Some locations will live up to your expectations.
But, some locations you visit will surprise and pleasure you in unexpected ways. This was the situation in York, Pennsylvania, a town in the state’s south-central region approximately two hours’ drive from Philadelphia.
York is known as The White Rose City, after the House of York’s insignia, and I was astonished to discover that it has a wonderful blend of history and trendiness, with an obvious splash of a deep-rooted agricultural backbone.
With so many things to see and do in York, I’ve selected seven of the finest that cover a broad range of what the city has to offer. Whether you have a day or a weekend in York, you’ll want to include some of these attractions on your itinerary.
- 1 The 7 Greatest Things to Do in York, Pennsylvania
- 2 Things to Do in York, PA: Finish
The 7 Greatest Things to Do in York, Pennsylvania
Central Market House in York
+1717848224334 York’s West Philadelphia Street
The vivid noises and fragrances of an open-air market are evident as soon as you enter inside this building that spans almost a full city block. The Central Market House, a communal meeting place and historical center for the city, should visit on your York itinerary.
With too many vendors to name, the food choices here are practically limitless and guaranteed to suit everyone in your group. Are you not hungry? No worries.
Vendors are also selling handmade arts, crafts, and clothing. If you have a dog, don’t miss The Boys Barking Bakery, where you can get a nice treat for your pet. It is one of the top things to do in York, Pennsylvania.
Humans may have a more difficult time determining what to eat. Walk around the several isles to locate vendors that serve Barbecue, seafood, Italian sandwiches, salads, and soups.
Visitors may order anything from vegan meals to Indian delicacies to gourmet hotdogs, with a shared eating space in the rear where they can pull up a chair, eat, talk, and linger for a while.
When sitting, take a time to gaze up. Local shipbuilders designed and erected the beautiful wood-beamed roof that covers the full length over 125 years ago. If you like old architecture, this vast seventeenth-century Romanesque Revival-style masterpiece is well worth a trip.
Sunrise Soap Company’s Manufacturing Station
29 North Beaver Street, York +17178437627
You may have heard of Sunrise Soap Company or seen their goods at Whole Foods stores if you reside in the mid-Atlantic area.
Stop by their store in downtown York for a fun and educational experience, where you can see the soap making process, from pouring and fragrancing to cutting to size. Soapmakers in this town employ the same techniques that have been utilized since the late 1800s.
If you’re looking for an out-of-the-ordinary hands-on experience, let your imagination run wild at the Creation Station.
Pull yourself a seat and roll up your sleeves; the good times are about to begin. Two large wire racks along the wall carry several hundred different molds in all shapes and sizes, from flowers to dog bones to animals, ready to produce your own glycerin soaps. You get to choose not just the form of your soap, but also the color and smells.
The warm liquid creation is poured into your mold of choice while your inner mixologist develops the exact hue of sunny yellow and adds just enough rose petal essential oil for the desired mild smell. It’s heading to the freezer to harden.
While you’re waiting, why not make your own fizzy bath bomb? Or how about a handcrafted, wonderfully perfumed sugar scrub or body lotion? You may construct anything your inner diva or daredevil wishes to take home with you.
Soapmaking is another activity for kids in York, PA, and it is closely monitored by experts to guarantee everyone’s safety.
Agriculture and Industrial Museum of York
West Princess Street, York +17178481587217
Join the whole family for an exciting, interactive journey through York’s industrial history that will have you wondering how you didn’t know that was created in York.
From the original Pullman Coach Company to a 1916 trolley vehicle that you can climb inside, these interactive exhibits are both entertaining and instructive. Learn what it’s like to milk a dairy cow, run a grist mill, and dial a phone number while seeing the call light up on a switchboard!
History fans will like the York Plan exhibit, which highlights York’s industrial contribution to the World War II fight. It’s everything here to uncover, from early pottery manufacture to the Stauffer Biscuit Company exhibit (animal crackers, anyone?) to the York Barbell Company.
Don’t forget to visit the Hall of Giants exhibit at the conclusion of the tour, where you can get up up and personal with a 72-ton ammonia compressor used to make ice in the early 1900s.
Holistic Symmetry Collective
York, +1717356260015 North Beaver Street
Go inside the Symmetry Holistic Collective, one of the best things to do in York, PA, to find your happy spot in the heart of downtown York.
