Pennsylvania May 12, 2016
These 10 Quintessential Tours Will Show You Pennsylvania In Ways You’ve Never Seen It
No matter your interest, chances are there’s a guided tour dedicated to teaching you more on the topic. Music? Check. Food? Check. Sports? Check. Taxidermy rodents? I’ll have to do some more research, but probably. Here are some of the best tours to take in Pennsylvania this summer — see if any catch your eye.
1. Martin Guitar Factory, Nazareth
The coolest thing about taking the tour of Martin Guitars is that it's FREE! The thorough tour of the factory will show you how the acoustic instruments are created from start to finish. Though the company was founded in Germany, the primary factory has been in Nazareth since 1838. If you go on the factory tour, you will also get to visit the museum of guitars, which includes unique models and instruments played by famous people.
2. Yuengling Factory, Pottsville
Yuengling is famous as America's Oldest Brewery, so if you enjoy a cold beer now and then, a trip to see their factory is surely in order. The 75-minute tours are free, but be sure to wear closed-toed shoes. The tour of the factory is not only a trip through the history of American beer, but also a trip through history.
3. Hershey's Chocolate World
Of course, it would be impossible to write a list of tours to take in Pennsylvania without mentioning Hershey's Chocolate Factory, the most famous factory tour in the state. This is an experience that you certainly won't forget as you immerse all of your senses in chocolate. Make your own chocolate bar and participate in other fun activities.
4. The Flavor of Pittsburgh Food Tour, through Pittsburgh Tours & More
Pittsburgh has won numerous awards for its culinary scene in recent years, so you can bet a food tour in this city will not disappoint. The three hour tour will allow you to sample the dishes that have made Pittsburgh's restaurants famous. Pittsburgh Tours & More offers other tours, too, such as The Pittsburgh Movie Tour and Latin Food Tour.
5. Philadelphia Ghost Tours
Pennsylvania has a reputation for being one of the most haunted states in the country, so the ghost tours here are tough to beat. This one, in particular, was named a "top 15 must-see attraction" in the U.S. by Budget Travel magazine. The walking tour takes place at night; you will light your way with candles. If Philadelphia isn't conveniently located for you, there are also ghost tours in Lancaster, Strasburg, and Gettysburg.
6. The Amish Farmlands Tour, Lancaster
The Discover Lancaster Visitor Center offers these 90-minute tours of Lancaster County, the center of Amish culture. You will learn about the culture and history of the area and stop to see one-of-a-kind Amish landmarks.
7. Underground Railroad Tour, Kennett Square
There are 16 sites in and around Kennett Square where participants in the Underground Railroad housed slaves while they made their way to freedom. This tour will show you some of these sites and teach you about the rich local history of abolitionists. You can take a guided bus tour, a self-guided tour, or a private guided tour. Learn more
8. The Crayola Experience, Easton
If you have children, the Crayola Factory is a necessary visit. If you don't have children, well, you might still have fun. Learn how the famous wax crayons and other products are manufactured and get in touch with your imagination. There are over 26 interactive attractions at the Crayola Factory to enjoy.
9. South Philly Culture Tour
There are plenty of historic tours of Philadelphia (that you should definitely check out) but for a change of pace, try the South Philly Culture Tour. Two of the most notable things you'll see are the 9th street Italian Market and the Magic Gardens. The Magic Gardens (pictured above) are a one of a kind art exhibit - a house and its adjacent yard entirely covered in mosaics. The three and a half hour tour is limited to 12 guests so that the experience remains personal.
10. Capitol Guided Tours, Harrisburg
The Pennsylvania State Capitol in Harrisburg is one of the most recognizable structures in the state for its distinctive architectural style and unique green roof. Teddy Roosevelt even called it the "handsomest building I ever saw." The tour of the capitol will give you special insight into not only our state's history and the history of the site, but also how our state government operates.
Have you taken any of these tours, or would you suggest any others? Share your thoughts in the comments, and as always, thanks for reading.