In and Around

While you are a student at Rutgers there is also an opportunity to get out and experience something new.

New Brunswick

Another venue to code/read.New Brunswick may be small but there are things going on all year. I would recommend looking out for community events happening in New Brunswick and Highland Park: 4th of July, Parades in Highland Park and New Years are just some of them. New Brunswick is the home of the State Theater of New Jersey (as well as other theaters in the Arts district). The State Theater hosts performances all year. Get to see at least one performance there. There is always a chance one of your favorite acts might perform there. A great program to look out for at the State Theater is “Scientists Exploring the Arts”, a free program where you get to see a performance as well as a pre-show talk with some of the performers. The program is open to students who are in specific science programs. Get Connected:

Princeton/NYC/Philadelphia

The great thing about being in New Brunswick is that one can easily get to a number of towns and cities using public transport.

Princeton is very easy to get too and is a great town to visit. Not just for the University but the town itself. Its a great afternoon excursion.

NYC is easily accessible via bus (cheapest) or train. There are tons of things to do. I would recommend the amazing museums and the many cultural experiences that are available. I wrote a guide for International Graduate Student about a year ago on getting to NYC and some options on things to do. You can see it here: Culture: Museums in NYC

Philadelphia is my favorite historical American city. You can take NJ Transit Train and then the Septa to get to Philadelphia. There are so many things to do in Philly that I keep on going back. Historic Philadelphia is a great experience. The art museum is great and the Rocky statue is just a bonus. There is a lot more than I have listed on here but once you start looking at either TravelAdvisor or WikiTravel you’ll have a lot to choose from.

Happy Exploring.

A relaxing day away from New Brunswick

For the past 12 years of my life, up until August of 2011, I lived in California. Moving to the East Coast was not only a big opportunity to branch out of my comfort zones in the living category, but also to explore new areas in the tri-state area. It is obvious that New Brunswick is nearly the midpoint between two large metropolitan cities-Philadelphia and New York City. However, there are also various other areas to consider, two of which have a much more laid-back feel (just what I like).

The first is Princeton, NJ. I first went here during the fall of 2011 and absolutely fell in love. It reminded me of a city near home, Old Towne Pasadena, with all the cute shops and delicious food. If you’re here, there are two places I highly recommend: the bent spoon, and Greene Street. The bent spoon is an ice cream shop that uses local ingredients, but also specializes in strange and enticing flavors. My favorite is the ricotta flavored ice cream, with local ricotta cheese from New Jersey. Other flavors I’ve seen include peach sriracha and chocolate hazelnut. It is one of the best ice cream shops I’ve been to. In addition, Greene Street is a consignment shop that is clean, well maintained, and quite large (there are 2 stories, one for women, and one for men). What I love about this consignment store is that is has not only cheap finds, but also luxury goods at a decent price point. I’ve seen anything from the likes of Gucci boots to Marc Jacob sunglasses to Celine purses for purchase. I feel that these types of consignment shops are difficult to find, and it’s nice to look around for hidden treasures.

Another quite similar area I frequent is a suburban area in Philadelphia called Chestnut Hill. It has the most amazing houses around–of course, I am biased, since I am used to Spanish-style California houses, but the old, rustic, grandiose feel of the houses are amazing. There is a small downtown area with local shops, surrounded by cobblestone roads. There is a great sit down place called Top of the Hill, and it is definitely a great place to grab a coffee and people watch.

While New Brunswick itself does offer a great atmosphere, lots of food options, and a bustling downtown area, it is sometimes nice to get out of the city without going into the two cities surrounding (Philly and NYC). Princeton and Chestnut Hill both offer a relaxing day out, especially when my California-self can survive the harsh East Coast weather.