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Beautiful Places to Visit in Pennsylvania

Updated on July 20, 2012


Beautiful Places to Visit in Pennsylvania!

Pennsylvania is a state that experiences all four true seasons; there are a plethora of cities and counties to visit depending on your travel needs too. Pennsylvania offers countless rivers- for fishing, swimming, boating, and tubing; many county, state parks and national forests for your picnicking, bird-watching, hiking, bicycle riding, snow-mobiling, camping, cross-country skiing, ATV riding, picture taking, sled riding, or hunting needs; a beach (Lake Erie) for sun-bathing, relaxation, and sand-castle building; a multitude of scenic highways with covered bridges for a relaxing drive, and preserved natural and historical landmarks you can’t just read about in your textbook- you have to experience it all for yourself.

The question- “where are some beautiful places to visit in Pennsylvania?” is so broad that I figured I needed to break the topic into three regions to fully answer the question- Western Pennsylvania, Central Pennsylvania, and Eastern Pennsylvania . I will tell you about the major common tourist places on the map, and the hidden treasures only a true travel-loving Pennsylvanian would know about.

Whether you want a day full of adventure-packed exploration and night-life full of casinos, stadiums, bars, and restaurants, or a calmer, relaxing visit where you feel like you truly travel back in time, Pennsylvania has everything you ever dreamed of and more! Pennsylvania is eclectic because it has a culture- rich history and preservation, but also revitalizations and amazingly beautiful landscapes (both land and manmade). Pack your bags, grab your loved ones, and jump in the car for a guaranteed beautiful visit during any season in Pennsylvania.

Beautiful Pictures of Pennsylvania

Sunset at Moraine State Park
Sunset at Moraine State Park | Source
Moraine State Park
Moraine State Park | Source
Boating can be so relaxing!
Boating can be so relaxing! | Source
Tionesta is picturesque!
Tionesta is picturesque! | Source

Western Pennsylvania : Erie, Conneaut Lake, Warren, Elk, Butler, Pittsburgh, and Fayette

Erie- My family always took vacations to Erie yearly. This is a great beautiful place to visit especially for families. There are plenty of beaches to choose from and there’s a little bicycle shop where you can rent bicycles to ride on the paths parallel to the beaches and water. This lake is huge and is practically like an ocean! Presque Isle State Park has amazing scenic views. You can go on a boat ride to experience the beauty from the water as well.

Conneaut Lake- I have fond memories of trips with my grandmother, mother, father, and brother to Conneaut Lake Park. This amusement park is not well known since it does not have the tallest, fastest rides in the world, but it does have a nostalgic wooden rollercoaster- The Blue Streak- that was built in 1937! This beautiful park is great for family especially since you can ride all you want; they have a kiddieland; the wait is minimal or non-existent, and the Potato Patch fries are freshly cut and hot! There is a beach and boat tours around the Lake available too. There is a historic hotel right on the Lake too. Conneaut Lake is a hidden treasure and often has local events but is minimally advertised. You won’t hear about this place from your travel agent, but it is a beautiful drive to get to, and the walk around the park will take you back in time! This is also one of the few parks that people who did not want to ride any rides did not have to pay an exorbitant amount just to walk around with their families.

Warren- The quaint towns of Tidioute and Tionesta (Forest County) are beautiful places to visit any time, but especially in the fall. The Allegheny National Forest is so picturesque especially with the leaves changing colors! The beautiful trails are plentiful in the forests too! The Kinzu Dam and Allegheny Reservoir are great locations to experience the beautiful fall foliage!

Elk- Elk County says it all- Elk! If you want to visit a beautiful sylvan environment where you are one with nature including all of the animals: porcupines, skunks, all kind of birds, deer, fish, and elk, then this is the place to visit! There are great places to camp, fish, hunt, and beautiful places to take pictures.

Butler- I was born in Butler County and lived there for twenty-seven years. During all seasons, there was always something to do at Moraine State Park off of 422. I picked blackberries with my mother to make pies, went sled riding with my family, went for picnics and swimming in their beach, and went for hikes, as well as boat and bicycles rides.

Also off of 422, is McConnell’s Mills. There are walking trails with picturesque waterfalls, and a mixture of calm and rapid water for kayaking (water sports are not recommended since the water can be unpredictable and rip currents can be deadly). There is a wonderful picture opportunity by the old mill and covered bridge. This place is great for rock climbing!

