The nightlife in New Jersey to discover before anyone else

by Staff

If you haven’t developed a bit of cabin fever over the last two years, you’re one of the lucky ones. Between stay at home orders, lockdowns, work from home and take-out only dining, many of us are getting a little desperate to enjoy the world again. Video calls are a great way to keep in touch with friends and family. Zoom drinks, however, are no substitute for a real night out on the town.

Even if things have been closed, we all feel a bit out of the loop with what’s going on. This article will take a look at some of the best nightlife in New Jersey that might have flown under your radar. From bars and casinos to live theater and drive-in movies, there’s something for everyone.


Unlike some states, the selection of legal casinos in New Jersey is fantastic. Atlantic City is the East coast’s premier gambling destination and if you’re looking to get in on the action, that’s the place to be. We all deserve a bit of good luck after the last few years and a New Jersey casino might be just the place to find it.

Ocean Casino Resort is the newest casino in Atlantic City, and it is also the hottest destination on the boardwalk. The casino offers thousands of slot machine games, a number of tables for classic table games including poker, blackjack, baccarat and craps, and a sportsbook.

If the resort side is more your style, they have plenty to offer there as well. There is a live music venue, an immersive golf experience, multiple clubs and bars, and of course a luxurious spa complete with a Himalayan Salt grotto.

Rooftop bars

If the winter gloom has you down, making plans to visit one of these rooftop bars in the spring or summer might help cheer you up. New Jersey has definitely caught on to the rooftop bar trend and has many to offer. The biggest selling point for rooftop bars is obviously the views. They are a classy venue for a date night, especially if you can time your visit to be there for sunset.

If you want to enjoy a stunning view of the Manhattan skyline without fighting through traffic and crowds, go to the NoHu Rooftop in Weehawken. Right on the Hudson River, this rooftop bar and restaurant has fire pits for colder weather (and snow globes when it’s really chilly!) and a gourmet menu to go along with the drinks and the view.

If you’re looking for something a little more relaxed, Porta in Jersey City is the perfect spot. This pizzeria and bar has a partially enclosed and heated rooftop where you can feel like you’re a million miles from everything in the heart of the city. With its wooden picnic tables, hanging flower baskets and fairy lights, it’s perfect for an evening with friends or a romantic date night.


Live theater is one of the great arts, and the innovation and creativity on display on the stage today is exciting. Many people assume that since New York City is so close, there’s no way that live theater in New Jersey could possibly compete. They’re wrong.

The Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn isn’t a new venue — it’s been around for more than 80 years — but it is finally reopening after having to close for most of 2020-21 due to the pandemic. While the venue isn’t new, the Paper Mill Playhouse is a producing theater, which means it’s possible to see world premieres of new productions there. The 2022 season will feature the world premiere of the musical The Wanderer, alongside stage adaptations of Sister Act and Clue.

Drive-in movies

The drive-in theater is a classic part of American culture. From the opening of the first drive-in theater in New Jersey in 1933 through their heyday in the 1950s and 60s to their recent revival as a place to watch cult classics or nostalgic favorites, drive-ins have an important place in the history of moviegoing.

Newark Moonlight Cinema is bringing the drive-in into the 21st century. The venue shows everything from cult classics to family-friendly favorites and new releases. Most excitingly, the Moonlight Cinema is an independent business that focuses on films “that celebrate Black filmmakers and actors”. It’s an important addition to Newark’s cultural landscape and a great night out as well. The next season starts in April, so keep an eye out for the schedule.

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The New Jersey Digest is a new jersey magazine that has chronicled daily life in the Garden State for over 10 years.

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