Labor Day will be here before you know it. That means it’s time to reevaluate your summer goals. If you still haven’t done everything you wanted to this year, head to the Pocono Mountains and start crossing items off your list before the season is over.
The Pocono Mountains is a dream destination that offers an awe-inspiring amount of summertime activities to make any traveler extend their holiday break. From family vacations, romantic getaways, girlfriend’s trips, pet-friendly spots and more, the Poconos can please any traveler no matter their age or summer itinerary.
The area is accessible within just a two-hour drive to millions of metropolitan area residents who take advantage of the quick trip for good reason. Here are some of our top outings.
If you’ve made it this far through summer without sitting down and catching a full sunset, it’s time to grab your beverage of choice and a lawn chair and truly enjoy the magnificent views of a Pocono Mountains sunset. Take in the view at one of the ten state and national parks in the mountains; many of them are open from dusk to dawn.
Take a hike and bask in the beauty of sundown at Big Pocono State Park atop Camelback Mountain at just about 2,100 feet or kick back and relax while taking in Lake Wallenpaupack’s epic miles-long sunsets. With the abundance of lakes and peaks throughout the region, the sunsets are truly a sight to see that will stay with you until next summer.
The Pocono area includes four regions,150 lakes and over 2,500 miles of land to explore. That being said, the amount of exciting outdoor summertime activities is practically endless. Pick your perfect adventure and make a day out of it, whether you’re into land recreation like golfing, camping under the stars and zip lining through the trees, or water activities like water skiing, boat tours and whitewater rafting. There are also water park resorts and adventure courses in the area for the daredevils in your group.
Spa & Shopping
After all this talk about activities in the Poconos, a little time for rest and relaxation sounds divine. Whether you’re on a girlfriend’s getaway or you simply want some time to yourself, what better way to relax than by hitting up a spa in the area for an indulgent Thai massage or a unique water acupressure experience?
After you’ve indulged in a little me time at the spa, take advantage of all the shopping available in the area. You can hunt for a bargain at the local flea markets and antique shops or find the perfect end of summer outfit for everyone in the family at the cute boutiques in town. There’s no sales tax on clothing in Pennsylvania, so if you live out of state, take advantage of this welcomed perk.
You won’t regret sneaking away for an hour or two to enjoy a little self-care or retail therapy before the summer is over and the to-do lists get longer.
Dining, Beer & Wine
Before summer is through, plan a fun day for the adults at one of the local wineries or micro-breweries in the Poconos. Many of the local wineries offer cellar tours and have tasting rooms or outdoor decks where you can sample the latest varietals, while taking in views of the mountains. Blue Ridge Estate Winery & Vineyards offers live music, rotating weekend events and special pairing dinners. If you’re more of a beer person, check out the Pocono Brewery Company for a good old craft beer served alongside wood-fired pizza.
The Poconos evolving food scene has exploded in the last few years with delicious farm to table meal options, fine four star dining, vegan and organic sidewalk cafes and down-home family cooking. The hardest part will be choosing the type of cuisine you want to try!
The mystical waterfalls and abundant hiking trails of the Pocono Mountains draw thousands of visitors each year. The region boasts 126 hiking trails with many of them featuring cascading waterfalls among the gorgeous scenery.
Make a day out of it and explore Bushkill Falls, also known as “The Niagara of Pennsylvania,” a popular destination for visitors because of its two miles of bridges and trails that connect eight waterfalls in the Pocono Mountains.
The area features other exciting attractions like mining for gemstones, Native American and Wildlife exhibits, paddleboat rides and an ice cream shop.
History & Culture
The Pocono Mountains is rich in history and filled with cultural events that are sure to please any history buff or cultural junkie. There are several museums and landmarks open to the public, as well as local theaters and playhouses to enjoy.
Take a bike ride and explore along the towpath of the Delaware and Hudson Canal, which was originally a path for mules to pull the canal boats. You can also take a tour of the beautiful grounds and interior of the Grey Towers National Historic Landmark and learn about the history of the Pinchot family and the role Grey Towers played in their conservation efforts. The Ritz Company Playhouse was built in 1933 and still shows live theater, Broadway musicals and comedies.
For a full list of upcoming events and festivals in the Pocono Mountains, click here.
What is your favorite memory from summer in the Pocono Mountains? Tell us in the comments.