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American Dream Mall Directions From NYC

Updated: May 14, 2024

Located less than an hour from NYC in New Jersey, the American Dream Mall is a massive retail and entertainment complex which spans over 3 million square feet.

It is one of the biggest malls in the entire country and features a variety of attractions including amusement parks, water parks, an indoor ski slope, shopping outlets, and dining options.

It's popular among families due to its diverse entertainment offerings, catering to all ages and interests.

The mall provides a one-stop destination for recreation, shopping, and dining, making it convenient for families looking for a day of fun.

Its unique attractions like the Nickelodeon Universe theme park and DreamWorks Water Park draw in visitors seeking thrilling experiences.

With its sheer size and range of activities, the American Dream Mall has become a go-to destination for families looking for an immersive entertainment experience.

The American Dream Mall hours varies with the activity you are looking for. Retail stores and dining outlets opens from 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM.

While the DreamWorks Water Park opens from 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM and Nickelodeon Universe opens from 12:00 PM - 7:00 PM.

For other activities like Big Snow, The Rink and Mini Golf, check out the hours here.

This post will not only cover how to reach the mall, but also include information about some of the best things to do at American Dream Mall.


Driving Directions to American Dream Mall

Starting from New York City, you can reach the American Dream Mall in New Jersey with a fun and easy car trip.

First, you'll hop onto I-495 W, heading towards the famous Lincoln Tunnel. Then, stay on NJ-495 W. Keep your eyes peeled for the exit that points you to Weehawken/Hoboken.

After you've taken the exit, get ready to join a different highway, NJ-3 W. Make sure to stay on this highway, following it to a town called East Rutherford.

Once you're here, look for the exit labeled "American Dream" on NJ-120 N. This exit will lead you to your final destination.

Your journey to the destination should take approximately 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the conditions of the roads and traffic.

American Dream Mall Driving Map

There's no need to worry about parking your car. The mall has numerous parking spaces scattered over multiple decks and lots. Just arrive early during peak hours to secure a prime spot.

Although parking fees can be a problem in NYC (and even parts of New Jersey,) American Dream Mall Meadowlands offers a rate of just $5 per vehicle for the duration of your visit.

However, if you'd rather not navigate the journey yourself, or you don't have access to a car, you can avail yourself of an Uber or Lyft.

Do bear in mind that this could slightly elevate the costs. Spending north of $50 per trip is plausible, especially when traffic is heavy or the journey spans a more considerable distance.

If you are planning on taking an Uber/Lyft or Taxi, we recommend taking the train to New Jersey first, as rates from that side of the water range from $4.50 - $20 on average.


How to Get to the American Dream Mall by Bus

NJ Transit Bus 355 runs from Port Authority Bus Terminal to the American Dream Mall, and travel times range from 35-55 minutes on average.

American Dream Mall Bus Map

This is actually the fastest way to get here without driving, taking a taxi, or using a rideshare service. When it comes to public transportation, taking the bus is your best option.

The fare is $18 for adults and $9 for children, seniors, and the military. Tickets can be purchased at the Port Authority Bus Terminal.

This service is offered during the following hours:

  • Monday - Friday: 10 am and 12:30 pm
    • Return Service: 7 pm and 9:30 pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: Hourly from 8 am to 9 pm
    • Return Service: Hourly from 10 am to 11 pm

If you’re looking for the most affordable method of transportation, this is likely your best bet. It might not be the fastest option, but it’s gonna cost less than any other service – including driving!


How to Get to the American Dream Mall by Train

Excited to see the American Dream Mall? A fast hop in a delightful train can be combined with a cab or rideshare service like Uber or Lyft to get you there.

Secaucus Junction Station will be your final destination, and you can get here from either Penn Station or Grand Central Station. A train to American Dream Mall departs every 15 to 20 minutes.

If you're coming from Grand Central, the trip will take around 30 minutes. However, the trip from Penn Station is only 10 minutes. Your train ticket should cost $2-$4.

