Hunterdon County Winner: RARITAN
Location is everything for this nearly 38-square-mile farming community in Hunterdon County. On a good day, the township is about 90 minutes from Manhattan, Philadelphia, the Poconos and the Jersey Shore. When the day trips are done, residents return to the farmland they call home.
“It was a farming community when I grew up,” Mayor Jeff Kuhl says. “It’s evolved over the past 30, 40 years into a place with quite a few things to do.” Nonetheless, Kuhl loves hiking amongst fall leaves at Bernadette Morales Nature Preserve.
Raritan’s natural bounty includes Blackwell, Lenape and Mine Brook Parks and Uplands Reserve, where the kids can venture down a 1.1-mile loop trail while keeping their eyes peeled for deer, turkey and other critters.
While Raritan doesn’t have a “Main Street,” it’s surrounded entirely by Flemington and all its sites. So, add Northlandz miniature and model train wonderland and Liberty Village Outlet Marketplace to the list of local destinations.
Residents also rave about Hunterdon Central Regional High School, which boasts top-tier academics and a STEM Community Consortium.
Fun fact: This township can trace its name to the Raritan tribe, one of the multiple tribes of the Lenape Native Americans across New Jersey.