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Your Weekend in Jersey City: Modern Art, Go-Karts, and Beer Gardens

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We know, we know, you don’t "do Jersey." But you’re missing out. Jersey City—industrial hub, birthplace of Martha Stewart, and the second-largest city in the state (after Newark)—is in the midst of a mini retail and restaurant boom, thanks to swarms of New Yorkers crossing the Hudson in search of cheaper rent. Not that there’s nothing to do but shop and eat—the waterfront town is also home to expansive parks, contemporary art museums, and a retro go-kart track. Here, we’ve mapped out the perfect way to spend a spring Saturday in JC.

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1. Marco & Pepe

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289 Grove St
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 860-9688
Visit Website
Start your day by enjoying the somewhat slower pace of Jersey City at cozy café Marco & Pepe (289 Grove Street). Tuck into fresh, simple dishes like poached eggs over ratatouille or huevos rancheros, and order some sides (cranberry nut bread, Brussels sprouts with bacon, and Portuguese muffins are favorites) for the table to share. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

2. Feena Boutique

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297 Grove Street
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 763-6324
Get your fix of indie labels and international artisans at Feena’s Boutique (297 Grove Street). The store has a bohemian yet fashion-forward feel, featuring handmade jewelry and natural lotions alongside its dresses, shoes, separates and accessories, many of which come from the owner’s native Portugal. Rich leather and soft canvas bags are the big draw, with some styles geared toward guys. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

3. Kanibal Home

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213 Montgomery St
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(551) 200-9386
Visit Website
Kanibal Home (213 Montgomery Street) is the area’s capital of odds, ends and treasures. The owners keep the space stocked with intriguing finds that range from useful to artful, charming to tongue-in-cheek. In one spot, you can score vintage furniture, taxidermy, dog-print notebooks, New Jersey-themed stationery and estate jewelry. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

4. Camille Cesari Loveprint Jewelry

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128 Sussex St
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 280-2215
Visit Website
The pieces at Camille Cesari Loveprint Jewelry (128 Sussex Street) have a truly personal touch. Designer and owner Cesari crafts custom jewelry stamped with fingerprints, making the store a must-stop for special gifts. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

5. Beekman Lane

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512B Jersey Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 706-2996
Visit Website
Original touches for your home line the shelves at Beekman Lane (512B Jersey Avenue), a small boutique offering thoughtfully chosen décor and antiques. Stop by to browse the rustic furniture, repurposed lighting, quirky knick knacks and prints with stories to tell. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

6. Carrino Provisions

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8 Erie St
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(973) 988-2836
Visit Website
If you feel like it’s snack time, duck into the new, buzzy Carrino Provisions (8 Erie Street), from the alums of Pork Slope and Talde. The Brooklyn hit-makers have brought casual yet upscale Italian eats to JC in market form. Enjoy coffee, paninis and pastries from the café, stock up on pastas, meats, cheeses and oils in the store, or sit down for a full meal in the osteria. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

7. Zahara Spa

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400 Monmouth St
Jersey City, NJ
(201) 533-9300
Visit Website
Zahara Day Spa (403 Monmouth Street) is known for luxurious massages and facials with long-lasting results. Rejuvenate with a hydrating body wrap or a hot stone treatment. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

8. Mana Contemporary Art Center

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888 Newark Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07306
Now that you’re nice and relaxed, it’s time to wander the halls of the Mana Contemporary Art Center (888 Newark Avenue). Take in exhibits in sculpture, lighting, painting, photography and even performance. Mana also has studios right among the galleries, so you can actually watch artists at work. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

9. Museum of Russian Art

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80 Grand St
Jersey City, NJ 07302
Lose yourself in a whole different art world at The Museum of Russian Art (80 Grand Street). The space is small, but you can take your time discovering the modern, contemporary and classic works, all from Russian artists. Check their website ahead of time to find out what’s on display—exhibits are constantly changing. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

10. Pole Position Raceway

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99 Caven Point Rd
Jersey City, NJ 07305
(201) 333-7223
Visit Website
Indulge your need for speed with Pole Position Raceway (99 Caven Point Road) and remember how fun a whizzing ride around the go-kart track is. Pole Position is an indoor facility with karts that reach 45 mph, and all you have to do is put down a $25 rental fee to have a go. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

11. Zeppelin Hall Biergarten

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88 Grand St
Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 721-8888
Visit Website
Unwind from all the exploring you’ve done in the sprawling space that is Zeppelin Hall (88 Liberty View Drive). You can kick back at one of the communal tables in this friendly spot, and order from a long list of German and craft brews. If you’re having so much fun, you don’t want to leave for dinner, you’re in luck. The kitchen serves delicious renditions of German comfort foods like currywurst, spaetzle, pretzels and potato pancakes. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]

