A novel biodegradable sodium carboxymethyl cellulose (NaCMC)-based hydrogel was synthesized by using fumaric acid (FA) as a crosslinking agent at various ratios. Hydrogels (CMCF) were characterized using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Swelling behaviors of hydrogels were investigated in distilled water, various salt, and pH solutions. The FTIR results indicated the crosslinking between carboxyl groups of FA with hydroxyl group of NaCMC through ester formation. AFM analyses showed that roughness of hydrogel surface decreased with increasing crosslinker concentration. The swelling capacity decreased with an increase in charge of the metal cation (Al3+ < Ca2+ < Na+). In order to investigate reversible pH sensitivity of CMCF hydrogels, pH-dependent swelling was studied at pH 2 and 10. Reversible pH-responsiveness of CMCF hydrogels was achieved. CMCF hydrogels containing the greatest ratio of FA exhibited the longest biodegradation time with a half life of 21 h using cellulase.