Pennsylvania’s capital Harrisburg is located in the northeast of Pennsylvania, next to the Susquehanna River. It boasts many historic landmarks and cultural attractions. It is a great place to spend a weekend or if you want to visit York, Gettysburg, and Allentown all within easy driving distance.
The strategic location of the city and its development of the canal and railroad system made it a key player in the American Civil War. Its selection as 1812’s capital explains why there are so many museums and historic buildings in the city.
Visitors can enjoy some outdoor fun at City Island and also take in the stunning architecture at its capitol. Harrisburg’s most loved summer activity is a cruise on the river. Harrisburg is home to the Pennsylvania Farm Show, and Great American Outdoor Show. These are two of the most important events in America.
16. Pennsylvania National Fire Museum
The Pennsylvania National Fire Museum is a fascinating and fun place you can visit in Harrisburg’s Olde Uptown. It is actually housed inside a Victorian-era firehouse. The museum’s varied collection includes historic alarm systems and fire engines, as well as many other items.
It was established in 1993 to preserve the state’s history of firefighting. The beautiful brick building, which dates back to 1899, is a testament to its dedication to this purpose. The museum houses a variety of artifacts as well as photos and exhibits that show how fire fighters used to fight the flames. There is also a wall honoring the firefighters who died.
You can also see vintage horse-drawn carriages, parts of equipment and intricate communication systems from years past. Also take photos of shiny new fire engines.
15. Capital Area Greenbelt
It is a wonderful way to explore the Capital Area Greenbelt and the surrounding areas. This beautiful route leads you through many parks and nature preserves. There are also important monuments, museums and landmarks along the way.
The multi-purpose path runs twenty miles round the Capital. Some sections wind their way through the wilderness or along the Susquehanna River. Others connect to different neighborhoods and tourist destinations.
You can enjoy the beautiful fauna and flora along this trail and learn about the history of the area from the plaques. The Reservoir and Wildwood parks can be explored, as well as the National Civil War Museum. You also have the opportunity to visit the Five Senses Garden.
14. Saint Patrick Cathedral
The majestic State Capitol Building is not Harrisburg’s only impressive structure. But the Cathedral of Saint Patrick is. It is instantly recognisable from its enormous green dome and striking facade. You can also stroll all around downtown, with many of the main attractions just steps away.
The colossal cathedral, now a National Historic Landmark was constructed in 1907. It is renowned for its exceptional Baroque Revival or Renaissance Revival architecture. It is worth going inside for a look at its stunning exterior, striking dome and stained-glass windows.
It is often described as breathtaking because of its beautiful nave and transept, which are richly decorated with exquisite artworks and statues depicting religious figures.
13. Broad Street Market
Broad Street Market is the place to go if you’re looking for fresh fruits and vegetables, tasty baked goods, or just to enjoy the vibrant local atmosphere. It is located in Midtown and has rows of stalls that sell a variety of local produce.
It is one of the longest-running farmers markets still in operation in America. Established in 1863 to feed Union soldiers stationed nearby, it has been around since then. There are more than 40 vendors that sell everything, from fresh produce to meat cuts and sandwiches to soups, soft pretzels, and other food items.
There are also many street foods from around the globe to choose from, as well as coffee shops and gift stalls scattered about.
12. Riverfront Park
The peaceful, picturesque Riverfront Park is located right near downtown but feels far from the bustle and hustle of the center. It offers stunning views of the River and City Island as well as a variety of outdoor fun activities.
The park, which runs parallel to the Susquehanna River and features beautiful green spaces, is long and narrow. It was established in 1912. It was part of the national City Beautiful Movement, which sought to bring more beautiful outdoor spaces and architecture into urban areas.
There are also beautiful gardens, leafy paths and statues. Also available is public art with benches and fitness machines. Riverfront Park hosts many major festivals throughout the year.
11. FNB Field
FNB Field, the city’s most exciting sports venue is the best place for you to be if you are looking for an entertaining sporting event. The intimate, atmospheric venue is located in the middle of City Island and can be found just across the Market Street Bridge.
This small stadium is the home of the Harrisburg Senators. It sits exactly on the same site where baseball was played for over 100 years. The beautiful Minor League Ballpark was opened in 1987. It is family friendly and offers great sights, snacks stands, and entertainment between innings.