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1. Marco & Pepe

289 Grove St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Start your day by enjoying the somewhat slower pace of Jersey City at cozy café Marco & Pepe (289 Grove Street). Tuck into fresh, simple dishes like poached eggs over ratatouille or huevos rancheros, and order some sides (cranberry nut bread, Brussels sprouts with bacon, and Portuguese muffins are favorites) for the table to share. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
289 Grove St
Jersey City, NJ 07302

2. Feena Boutique

297 Grove Street, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Get your fix of indie labels and international artisans at Feena’s Boutique (297 Grove Street). The store has a bohemian yet fashion-forward feel, featuring handmade jewelry and natural lotions alongside its dresses, shoes, separates and accessories, many of which come from the owner’s native Portugal. Rich leather and soft canvas bags are the big draw, with some styles geared toward guys. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
297 Grove Street
Jersey City, NJ 07302

3. Kanibal Home

213 Montgomery St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Kanibal Home (213 Montgomery Street) is the area’s capital of odds, ends and treasures. The owners keep the space stocked with intriguing finds that range from useful to artful, charming to tongue-in-cheek. In one spot, you can score vintage furniture, taxidermy, dog-print notebooks, New Jersey-themed stationery and estate jewelry. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
213 Montgomery St
Jersey City, NJ 07302

4. Camille Cesari Loveprint Jewelry

128 Sussex St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
The pieces at Camille Cesari Loveprint Jewelry (128 Sussex Street) have a truly personal touch. Designer and owner Cesari crafts custom jewelry stamped with fingerprints, making the store a must-stop for special gifts. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
128 Sussex St
Jersey City, NJ 07302

5. Beekman Lane

512B Jersey Ave, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Original touches for your home line the shelves at Beekman Lane (512B Jersey Avenue), a small boutique offering thoughtfully chosen décor and antiques. Stop by to browse the rustic furniture, repurposed lighting, quirky knick knacks and prints with stories to tell. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
512B Jersey Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07302

6. Carrino Provisions

8 Erie St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
If you feel like it’s snack time, duck into the new, buzzy Carrino Provisions (8 Erie Street), from the alums of Pork Slope and Talde. The Brooklyn hit-makers have brought casual yet upscale Italian eats to JC in market form. Enjoy coffee, paninis and pastries from the café, stock up on pastas, meats, cheeses and oils in the store, or sit down for a full meal in the osteria. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
8 Erie St
Jersey City, NJ 07302

7. Zahara Spa

400 Monmouth St, Jersey City, NJ
Zahara Day Spa (403 Monmouth Street) is known for luxurious massages and facials with long-lasting results. Rejuvenate with a hydrating body wrap or a hot stone treatment. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
400 Monmouth St
Jersey City, NJ

8. Mana Contemporary Art Center

888 Newark Ave, Jersey City, NJ 07306
Now that you’re nice and relaxed, it’s time to wander the halls of the Mana Contemporary Art Center (888 Newark Avenue). Take in exhibits in sculpture, lighting, painting, photography and even performance. Mana also has studios right among the galleries, so you can actually watch artists at work. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
888 Newark Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07306

9. Museum of Russian Art

80 Grand St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Lose yourself in a whole different art world at The Museum of Russian Art (80 Grand Street). The space is small, but you can take your time discovering the modern, contemporary and classic works, all from Russian artists. Check their website ahead of time to find out what’s on display—exhibits are constantly changing. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
80 Grand St
Jersey City, NJ 07302

10. Pole Position Raceway

99 Caven Point Rd, Jersey City, NJ 07305
Indulge your need for speed with Pole Position Raceway (99 Caven Point Road) and remember how fun a whizzing ride around the go-kart track is. Pole Position is an indoor facility with karts that reach 45 mph, and all you have to do is put down a $25 rental fee to have a go. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
99 Caven Point Rd
Jersey City, NJ 07305

11. Zeppelin Hall Biergarten

88 Grand St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
Unwind from all the exploring you’ve done in the sprawling space that is Zeppelin Hall (88 Liberty View Drive). You can kick back at one of the communal tables in this friendly spot, and order from a long list of German and craft brews. If you’re having so much fun, you don’t want to leave for dinner, you’re in luck. The kitchen serves delicious renditions of German comfort foods like currywurst, spaetzle, pretzels and potato pancakes. [Photo: Bryan Sansivero]
88 Grand St
Jersey City, NJ 07302