Lancaster PA Attractions

Lancaster County, PA is just minutes from the border of Berks County. If you’re visiting us in the Greater Reading area, you’ll find many interesting attractions in and around Lancaster, as well as cultural events, cool festivals, fun places to eat, and many more things to see and do for the entire family.

Shady Maple Smorgasbord & Shady Maple Farm Market

lancaster-pa-attractions-294x250A “must stop” is the Shady Maple Smorgasbord in East Earl, PA, a unique dining experience built around great family traditions. Indulge yourself in the world’s largest selection of popular Pennsylvania Dutch foods at the area’s largest smorgasbord. It features over 200 feet of PA Dutch specialties (and other delicious selections), with over 100 daily items to choose from, and is on par with the buffets you’ll find at most casinos.

In a new location since 2000, the two-story building houses the Smorgasbord on the top level (which seats well over a thousand people) and the 40,000 sq. ft. gift shop and Fast Food Dutchette on the lower level. Shady Maple Smorgasbord serves over 1 million foodies each year. Tickle your taste buds with desserts like Shoo-Fly Pie and PA Dutch birch beers. Then burn off some of the calories by wandering around the gift shop for Amish souvenirs, furniture, sports memorabilia, garden items, toys, and more.

Move on to the Shady Maple Farm Market to check out the wide variety of farm-fresh produce, fresh seafood, quality meats, over 100 varieties of smoked meats from their own smokehouses, and delicious “made from scratch” baked goods and desserts. Shady Maple is open every day but Sunday.

Mast Farms

Another great spot to find excellent produce is Mast Farms in Morgantown. They are third-generation potato farmers and grow many other things. But one of their most fun offerings is the Mast Farms Corn Maze which takes place in the fall (late September through early November). There are three fun mazes in 12 acres of corn (one of the largest in Eastern PA). Aside from the maze, other activities include the zip lines, hay jump, hay tunnels, hay rides, tube slide, farm animal exhibits, pumpkin painting, an obstacle course, and good, tasty food. The kids will have a blast!

Ephrata Cloister

Immerse yourself in an educational, historical and cultural experience at Ephrata Cloister in Ephrata, PA, one of America’s earliest religious communities. Conrad Beissel, the charismatic German-born founder of Ephrata, was born in 1691 and eventually immigrated to Pennsylvania in 1720, where William Penn’s policies offered freedom of conscience.

The mostly celibate community he founded became known for its self-composed a cappella music, Germanic calligraphy called Frakturschriften, and a complete publishing center which included a paper mill, printing office, and book bindery. There are nine surviving original buildings that have been restored. Enjoy a tour of this National Historic Landmark to learn more about the community and the people who built it. From April through December, the site is open seven days a week, and is closed Mondays and/or Tuesdays at other times of the year.

Eat, shop, find your way out of a corn maze, be entertained by Bible stories, and get a taste of history and culture in and around Lancaster, PA. There are many more things to do in the area. For more ideas, browse the Greater Reading Convention and Visitors Bureau’s website or visit us inside the GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in historic downtown Reading.