North Jersey cities rank best

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New Jersey has a lot to offer: sweeping views of New York City, expansive farmland and green spaces, beautiful beaches, and abundant economic and recreational activities.

So it’s no wonder the Garden State’s highly desirable real estate market was highlighted by Travel + Leisure magazine, which compiled information from local industry experts in a list of the 10 best places to live in New Jersey.

Six of the ten are here in North Jersey. Here’s a look at where the cuts were made:

No. 1: Jersey City

Jersey City, the state’s second-largest city, was cited for its abundance of bars and restaurants, as well as its highly rated public arts programs. It also offers many properties that come with good amenities, views of New York City, and easy access to public transportation.

No. 2: Hoboken

Likewise, Hoboken offers residents a direct view of New York City across the Hudson River. But Hoboken, nicknamed the “Mile Square City,” is much smaller.

Known for its 19th-century brownstones and classic homes, Hoboken has become a destination for those seeking a small-town feel with direct access to a major city, Travel + Leisure reported. Across Hoboken you’ll find sidewalk cafes, bars, restaurants, retail spaces, health studios, and parks. You name it, Hoboken has it.

No. 4: Montclair

Montclair is known for its vibrant arts and culture scene, making it the fourth best place to live in New Jersey, according to Travel + Leisure. The city offers a good mix of urban and suburban amenities, with easy access to public transportation into New York City and an abundance of parks and outdoor space.

The city also offers a wide variety of home styles and layouts, from traditional Colonial homes to Tudor and Victorian style homes.

No. 5: Ridgewood and Ho-Ho-Kos

Ridgewood and neighboring Ho-Ho-Kus come together as the fifth best place to live in New Jersey. With the median home value in both cities at around $1 million, the list cites highly acclaimed public school systems, family-friendly amenities and safety as contributing factors to their desirability.

No. 6: Melbourne-Short Hills

When you think of Melbourne and Short Hills, you probably think of the luxury mall at Short Hills. Access to shopping is a positive for residents in both cities, but the list cites Melbourne’s top-rated public school system and extensive recreational activities as the area’s biggest draw for new residents.

Plus, there’s plenty of outdoor space and two train stations for easy access to New York City.

Number 7: Wayne

Wayne is one of the most affordable cities on the list, with a median home value of about $637,000. It has become a highly desirable location for its school system and many lake communities.

Here’s the full list from Travel + Leisure:

  • No. 1: Jersey City
  • No. 2: Hoboken
  • No. 3: Princeton
  • No. 4: Montclair
  • no. 5: Ridgewood/ho-ho-kus
  • No. 6: Melbourne-Short Hills
  • Number 7: Wayne
  • No. 8: Avalon/Stone Harbor
  • No. 9: Middletown
  • No. 10: Fair Haven

Maddie McGee is the real estate reporter for and The Record, where she covers all the things worth celebrating living in North Jersey. Search for it Instagram @madiemcgay, on X @madiemcgayyAnd register for it North Jersey Living the news. Do you have a great tip, trend or home that we should know about? Email her at

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