Kid-Friendly Road Trip Planner
Here are six boredom-busting family road trip ideas the cover everything from what to see, local eats, and where to crash!
Theme parks and time-warp charm in Pennsylvania
The Route: Begin with a blast of history in Philly, home of the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. Head west on Highway 30 through tidy rows of corn and barley. Lancaster is Amish country, where towns offer handmade crafts and hearty fare (think: fresh chicken potpie). Abe's Buggy Rides (abesbuggyrides.com) has been escorting folks through the countryside since the '60s. In Hershey (hersheypa.com), find a botanical garden, a trolley tour, a serious amusement park, and a zoo. (Don't miss the 100-foot Ferris wheel!) But the main event is following the aroma to Hershey's Chocolate World (hersheyschocolateworld.com), where you can don an apron and stuff a bar with almonds, chocolate chips, pretzel bits, sprinkles, or other add-ins. The big decision is whether to gobble it up right then or keep it as a souvenir. The Pennsylvania Turnpike then leads east to Langhorne, where Sesame Place (sesameplace.com) beckons the babes. Kids can ride in Big Bird's Balloon Race, climb Cookie Mountain, jump at Ernie's Bed Bounce, then end the day with a hug from the furry guy himself.
Sleep: The Omni Hotel at Independence Park (omnihotels.com) sits near Philly's historic sites. The Lancaster Marriott (marriott.com) is a good base for Amish country. The Hotel Hershey (thehotelhershey.com) has a way-cool pool and a free shuttle to all the fun.
Local Eats: Whoopie pies are a Pennsylvania tradition. Bird-in-Hand Bakery, east of Lancaster (bird-in-hand.com), has been making its family recipe—springy chocolate cookies stuffed with light vanilla icing—for decades.