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Swartswood State Park, Swartswood

#27 of 55 in Nature in New Jersey
Must see · State Park · Nature / Park
Swartswood State Park is a 3,460-acre (14.0 km2) protected area located in the Swartswood section of Stillwater and Hampton townships in Sussex County, New Jersey, in the United States. Established in 1915 by the state's Forest Park Reservation Commission, it was the first state park established by the state of New Jersey for the purposes of recreation at the state's third-largest freshwater lake. Today, Swartswood State Park is operated and maintained by the New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry.

The park's main feature is Swartswood Lake, a 502-acre (2.03 km2) glacial lake located in northwestern New Jersey's Kittatinny Valley—part of New Jersey's Ridge and Valley physiographic province. Both Swartswood Lake and the smaller Little Swartswood Lake are remnants of the retreat glaciers from the Wisconsin glaciation which began roughly 20,000 years ago. Both lakes have been the focus of water-quality improvement efforts by the state, including invasive aquatic-weed control and watershed protection in association with a local non-profit organization. The park is open all year, with many recreational activities available, including hiking, birdwatching, cross-country skiing, swimming, boating, and camping. Fishing and hunting are also permitted within the park.

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Swartswood State Park reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
42 reviews
  • A nice state park close in to the metro area. Camping, a few yurts, swimming, day picnicking. Call ahead to see if water is open for swimming. Water can be closed, but not as much as Lake...  more »
  • Swartswood Lake is a jewel in New Jersey. They don't allow gas motors on boats so the water is clear and beautiful. You can also fish this lake. In spring, summer, and fall you can use the park...  more »
  • Was very impressed with this park when we went for a 4 day camping trip. The park is very easy to navigate, even though our site was at the far end of the facility, the bathrooms were still within a 10 minute walking distance. When the kids couldn't wait for the walk, it was only a few minutes drive and there were a lot of parking spaces. Very convenient. The bathrooms were always well maintained and kept clean by the staff. The sites themselves were very well maintained, a decent size and properly spaced from neighbors. During the day, staff would drive past multiple times a day to check on the sites and were super friendly and happy to help if you had questions. The swimming beach was clean and fairly large. I just wish were was more shoreline fishing locations for people. The docks are small and were being utilized by boaters so you can't really fish off them and the shoreline was tree covered so not many places to fish if you don't have a boat to use. Overall, we were very happy with the park and will be definitely using it again in the future.
  • A family favorite for camping. We enjoy the more woody and semi private tent camping spots. Go at least once a year if not more to get away. Staff is great, very helpful and friendly. Well maintained camp sites, both wooded and open. Also have cabins, although I've never stayed in one. Clean washroom facilities with hot showers. Older, but generally well maintained. Beach area is nice, with life guards. Typical lake beach. We enjoy biking around the park, hiking and fishing. Boat rental available. Great place to get away and experience camping without sacrificing any of the basics. Highly recommend.

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