The central Pennsylvania destination of Lancaster is more than just Amish country. Discover everything there is to do in this relaxing, rural getaway.
Grab breakfast in downtown Lancaster at The Baker’s Table, where the owners mix Parisian influence with local flavors. The weekend breakfast buffet features made-to-order omelets, hot waffles, hash browns and more. Pick up a few sweets from the display case, too. You’ll have a difficult time choosing from the array of eclairs, croissants, cookies and whoopie pies. The Baker’s Table is located within the Cork Factory Hotel, a Historic Hotel of America. Even with a big breakfast, you’ll be leaving spending less than $20.
Make a stop at the Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society for a tour of the museum featuring Amish and Mennonite cultural items, such as needlework and rare manuscripts. Come at the right time of year, and you can also purchase Pennsylvania German folk art, for a unique souvenir. Admission to the museum is $5.
Enjoy a family-style lunch at Plain & Fancy Farm Restaurant, where the award-winning eatery, featured on the Travel Channel’s Man v. Food Nation, has served up country cooking for nearly 60 years. The restaurant is set on 10 acres and frequently hosts events and other attractions. Lunch is less than $20 and you’re sure to leave stuffed.
Explore a different side of Lancaster’s history at the National Iron & Steel Heritage Museum. The museum primarily focuses on the Lukens and Huston families and their steel empire. Exhibits display the steel-making process, the many recognizable landmarks created with Lukens steel (like the Space Needle), the three mansions owned by the families and a steelworker’s memorial. Admission is $15.
Continue the manufacturing theme with a visit to America’s most complete charcoal-fueled iron-making complex, the Cornwall Iron Furnace, in use 1742–1883. Admission is $8.
Before you leave, grab dinner at one of Lancaster’s microbreweries or two (did you know Lancaster was dubbed the Little Munich of America for its brewing history?). There’s the Lancaster Brewing Company, JoBoy’s Brew Pub and Bube’s Brewery. The latter is located in a brewery complex from the 1800s, and is one of the few early American breweries still left intact. It also hosts ghost tours!
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