If you’re wanting to escape for a short time, several PA weekend getaways are wonderful possibilities. We’ve got ten spots to visit in the Keystone State for a holiday weekend, a long weekend, or any weekend for that matter. From the Lehigh Valley to Erie, and all in between, there’s plenty of family fun in Pennsylvania.
The Best Places to Visit in Pennsylvania for Families
We also have it, in addition to a few hotels in the neighborhood of the world-famous Hershey Park! Without further ado, here is our rundown of the top family-friendly resorts in Pennsylvania!
1. The City of Lancaster
One of the most popular places to travel for a weekend excursion in Pennsylvania is Lancaster, which is home to Dutch Wonderland. This amusement park features train rides, tiny roller coasters, a “Frog Prince” diving display, and the Prehistoric Path, which features genuine dinosaurs.
However, that is not the end of the fun to be had in Lancaster. Both the Strasburg Railroad and the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania are great destinations for anyone interested in trains.
Ziplines, obstacle courses, sky bridges, and other exciting activities can be found at Refreshing Mountain, which is a great destination for thrill seekers. Tiny people may bring the play to life at Tiny Town, which has 11 playhouses for interactive enjoyment. Little scientists can tinker at the Lancaster Science Factory, while tiny people can bring the play to life at Tiny Town.
2. Hershey, Harrisburg
There is no reason not to go to Hershey, also known as the Chocolate Land. Hersheypark is likely to keep children of any age entertained, and the Hershey Story Museum offers visitors the opportunity to schedule a hands-on chocolate-making class in the museum’s Chocolate Lab.
Visit the park during the holiday season to participate in seasonal activities such as meeting Santa’s reindeer, viewing the park while it is lit up, and riding holiday coasters.
From ketchup to cartoons, Pittsburgh is a destination in Pennsylvania that should be on the list of weekend trips that no family should skip. The Heinz History Center, which is part of the Smithsonian Institution, is home to forty different displays that are all focused on the history of western Pennsylvania.
Even though there is an exhibit that pays homage to the famous ketchup bottle, the majority of the displays pay tribute to Pittsburgh’s legacy, the sporting world, and general history. The exhibitions titled “Kidsburgh” and “Discovery Place” are very entertaining for children.
4. Valley of the Lehigh
The three main communities in the Lehigh Valley—Allentown, Bethlehem, and Easton—each offer a variety of activities and attractions that are perfect for families. Visit the Crayola Experience in Easton to watch a live demonstration of how crayons are manufactured as well as participate in a wide variety of hands-on crafting activities.
At the National Canal Museum, you can get an authentic ride on a canal boat while also learning about the history of these mule-pulled vessels.
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“Tunnel Vision” and “Hurricane Simulator” are just two of the many hands-on and interactive STEM displays that can be found at The Da Vinci Science Center in Bethlehem, which is ideally suited for children aged 12 and under.
5. The Poconos
The Poconos may very well be the best place in all of Pennsylvania to spend a weekend because there is so much to do in such a large area.
You can find some of the best indoor water parks in the state, which are wonderful places to visit if you don’t want to plan your activities based on the weather. Because the slides at Great Wolf Lodge are a little less violent than those at other neighboring water parks and because Wiley the Wolf and his buddies can be seen around the park, the resort is an excellent choice for families with younger children.
The slides at Kalahari are significantly larger in contrast to those at other parks, making it an ideal destination for thrill-seeking children and adults of all ages. In addition to its indoor park, Kalahari also features an outdoor park where visitors can take advantage of the warm weather.
6. The City of Philadelphia
Even though we live here, we think that the City of Brotherly Love is the best destination to go for a staycation or an urban vacation because it has so much to offer in terms of history, culture, and entertainment.
As a step back in time to the colonial era, a visit to the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall with the kids is a must. Visit the Franklin Institute to get your fill of science, including an up-close look at the Giant Heart.
Go to Smith Playground and Playhouse or stop by America’s first zoo to learn about the animals that live there before attempting a ropes course if you want to strike a balance between learning and having fun.
For history buffs, this may be their first choice of weekend getaways in Pennsylvania. They can begin their journey back in time at Gettysburg National Military Park, which is the location of the famous battlefield where the tides turned in the American Civil War.
If you are a history buff, this may be your first pick for a Pennsylvania weekend getaway. The Gettysburg Museum of History features not just more educational opportunities but also displays that highlight both World Wars and Vietnam, as well as presidents, figures of popular culture, and more.
The World of Little League Museum has reopened its doors after being closed for business for the previous 18 months. New displays at the museum include the Hall of Excellence and the Road to the World Series.
Around thirty minutes to the south of Williamsport is where you’ll find the Lewisburg Children’s Museum, a relatively new museum that caters to children aged two to ten and that features hands-on exhibits such as “Space and Science.” Enjoying the natural scenery in and around Williamsport is an essential part of any vacation there.
9. Laurel Valley and Highlands
Several counties make up the mountainous Laurel Highlands region, which is known for its natural beauty. Snow bunnies may ski or board and then hit the pool, bask in the hot tub, bowl, or play mini-golf—all of which are indoor activities—at Seven Springs Mountain Resort, which is located in Somerset County.
This is a lovely stop throughout any season. In addition to the activities that are available indoors, guests can enjoy the resort’s outdoor pool, alpine slides, and zip lines when the weather is warmer.
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Idlewild and SoakZone, located around 25 miles north of Seven Springs, have won a number of accolades throughout the years, making them popular destinations for people who enjoy amusement parks.
We believe that Erie will prove to be well worth the effort, despite the fact that it is the most northern of our Pennsylvania weekend getaways. Even though the winters can be particularly harsh, Presque Isle State Park in Erie is home to Pennsylvania’s one and only coastline.
Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, guests can enjoy swimming in the waves on this sandy peninsula. The majority of Presque Isle’s hiking routes are less than one mile in length, and the area is dotted with lighthouses that add to the picturesque ambiance.
Every kind of tourist may find an activity or attraction to enjoy in Pennsylvania, making it an ideal state for families. You have options available to you, regardless of whether you want to go skiing in the winter, hiking in the summer, or something in between.
They are all, in addition, suitable for use by children. Your priorities for a fun-filled getaway with the whole family will determine which of these two options is the best fit for your needs.