Nestled away in the northeast of Pennsylvania is Scranton; a surprisingly scenic metropolis that acts because the cultural and business capital of Lackawanna County. Once a coal mining, railroad and industrial powerhouse, it’s now principally recognized for being the setting of the hit TV present ‘The Office’.
During the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the affluent metropolis attracted hundreds of immigrants come to work in its anthracite mines or on the railroads. This earned it the nickname ‘The Electric City’ with vital and enticing buildings popping up throughout city.
While the town’s heyday has lengthy been and gone, there are many enjoyable issues to do in Scranton. This is as a result of picturesque parks and winding trails lie proper subsequent to fascinating previous industrial sights and museums specializing in the area’s wealthy historical past.
14. Lackawanna State Park
Offering up every kind of thrilling out of doors actions, the stunning Lackawanna State Park will be discovered simply fifteen minutes’ drive immediately north of the town middle. Centered on the big lake of the identical title, it has every part from mountain climbing and biking to swimming, crusing and tenting for you to get pleasure from.
Protected as a part of a park since 1972, its scenic web site encompasses huge forests and fields with small streams and trails weaving their means right here and there. Once house to the native Lenape tribe, the realm was then settled by white farmers with a horse racing course and fairgrounds established on what’s presently the campsite.
Nowadays, out of doors lovers flock to the park to hike and bike about its lush woods or fish, swim and boat out on the reflective lake.
13. The Marketplace at Steamtown
If as an alternative of the nice outside it’s a large mall you need to discover, then The Marketplace at Steamtown is likely one of the finest locations to head in Scranton. Set proper in entrance of the vital historic web site of the identical title, its numerous retailers and eating places cater to each curiosity, style and finances.
Part of a big undertaking to revitalize the downtown space, it was opened in 1993 with about fifty shops and boutiques now packing out its two flooring. Locally owned and operated for probably the most half, they promote every part from magnificence merchandise and vogue gadgets to books, toys and video video games.
Besides its huge meals court docket, there’s really a small aquarium, massive indoor playground and stress-free spa for guests of all ages to get pleasure from. The Scranton Public Market additionally takes place every weekend with a boxing membership, music lessons and even a neighborhood school all being primarily based on the mixed-use mall.
12. Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den
One of the mall’s hottest sights is after all the academic but entertaining Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den. Here you’ll be able to see sharks, stingrays and shoals of fish swimming about in huge tanks full of colourful corals with snakes and crocodiles additionally that includes.
Only opened in 2017, the state-of-the-art aquarium has an exquisite walk-through expertise which sees you stroll from Frog Swamp and Snake Den by means of to Gator Alley and Shark Reef. Along the best way, you’ll sees a lot of species from all world wide with informative shows accompanying every of the displays.
Highlights embrace stroking stingrays in the contact tank and watching among the reside feedings and academic exhibits the place you meet alligators, turtles and far, far more.
11. Lackawanna County Courthouse Square
Right in the historic coronary heart of city is one among its most spectacular architectural gems: the Lackawanna County Courthouse Square. Instantly recognizable, the nice Romanesque Revival constructing occupies a complete block with fairly grounds and gardens mendacity throughout it.
Built throughout Scranton’s finish of century heyday as an vital coal mining middle and railroad hub, the putting constructing sure tasks energy and status. Erected in 1884, it options not only a five-storey bell tower however a fetching facade too with it nearly showing like an previous European citadel.
Aside from taking in its beautiful structure and snapping some photographs, you can too amble concerning the attractive grounds exterior. These are dotted with veterans’ memorials and the statues of well-known figures like Christopher Columbus and George Washington.
10. Everhart Museum
Not too distant in Nay Aug Park is the excellent Everhart Museum. Long a agency favourite with households, it boasts a vastly fascinating assortment of artifacts, specimens and fossils.
Now the biggest public museum in Northeastern Pennsylvania, it was first opened to the general public again in 1908. Named after outstanding doctor and philanthropist Isaiah Fawkes Everhart, it focuses on each pure historical past and the nice arts with its grand galleries divided between the 2 topics.
As such, visitors can see stuffed animals and prehistoric dinosaur bones alongside historical Egyptian funerary objects, African masks and extra modern masterpieces by Jackson Pollock and Andy Warhol amongst others. Decorative arts from Asia, Europe and America additionally characteristic as do pleasant sculptures and ceramics from numerous cultures and civilizations throughout the globe.
9. Montage Mountain
One of the state’s prime ski resorts, Montage Mountain actually looms above the south of Scranton. In simply fifteen minutes’ drive from downtown, you could find your self taking pictures down its gentle slopes with snowboarding, snowboarding and snow tubing all being on supply.
Although Pennsylvania maybe isn’t related to snow sports activities, the resort has a really respectable thousand-foot vertical drop with 26 runs crisscrossing their means concerning the mount. As you ski round its numerous terrain, you’ll be able to bask in phenomenal views of the encompassing valleys and metropolis beneath.
In summer season, Montage Mountain has a terrific water park for visitors to splash about in with lazy rivers and sunbathing areas mendacity subsequent to a lot of enjoyable water slides. It additionally hosts loads of out of doors occasions and live performance with batting cages, seashore volleyball and mini golf counting amongst its different sights.
8. Lackawanna River Heritage Trail
An exquisite means to see extra of the town and its environment is to stroll, run, jog or cycle alongside the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail. Connecting each rural and concrete communities in the realm, it takes you previous a great deal of beautiful surroundings and idyllic nature spots.
From the confluence of the Lackawanna and Susquehanna Rivers, the multi-purpose path meanders its means northwards till it joins up with the Delaware & Hudson Rail Trail. Very well-maintained, it stretches over seventy miles in complete with a lot of the route following alongside the riverbanks.
