When you’re touring through that stretch of Pennsylvania that is quintessentially Americana, you have to know the top destinations and things to do in the area. With the right direction, you can easily pack tons of fun into one day. With food, entertainment, and high quality activities available, you can’t go wrong when you’re out and about in Hamburg, PA.
Even though there’s fun in every direction, going in with an idea and roadmap of what you can do makes all of the difference. That’s why we’ve broken down the top 8 things to do while in Hamburg.
When taking a tour of this part of PA, it’s impossible to pass up a chance to learn about one of the mainstays of early local industry. The Reading Railroad Heritage Museum is located right in the heart of Hamburg, PA. Owned and operated by the Reading Company Technical & Historical Society, this museum is home to all sorts of awesome activities for history buffs and railroad enthusiasts.
About 20 minutes north of Hamburg, you can continue your railroad adventure at the WK&S Railroad. When you ride in one of these train cars, you’ll get picturesque views of rolling hills, forests, and lovely looks at the towns of Trexler and Wanamakers. For over 50 years, the railroad has been serving the community and delighting passengers. In addition to the regular rides available, the railroad also hosts a variety of special events coming up in August.
The Tropical Wine & Cheese Train on August 16th will feature a selection from Long Trout Winery and cheeses from the BAD Farm. The BB&C Train features some great offerings. Barbecue, beer, and cigars all in one place at WK&S! A picnic meal, complementary beer sampling, and then the beer and cigar of your choice while you enjoy a twilight train ride.
You probably have a thing for classic theaters (who doesn’t), so the Hamburg Strand Theatre right on 4th St should be a destination for the whole family. Comfortable seating and a fully stocked snackbar make this classic theatre feel like a high end experience. On top of how awesome the architecture and aesthetic are, it’s also incredibly affordable. For less than $10 a ticket, you can have a comfortable family experience without breaking the bank. Taking a load off in an air conditioned theater is also a great way to cap off a summer day of fun in the sun.
If you’re looking for a great way to get out and enjoy the fresh air, the Schuylkill River Trail cuts right through Hamburg. With numerous places to pull off and take a break or have a nice picnic, this crushed stone path extends from Pottstown to Reading, then all of the way up through Hamburg towards Pottsville. With beautiful views from the trail and a good amount of shade from surrounding trees, this stretch of path is a great way to spend the day and get active!
The Schuylkill River Trail actually crosses the Appalachian Trail just outside of Port Clinton to the north of Hamburg. This trail—which extends from Georgia all the way up to Maine—is very popular destination for casual hikers and seasoned veterans alike. When hiking along this stretch, you may even run into those dedicated outdoorspeople who are attempting to walk the full length of the trail! Just outside of Hamburg along the hike is one of the best views in Pennsylvania’s portion of the Appalachian Trail. Tired hikers from all over the world get to this point and find themselves rejuvenated to complete the second half of their hike.
If you’re in a hiking mood, why not head out to the Hawk Mountain Sanctuary just outside of town. In addition to miles and miles of beautiful trails and breathtaking views, you’re in for a treat if you stop in between August and December. The Hawk Migration happens at this time of the year, and birdwatchers from all over come out to see these majestic birds of prey swooping all over the mountains and trails.
To scratch that local art itch and see a lot of the local flavor, the Gallery of Hamburg should have a place on any itinerary. Casually laid out to avoid the classic stuffy gallery feel, this unique local artist spot is welcoming for everyone. Whether you’re a serious art critic or just casually training your artistic eye, the Gallery of Hamburg is a seriously cool location for all levels.
This recent addition to the local makeup has seen a major swell of support from the community. Opened just over a year ago, the 1787 Brewery has proven to be a great location for both locals and visitors to gather together and enjoy something we can all get behind: delicious food. With locally sourced ingredients and a great customer service attitude, you’ll love every second you’re there.
Then there’s the beer. Featuring in-house crafted brews named after some local features and classically Hamburg experiences (the Boil Water Advisory is one fine example), few things are as integrated into the local culture like this new brewery.
This cozy down home dining situation is located in Lenhartsville, just a few minutes down the road from Hamburg. With a PA Dutch focus for the menu, you’re sure to get a filling and wholesome experience no matter what you pick. When the owner and chef Steve Stetzler isn’t loading up plates with delicious food, he and his staff engage in charitable activities in the area. This family-friendly atmosphere and hearty selection of cuisine is the perfect place to take the family when you’re out exploring the heart of PA Dutch country!
If you find yourself in town Labor Day weekend, you can’t miss the 16th Annual Taste of Hamburger Festival on August 31st. With dozens of burger chefs lining the streets and lots of activities like the Burger Run, Burger Eating competition, Cow Decorating, and even a Mooing Contest there’s something for everyone. If you don’t have any plans for that weekend, now you do!
And Everything In Between
These are just a few of the great opportunities for fun when you stop into Hamburg, PA. When you have great food, awesome activities, and a terrific community, you’re always going to have a great time. When you’re there, keep an eye out for new businesses and awesome chances to experience the local flavor!