.

Guests must be accompanied by a member or have a reservation made by a member (if unaccompanied).

Float along the Delaware River with Two River Tubing

Float leisurely and slowly down the Delaware River with Two River Tubing!

Two River Tubing is situated at the Sand Bar, a bar and restaurant near where the Delaware River and Lehigh River converge.

Depending on the water flow and whether you stop along the journey, a trip with Delaware River Tubing can take around two to three hours.

You’ll pass by two bridges: the Northampton Street Bridge, also known as the “Free Bridge,” and the Easton-Phillipsburg Toll Bridge, also known as the “Route 22 Bridge.”

These bridges provide visual cues that you’re nearby your starting or end point, so you can start paddling or moving ashore.

Choose between a regular, a jumbo, or a back rest – whatever “floats” your boat!

For a perfect trip, you can rent a cooler tube to float along with your bag, food, beverages, and other necessities!

Tour the Historic Van Nest-Hoff-Vannatta Farmstead

The Van Nest-Hoff-Vannatta Farmstead is situated on a seven-acre parcel of land that was once a portion of a much bigger land, purchased by the State of New Jersey using Green Acre Funds.

The original 768 acres were first occupied in 1763 by John Van Nest; succeeding owners were Abel and John Hoff, then William M. Vannatta in the early 19th century.

The farmstead is one of the largest farmsteads in the region, demonstrating its owners’ wealth.

Three structures, including the farmstead’s 1824 bank barn, 18th-century stone house, and early 19th-century out kitchen, represent their respective eras.

The farmstead also has five more frame structures that date as far back as the late 19th to early 20th century, including a privy, a smokehouse, and three wagon houses.

In 2005, the Van Nest-Hoff-Vannatta Farmstead was included in both the New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places for its architectural and agricultural significance in the region.

Enjoy Beer at Invertase Brewing Company

The family-run and owned Invertase Brewing Company invites you to visit, enjoy, and down some delicious beer on tap!

Having started with just four taps in October 2019, Invertase Brewing Company has since expanded its products, services, and amenities.

Today, it is the state’s largest beer garden with a bandstand and a private event space.

Owners Karen and Steve and their son Stephen created every aspect of Invertase Brewing Company.

The family has dedicated their abilities and experience to making high-quality craft beer that guests will enjoy in a pleasant and friendly setting.

Hunt Birds at the Buttonwood Game Preserve

In Phillipsburg’s picturesque, rolling hill region, the Buttonwood Game Preserve features 155 acres of diverse habitat that offers excellent cover for chukar, pheasant, and quail birds.

There are no sure kills at the Buttonwood Game Preserve.

Therefore, every hunt is challenging but fun.

The Buttonwood Game Preserve prides itself on offering excellent bird hunting opportunities that are on par with those encountered in the wild.

They also offer sporting clays with 13 challenging and exciting clay course stations, perfect for those seeking a change of scenery and pace.

Buttonwood Game Preserve breeds roughly 5,000 chukar and 17,000 pheasants per year.

Additionally, the knowledgeable guides and skilled bird dogs add to the entire bird hunting experience at Buttonwood Game Preserve.

Savor Wine at Villa Milagro Vineyards

Villa Milagro, meaning “a place or house of miracles,” is precisely how owners and guests see the stunningly green mountain views of the Villa Milagro Vineyards.

One of the smallest wineries in New Jersey, Villa Milagro Vineyards opened in 2007.

In early 2001, Steve and Audrey bought a 104-acre cornfield, built a homestead, cultivated a 10-acre vineyard in 2003, and started a winery.

They kept things simple and managed nearly everything by themselves.

Audrey’s passion for food culminated in a selection of wines that go well with a wide range of menus, food styles, and cuisines.

Villa Milagro Vineyards invites you to visit, take in the beauty, immerse yourself in nature, and savor one of humanity’s oldest pleasures.

Have Fun at the Warren County Farmers’ Fair

What began in 1859 as a social affair of farmers, manufacturers, and mechanics turned into the Warren County Farmers’ Fair in 1937.

Later, it became an annual event.

The greatest features of the fair are all the fun and spectacular activities planned throughout the week and some free and great musical entertainment.

Among the Fair’s mainstays is the renowned Warren County Hot Air Balloon Festival which has been a fan favorite since 2001.

