Reporting Rhea Hughes
Pennsylvania has a plethora of destinations perfect for creating lasting memories for years to come. Skip the standard road trip and venture out on the most beautiful drives the city has to offer. A new adventure out of the city may be your ticket to much-needed relaxation, so grab the camera and hop in the car.
I-95 to Route 1
1001 Longwood Rd.
Kennet Square, PA 19348
Distance: 32 miles one-way
Price: $18 adults/$8 children/students 5-22 years old/children younger than 4 free
Hours: Mon to Sun – 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Traveling along Historic Route 1, the oldest highway on the East Coast, you will succumb to the lovely green open spaces on your way to Longwood Gardens. Longwood boasts 1,000+ stunning acres of overwhelming beauty for you to take a stroll through and admire. With tons of well-maintained indoor and outdoor gardens, you will never want to leave this magical place. Included with your entrance fee are fountain shows, elaborate indoor displays, and access to the various immaculate outdoor gardens and foot paths. Food and entertainment available throughout the facilities, but you are welcome to use the picnic facilities (which include charcoal grills) for free.
I-95 to Route 232 North in New Hope
Philadelphia, PA 19115
Distance: 37 miles one-way
Charming New Hope is a trendy little town located only 40 miles from Philadelphia. The drive to New Hope will take you along country roads, through farmland and even over a covered bridge or two. You will take in the scenery along the banks of the Delaware River before embarking on a relaxing day of browsing antiques, enjoying a meal at one of the many unique restaurants, or even hopping on the historical steam locomotive for a great photo opportunity. Stop at 100-year-old Pennypack Park along the way for a scenic picnic along the slow-moving riverfront.
I-76 to Route 30 to Lancaster County
Lancaster County, PA
Distance: 60 miles one-way
Take a drive toward Lancaster along one of the most picturesque routes in Pennsylvania. Stop at shops along the way to browse antiques, experience the Amish culture, tour a museum, or enjoy some good old fashioned Pennsylvania Dutch food. Traveling primarily on Route 78 out of the city, you will pass through rolling green hills and sprawling farmlands. Keep in mind you may need to share the road with a native Amish traveler in a horse drawn buggy, so go easy over hills. Along Route 222, you will be pleasantly surprised with the choices where you may stretch your legs while you explore Lancaster County.
Route 309 to Bethlehem
Distance: 52 miles one-way
Historic Downtown Bethlehem is a quaint, artistic town known for its historical sites, fabulous food and classic beauty. Located approximately 60 miles from Philadelphia, Bethlehem is nestled in the Lehigh Valley and is rich in history. Cruising through Quakertown and its back roads, you will find heavily wooded views along creeks and streams which define country roads. Known as “The Christmas City,” Bethlehem will provide a lovely roadtrip destination for you and your family. Area events include Musikfest and the Blueberry Festival.
Kelly Drive to Lincoln Drive
Distance: roughly 20 miles one-way
If you are considering a scenic drive with no particular destination, Kelly Drive will wind you through the hills along the Schuylkill River for four miles of fun and a chance to sneak a peek at Boathouse Row. Once you connect with Lincoln Drive, expect smooth sailing, relaxing open roads with mature landscapes and wooded areas on both sides of your drive. At Wissahickon Memorial Bridge, gaze upon the scenery as you drive through Fairmount Park, a great place to take a break from the car and walk the trails. This is the perfect Sunday cruise out of the city.
Leslie Gerhart is an artist, photographer and social butterfly who hands her hands in every creative task she can. Having a young son, she is always on the prowl for an exciting adventure or new idea to try on a tight budget. She uses her unique perspective to seek out cost effective ways to change up the routine and break out of the normal day to day monotony. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.