8 Best Destinations and Attractions in Pennsylvania
The Keystone State is nicknamed for its key importance in establishing the United States of America. With both centuries of rich American history and densely populated modern cultural hubs, PA has become a popular place for tourists to visit. As a proud Pennsylvania RV dealership, we’ll always encourage travelers to check out destinations from the origins of the Declaration of Independence to thrilling amusement parks. To get you started on your PA road trip, here’s our list of the best tourist destinations and attractions in Pennsylvania.
Independence National Park
Philadelphia’s Independence National Park is home to Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed, and home of the Liberty Bell. Therefore, it’s an obvious first addition to our list. Whether you’re an American history buff or not, this beautiful and iconic landmark is a must-visit destination.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Art enthusiasts and movie lovers alike will want to make a stop at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. This attraction in Pennsylvania houses work from both American and European artists. The European collection includes work by Rembrandt, Monet, Picasso, Matisse, Chagall and more. Additionally, there are exhibits featuring textiles and fashion, colonial American styles, and a sculpture garden.
And, of course, this museum is home of the famous Rocky steps – the steps that protagonist Rocky Balboa, portrayed by Sylvester Stallone, is seen running up in the “Rocky” movies. Thousands of visitors recreate the iconic movie scene on these steps every year!
Theme parks aren’t just for Florida – this amusement park in Hershey, PA, will give Disney World a run for its money! It was initially built in 1906 as a place for Hershey Chocolate Company employees to have fun. It’s since become the top amusement park in the state and one of the most popular attractions in Pennsylvania. Thrill-seekers and young children alike will find something to enjoy with everything from huge roller coasters to aquatic shows, ZooAmerica and Chocolate World.
Eastern State Penitentiary
This eerie, intimidating building looks more like a medieval castle than a 19th century prison. The Eastern State Penitentiary is a top attraction in Pennsylvania for history fanatics and ghost hunters alike. Its daytime tours include visits to the cells that once belonged to infamous criminals like “Slick Willie” Sutton and “Scarface” Al Capone. Aside from searching out the spirits of prisoners, the nighttime tours include beer tastings, trivia and other themed activities that change throughout the year.
Gettysburg National Military Park
This national park is the site of the 1863 Battle of Gettysburg during the Civil War. This three-day battle resulted in the death of roughly 51,000 people. It was a significant Union Army victory that became a turning point in the tides of the Civil War. Now, you can walk the grounds where this tragic battle occurred. The Park Museum features a wide collection of Civil War uniforms, weapons and more. You can join living history programs, watch historic reenactments and even take a scenic horseback ride at this popular park.
No list of the best attractions in Pennsylvania is complete without a visit to Amish country. Strasburg is a small town in Lancaster and is home to the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. In keeping with the railroad theme of the town, you can also find the National Toy Train Museum. We recommend a ride on the Strasburg Rail Road – where you can journey along the historic tracks through scenic Amish towns and farms.
Carnegie Museum of Natural History
A well-known natural history museum, the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh is one of the top museum attractions in Pennsylvania. It’s particularly well-known for its dinosaur and paleontology exhibits that would impress even the likes of Ellie Sattler and Alan Grant (before their time at Jurassic Park, perhaps). The dino exhibits include everything from one of the first T-rex skeletons ever excavated to the sea creatures that dominated our oceans millions of years ago. Take a walk back in time at this iconic museum!
The Valley Forge National Historical Park is another place PA-touring history buffs need to make a stop. It’s a key location from the American Revolutionary War and is now a place to honor the sacrifices made to gain American independence. In the winter of 1777 to 1778, George Washington and his troops camped out at Valley Forge. The 3,500-acre park includes monuments, open land and forests, and a museum in the visitor center. It’s another prime example of the rich American history that Pennsylvania has to offer.
Classic movie fanatics, model train enthusiasts and everyone in between will want to visit the state for one of these famous attractions in Pennsylvania. And, of course, the best way to travel to and stay at these destinations is in an RV! National parks and museums across the state have both primitive and full-hookup campgrounds ready for your family’s stay. Visit Juniata Valley RV in Mifflintown, PA, for an RV that’s ready to take you on a tour of the Keystone State.
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