If someone says the best things in life aren’t free, head to the Pocono Mountains and enjoy them. We’ve lined up 13 no-cost activities to start experiencing today.
1. Visit the Harrity Covered Bridge in Beltzville State Park. Covered bridges are a statewide spectacle, and you’ll want to see ours. Built in 1841, our bridge welcomes leisurely walks through the past for pedestrians in the park. While at Beltzville, check out the hiking and biking trails, too.
2. Speaking of trails, hike to a waterfall! The Poconos is home to both the tallest and second tallest falls in the state; Raymondskill Falls and Dingmans Falls at Dingmans Falls Visitors Center. George W. Childs Recreation Site features three separate waterfalls throughout the hike. All three areas are in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.
3. Tour the Zane Grey Museum. Open Memorial Day, enjoy a free, self-guided tour throughout the museum. National Park Service rangers and volunteers are on-site to answer any questions about the famed Western novelist.
4. Take a trip to the farmers’ market. The Main Street Farmers' Market at The Cooperage offers a wide variety of locally grown items from produce and plants to breads and meats. Stop by and browse the market on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. until March 31, 2018.
5. Every week in March, the Pocono Arts Council’s gallery is open to the public. Catch a fresh exhibit each month Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gallery hours will extend into the spring season.
6. For animal lovers like ourselves, visit a petting zoo! Open seven days a week, the free petting zoo at Country Junction includes alpacas, goats, turkeys, pigs, ducks, rabbits and chickens.
7. See a National Landmark. The Roebling Aqueduct Bridge, the oldest existing wire suspension bridge, is designated as both a National Historic Landmark and National Civil Engineering Landmark. Formed from glacier ice melt, Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park is recognized as a National Natural Landmark.
8. Bike historic paths in the Pocono Mountains. The Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor, Switchback Railroad Trail and McDade Recreational Trial are among the most notable in the region. Enjoy beautiful scenery along the trails as well.
9. Sit back, relax and enjoy some free, live entertainment. Pull up a chair for Live Music at the Pub in the Pines from 9:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. on Saturday evenings, or stop by Trackside Station Grill & Bar Fridays and Saturdays from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. for performances by local musicians.
10. Come view Poconos’ indigenous wildlife while birdwatching. Both the Dorflinger-Suydam Wildlife Sanctuary and Lacawac Sanctuary have miles of nature trails intertwining through diverse habitats open to the public all year from dawn until dusk. Don’t forget your binoculars!
11. Picnic at a park! Open sunrise to sunset, our national, state and local parks are accessible year-round. Pack a lunch, and head to Big Pocono State Park or Tobyhanna State Park to enjoy your food accompanied by the beautiful scenery of the region.
12. Bring the family to experience a no-cost event this spring; take your pick on April 21, 2018. Jim Thorpe Earth Day hosts annual kids’ crafts, free music and much more. Monroe County Earth Day give and take events, children’s’ activities and more. Toast to Milford celebrates community where local businesses offer free tastings of craft beers, wine, cocktails, hot beverages and cuisine.
13. Explore downtown areas whether you’re at an event or passing through. Towns like Jim Thorpe, Milford, Honesdale and Stroudsburg offer rich histories, picturesque splendor and irreplaceable charm in addition to quaint shops and eateries.