A great spot that you won’t find on a map is called Kennedy’s Mills. Kennedy’s Mills is north of McConnell’s Mills. This location is great because most of the time one can take a walk without seeing a lot of others; although, everyone I have ever met there has been extremely gregarious. There is a huge rock that a lot of people sunbath on and jump off of into the deep water below to cool off in the summer months! During the winter months, this place is beautiful with the running water and melting icicles cascading off of the hills and rocks.

There is a great scenic overlook in East Brady too!

Pittsburgh- If you have ever experienced driving through the Fort Pitt tunnels at night into downtown Pittsburgh, then you would know why Pittsburgh made my list of beautiful places to visit. The town in beautiful- the nightlife is great- and the Pirates, Steelers, and Penguins fans are welcoming! You can take a ride on the Duquesne Incline and see the skylines for yourself for an inexpensive fare. On the Fourth of July, Point State Park (where the three rivers- Ohio, Monongahela, and Allegheny Rivers meet) is where you need to be to see breathtaking fireworks (one of the top ten in the nation!) displayed over the water and bridges. Pittsburgh has numerous districts to visit, but no visit is complete without taking a stroll on the Strip!

Fayette- Fallingwater is the creative masterpiece designed over a waterfall by Frank Lloyd Wright. This famous house is a breathtaking National Historic Landmark. I absolutely love the part of glass-paneled flooring cut-out that lets you see the water flowing beneath you in the house. This is an absolute gem that you must see first-hand. If you visit Fayette County during the summer, make sure you check out the Fayette County Fair!

Getting buried in the sand on the beach in Erie!
Getting buried in the sand on the beach in Erie! | Source
A beautiful sunset in PA!
A beautiful sunset in PA! | Source
A picturesque fall foliage photo!
A picturesque fall foliage photo! | Source

Central Pennsylvania- State College, Tioga, Gettysburg, and Harrisburg

State College- State College is right in the middle of the state. It is surrounded by plenty of beautiful hiking and picnicking spots. Penn State campus itself is beautiful, but so are the surrounding areas. There are tons of recreation areas, state parks, and forests for your sight-seeing needs. If you want to bring your family to a quiet, serene fishing environment, you will have to check out Fisherman’s Paradise!

Tioga-Pine Creek Gorge- AKA- “Pennsylvania’s Grand Canyon” is located in Tioga County. This beautiful area was made my nature and is extremely worth the visit! There are numerous walking paths, which will take you by remarkable waterfalls, and there is also a wonderful overlook, which is a relatively small (.6 mile) loop.

Gettysburg- Gettysburg is well known for the Battle of Gettysburg and the Gettysburg Address, the rich history, and also the beautiful scenery. You can walk, drive, horseback ride, or cycle through the miles and miles of trails at your own pace, or you can hire a guide to travel with you and show your all of the distinct historic points. Gettysburg is a beautiful, sacred place with so much history.

Harrisburg- The state capitol is a beautiful, historic place to be, and Harrisburg might just be the sweetest place on Earth, especially since it is in close proximity to Hershey Park~you can tour the factory and taste the final product- the freshest way possible. Hershey Park itself is beautiful, and there are activities for all ages!

Taking a relaxing walk through the woods!
Taking a relaxing walk through the woods! | Source
Getting the sights, sounds, and smells at the local fair in PA!
Getting the sights, sounds, and smells at the local fair in PA! | Source
Getting up close and personal with the friendly animals in PA!
Getting up close and personal with the friendly animals in PA! | Source

Eastern Pennsylvania- Poconos Mountains, Lancaster, and Philadelphia

Poconos Mountains- "Pocono" means the "stream between two mountains,” and this region encompasses 2,400 square miles of mountains, lakes, rivers, waterfalls and woodlands that are just waiting for you to discover by foot, car, bicycle, boat, snowmobile, canoe, horseback, or ski. The Poconos are a beautiful travel destination any time of the year! While the Poconos are known for skiing in the winter, they also have relaxing, beautiful beaches for the summer adventures as well!

Lancaster- If you value the finer, simpler way of life, then you need to visit the Amish Country in Lancaster County, PA! I suggest you check out the covered bridges in this area- there are at least twenty-five! They are beautiful and rare in this day and age.

