The largest park in the “Garden State” features lakes, waterways, forests, meadows and a spectacular cherry blossom festival in spring.
Come to Branch Brook Park and enjoy the scenery as you walk or jog the network of trails that wind around lakes, through woodland and across the fields. Bring a picnic and take in the park’s natural beauty as you relax on the grass. In the springtime, see a breathtaking array of cherry trees in full bloom.
Branch Brook Park dates back to the late 19th century and was the first county park to be opened to the public in the United States. Explore 360 acres (145 hectares) of parkland stretching north to south in a narrow 4-mile (6-kilometer) strip through central Newark.
Visit in spring and be dazzled by the bright pink cherry trees in magnificent bloom. There are over 4,000 cherry trees in Branch Brook Park. Hordes of visitors come to the cherry blossom festival each year to marvel at the fantastic colors.
Come here at any other time of year to enjoy the park without the crowds. Spend an afternoon by the calm waters of Branch Brook Lake. Try your luck at fishing for trout. You’ll also find a narrow river and several smaller ponds as you explore the park. See how many of the 19 bridges you can find as you follow the stream.
Head to the southern end of the park and you’ll find the Branch Brook Roller Skating Center. Towering above the trees here, you’ll see the high Gothic features of the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart, which adjoins the park. The cathedral makes a great backdrop for photos, especially with the blooming cherry trees in the foreground.
A number of cafés and restaurants can be found along Bloomfield Avenue, which dissects the center of the park. Summertime in the park sees a series of outdoor concerts and cinema showings. Take your seat on the grass or dance under the stars to the sounds of a local band. Branch Brook Park is free to enter and is open year-round.