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Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

New York
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Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

This summer we two grandmas will take our 7 and 9 year-old granddaughters to PA Dutch country for a week. We want to stay on a working farm for a few nights (suggestions?) and visit Hershey Park or Dutch Wonderland for amusements and visit Hershey factory. Are there must-sees? Do you have a favorite farm? Are there places to stay with two bedrooms that won't cost an arm and a leg? We're taking a train from New York City and wonder where should we get off in order to rent a car?

Any and all advice is very much appreciated.


gettysburg, pa
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for Gettysburg
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1. Re: Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

Hello! Now is the time for thinking about a warm summer trip. Here are a few suggestions:

Airy Hill Farm in Manheim gets great reviews--it sounds like what you are looking for. It has a beautiful location.

For kids 7 and 9, I think that Hershey Park might be a little more interesting trip than Dutch Wonderland. Chocolate World, the factory ride, is a nice refreshing break during the heat of the day. No actual factory tours, but a fun ride and more Hershey products than imaginable.

My two boys always like a trip to Hershey Gardens as well. It's a beautiful spot for pictures, and the Children's Garden is fun.

Over in the Lancaster area, a trip on the Strasburg Railroad is fun.

I'm sure you'll get lots of other suggestions, especially help for navigating the train and the rental car. Good luck with your planning!

Destination Expert
for Hershey, Harrisburg
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2. Re: Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

Here is a listing of some things to do in the Harrisburg/Hershey area. I'm no expert on the Lancaster area, but I'm sure another poster will be able to give you ideas of things to do in that area. Enjoy your visit and let me know if you have any questions.

The Harrisburg-Hershey area has a lot to offer, it depends on your interests.

1. There is the Whitaker Center, which has the Harsco Science Center (many hands-on exhibits) and an IMAX Theater (Harrisburg). (www.whitakercenter.org/science/index.asp).

2. Also in Harrisburg, you can ride the “Pride of the Susquehanna” riverboat on City Island, play Water Golf, take a horse drawn carriage ride, or catch a Harrisburg Senators minor league baseball game during the summer (www.harrisburgpa.gov/parksRec/cityIsland/).

3. If you are looking for a break from the HersheyPark scene, there are two family mini golf centers in the area worth checking out – Adventure Sports (http://www.adventurehershey.com/) and Challenge Family Fun Center (http://www.challengefamilyfun.com/).

4. The Middletown &-Hummelstown Railroad (http://www.mhrailroad.com/) is a nice relaxing old-fashioned railroad trip. You can combine it with a visit to Indian Echo Caverns (http://www.indianechocaverns.com/).

5. Hershey attractions (http://www.hersheypa.com/) which include:

a. Hershey Park (http://www.hersheypark.com/index.php

b. Hershey Gardens (http://www.hersheygardens.org/)

c. The Hershey Story (http://www.hersheystory.org/)

d. Hershey Trolley Works (http://hersheytrolleyworks.com/)

e. Chocolate World (http://www.hersheys.com/chocolateworld/)

f. Milton Hershey School Founder’s Hall (mhs-pa.org/about/…)

6. The Antique Auto Museum near Hershey Park( http://www.aacamuseum.org/)

7. Lake Tobias Wildlife Park in Halifax offers a safari tour and petting zoo. It is about a half hour drive north of Harrisburg. ( http://www.laketobias.com/)

Central Maine
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for Maine
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3. Re: Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

Have taken young relatives to both Dutch Wonderland and Hershey Park in the past -- for 7 and 9 year olds would definitely choose Hershey Park.... rides and attractions much better suited to their ages than Dutch Wonderland.

New York
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4. Re: Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

Thanks so much to all who have written so far. Very helpful. This is truly a small, friendly world!

Bangor, Pennsylvania
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for Lancaster
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5. Re: Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

In Lancaster County kid friendly activities would include the Railroad attactions in Strasburg (Strasburg Railroad. ,Pa Train Museum, Choo Choo Barn)

Also the corn maze and related activities at Cherry Crest Farm, if you're coming in the later Summer when the maze is open (corn has to grow high enough).

Without question your grandkids are too old for Dutch Wonderland. Hersheypark would be a better fit.

Edited: 22 December 2010, 12:32
6. Re: Hershey and Lancaster Family vacation

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