Sometimes the world can be a little rough for those of us who don’t like crowds and who seek out the quiet in a fast-paced world. Even the most outgoing of people sometimes need to get away from it all. Fortunately, Pennsylvania provides countless opportunities for those who want to relax while avoiding hoards of people. Here are 10 perfect places in Pennsylvania for people who hate crowds.
1. Cherry Springs State Park, Coudersport
Embrace the peaceful surroundings of Cherry Springs State Park where you can trek the easy one mile hiking trail or wait until the sun goes down for the real magic to begin. Undisturbed by modern development, Cherry Springs State Park remains as untouched as it has been for the last two centuries. The sky promises a clear view for stargazers. Visit for the evening or camp out at one of the 30 campsites throughout the park.
2. Abandoned Pennsylvania Turnpike Tunnels, Breezewood
Thirteen miles of road, what was once the Pennsylvania Turnpike, now sit undisturbed, except for the occasional hiker, biker, photographer, or curiosity seeker. Trekking the stretch of abandoned highway, which includes the quaint Rays Hill Tunnel now surrounded by lush green, should be done with care. A 13-mile bike trail was proposed back at the turn of the century but, to this day, the land still remains abandoned.
3. Eckley's Miners Village, Weatherly
Travel back in time when you visit Eckley's Miners Village, a coal mining village that remains very much as it was throughout its history, starting in the mid-1840s. View the museum's exhibitions or simply stroll through the quaint grounds of the historic village. Slip in and out of the village's buildings, all frozen in time, including original homes, the Immaculate Conception Church (circa 1861), Slate Picker's House (circa 1854), and St. James Episcopal Church (circa 1859).
4. LaPorte Haystacks, Sullivan County
Find peace and quiet at the LaPorte Haystacks, large rocks that look like haystacks jutting up from the waters of the Loyalsock Creek. Visit the Loyalsock State Forest to see the modern marvel, which requires you to hike either the Haystacks Trail (marked by a yellow blaze) or the Loyalsock Trail, the former of which is easier for novice hikers.
5. Isle of Que, Selinsgrove
A tiny piece of paradise, less than six miles long and half a mile wide, hides near Selingrove, unspoiled land that the Native Americans once considered sacred ground. Visitors to the Isle of Que may still find original artifacts. Explore the tiny island on foot or by bike. Swim, fish, or kayak across the clear water while watching for wildlife.
6. Elk Country, Benezette
Maybe running into a lot of people doesn't sound like a pleasant afternoon but what about crossing paths with the gorgeous elk that roam Benezette? Elk Country promises a relaxing experience away from the hustle and bustle of every day life. Stop by the Elk Country Visitor Center where several trails start and observation areas are located. And, don't be surprised if you see wandering elk when you're driving around Benezette.
7. Eagles Mere
Eagles Mere holds the title of “The Last Unspoiled Resort,” and rightly so. Only 120 people call the tiny town home year round with 3,000 seeking refuge from everyday life in the summer. Whether you visit Eagles Mere in the winter or in the summer, you'll discover plenty to do – browsing through specialty shops, dining at quaint restaurants, celebrating the Water Festival, tobogganing, and enjoying small town hospitality.
8. Stroud Preserve, West Chester
Explore the unspoiled beauty of nature at Stroud Preserve. Trek one of the nine miles of hiking trails, which are rated either easy or moderate. Go horseback riding. Or watch for the native birds, such as the field sparrow and the eastern meadowlark. The nature preserve also features meadows and spring fed streams.
9. Trough Creek State Park, James Creek
Drink in the unrivaled beauty of Pennsylvania's landscape at Trough Creek State Park. The 12 miles of hiking trails, each of varying difficulty, will lead you to such untouched beauty as Rainbow Falls and a suspension bridge (via the Balanced Rock Trail) and the Paradise Furnace Ruins (via the Cemetery Trail). Make reservations to stay overnight at the on-site Trough Creek Lodge or camp at one of the 29 camping sites throughout the park.
10. Mount Davis, Elk Lick Township
Head to the top of the world – or the top of Pennsylvania, at least – for unparallelled views of the landscape below. Mount Davis, the highest point in the state, features an observation tower and can be reached by car (follow the road signs). Park in the parking area and walk less than a mile for amazing views.
Treat yourself to a day away from stress of the crowds by visiting one or more of these 10 perfect places in Pennsylvania for people who hate crowds. Feel like getting away from it all without getting out of the car? Buckle up and take this
scenic drive to nowhere.