One of the most beautiful, yet perhaps forgotten, areas of the Northeast has to be the Amish Country of rural Pennsylvania. While you might think of farms and horses and buggies when you think of the Amish, it turns out this area actually has some beautiful countryside and a lot of very interesting sights to see and activities to take part in.
The heart of Amish Country is surrounding a town called Lancaster. Easily accessible by car from local major cities, only an hour and a half from Philadelphia and the same distance from Baltimore, it is a great road trip to spend a few hours.
See and Do
If you are interested in taking in a bit of nature and learning some history, then the Lancaster area is a perfect place to spend an afternoon exploring. Here is just a sampling of some of the things to see and do in and around Lancaster.
You can’t visit Amish Country without trying some of the traditional foods in the Lancaster area. One of the most famous has to be Yoder’s which serves heaping quantities of very traditional German Amish style food.
Open every Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday from 6 am until 3 pm, Lancaster Central Market is one of the oldest Farmers Markets in the country. Inside you will find a variety of things from fresh flowers, produce, and coffee to locally sourced meats, cheeses, bread, jams, and much, much more. It’s a family-friendly market with a great vibe. It’s the perfect spot to grab a bite to eat for breakfast or lunch. The only downside is there isn’t much seating.
If you love entertainment, theater, Victorian Architecture, or all of the above, take a trip to the historic Fulton. It’s the oldest running theater in all of the United States. Visitors say the building itself is beautiful, the shows are fantastic and there isn’t a single bad seat in the house.
This is a great spot to bring the kids, as there are a bunch of hands-on activities for them to explore and learn from. Plus, it gives a great bit of insight into the lifestyle and history of Mennonites.
If you really want to see and experience what life is like as an Amish person, a trip to the Plain and Fancy Farm has to be in order. Here you’ll be able to take tours of the farms and really learn about the work that goes into the land. As an added fun fact, this is where the movie Witness with Kelly McGillis and Harrison Ford was filmed.