The ticket booths at Grand Central Station. Image source: Pixabay user Franz Jl.
The ticket booths at Grand Central Station. Image source: Pixabay user Franz Jl.

Enjoy the changing views from your window until you get to Secaucus Junction station. What's the train's final stop? Not quite the mall, but it gets you pretty close.

Upon dismounting from the train, a taxi or a rideshare will be necessary for the remaining stretch. This short ride is the final stretch before you stand in front of the unique American Dream Mall.

Train to American Dream Mall Map

While taxis offer a rate of just $4.50, a rideshare such as Uber/Lyft will likely cost $15-$20. Depending on which you choose, this means the total cost of travel ranges from $8.50 - $24 per person.

You might wonder about taking a bus from Secaucus Junction station, but it will be a slow ride. It takes between 45 minutes to an hour. You'd reach your destination faster and have more fun by using a taxi or rideshare.


How to Get Here by Ferry

Although it isn’t currently in service, there is actually a ferry from Midtown Manhattan to Port Imperial in Weehawken, NJ. This is actually one of the fastest ways to reach the attraction, as you avoid all the road traffic by cruising across the water instead!

Ferry to American Dream Mall Map

The ferry itself only takes 8 minutes to reach its destination, but you’ll also need to take a shuttle from Port Imperial to the American Dream Mall. These shuttle buses only take 20 minutes to reach the mall, so the entire journey takes less than 30 minutes!

As of March 2024, we have no information about when this service will return to operation. That said, we highly recommend checking their website before heading out just to make sure, as this is definitely one of the easier ways to get to the American Dream Mall Meadowlands.

Admission for both the ferry and shuttle are $16 each way, or $32 for return tickets. You can also purchase shuttle tickets individually from Port Imperial for $7.


Things to Do at American Dream Mall

Even if you don’t feel like going shopping, you might still want to consider a trip to the American Dream Mall because they also have several theme parks, museums, and other fun attractions for visitors of all ages.

This section will cover some of the best things to experience at this massive entertainment and shopping complex.


1. Nickelodeon Universe

Let's kick things off with Nickelodeon Universe, a cosmos brimming with exhilarating enjoyment waiting to be discovered.

This dynamic theme park features adrenaline-inducing rides, lovable Nickelodeon characters like SpongeBob, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora the Explorer, and ceaseless entertainment.

The park, boasting thrilling roller coasters and delightful family-friendly rides, caters to every thrill-seeker. Character meets, greets, shows, and more are on the itinerary.

Prepare for bouts of laughter, screams of excitement, and the creation of priceless memories at Nickelodeon Universe.

The tickets are affordable, and given the myriad of fabulous attractions, you'll likely want to devote at least 4-6 hours of your day here.


2. Dreamworks Waterpark

Next is the Dreamworks Waterpark, a spectacular place where the fun never stops. Imagine a tropical paradise filled with jaw-dropping water slides, relaxing lazy rivers, and wave pools - Dreamworks Waterpark. 

Play with your favorite Dreamworks characters like Shrek and Kung Fu Panda in water-based escapades. This indoor park is ideal for a family fun day, rain or shine.

Given the diverse water experiences, spending 4-6 hours here, immersed in fun and laughter, is to be expected.


3. SEA LIFE Aquarium

Make a splash at the SEA LIFE Aquarium and see the breathtaking underwater world. This fantastic aquarium thoroughly examines marine life, from vibrant fish to magnificent sharks. You can see and even touch some extraordinary sea creatures.

Be captivated by the interactive exhibits and learn fascinating facts about our oceans and their inhabitants. With many sea creatures to discover, plan on spending around 4-6 hours here, diving deep into the mysteries of the underwater world.


4. LEGOLAND Discovery Center

You can be welcome to the land of creativity and fun - the LEGOLAND Discovery Center. Here, you're given free rein to your imagination, building, playing, and learning with an ocean of LEGO bricks.