Philadelphia– AKA- "Philly" or "The City of Brotherly Love." This is the largest city in the Commonwealth of PA. This city is full of beautiful, historic heritage. And no travel to Philadelphia is complete without ingesting the infamous "Philly Cheesesteak!"

A beautiful drive during winter months in PA!
A beautiful drive during winter months in PA! | Source
A clear road means a perfect time to go on a winter adventure!
A clear road means a perfect time to go on a winter adventure! | Source
Beautiful Winter time!
Beautiful Winter time! | Source

If you truly want experience the nature and beauty that Pennsylvania has to offer, I suggest you check out the abundant trails that you can walk, run, cross-country ski, and cycle on. For an extreme route, I suggest you check out the 150-mile Great Allegheny Passage, which connects to the C&O Canal towpath which ultimately links Pittsburgh to Washington DC; this route will give you a breathtaking experience with the sights, smells, and sounds of nature you absorb at your own pace!

Whether you want to sit back in your car and enjoy the scenery, or hit the trails and experience the remarkable views firsthand, Pennsylvania has options in Western, Central, and Eastern Pennsylvania that will fit your traveling needs and your budget!

© FreezeFrame34

How Much Do You Know About Pennsylvania?

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    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      3 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks for reading and sharing, favored! PA is one of my favorite places too! Lancaster is a great getaway spot not only because it's beautiful, but also because of the peacefulness in the area!

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 

      3 years ago from USA

      PA is one of our favorite places to visit, especially the eastern cities. We would take weekend trips to Lancaster just to get away for a few days.

    • profile image

      joshua justiniano 

      5 years ago

      Does anyone know of any places in PA that have pink leaved trees?? I want to take my girlfriend somewhere nice that's kind of secluded if you know what i mean. Please help

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks for the positive feedback, Vinaya. I'm glad you enjoyed your virtual trip! Pennsylvania is a beautiful state full of interesting places!

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 

      5 years ago from Nepal

      This is very interesting travel article. I enjoyed this virtual tour to Pennsylvania.

      I have never created quiz on my hub. I will love to try this.

      PS: Thanks for your comment on my Meditation hub. I'm glad that you want to backlink my article.

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks for reading and commenting, Dolores!

      I'm glad you were able to take the virtual trip!

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 

      5 years ago from East Coast, United States

      As we are just south of PA, I've been to several of the places that you mentioned and had a great time. I love your pictures, they remind me of old postcards.

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks for reading and commenting, cygnetbrown.

      No matter where I live, PA will always be "home."

      Glad you were able to reminisce!

    • cygnetbrown profile image

      Cygnet Brown 

      5 years ago from Springfield, Missouri

      I grew up in Pennsylvania near Erie. You brought back some wonderful memories. (and yes, I aced your quiz. lol.)

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment, frogyfish!

    • frogyfish profile image


      5 years ago from Central United States of America

      You have great information and beautiful serene pictures of Pennsylvania. I have ancestery there I have never met in Lancaster County. And I took your test and did only 50% - twice. Fun!

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks, Peggy W! I will have to write a hub of my hometown soon too! It was ranked in the top ten by the Smithsonian Magazine's list of best small towns in America!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Oh this just proves to me that I need to spend time in the beautiful State of Pennsylvania. Thanks for all of your photos and information. Voted up, useful and interesting.

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks Purple Perl! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    • Purple Perl profile image

      Purple Perl 

      6 years ago from Bangalore,India

      Congrats on your win! Glad to know about all places of interest thro' your hub.Makes a great travel guide.

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks Ruby H Rose! I'm glad you are enjoying it! Some of the best vacations are ones in which you don't have to leave your home to experience :)

    • Ruby H Rose profile image

      Maree Michael Martin 

      6 years ago from Northwest Washington on an Island

      Excellent! What a beautiful place! I am getting to travel in cyber space. Awesome! Congratulations on winning the contest. I look forward to many more of your exciting hubs. Thanks!

    • FreezeFrame34 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Charleston SC

      Thanks, itakins, I enjoyed writing it; it brought back memories!

    • itakins profile image


      6 years ago from Irl

      Wonderful hub - I really want to visit after reading this.and the pics are beautiful too.


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