The Traditional Arts Expo displays various arts and crafts, and the Kids Corral with activities.

Its shows engage the little ones, including the Main Arena events like Tractor Pulls, Demolition Derby, and Rodeo.

The fair is a real family affair and a piece of true Americana that provides healthy, reasonably-priced family entertainment for both residents and visitors.

The Warren County Farmers’ Fair usually falls on the first week of August and runs the entire week; check their web calendar in advance!

Work up a Sweat at Lopatcong Park & Pavilion

Visit Lopatcong Park & Pavilion on Phillipsburg’s northeastern side for sports and other recreational activities.

Lopatcong Park & Pavilion is a large park spanning over 80 acres, making it a perfect place to get your body moving!

It has multiple baseball or softball fields, a football field, three soccer fields, a fieldhouse, a concession stand, a playground, and walking trails.

Walking along the park trails is a great way to keep active if you’re not into sports.

However, if you want to unwind and watch others play, don’t worry.

Lopatcong Park & Pavilion still makes the ideal spot to do just that.

Swing Your Body at Dance Phillipsburg

Dance Phillipsburg might be the right fit for those who love to try something new.

Dance Phillipsburg is a contemporary dance studio situated downtown that offers a variety of entertaining dance classes to Warren County.

The studio features a cabaret belly dance class by professional dancer Tasha.

Dance Phillipsburg is also proud to offer Tribal Improv Belly Dance, Belly Dance Drills, and Yoga for Belly Dance!

It’s not common to see dance studios offering these kinds of dances, so take the opportunity to sign up for a class at Dance Phillipsburg whenever you visit town!

Spend Time with Family at Walters Park

Walters Park is one of Phillipsburg’s major parks with playgrounds, athletic fields, and courts, ideally positioned to serve the entire historic and picturesque town.

Walters Park has an amphitheater, a pool, a pavilion, a 1/2 mile walking track, picnic and play areas, basketball and tennis courts, baseball and football fields, and outdoor fitness equipment.

With two main playgrounds, it’s a beautiful park to hang out with the kids.

They will enjoy the swings, slides, monkey bars, rock-climbing walls, and tunnels!

Walters Park’s pavilion is also the perfect location for family gatherings or other special celebrations too large to be held in a backyard.

Explore the Marble Hill Natural Area

The picturesque and fascinating 288-acre Marble Hill Natural Resource Area is just north of Phillipsburg along the Delaware River.

Owned by Warren County, the area is administered by several non-profit groups for preservation and public use.

This park protects the Delaware River’s watershed and protects neotropical and migrating songbirds that utilize the Delaware River as a flyway.

The Marble Hill Natural Area features four miles of paths that provide seasonal views of the Delaware River.

It has abundant highland deciduous forests and groups of rhododendrons that are most vivid during late spring through early summer.

The park is a popular portion of the 32-mile Warren Highlands Trail that meanders through the county and highlights various attractions.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Spot Wildlife at the Merrill Creek Reservoir

The waters of Merrill Creek Reservoir

Nicholas from Pennsylvania, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Merrill Creek Reservoir is a 650-acre artificial lake located in Harmony Township, New Jersey, approximately ten minutes from Phillipsburg.

It holds 15 billion gallons of water, with 290 acres of preserved fields and woodlands.

The lake and the surrounding areas are abundant with wildlife, including trout, bass, carp, crappie, catfish, yellow perch, walleye, crows, bald eagles, wild turkeys, white-tailed deer, and other migratory birds.

Visitors can go hiking, cross-country skiing, take photos, observe wildlife, and do nature study in the Merrill Creek Environmental Preserve.

It was created and is managed explicitly for minimal impact recreational purposes.

Launch facilities are available for recreational boating.

However, gasoline motors are not permitted.

The Merrill Creek Visitor Center provides environmental programs for children as young as pre-K through adults, as well as natural history and cultural displays.

The reservoir invites visitors to enjoy all the recreational activities at Merrille Creek.

Final Thoughts

Phillipsburg holds a special place in the hearts of families with fun activities and locations fit for all ages.

Thanks to the adjacent Delaware River that offers adventurous water activities and stunning views, Phillipsburg is more fun than ever!

Moreover, Phillipsburg also boasts entertainment, history, greenery, and much more.

The best things to do in Phillipsburg prove that a small town can offer variety and pleasure, making this town truly one of a kind.

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