20 Best Things to Do in Ridgewood, NJ

Ridgewood, NJ
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New Jersey has several villages, one of them being Ridgewood of Bergen County.

Ridgewood is a village established in 1894 and is approximately 15 square kilometers in size.

While the village may not be the biggest in the area, it still offers a variety of sights for you to check out.

Some sights available in this village include different places to shop, drink, and relax.

You can also explore different natural spots and urban areas and discover hidden gems in the village.

Whether you want to explore or eat, you can find plenty to do in the village.

Start your next trip by checking out the best things to do in Ridgewood, NJ.

View the Exhibits at the James Rose Center

Exterior of James Rose Center
JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ, M.D., CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The James Rose Center is a center you can find on East Ridgewood Avenue and features different exhibits and programs.

The exhibits and programs at this center mainly feature nature and landscaping.

Aside from this, the center features a roof garden which you can view during a tour of the center.

Anyone interested in either nature or landscaping will find plenty to enjoy by visiting the James Rose Center.

Visit the Schoolhouse Museum

As a village that dates back to the 1890s, Ridgewood offers you a fair share of history to explore.

One of the places to check out local history is at the Schoolhouse Museum.

The Schoolhouse Museum is a schoolhouse that became a museum and has been around since 1872.

The museum opened in 1905 and is under the management of the Ridgewood Historical Society.

You can find this museum at East Glen Avenue.

Likewise, you can visit during the weekends.

There are different exhibits featured at this museum, and some of the artifacts you can find include old tools and civil war artifacts.

The museum also has tours you can join, plus after-school programs.

If you like art, head to the Stable Art Gallery to check out local artworks.

Located on North Maple Avenue, the gallery features various pieces ranging from drawings to photographs and other works from different mediums.

The exhibits at the gallery vary per month and can feature different artists.

You also have a chance to have your work presented at the gallery for a fee.

When it comes to art, the Stable Art Gallery is a top place to check out.

Grab a Drink and Dance at the Steel Wheel Tavern

Ridgewood has plenty of places for you to find drinks and fun, and one of them is the Steel Wheel Tavern.

The Steel Wheel Tavern is a diner and bar located on North Broad Street and features American cuisine with locally sourced ingredients and a selection of cocktails and other drinks.

Some dishes you can enjoy at the tavern include a range of seafood dishes and burgers.

If you are interested in the drinks available at the bar, they have a happy hour where you can enjoy a selection of house beer and wine, among other alcoholic drinks.

In addition to food and drinks, the tavern features live entertainment almost every day.

The Steel Wheel Tavern is an ideal spot to visit if you want to have fun with drinks.

Take a Coffee Break at Rey Sol Coffee Roasters

Rey Sol Coffee Roasters is where to go to fulfill your coffee craving.

Compared to other cafes in the area, Rey Sol Coffee Roasters provides a taste of Colombian coffee and offers different coffee beans with various flavor profiles like fruit notes.

You can sample a variety of hot or cold coffee blends at the cafe, plus coffee specials that feature in-house ingredients.

The cafe also offers unique drinks like agave lemonades and coffee lemonade.

Aside from drinks, the cafe features freshly baked goods and a list of options for snacks and breakfast.

You'll find no shortage of options to perk up your morning when visiting Rey Sol Coffee Roasters on Cherry Street.

Sample the French Sweets at Sook Pastry

Sook Pastry is one of the many bakeries you can find in Ridgewood.

However, in comparison to other bakeries, Sook Pastry features a selection of French bread and sweets, among other treats.

Among the various baked goods available in this bakery, there is a selection of pastries, tarts, and crepes you can sample.

Aside from various sweet treats, the bakery has a list of sandwiches and other savory snacks.

In addition to different baked goods, the bakery offers a selection of chocolates.

If you want to try a French treat or indulge your sweet tooth, check out Sook Pastry at South Broad Street.

Indulge in your cupcake craving by stopping at Cupcakes by Carousel on East Ridgewood Avenue.

The cupcake shop has been around for over thirty years now and has no shortage of options for cupcake flavors on its menu.

These flavors include classics like red velvet and unique choices like chocolate cheese.

Some cupcakes feature blends of flavors and mini versions of the different creations.

The bakery also accommodates different dietary needs and offers gluten-free and dairy-free options.

