Ramsey is an attractive suburban community, encompassing 5.6 square miles of Northern New Jersey. With a population of 14,629, this suburb enjoys a small-town congeniality, while still being close to a the major metropolis of New York City. Most of the population (nearly 82%) has completed some form of higher education, giving Ramsey an Educational Climate Index of 4 out of a possible 5. 60% of the population hold white-collar jobs; 40% are considered blue collar. Ramsey Public Schools include three elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school that do an outstanding job of preparing youths for future endeavors. The borough is also known for its exemplary recreational facilities, including the Ramsey Golf & Country Club which includes an 18-hole golf course, lakefront pool and beach, and paddle tennis facility. Konica Minolta’s U.S. headquarters are in Ramsey.
Originally the home of the Lenni-Lenape Native Americans, the village of Ridgewood was later inhabited by Dutch settlers. Once a railroad station was built in Ridgewood, wealthy New Yorkers looking for summer recreation built estates in the area, eventually becoming year-round residents. Today, Ridgewood has a population of 24,000 residents with a thriving business district, hospital, and nationally-recognized school system. Only 15 miles to NYC, Ridgewood has a small-town feel, while still being conveniently close to a global metropolis. It has an Educational Climate Index of 4, with 79% of the population holding some type of college degree. In 2011, it was ranked 26th in Money magazine’s “Best Places to Live in America.”
The borough of Allendale has a distinct likeness to traditional New England towns, with its perfectly manicured homes and well-maintained streets. There is a versatility among its residents that is expressed in the wide range of clubs and organizations offered for all ages. Smaller than some of its neighboring towns, Allendale has a population of 6,980 and only encompasses about three square miles. Most residents hold some type of college degree. One of the more unique aspects of Allendale is its ‘Celery Farm,’ a nature preserve that is home to hundreds of animals, including fox, deer, rabbits, and most notably, exotic birds.
As the largest municipality in Bergen County, Mahwah has more open space than any other city in the county, and has a variety of different home styles to choose from. The population of Mahwah is 26,471, and the median age is a bit younger, at 41. The community is home to five public elementary schools, one public high school, as well as Ramapo College. Located near the Ramapo Mountains and Ramapo River, Mahwah is also home to several state and county parks, including Campgaw Mountain Reservation. New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked Mahwah as its 9th best place to live in its 2008 rankings of the “Best Places to Live” in New Jersey.
Glen Rock is located south of Ramsey, and was formed in 1894 from portions of Ridgewood and Saddle River Townships. It was settled around a large boulder in a small valley, or glen, from which it gets its name. The Lenape Native Americans called the boulder “Pamachapuka,” meaning “stone from heaven,” and used it for signal fires and as a trail marker. Today, Glen Rock’s population is 11,615. It has four public elementary schools, one public middle school, and one public high school. In 2015, the Glen Rock Board of Education voted to designate the Hindu holy day Diwali as an annual school holiday, based on its increasing American Indian population. Like neighboring communities, most residents have college degrees or some form of higher education.
Montvale is a small borough of approximately 4 square miles, situated in the picturesque Pascack Valley of northeastern Bergen County, bordering on New York State. Montvale only has a population of 8,311, but its residents enjoy a high quality of life with exemplary schools and recreational programs, and easy access to shopping centers and an array of cultural activities. There are many new housing developments in Montvale that add to its older residencies with historic charm. Montvale ranks a 5 out of 5 on the Educational Climate Index, and most residents are white collar workers (73%).
TThe Native Americans who inhabited the area where Oakland now sits enjoyed the land of fertile valleys and lucrative hunting in its lush woodlands. After WWII, Oakland became a desirable place to live for those who worked in NYC but still wanted that “country-living” feel. Today, Oakland is more rural than many of the other towns listed on this website, but is still close to all the amenities residents want and need. The population of Oakland is 12,842. The Ramapo River runs north and south through Oakland, and the Ramapo State Forest is in northwest Oakland, offering residents plenty of space to hike and enjoy the outdoors.
Wyckoff is named after the Native American word meaning ‘high ground’ or ‘water.’ Having a charming, small-town feel, the population is 16,748, with the median age being 46. Wyckoff has four public elementary schools, one public middle school, and two public high schools. Wyckoff is home to the JA McFaul Environmental Center, which is a lovely local park and wildlife sanctuary with a pond, animal shelter, garden trails, picnic sites, and nature exhibits.
Fun fact: The Jonas Brothers are from Wyckoff.
Quiet country living is the hallmark of Franklin Lakes, which lies in western Bergen County. Most of its one-acre building lots are substantially wooded, and many are situated on or near the shores of the 21 magnificent lakes that grace its countryside. Franklin Lakes is also home to a semi-private golf and country club, many neighborhood stores, two large shopping centers, and six public schools. The population of Franklin Lakes is 10,884, and the median age of residents is 47. Franklin Lakes has been featured on several reality television shows, most notably as the setting for the Real Housewives of New Jersey.
Paramus is a popular residential community, partly due to its close proximity to world-class retail centers and shopping malls that cater to its 26,730 residents. It is the second largest among the 70 municipalities in Bergen County, and is also home to Bergen Community College. Located southeast of Ramsey, it is only 8 miles west of Upper Manahattan. Within Paramus are multiple country and golf clubs, and parks. Paramus has received multiple recognitions in recent years, including being listed on the “Best Places to Live in New Jersey” by New Jersey Monthly, and being listed as one of the top cities to own your own business.
Located just west of the Hudson River, Englewood’s proximity to New York City makes its population diverse. 28,056 individuals make up Englewood’s population, and overall, it is a sophisticated city that combines most of its historic charm with an exciting cosmopolitan atmosphere. It offers a wide range of housing options, from large estates to affordable apartments. Englewood’s population spans across all ages, and households with married couples or children are slightly less common than its more family-centric neighboring communities. Englewood is also a hub of history, with many historical homes and landmarks within its city borders.
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