Symmetry provides a welcoming atmosphere for the LGBTQ+ community, persons of color, and everyone seeking serenity, balance, and well-being in their everyday lives. It is a one-of-a-kind escape from the rush and bustle of metropolitan life.
Symmetry is a group of trained practitioners that specialize in alternative health services such herbals, reiki sessions, tinctures, crystal healing sessions, and yestea parties.
Have an adult tea party inside The Witchwood Tea House, where you may choose from over 60 different bulk loose-leaf teas for a soothing and informal afternoon break.
This downtown store, half wellness facility, part teahouse, will check all the boxes for anybody who enjoys all facets of wellbeing.
Brew Bus Tours on the York County Ale Trail
Get onboard the 16-passenger yellow brew bus as your driver drives you about town, stopping at numerous local brew pubs to sample the finest beer and cider made in York.
Not only does your driver drive you around, but each member of the crew is quite educated about beer, particularly York beers, so there is an educational component to the trip.
This tour includes some walking, but nothing too demanding. The brew crew does not drink while on duty, letting each participant to feel safe and comfortable as they drive throughout town from one station to the next.
Participants must adhere to the regulations, which include no raucous conduct, no alcoholic drinks on the bus, and the usage of seatbelts. Instead, relax, enjoy yourself, and load up on some of your favorites to take back to the hotel (or home) with you! A fantastic activity among the York, PA things to do.
Natures Platter Can Help You Improve Your Charcuterie Game
Dallastown, +1717487588764 E. Main Street
Who doesn’t like snacking on a beautiful spread of meat, cheese, olives, and crackers? A visit to Natures Platter will most certainly raise everything you thought you knew about assembling the ultimate charcuterie boardboard.
Proprietor Marie Fisher not only has expertise crafting cuisine that appeals to the eyes as well as the stomach, but she also handcrafts live edge slabs of wood into useful works of art. It’s one of the greatest gastronomic activities in York, PA.
She does it everything, from selecting the ideal slabs of wood to machining them precisely, scraping the edges to perfection, and finally staining and preserving the wood.
From rare exotic woods like African zebra wood to classics like hickory and oak, Marie has an eye for a pleasing texture that, once stained, transforms into a masterpiece! Stop in and say hi if you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind charcuterie board or want to learn more about crafting the ideal presentation.
Marie also invites groups for courses, making it an ideal location for a bachelorette party or a ladies’ day out.
Creamery Caputo Brothers
Spring Grove, +17177391091245 N. Main Street
What happens when you mix an Italian-trained cheesemaker with a teacher and champion for local, sustainable farms in the York area?
You’ll receive everything Caputo Bros! This one-of-a-kind creamery is changing the way mozzarella is made in the United States. It’s the most delectable pastime among the things to do in York, PA.
Caputo Brothers founders David and Rynn Caputo employ a natural culturing procedure devoid of vinegar or citric acid after training with renowned cheesemakers in Italy. They have been producing the country’s first organically fermented cheese curds that can be stretched into fresh mozzarella, exactly as in Italy, since 2011.
Getting their milk solely from local farm partners that are certified animal welfare approved and where cows are pasture-raised results in considerably better quality milk, which results in higher quality cheese.
Sample everything from Troegenator Beer Cheese (created in partnership with a local brewer, Troegs) to made-from-scratch gouda, ricotta, and provolone at their cheese store. Not sure what to pick? Take a Beer Cheese Sampler Box or a Classico Gift Box home with you.
Let’s say you want to manufacture fresh mozzarella like Caputos. You’ve come to the right place! Take a virtual create your own mozzarella lesson where you’ll get your stretched curd as well as access to a step-by-step video instruction taught by renowned cheesemaker and co-founder Rynn Caputo.
You’ll be making fresh mozzarella with a rich and creamy texture like no other in no time from the comfort of your own home. These virtual lessons would also make an excellent present for the cooking enthusiast in your family.
Things to Do in York, PA: Finish
Overall, York is a varied community with a rich history and distinctive scenery in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch Country in south-central Pennsylvania. York is about two hours north of Washington, D.C. and two hours west of Philadelphia, making it an ideal day trip from either city. Further information is available on the Discover York website.
Visiting other places in Pennsylvania? Check out our other resource:
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