Blue Marsh Lake (Leesport)
The earlier you get to Blue Marsh Lake, the better — it's an outdoor haven for nature-oriented activities. Â Find the best subjects in the early morning or wait until evening, and try a few different base camps to vary your shots: a few from the trails, some along the lake shore, and others right out on the lake in a canoe or motorboat (there's a nice rental place nearby). From spring through the summer you'll catch osprey, great blue heron and egrets as they call Blue Marsh home for the season. Once you've filled up a few memory sticks, head back into Leesport for a quick lunch at Ozzie's Cafe, just off Leesport Road. Then it's off you go to the pinnacle of Pennsylvania beauty, (literally).
The Pinnacle (Kempton)
Head 35 minutes north to the justly named Pinnacle, the highest point in Berks County. It's also the state's best-known vista loop hike. You can access the entrance on Hawk Mountain Road, part of the Appalachian Trail. Get your camera ready for dramatic bare rock and cliffs, incredible views from the north, east and south and if you're lucky, Turkey Vultures that soar in the thermals and rat snakes that bask on the sun-warmed rocks. Round trip for the hike is about three and a half hours.
Deitsch Eck Restaurant (Lenhartsville)
Deitsch Eck (Dutch Corner) is a family-operated restaurant, serving heaping portions of PA Dutch food. Get ready for staples like fritters, chowchow and chicken pot pie. And don't forget the pickled beets.
Hawk Mountain Bed & Breakfast (Kempton)
There are countless luxury hotels, inns and B&Bs in the area, and this is one of the most charming. Located in Pennsylvania's scenic Blue Mountain valley, a lodge that combines the finest European bed and breakfast tradition with American comfort.