Things To Do In And Around Lancaster, Pennsylvania

  The county of Lancaster, in Pennsylvania, is most famous for being the home of the Amish community and is one of the oldest inland ...

The county of Lancaster, in Pennsylvania, is most famous for being the home of the Amish community and is one of the oldest inland towns in the USA. (Before you knock visiting Amish country, check out this post from Kate about visiting an Amish community in Ohio. It actually sounds super fun and relaxing.) It is a fascinating place to visit if you want to experience personal growth, whether you want to stick the tourist trail or go a little bit off the beaten track. Here, we explore just a few of the things you can do in and around this charming town before heading off to eat in one of the many restaurants in Lancaster, PA.

The Ephrata Cloister

In the middle of the 18th-century, a group of nearly 300 men and women in rural Pennsylvania retreated from their material lives and became part of the Ephrata Cloister, a religious community founded by a German immigrant. These days, the property, which was once self-reliant, is open to the public who can gain an insight into the secluded lifestyle of the people who once lived there and explore the restored interiors of the dormitories and workspaces, as well as the founder's house.


Ever wondered what the home of one of the least loved American presidents was like? Well, if you head to Wheatland, you will be able to see for yourself! James Buchanan, the 15th President of the United States, lived here during his campaign and after his widely maligned four-year term. It has never been altered or remodeled in any significant way and still holds some of his possessions, such as the desk he used at the White House. If nothing else, it gives you a fantastic insight into the upper-class lifestyle of the 19th century.

The Indian Steps Museum

This small museum situated on the banks of the Susquehanna River is home to a unique collection of Native American artifacts. The area is rich in Native American history, with evidence of communities living there over 10,000 years ago! There was once indeed a set of steps carved into the cliffs and leading down to the river, but have long since been buried below the waters since the construction of the dam around 1911.(This sounds really cool - I'd definitely love to visit here.)

The Central Market

This is the oldest farmer's market in the United States and was even approved by the King of England! Fresh produce has been sold here in the Pennsylvania Dutch country since the 1730s when it was legitimized by official decree from King Geroge II of England. Now, you can buy baked goods, flowers, candy, herbs, and specialties from the Amish community as well as Greek, Italian, German, Thai, African, and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Lancaster is full of things to do, particularly if you're looking for something with history and culture behind it. Grab your favorite travel buddy and head to a town that truly is charming.

*This is a collaborative post. 

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