Imagine a charming snow-covered town decked with perfectly trimmed evergreens, Christmas carolers, and homemade hot cocoa. Sounds straight out of a Hallmark Christmas movie, right? Well…Happy Travelers, put down the remote and look no further than these movie-esque Pennsylvania wonderlands.
The Christmas tree shines bright in Lincoln Square and wreaths hang on every lamppost. Gettysburg businesses along the square join in the holiday fun with Christmas lights, festive decorations, and shiny wrapped presents donning their windowsills and doorways. The Gettysburg Christmas Festival on Dec. 6 kicks off the holiday season with food, reindeer games, and winter wonderland activities.
Enjoy a stroll through downtown Canonsburg to experience the town’s Old Fashioned Christmas Celebration. Surround yourself with sparkling white lights and festive holiday window displays, take advantage of photo ops with Santa himself, and shop for the perfect Christmas gift at the Christmas Market. On Dec. 6, be there for the inaugural lighting of Canonsburg’s new Christmas tree donated by none other than The Hallmark Channel!
On Dec. 7, take a step back in time (19th century London, to be exact) and celebrate Wellsboro’s annual “Dickens of a Christmas.” The historic gas-lit Main Street will be closed to traffic and become an early Victorian marketplace. Festivities include strolling carolers, theatrical performances of “A Christmas Carol,” and best dressed showcase.
Celebrate Charles Dickens’ timeless holiday tale, A Christmas Carol, at the Narberth Dickens Festival on December 8. The world of Ebenezer Scrooge comes to life when Narberth Main Street is transformed into 1840’s London. Keep an eye out, iconic characters like Ebenezer and Tiny Tim may be roaming the streets.
5. Jim Thorpe
Nestled in the breathtaking Lehigh Gorge, Jim Thorpe offers visitors a unique and family-friendly way to view the snow-covered Pocono Mountains. At Christmastime, the historic Victorian architecture, cheerful music, and brisk mountain air burst with holiday spirit. Olde Time Christmas Weekends feature horse-drawn carriage rides, live entertainment, and of course, Santa Claus!
Loved ones visiting for the holidays? Walk the grounds of a historic estate while Jack Frost is nipping at your nose. The Greys Towers National Historic Site is a 100-acre estate bestowed with spectacular wintertime views. Visitors are welcome for daily self-guided tours.
7. New Hope
Embark on a winter adventure as you explore 18th-century-style buildings, beautiful gardens, and winding brick walkways of Peddler’s Village. December is a month-long celebration with holiday shopping, festive light displays, and a gingerbread house competition! Wander to Shady Brook Farm to warm up with a cup of hot cocoa and cook up s’mores at a toasty bonfire. Snap a holiday photo with Santa at the farm market or pick out the perfect Christmas tree.
Gallivant along the charming streets of Historic Bethlehem trimmed in twinkling lights and boosting with holiday cheer. Find wandering carolers, horse-drawn carriages, and strolling musicians. The festive atmosphere is truly a scene straight from a Hallmark classic. Not to mention, Christkindlmarkt nearby has been recognized as one of the best holiday markets in the U.S. by Travel + Leisure and Maratha Stewart Magazine.
Board the Polar Bear Express and travel down snow-covered tracks through holiday light displays at the Rockhill Trolley Museum. The festive vessel invokes movie-quality holiday spirit with a roving fiddle player on board followed by hot chocolate and cookies around the bonfire.
Indiana, the Christmas Tree Capital of the World, is the hometown of Jimmy Stewart, star of the beloved holiday classic "It's A Wonderful Life." During the holidays, downtown Indiana is transformed into a modern-day Bedford Falls, complete with twinkling light displays and a 32-foot live Christmas tree in the center of town.
11. Kennett Square
Embrace the holiday spirit among illuminated trees, glowing orbs, and a shimmering tunnel of lights at Longwood Gardens. Stop at the Main Fountain Garden to witness a choreographed light display. Unwrap the magic of Christmas at A Longwood Christmas and allow romance to blossom this holiday season.
Celebrating 72 years of season's greetings, Koziar's Christmas Village has inspired the holiday spirit for generations. The extraordinary seasonal attraction filled with delightful displays, a train, a kissing bridge, and thousands of twinkling lights.
A charming late 19th-century B&B is the perfect backdrop for a holiday Hallmark film. Juniata Valley Winery & Wilson House Bed and Breakfast sits among towering trees, meandering country roads, a vineyard, and spectacular mountain views. This romantic holiday getaway allows guests to cozy up by the fire with a selection of award-winning dry and sweet wines.
14. Conneaut Lake
Lighting up the lake is a community tradition. Locals refer to the celebration as “The Christmas Project,” where more than 230 lighted trees surround Conneaut Lake to spread holiday joy this season. Hop aboard Barbara J paddleboat to take in the sights from the water. Tours are available every weekend between Nov. 29 – Dec. 15.
Take the family or that significant other to Lakemont Park’s Holiday Lights on the Lake, a fifty-one acre dazzling light display with animation. Tune your radio 88.5, Lakemont’s radio network to enjoy holiday music on you journey through the magical lakeside display. Make a visit to Santa’s Village at the end of the tour, and you may just bump into Santa himself! Open through Jan. 5.
For more holiday ideas in Pennsylvania, check out the visitPA website. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram to stay up-to-date on even more great ideas and places to visit around our state.