Tourists as well as locals can enjoy the Double-A Eastern League affiliate, the Washington Nationals. They include softball and volleyball fields, as well as marinas and food courts. Nature trails are also available.
10. Fort Hunter Mansion and Park
Another interesting historical sight is located just upstream from the centre, the Fort Hunter Mansion & Park. The historic house museum is surrounded by beautiful lush gardens and grounds. It shows how life was for wealthy Americans in 1725.
The estate, which is perched on a hill overlooking the river and includes around 12 buildings that visitors can explore. It has been a fortress, frontier trading station, and private residence throughout its long history.
This Victorian-era home is filled with period furniture, beautiful furnishings and interactive exhibits. Expert guides and costumed actors provide additional information about this era. Many people hold private functions and weddings at the park’s idyllic riverside location because of its stunning scenery.
9. Whitaker Center
The Whitaker Center of Science and the Arts is located in the heart of the city. It offers many hands-on experiments and activities, as well as a performance theatre and IMAX cinema where you can see live music, dance and science performances.
It was the first of its type in the United States to allow science to be used as an entry point to the arts. The complex opened for the first time to the public in 1999. It has more than 200 interactive exhibits spread across three floors. They focus on natural science, mathematics and technology. There are also exciting esports areas as well as STEM design studios.
You can also enjoy an educative and entertaining movie in the IMAX. Or, you could always catch a performance of an orchestra, ballet, or opera in this magnificent theater.
8. Appalachian Brewing Company
The Appalachian Brewing Company offers a refreshing pint to cool off after a day of sightseeing and shows. It is located near Capitol Park and the Science Center. You can take tours or enjoy tastings at the brewpub.
It was the original and only brewery in capital to open since prohibition. The company was established in 1997. Its lager room and production line, as well as the bottling floor, are located in an 1890 brick building. However, it has a restaurant and tasting area that is situated adjacent to this building.
You can also enjoy signature beers like Aero-Head and Outta Focus, as well as delicious burgers, tacos, and other quick bites at this lively, laid-back bar.
7. Wildwood Park
Wildwood Park is located just north of Uptown and boasts stunning scenery, landscapes, and natural beauty. It is a popular spot to get active and enjoy the beauty of nature.
You can ride, bike, or hike along the numerous trails that wind through its woods, wetlands and wild areas. It is a peaceful and quiet spot that allows you to birdwatch as well as see wildlife. You can spot all kinds of native species out at the lake, or hiding in the thick foliage.
The state has an excellent nature center where visitors can find out more about its fauna and flora. There are many snakes, turtles as well as herons, rabbits, and other wildlife that is often seen in the park.
6. Pride of the Susquehanna riverboat
A relaxing cruise aboard the Pride of the Susquehanna is another great way to explore the city’s waterways and landmarks. The pretty paddle-wheel riverboat offers a great view of many city landmarks, as well as fine views of the river’s banks.
The boat, which was launched only in 1988, is charming and colourful. It has diesel power to propel it up the Susquehanna. The commentary gives passengers interesting facts and information about the area’s history as well as a relaxing way to watch the world pass by while you relax and enjoy the view.
Apart from the regular cruises of 45 minutes, the Pride of the Susquehanna also offers fun events such as murder mystery dinners or music nights, and special sunset tours for tourists and locals.
5. State Museum of Pennsylvania
The State Museum of Pennsylvania is the perfect place to go if you are interested in learning more about Pennsylvania’s culture, history and natural world. It is located right beside the majestic State Capitol Building and offers a wide range of artifacts, displays, and archaeological finds for its visitors.
The museum contains more than 2 million items and specimens related to Pennsylvania’s history. You can also see a variety of dioramas, displays and objects, including vintage cars and flint archetypes.
There are many fine paintings, historic photos and other highlights. These include the brilliant planetarium and large-scale Village Square streetscape that you can enter and explore.
4. City Island
The mile-long City Island is located right at the heart of the Susquehanna River. It offers a variety of exciting attractions and activities. It is connected to the Market Street Bridge to both banks, making it one of Harrisburg’s most popular places to relax or take part in exciting outdoor entertainment and activities.
