It’s probably fair to say that we, Pennsylvanians, know how to make pretty good decisions. After all, we’ve decided to live in PA, a diverse state that offers four seasons and plenty to do all year around. But, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Here are 14 of the best decisions you can make in Pennsylvania.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Buy a snow scraper
and a shovel.
We face our fair share of snow in PA. Keeping a snow scraper in our car and a shovel by our front door is just a good idea.
2. Get comfortable with turning on the furnace and the A/C on the same day.
PA's weather is pretty finicky. In fact, it's not uncommon for us to experience all four seasons in one day. Don't let it stress you out. Instead, just get used to the fact that you might have to use the air conditioning and the furnace on the same day.
3. Visit Pennsylvania’s breathtaking state parks and…
How lucky are we to live in a state with 121 gorgeous state parks? The best decision you can make? Start exploring them! PA's state parks boast a wealth of natural wonders, including waterfalls, boardwalks, hiking trails, and campgrounds.
In between exploring state parks, check out some of PA's lush forests. From Sproul State Forest (pictured above) to Allegheny National Forest, you'll find plenty to do all year around. Go hiking, camping, fishing, and swimming (where permitted) in the summer. Winter means ice skating, snowshoeing, sledding, and cross-country skiing.
5. Spend an afternoon strolling through one of PA’s gardens.
Feel as though you've stepped into a fairytale when you visit the enchanting gardens in the state. Chanticleer Garden, (pictured above), for example, features charming footbridges, babbling brooks, and a glass house that's perfect for a picnic lunch.
6. Plan a trip to Punxsutawney for Groundhog Dog.
Groundhog Day has special meaning in Pennsylvania. Want to make a great decision? Plan a visit to Punxsutawney at least once on Groundhog Day to see cute little Phil make his weather prediction.
7. Explore the state by rail.
You don't have to travel from one side of the state to the other to explore PA by rail. Simply hop aboard a local train. Like the New Hope & Ivyland Railroad, Strasburg Railroad, or Oil Creek & Titusville Railroad. Each offers scenic train rides and even special events, like a ride with Santa, throughout the year.
8. Stand high above Pine Creek Gorge.
Experience Pennsylvania's own Grand Canyon when you visit Pine Creek Gorge. Marvel at the natural beauty from scenic vistas in Leonard Harrison State Park and Colton Point State Park. The spellbinding gorge spans 50 miles and is more than 1,000 feet deep.
9. Go tobogganing in Eagles Mere.
The picturesque village of Eagles Mere belongs on every Pennsylvanian's bucket list. For a truly memorable experience, plan a winter trip to the charming village for an afternoon of tobogganing. Tobogganing has been a tradition since 1904. Visitors can soar down the hill on a toboggan then enjoy a steaming cup of hot chocolate.
10. Eat a home-cooked Amish meal.
Sit down to a delicious, homecooked Amish meal at one of the quaint Amish restaurants in PA. After all, nothing can beat a home-cooked meal, right?
11. Watch elk roam free or...
Make it a point to visit the charming town of Benezette, in the heart of Elk Country. Visit the Elk Country Visitor Center where you can watch elk roam, relax, and play. Tour elk country aboard a covered wagon. And, dine at the Old Bull Cafe, where you can watch elk roam on the front lawn.
12. ...go on a safari (yes, in PA!)
Embark on an old-fashioned safari adventure at Lake Tobias Wildlife Park. (You'll have to wait until May 1, though, for the new season to start.) Ride around the more than 150-acre wildlife park on a wagon as animals, including deer and buffalo, walk up to you. The wildlife park also features a petting zoo and a reptile and exotics exhibit.
13. Watch a movie at the drive-in.
PA promises plenty of opportunities to revel in nostalgia. And, nothing proves that more than the old-fashioned drive-ins that still welcome moviegoers in PA. Shankweiler's Drive-In may be the oldest but you'll find plenty of cozy drive-ins around the state to take in a movie under the stars.
14. Create your ultimate PA bucket list.
The very best decision you can make in PA — besides living here? Create the ultimate PA bucket list so you can continually discover how amazing of a state we really live in.
C’mon! Add to the list! What are some of the other best decisions you can make in Pennsylvania?
Click here to get started making the ultimate PA bucket list.