Not only that, but you can also check out seasonal flavors.

Aside from various cupcake options, the shop has a selection of cakes and pies for different occasions.

If that isn't enough, you can create a cupcake for yourself with the shop's DIY kits.

Regarding cupcakes, Cupcakes by Carousel is a top shop in Ridgewood.

Spend Some Time Outdoors at the Saddle River County Park

A duck pond at Saddle River County Park
User:NHRHS2010, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Enjoy the outdoors by stopping at the Saddle River County Park at Ridgewood Avenue.

You'll find it in Saddle Brook, New Jersey, 13 minutes from Ridgewood.

The county park is a 596-acre space consisting of five sections where you can enjoy different activities.

Among these different sections, Wild Duck Pond is the area you can access from Ridgewood.

A few facilities you can in this area are playgrounds and a picnic space by the lake.

You can explore the other areas, find the different sports fields, or look out for the nature trails in the park.

There are plenty of activities at the Saddle River County Park, including fishing, jogging, and picnicking.

Try the Tapas at the Cravings Tapas Bistro

Have you ever tried tapas?

If not, take the chance to do so by dining at the Cravings Tapas Bistro.

Cravings Tapas Bistro is an eatery you can find on Wilsey Square and features different Spanish dishes.

For anyone not familiar with tapas, they are an appetizer or snack in Spanish cuisine and can range from something light to something hearty.

On Sundays and holidays, you can enjoy a special where you can choose three tapas and a dessert at an affordable price.

You can also try the bistro's charcuterie board and dessert options.

When visiting the Cravings Tapas Bistro, there is plenty for you to sample.

Dine at the Pearl Restaurant

The Pearl Restaurant is where to go if you're craving seafood or pasta in Ridgewood.

You can find this restaurant on South Broad Street and enjoy different dishes for lunch and dinner.

If you are craving something light or pasta, you'll want to check out the restaurant's lunch menu.

Compared to the lunch menu, the dinner offers a longer list of entrees and varies in pasta dishes.

Aside from the lunch and dinner menus, the restaurant offers catering services for groups as large as 50 people.

It also has a family takeout service to provide dishes for private parties.

The Pearl Restaurant is a top choice if you want to enjoy a hearty meal.

Find Tasty Drinks at the Quick Stop Wine & Liquor

While there are plenty of places to grab different alcohol blends in Ridgewood, there are shops that offer drinks you can bring home, such as Quick Stop Wine & Liquor.

Quick Stop Wine & Liquor is a store you can locate on Godwin Avenue and features a selection of drinks for your convenience.

The store has several red and white wines available, including organic varieties.

There are also craft beers you can purchase if you're not a fan of wine.

If you don't feel like getting any liquor, the store provides a selection of coffee.

Aside from drinks, the store has snacks, ice, and other convenient items.

Have a Look at the Programs at Ridgewood YMCA

If you are interested in any local programs and activities, check out Ridgewood YMCA.

Ridgewood YMCA, whose headquarters you can find on Oak Street, is a non-profit organization that provides programs and information for residents and non-residents.

They are the group to call if you want to learn about different programs, camps, and other activities available for the community and visitors.

Whether it's about seasonal camps for the kids or fitness classes to stay active, Ridgewood YMCA has plenty of options and information for anyone interested.

If you want to learn more about what the community offers, check out Ridgewood YMCA.

Check Out the Town & Country Apothecary & Fine Cosmetics

Plenty of towns have their share of unique shops, and Ridgewood is no different.

One such shop in town is the Town & Country Apothecary & Fine Cosmetics.

As its name suggests, Town & Country Apothecary & Fine Cosmetics is a store that provides various health and cosmetic products.

You can find the store on East Ridgewood Avenue and browse several products ranging from vitamins to skin care products.

In addition to providing health and cosmetic products, the store features a gift shop corner and watch repair services at the back.

There is plenty to see when visiting the Town & Country Apothecary & Fine Cosmetics.

Relax with Organic Treatments at the Namaste Organic Spa

There are plenty of ways you can treat yourself in Ridgewood, and one of them is by self-care at the Namaste Organic Spa.

Located on Franklin Avenue, the Namaste Organic Spa offers a range of services for healing and relaxation.

These services include different massages, spiritual healing treatments, and waxing options.