Engage in the interactive build-and-play zones, embark on a LEGO Factory Tour, or catch a flick at the 4D cinema. There's plenty to keep you busy for 4-6 hours, making LEGOLAND Discovery Center a perfect destination for LEGO lovers of all ages.


5. Dream Wheel

Leap aboard the Dream Wheel for a spectacular journey into the skies. This isn't just your ordinary Ferris wheel; it's a ticket to see the world from a new height.

As you ascend with each revolution, you'll find yourself closer to the skies, drinking in the awe-inspiring vistas beneath. This is a quiet retreat from the rush of life below.

Once you've spent some time aloft, you'll discover that the world appears even more majestic when observed from this height. Remember to capture some memories with photos while you're at it.

  • Duration: 30 Minutes
  • Constant Availability
  • Operating Hours: 3:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • $31/Adult | $19/Child | $0/Infant
  • Book Your Tour or Learn More

6. TiLT Interactive Museum

The TiLT Interactive Museum invites you into a wonderland where fun and learning go hand in hand. You'll encounter unique exhibits and engaging challenges that entertain you for hours. 

The best part? The ticket prices are so reasonable. Spending a few hours at TiLT is like strolling into a new world where nothing is as it seems. You'll laugh, ponder, and, most of all, leave with a big smile. 


7. Angry Birds Mini Golf

Join the world of Red, Chuck, Bomb, and the gang at Angry Birds Mini Golf. This isn't your regular game of golf, but it's an adventure-packed romp with your feathery pals from Angry Birds. 

You'll likely spend a couple of enjoyable hours in this riveting universe. So, why limit the Angry Birds experience to your screen when you can join them for a round of mini-golf?

So grab your club, target the holes, and let the mirthful journey commence.


8. Blacklight Mini Golf

Imagine a game of golf that's more than just greens and holes. Welcome to Blacklight Mini Golf, a fantastical land where every shot you take glows under the blacklight. 

It's a game, an adventure, and an art show all rolled into one fantastic experience. The entry tickets are affordable and guarantee a bucketload of glowing fun. 

As you make your way through this neon wonderland, you'll find yourself losing track of time. So hold your glowing golf ball and putter, and start the glowing games at Blacklight Mini Golf.


9. Ice Skating Rink

Ever harbored dreams of smoothly skating over ice like an ice-dancing champ? You have the opportunity to fulfill those dreams at the American Dream Mall's ice skating rink.

It's not merely about the ice or the skates but the sheer delight of twirling and whirling on a gleaming slab of ice. Swirling and twirling on the ice can take up much of your day. 

So lace up your skates, foot onto the ice, and glide into a world of frosty fun.


10. Mirror Maze

As you enter the Mirror Maze, you'll immerse yourself in a realm where everything is warped, mirrored, and intriguingly mind-boggling.

The maze transcends being a mere problem to crack; it's a visual spectacle teeming with amusement and mentally stimulating instances.

Entry is quite economical, and navigating through the maze should take around an hour. Therefore, don your thinking cap, open your eyes, and solve this sparkling maze of mirrors. 


11. Escape Room Adventure

Ever wanted to be the hero of your adventure? At the Escape Room Adventure, you get to be just that, Solve puzzles, crack codes, and find your way out of the room before time runs out. 

The thrill and excitement of this real-life adventure game are fantastic for all ages. You'll be engaged in the game for an hour, completely forgetting the world outside. 

So gather your friends, muster your courage, and prepare for an adrenaline-pumping adventure at the Escape Room Adventure.


12. Paradox Museum

You can step into the world of illusion at the Paradox Museum.

This unique attraction will challenge your mind and amaze your senses. Wander through mesmerizing exhibits, experience interactive art installations, and capture unforgettable photos. 

Your excursion to the Paradox Museum will be anything but ordinary; it's more like a journey into the dominion of the remarkable. Setting aside a good chunk of your day for this stimulating activity would be a good idea.


About The Author

Lori Pickhardt

Updated: May 14th, 2024
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