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15 Family-Friendly Activities in Central PA

Updated: Dec 13, 2023

Welcome to the vibrant world of Central PA, where family fun knows no bounds! Whether you're a local looking for new adventures or planning a visit to this delightful region, we've got you covered. From thrilling outdoor escapades to captivating cultural experiences, Central PA offers a treasure trove of family-friendly activities that will leave everyone smiling. Get ready for a wild ride filled with laughter, exploration, and unforgettable memories!

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Get Your Adrenaline Pumping Unleash your inner thrill-seeker with these heart-pounding family-friendly activities sure to get your blood pumping!

  1. Refreshing Mountain: With a variety of ropes courses and ziplines designed for different skill levels, participants can soar through the treetops, taking in breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. Whether it's team building or simply seeking an adrenaline rush, Refreshing Mountain's ziplines provide an unforgettable outdoor experience for groups of all sizes. Prices vary by package.

  2. Amusement Park Delights: Make a beeline for Hersheypark in Hershey, PA, where roller coasters, water slides, and endless fun await. The park is open seasonally from April to December, and admission prices start at $47.95 for children and $69.95 for adults.

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Dive into Nature's Wonders Central PA boasts an abundance of natural beauty and outdoor adventures that will captivate the whole family. Get ready to explore the great outdoors!

  1. Scenic Hiking Trails: Lace up your hiking boots and venture into the picturesque landscapes of Central PA. Explore the lush trails of Gifford Pinchot State Park, open year-round from sunrise to sunset. Admission is free, but some activities, such as swimming, may have additional fees.

  2. Wildlife Encounters: Embark on a wildlife safari at Lake Tobias Wildlife Park in Halifax, PA. Take a safari tour to see exotic animals up close or enjoy a petting zoo experience. The park operates seasonally from May to October, and admission prices start at $8.50 for children and $9.50 for adults.

  3. Nature's Playground: Discover the wonders of Wildwood Park in Harrisburg, PA. Explore its scenic trails, wildlife observatory, and educational programs. The park is open throughout the year from dawn to dusk, and admission is free.

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Immerse Yourself in Culture Central PA is a haven for art, history, and cultural enthusiasts. Immerse yourself in the region's rich heritage with these captivating activities.

  1. Interactive Museums: Step into the world of interactive exhibits at the Whitaker Center in Harrisburg, PA. Discover science, technology, and art through hands-on experiences. The center is open throughout the week, with varying hours. Admission prices range from $11 to $17.

  2. Artistic Delights: Unleash your creativity or marvel at the artistic masterpieces at the Susquehanna Art Museum in Harrisburg, PA. Explore their rotating exhibitions, attend art workshops, and enjoy the vibrant local art scene. The museum is open from Wednesday to Sunday, with admission prices starting at $8.

  3. Historical Excursion: Step back in time at the National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg, PA. Explore exhibits that highlight the history and impact of the Civil War. The museum is open from Wednesday to Sunday, with admission prices starting at $7.50 for children and $13 for adults.

  4. The Pride of the Susquehanna: Set sail on the scenic waters of the Susquehanna River and enjoy stunning views of Harrisburg's skyline and the picturesque landscapes along the riverbanks. The riverboat offers a variety of themed cruises, including sightseeing tours, sunset cruises, and even special events like pirate-themed adventures for kids. Adults 13+ are $13. Children 12 and under are $8.

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Fun and Games for All Indulge in lighthearted fun and quality time together with these activities that will bring out the kid in everyone.

  1. Mini Golf Madness: Putt your way through whimsical mini-golf courses at Adventure Sports in Hershey, PA. Enjoy 18 holes of family-friendly competition and entertainment. The facility is open daily, and prices range from $6.50 to $9.50 per person.

  2. Family Game Nights: Create your own family game night at The Game Table Cafe in Mechanicsburg, PA. Choose from a vast library of board games while enjoying delicious food and drinks. The cafe is open throughout the week, with varying hours. The game library fee is $5 per person.

  3. Bowling Bonanza: Enjoy a classic family-friendly activity at Trindle Bowl in Mechanicsburg, PA. Put on your bowling shoes and strike up some friendly competition. The bowling alley is open daily, with varying hours. Prices range from $3.50 to $4.50 per game, plus shoe rental.

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Festivals and Fairs Galore Central PA is known for its lively festivals and fairs that celebrate the region's rich heritage and vibrant community spirit.

  1. The Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire: Transport your family back in time to the enchanting era of knights, maidens, and royal festivities. The faire takes place on select weekends from August to October in Manheim, PA. Ticket prices start at $31.95 for adults and $11.95 for children.

  2. Family Fun Fest: Join the fun at Kipona, a Labor Day weekend celebration along the Susquehanna River in Harrisburg, PA. Enjoy live music, food vendors, arts and crafts, and a spectacular fireworks display. Admission is free.

  3. Sweet Treats Festival: Indulge your taste buds at the Annual Hershey Chocolate Festival in Hershey, PA. Sample a wide array of delectable chocolate creations and participate in interactive chocolate-themed activities. The festival takes place on select dates, and ticket prices vary.

  4. Agricultural Adventures: Experience the thrill of the York Fair, America's oldest fair, in York, PA. Enjoy thrilling rides, live entertainment, agricultural exhibits, and mouthwatering fair food. The fair is held annually in September, and admission prices range from $8 to $12.

With these 15 family-friendly activities in Central PA, the possibilities for adventure and laughter are endless. From thrilling outdoor escapades to cultural experiences that ignite the imagination, Central PA has something for everyone. So, gather your loved ones, pack your sense of adventure, and embark on an unforgettable journey through this captivating region. Let the joyous moments and cherished memories begin!


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