In addition to providing different treatments, the spa has a shop where you can purchase a selection of skincare products, among other items.

Whether you want a quick 30-minute massage or a deep facial treatment, you can enjoy plenty of services at the Namaste Organic Spa.

Browse the Bookends Bookstore

Anyone who loves books needs to check out the Bookends Bookstore at East Ridgewood Avenue.

There are various books available at this store, and if you're lucky, you might catch a book signing event.

While Bookends Bookstore may not be the most exciting shop in town, there is plenty for you to check ouy at this store.

You'll need to get a ticket online if you want to check out the book signings at the store.

Paint and Drink at Pinot's Palette

Ridgewood has its share of unique shops, but there are also several branch shops you can check out for fun.

One of them is Pinot's Palette.

Pinot's Palette is a national paint and sip franchise you can find scattered around the state.

The Ridgewood branch sits at Oak Street and offers different classes, event bookings, and products.

If you're interested in learning to paint from the studio, classes take place on Fridays and Saturdays.

Otherwise, you can book a painting party for your group and bring your own food and drinks.

When it comes to having fun with painting, Pinot's Palette is where to go.

Relax along the Sand at Graydon Pool

Summer or not, Graydon Pool is your ultimate outdoor destination.

This 2.6-acre park and pool ground has survived many generations of history.

It features a sandy front, spray fountains for the little kids, and the usual park amenities.

This includes grills, picnic tables, sports courts, and a playground area with comfortable seating.

This municipal pool is home to the Graydon Competitive Swim team and Stand Up Paddleboard classes.

So, if you're not confident in your swimming prowess, you can learn it from the experts at the pool.

Find Graydon Pool on Northern Parkway.

Join Classes and Bead Camps at Bazaar Star Beadery

Bazaar Star Beadery may seem like your unlikely tourist attraction, but it's worth more.

This full-service bead store has everything you might need for anything bead-related.

From colorful necklaces to fancy Whirly Swirly decors, you can find your next decorative art souvenir at this place.

It takes pride in its nickname, The Ultimate Beading Experience, because of its customizable bead services.

Aside from designing your own bead craft, you can also join events hosted at this place, including bead camps and other workshops.

You can even host a birthday party, a ladies' get-together, and a scouting event at this beadery.

Bazaar Star Beadery is on East Ridgewood Avenue.

Enjoy Local Films and Other Projects at Ridgewood Guild’s Annual International Film Festival

Even if you're not a film enthusiast, Ridgewood Guild’s Annual International Film Festival is still worth checking out while you're in the village.

This event celebrates spring in the most exciting way—through film!

Many local filmmakers and cast members come around for a special red carpet event and an awards ceremony.

Its program lineup also includes free interviews, master classes, and a Hollywood-style after-party.

There's more to see and more to learn about the short films presented at this festival

So, make sure this two-day festival is on your must-experience list while in Ridgewood.

Ridgewood Guild’s Annual International Film Festival takes place in various locations in the village every April.

Jam to Local Tunes at the Annual Music Fest

Need a musical break while on your Ridgewood trip?

Ridgewood's annual Music Fest may be your best shot.

This event celebrates music in a variety of genres, including pop, rock, RnB, and even country!

Best of all, it welcomes many with good food and an astounding beer and wine garden.

Dance the afternoon away with this fest's music offering—it's worth it!

Ridgewood's Music Fest takes center stage in Memorial Park every September.

Don't be late for the festivities on Van Neste Square.

Art comes in many forms and presentations; it doesn't have rules.

And this is what Convey Art Gallery wishes to become its legacy for the generations to come.

This contemporary art gallery showcases the best of the best pop art, street art, and even abstract pieces.

There is also a multitude of African art and street art.

It started serving the community in 2021 through pop-up exhibits.

And now that it has a physical building that many can visit, it also serves as a safe space for local and emerging artists.

Convey Art Gallery welcomes you to its art madness along North Broad Street.

Final Thoughts

Among the different towns you can visit in New Jersey, Ridgewood is a charming place where you can discover other things.

Whether trying a new dish or exploring local arts, there is plenty for you to find in this town.

It may not have grand attractions or exciting adventures, but there is much for you to experience.

Take a break from big adventures and consider a fun exploration by visiting Ridgewood.

Book your trip today!

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