Things to Do in Lancaster with Kids: Ultimate list

Things to Do in Lancaster with Kids

Looking for some fun things to do in Lancaster with kids? Look no further! This charming city in Pennsylvania offers a wide range of outdoor and indoor attractions, as well as exciting seasonal events and delicious dining options that are perfect for families. So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable adventure with your little ones!

Parks and Playgrounds for Kids

Start your outdoor adventure by visiting one of Lancaster’s many parks and playgrounds. One popular choice is Long’s Park, located in the heart of the city. This sprawling park features beautiful gardens, a picturesque lake, and a fantastic playground where kids can climb, slide, and swing to their heart’s content. Don’t forget to pack a picnic and enjoy a relaxing lunch in the shade!

Another great option is Lititz Springs Park, just a short drive from Lancaster. This historic park is known for its natural springs and boasts expansive green spaces, charming walking paths, and a lovely playground. Kids will love exploring the park’s unique features and playing on the colorful equipment.

But wait, there’s more! Lancaster also offers a hidden gem for families seeking outdoor fun. Buchanan Park is a hidden oasis nestled in the heart of the city. This park features a large play area with innovative equipment, perfect for kids of all ages. Additionally, families can enjoy a leisurely stroll through the park’s beautiful gardens and take in the vibrant colors of the seasonal flowers.

Family-Friendly Hiking Trails

If your family enjoys hiking and exploring the great outdoors, Lancaster has plenty to offer. Head over to the breathtaking Lancaster County Central Park, where you’ll find miles of scenic trails suitable for all ages and skill levels. Kids will love discovering hidden streams, observing wildlife, and taking in the picturesque views of the surrounding countryside.

For a more adventurous experience, venture out to Chickies Rock County Park. This nature reserve features rugged hiking trails that lead to stunning overlooks of the Susquehanna River. Take a moment to capture the moment with your little adventurers against the backdrop of the river and rolling hills.

But wait, there’s more! If you’re looking for a hike that combines nature and history, head to the Conestoga Trail. This trail winds through the beautiful Lancaster countryside and passes by several historic landmarks, including old stone bridges and remnants of the area’s industrial past. It’s a great opportunity to teach your kids about the rich history of the region while enjoying the great outdoors.

Animal Encounters in Lancaster

Lancaster is home to several family-friendly attractions where kids can get up close and personal with animals. One must-visit spot is the Cherry Crest Adventure Farm. This working farm offers a variety of interactive experiences, including petting zoos, wagon rides, and even a baby chick hatchery. Kids will have a blast learning about farm life and making furry friends along the way.

Another fantastic option is the Wolf Sanctuary of PA. This sanctuary provides a safe haven for wolves and offers guided tours that educate visitors about these majestic creatures. Kids will have the chance to observe wolves in their natural habitat and learn about the importance of wildlife conservation.

But wait, there’s more! For a truly unique animal encounter, visit the Eastland Alpacas farm. This family-owned farm is home to a herd of adorable alpacas. Visitors can take guided tours to learn about these fascinating animals, feed them, and even have the opportunity to hand-spin alpaca fiber. It’s an experience your kids will be talking about for years to come!

Interactive Museums and Galleries

When the weather is less than ideal, Lancaster’s indoor attractions come to the rescue. Start your indoor adventure by visiting the North Museum of Nature and Science. This interactive museum features hands-on exhibits that encourage kids to explore the wonders of nature and science. From digging for fossils to learning about the night sky, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Another must-visit destination is The Lancaster Science Factory. This hands-on science center offers interactive exhibits and workshops designed to spark curiosity and foster a love for STEM education. Let your kids unleash their inner scientists and engineers as they explore the wonders of technology and invention.

Indoor Play Centers and Arcades

For a day of pure entertainment, take your kids to one of Lancaster’s indoor play centers or arcades. Launch into a world of excitement at Sky Zone Trampoline Park, where your kids can bounce, flip, and defy gravity on wall-to-wall trampolines. With plenty of safety measures in place, this is the perfect place for your little ones to burn off energy and have a blast.

If your kids prefer arcade games, make a stop at The Works. This multi-level entertainment center is packed with arcade games, laser tag, go-karts, and more. Watch as your kids immerse themselves in a world of tokens, prizes, and endless fun.