It was once home to the Iroquois, Susquehanna and Susquehanna Tribes. Later Union soldiers used it as a military base during the American Civil War. Numerous playing fields, courts, and batting cages were built since then, with Senators playing at FNB Field.
In addition to all the riverside trails, sports facilities and arcades, residents can also enjoy an observation deck, small sandy beach, and an arcade. It is possible to ride a horse or take the small steam train. You also have the option of taking a cruise on the Pride of the Susquehanna.
3. Pennsylvania State Capitol
Pennsylvania’s State Capitol is often regarded as one of the most impressive in the nation. It can be found in Harrisburg. It is sometimes called the “Palace of Art” because of its many sculptures, murals, and stained-glass windows.
The state’s capital has been in the same place since 1812. It was the home of the capitol, which dates back to 1906. Its enormous complex is dominated by a huge, majestic staircase that leads to the entrance. A tall dome, inspired from St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome, sits above it.
The interior is as impressive as the four floors. There are 475 rooms that have amazing mosaics and artworks depicting famous people, events, and industries throughout Pennsylvania’s past. Guides will guide you on tours and explain the history of the building, as well as pointing out special features in its rotunda or large government chambers.
2. National Civil War Museum
The National Civil War Museum is located in Reservoir Park. It has been called the “only institute” in America that tells the whole story of war. The museum’s galleries offer a balanced and impartial view of both Union and Confederate causes, as well as the aftermath. Some individuals are even examined in detail.
It was established only in 2001. The two-storey brick structure houses the exhibits. Some sections are focused on slavery, the opening shots at Fort Sumter and later pieces examine how topography and geography affected troop movement. The displays that explain why soldiers fought for one side or the roles of women in war are particularly captivating.
The large selection of original artifacts includes the personal belongings of many important generals, as well as old uniforms and weapons that were used by common soldiers. Pictures and films help to bring out the Civil War’s essence and provide a detailed explanation of this important conflict.
1. Hershey Park
Harrisburg is known for its rich history and many cultural attractions. However, Hershey Park is a popular tourist attraction when visiting the capital. The fun, family-friendly attraction is one of Pennsylvania’s most loved attractions. It offers a variety of thrilling rides and rollercoasters that everyone can enjoy.
It is located just 20 minutes from downtown and was established by Milton S. Hershey as a recreation park for his employees. There are now over 70 attractions, including The Boardwalk, Kissing Tower Hill, Pioneer Frontier and Kissing Tower Hill.
There is also a fantastic water park and Zoo to visit with live music, firework displays and parades. You can find Hershey’s Chocolate World just outside. Here you will find delicious chocolates and candy, as well as a variety of shops and restaurants scattered throughout the resort.
Harrisburg Map of Things to Do
This city is known both for its beauty and rich history, having played a major role in the Westward expansion, the Civil War, and the Industrial Revolution. Now one of the largest metropolitan areas in the state, Harrisburg attracts many visitors throughout the year.07-Dec-2020
The Subway Cafe pizza is a classic in Harrisburg. The restaurant on Herr Street has been making pizzas for nearly 70 years. The Old World pizzas pay tribute to the original owners’ Italian heritage. A cracker thin crust is topped with provolone cheese and sauce.18-Jan-2017
– Lancaster Central Market. 1,006. Flea & Street Markets.
– Gettysburg National Military Park. 8,354. Battlefields • Parks.
– Presque Isle State Park. 3,175. Parks.
– Mount Washington. 3,020. Neighborhoods • Mountains.
– SteelStacks. 644. Art Galleries.
– Pine Creek Gorge. 144. Canyons.
– Core Creek Park. 119. Parks.
– Allentown Fish Hatchery. 347. Parks.
The capital of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg is a historic community adorned with 18th- and 19th-century buildings, picturesque views of the Susquehanna River, and a vacation’s worth of things to do.13-Sept-2021
1. Independence National Park and the Liberty Bell. One of America’s most historic areas and home to the Liberty Bell, Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia is a national treasure.22-Mar-2022
Some of the main features for tourists in Harrisburg are the activities that take place on and around the Susquehanna River, ranging from biking along the Capital Area Greenbelt and kayaking, to a riverboat trip or an afternoon of recreational activities at the City Island Complex.13-Sept-2021