Peppering the edges of the trail are numerous public artworks and historic websites with many relating to the area’s coal mining and railroad previous. When passing by means of cities, you additionally come throughout some cafes and retailers earlier than rising shortly afterwards in the charming countryside once more.
7. Anthracite Heritage Museum
For these in studying extra concerning the historical past of the state, the wonderful Anthracite Heritage Museum is solely a should. Its artifacts and displays depict what life was like for early immigrants to the realm who got here to work in its once-prolific mines, mills and factories.
Part of a bigger complicated that preserves the historical past of anthracite mining in Pennsylvania, it lies in the west of McDade Park. Full of fascinating displays and historic photographs, it covers immigration to the realm, the evolution of the business and the cruel realities of working in a mine in the 1800s.
As effectively as seeing previous instruments and gear and listening to all concerning the horrendous working circumstances, you can too discover a reproduction of a miner’s house and an atmospheric previous saloon.
6. Houdini Museum
One of probably the most well-known magicians and illusionists the world has ever seen, Harry Houdini really lived and carried out in northeast Pennsylvania for a number of years. At his museum in North Scranton, guests can see previous memorabilia and movie clips earlier than watching a tremendous magic present.
Founded in 1988, the stunning little museum appears at each his life and legacy with posters, photographs and private belongings all that includes. On excursions, you’ll be taught all about Houdini’s best tips and the way he got here to be such a world-renowned magician.
Although the museum is all about Houdini, the spotlight is arguably the hour-long magic present that takes place on the finish of the tour. Both Dorothy Dietrich and Dick Brooks – two large celeb magicians themselves – will awe and astound visitors with their unseen sleights of hand and scarcely plausible bag of tips.
5. Scranton Lake Walking Path
An absolute deal with to amble round peacefully, the Scranton Lake Walking Path takes you proper spherical the massive physique of water. Located only a bit additional previous Nay Aug Park from the middle, it has pleasant surroundings, nature and views for you to take in.
Created in the early 1900s following the damming of the Stafford Meadow Brook, the reservoir is surrounded by a lot of lush woodland with East Mountain additionally overlooking it. Looping its means about its shimmering floor is the picturesque strolling path which reaches simply over 3.5 miles in size.
While strolling, operating or biking alongside the principally flat path, you’ll be able to benefit from the fabulous fauna and foliage on present throughout you. Glinting by means of the bushes is, after all, the glowing Lake Scranton which is bordered by the attractive brickwork of the dam to its southern facet.
4. Electric City Trolley Museum
As it was house to the primary passenger trolley line in Pennsylvania, Scranton turned referred to as ‘The Electric City’ in the late Eighties. At its terrific transport museum, you’ll be able to be taught concerning the historical past and growth of the railroad strains and see loads of the classic automobiles.
Set proper alongside the Steamtown National Historic Site, it was established in 1999 to protect the Keystone State’s wealthy railroad previous. Old artifacts, gear items and displays at the moment are on show in a resplendently restored late nineteenth-century mill constructing.
The finest a part of the go to although is hopping aboard an genuine 1926 or 1932 trolley and touring across the surrounding countryside. The peaceable five-and-a-half-mile journey takes you over Roaring Brook, by means of a mile-long tunnel and up to PNC Field on Montage Mountain.
3. Nay Aug Park
The metropolis’s largest park, Nay Aug straddles the appropriately named Roaring Brook and its attractive gorge. Despite its shut proximity to the middle, its woods and waterfalls really feel a world away from the busy downtown space with every kind of facilities and actions being on supply.
Carved out of the rock over the last ice age, Nay Aug or ‘noisy brook’ because it means in the Munsee language rushes its means down rapids and thru the jagged gorge. For one of the best views of the stream and the scenic woodlands mendacity on all sides, head throughout its lined bridge or to the highest of the park’s tall treehouse.
Since 1893, each locals and guests alike have flocked to discover its sprawling inexperienced confines with two Olympic-sized swimming swimming pools, a number of playgrounds and a waterslide park now additionally scattered about. After mountain climbing and biking about, you’ll be able to cease for a snack or sizzling drink at its picnic pavilions or the cosy Blackwatch Cafe.
2. Lackawanna Coal Mine Tour
A enjoyable and interesting expertise, the Lackawanna Coal Mine Tour sees you enterprise 300 toes beneath the earth’s floor in an previous mine automobile. As you discover the twisting veins of the deserted anthracite mine, your educated information will train you extra concerning the business, its influence on Pennsylvania and the numerous perils that the miners confronted.
Part of the identical complicated because the Anthracite Heritage Museum, its deep shafts, museum and reward store additionally lie inside McDade Park. Opened by the Continental Coal Company in 1903, its wealthy coal seams had been mined till 1966 with excursions of the mine and museum beginning up simply over a decade later.
Nowadays, guests strap on their protecting laborious hats earlier than taking the brilliant yellow mine automobile into the deep, darkish depths of the mine. Once you attain the underside, you’ll get out and stroll round all of the shored up previous tunnels as your information explains the hardships kids as younger as seven or eight confronted when working in the mine.
1. Steamtown National Historic Site
Back in the middle of city is the town’s standout sight: the Steamtown National Historic Site. As effectively as being house to rows and rows of shiny previous steam trains, the railroad museum has an enormous assortment of artifacts, photographs and previous gear items for you to peruse.
Established in 1986, the museum occupies the previous Scranton Yards with its innumerable displays and trains being centered round a working turntable and reconstructed roundhouse. Several turn-of-the-century outbuildings are additionally set on web site which impressively has roughly two dozen locomotives on show with the oldest relationship to 1903.
After studying all concerning the historical past and growth of the railroads in Pennsylvania, you’ll be able to take a brief trip alongside its heritage monitor on an atmospheric previous steam practice.