Where will you travel in 2022? It's never too early to start planning your summer vacation! While the Pocono Mountains offers memorable family fun throughout all four seasons, our region is a particularly great for escapes during the warm weather months. Get out of the city and enjoy fresh air, wide open spaces and quality together time on the water, up in the trees, gathered round a campfire, or out and about in our charming small towns.
There's something for all ages to enjoy in the Poconos! Start daydreaming about the fun you'll have on your summer trip: take a look at eight activities the whole family will love.
Explore the Great Outdoors
1. Explore the Great Outdoors
The Pocono Mountains is home to 2,400 acres of pristine natural beauty, which have made our region a beloved summer getaway destination for generations of families. Reconnect with nature and enjoy the sunshine in our area's national, state and local parks. Whether hiking or biking is more your group's style, there are hundreds of trails to explore, leading to expansive mountain views and stunning hidden waterfalls. Visitors to Bushkill Falls, known as the “Niagara of Pennsylvania,” can explore eight different cascades, plus a mini golf, paddle boats, a snack bar and more. You'll find the two tallest waterfalls in Pennsylvania, Raymondskill Falls and Dingmans Falls, both located within Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.
Splash the Day Away
2. Splash the Day Away
Nothing says summer like a day at the beach! Feel the sand in your toes and float on the waves at beaches with kid-friendly swimming at Mauch Chunk Lake Park, Promised Land State Park, Tobyhanna State Park and Palmyra Township Public Beach on Lake Wallenpaupack. Lush, green hills and trees rising up above the blue, sparkling water of our lakes and rivers is the perfect background for a relaxing and fun family summer day.
Up the ante on your water adventures with a visit to impressive local indoor and outdoor waterparks. Take on dozens of water rides, wave pools and more at Camelbeach Mountain Waterpark, the largest waterpark in Pennsylvania, or try Costa's Family Fun Park, which has go-karts, bumper boats, miniature golf and more in addition to pools and water slides. Don't let bad weather get you down: the enormous indoor splash utopias at Kalahari Resorts & Conventions, Great Wolf Lodge, Split Rock Resort, and Camelback Lodge & Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark are full of lazy rivers, dump buckets, multi-story slides and much more that are ready for action even on stormy days.
Float Your Boat
3. Float Your Boat
Whether a pontoon, canoe or kayak, stand-up paddleboard, tube or raft is your vessel of choice, grab your paddle, don a life jacket and prepare to explore the 170 river miles and 150 lakes in the Pocono Mountains. Local outfitters offer boat rentals as well as day trips with guides available and transportation to and from the launch site provided. For great fishing and untouched scenery, navigate the winding bends of the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River. If you're looking for a truly exhilarating trip, give whitewater rafting a try! The Lehigh River is home to Class I, II and III rapids which provide fun outings for all skill levels, from dam release events to more gentle family trips.
Travel into the Past
4. Travel into the Past
From the ancient ice age landscape at Boulder Field National Natural Landmark to the home of the "Father of the American Conservation Movement," Gifford Pinchot, at Grey Towers National Historic Landmark in Milford, from Victorian mansions in Jim Thorpe to the birthplace of the American Railroad in Honesdale, there's so much history to discover in the Pocono Mountains. Visit a museum to dive into the region's rich past, or experience a bygone age for yourself during an interactive tour, including train rides on The Stourbridge Line or Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway or trolley tours with the Jim Thorpe Trolley Company or the The Pocono Historic Trolley Tour.
Play in the Treetops
5. Play in the Treetops
Fly through the sky and climb up in the branches: Pocono adventure parks offer aerial fun for all. Cross the forest canopy high above the ground on rope bridges, navigate a woodland obstacle course, or soar down the mountainside on a zipline. If you've never tried an adventure park before, it's the perfect way to make memories with loved ones. Get outside at Adventure Center at Skytop Lodge, Summit Aerial Park at Blue Mountain Resort, Camelback Mountain Adventures, or Gorilla Grove Treetop Adventures.
Go Horseback Riding
6. Go Horseback Riding
If your kids have been begging you to let them try horseback riding, the Pocono Mountains is the perfect place to do it! Make a new friend at local stables and explore peaceful paths and pastoral fields in the saddle. Bushkill Riding Stables and Happy Trails Stables welcome beginners and offer guided scenic rides, while Daisy Field Farm and Mountain Creek Riding Stables offer wagon rides and pony rides for little ones as well.
Encounter Critters of All Shapes & Sizes
7. Encounter Critters of All Shapes & Sizes
Take a walk on the wild side and meet animals from around the world face-to-face in the Poconos. From alligators to lions to warthogs, Claws 'N’ Paws Wild Animal Park is home to many different members of the animal kingdom, including Jethro the friendly giraffe. Admire the big cats basking in the sun, laugh with the monkeys, or even help feed the parrots. At Bear Mountain Butterfly Sanctuary, visitors can enter the "Fluterrarium" and discover exotic frogs, axolotls, turtles, glow fish and more. You can even arrange a visit to the farm with Pohopoco Creek Alpacas to meet the alpacas that live there.
Head to the County Fair
8. Head to the County Fair
Pocono Mountains communities put on four classic county fairs each summer throughout August and early September. Featuring big-time carnival rides, delicious food, animal exhibits, live entertainment, demolition derbies and so much more, many of these fairs have been going for over 100 years. The fairs are just the beginning when it comes to family-friendly Pocono summer events!