Educational Activities in Lancaster

Education and entertainment go hand in hand at Lancaster’s educational attractions. Start your educational journey at the Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum, where your family can step back in time and experience Pennsylvania Dutch heritage. From live demonstrations to interactive exhibits, there’s something for everyone to learn and enjoy.

Another informative stop is the Lancaster Heritage Center, which offers a fascinating glimpse into the city’s rich history. Kids can participate in guided tours, hands-on activities, and even educational workshops. Let their imaginations run wild as they explore the past and connect with the people who shaped Lancaster into the vibrant city it is today.

Summer Festivities in Lancaster

Summer is the perfect time to soak up the sun and enjoy the various festivals and events happening in Lancaster. One event not to be missed is the Lancaster County Balloon Festival. Marvel at the colorful hot air balloons as they grace the sky, and don’t forget to take a tethered ride for a truly unforgettable experience.

If your family loves the water, head over to Dutch Wonderland’s Duke’s Lagoon. This water park offers a refreshing oasis filled with water slides, splash pads, and lazy rivers. Beat the heat and make a splash with your kids as you create unforgettable summer memories.

Winter Activities for Kids

When winter arrives, Lancaster transforms into a winter wonderland with a variety of fun-filled activities. Lace up your ice skates and hit the ice at the Lancaster Ice Rink. Whether your kids are seasoned skaters or trying it for the first time, gliding across the ice is a magical experience that the whole family can enjoy.

For a unique winter adventure, head over to Dutch Winter Wonderland. This holiday-themed park features twinkling lights, holiday shows, and even a visit from Santa Claus himself. Take a ride on the park’s festive train or enjoy a cup of hot cocoa as you immerse yourself in the holiday spirit.

Annual Family Events in Lancaster

Throughout the year, Lancaster hosts a variety of family-friendly events that are guaranteed to create lasting memories. One event that draws visitors from near and far is the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. Step back in time to the 16th century and experience jousting tournaments, live entertainment, and artisan crafts. Let your kids dress up and join in the medieval merriment!

Lancaster’s annual Food Truck Festival is another must-visit event for food-loving families. Sample a variety of delicious cuisines from gourmet food trucks, enjoy live music, and let your little ones burn off energy in the festival’s dedicated kid zone.

Kid-Friendly Restaurants

After a day of exploring and adventure, satisfy your kids’ appetites at one of Lancaster’s kid-friendly restaurants. Stop by Isaac’s Famous Grilled Sandwiches, a local favorite known for its creative and delicious sandwiches. With a dedicated Kids Menu featuring tasty options like grilled cheese and chicken tenders, there’s something for even the pickiest eaters.

If you’re in the mood for pizza, make a visit to the family-friendly Italian eatery, Luigi’s. Known for their mouthwatering pizza and pasta dishes, Luigi’s offers a warm and inviting atmosphere where kids can enjoy a memorable dining experience. Check more family-friendly restaurants nearby here.

Sweet Treats: Ice Cream Parlors and Candy Shops

No family adventure is complete without indulging in some sweet treats. Treat your kids to a visit to Urban Churn, an ice cream parlor known for its homemade, small-batch ice cream. From classic flavors to inventive creations, this delightful ice cream shop has something to satisfy every sweet tooth.

For a sugary adventure, make a stop at Wilbur Chocolate Candy Store. Step into a world filled with decadent chocolates, nostalgic candies, and unique confections. Your kids will love savoring the flavors of Lancaster’s sweetest treasures.

Healthy Eating Options for Families

If you’re looking for healthy and wholesome dining options in Lancaster, you’re in luck! Pay a visit to The Seed, a vegan restaurant committed to serving delicious plant-based dishes. From fresh salads to flavorful wraps, your family can enjoy a satisfying and nutritious meal.

Another healthy choice is Forklift & Palate, a farm-to-table restaurant that emphasizes fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Let your kids explore a menu filled with nutritious options that will satisfy even the pickiest eaters, all while supporting local farmers and sustainability.

Whether you’re exploring the great outdoors, immersing yourselves in educational activities, or indulging in delicious treats, Lancaster offers endless opportunities for fun and adventure with your kids. So start planning your family getaway and get ready to create memories that will last a lifetime!

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