Five things you must do when visiting the Pocono Mountains
The Pocono Mountains is a nature-filled escape for all travelers and city dwellers. Just a 2-hour drive from New York City or Philadelphia and you will find yourself cruising through the rolling hills of the Poconos. It is the perfect destination to relax, hit the trails, enjoy the scenery, and partake in the local delicacies. There is never a wrong season to visit the Poconos, with beautiful fall foliage, ski resorts, endless hiking trails and plenty of seasonal events. Get your walking shoes on and ready to explore!
Explore the Delaware Water Gap
The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area covers nearly 70,000 acres along the banks of the Delaware River. There are many miles of hiking trails along the river and through the forested mountains leading to breathtaking waterfalls and majestic viewpoints of the landscape.
The best hike is the short walk to Raymondskill Falls, a 3 tiered waterfall with a combined height of 150 feet. You have the opportunity to step out over the water onto a wooden platform where the mist of the waterfall blows in your face and the powerful water churns under your feet.
A highly recommended stop is the Hialeah Trailhead within the Delaware Water Gap. Here you can walk along the river and through a variety of landscapes including green forests and cornfields.
Stroll the historic streets of Jim Thorpe
The charming historic town of Jim Thorpe is nestled in the Pocono Mountains. The small downtown is lined with beautiful brick facades and brightly painted buildings. Each building, with its own unique history, offers a mix of shops ranging from art galleries and handmade souvenirs to the Stonekeep Meadery tasting room.
Bike or ride along the Lehigh River
Rent a bike in Jim Thorpe from Pocono Biking or get a ticket for the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway for a ride into Lehigh Gorge State Park. For the bike ride, take the shuttle upstream to the Upper Gorge for a relaxing downhill ride back into Jim Thorpe. The 15-mile bike ride winds along the river with plenty of places to stop and enjoy the natural surroundings.
Alternatively, ride on a 1930’s reversible seat train coach in an open-air car up into the gorge. The tracks are lined with old telegraph poles and rocky hills covered in greenery. The train follows the same route as the bike ride, so it is best to pick which activity you will enjoy more.
Go for a scenic drive through the Poconos
There is no better way to experience the Poconos than to hop in your car and go for a ride through the countryside. Driving down the winding country roads you can find your own hidden gems and where to stop to enjoy the region. Do not miss the Pocono Environmental Education Center (PEEC) where you can climb into a replica beaver dam and touch real deer antlers.
Dine in the town of Milford
Head into the rustic town of Milford to enjoy a wide range of fresh and local food at its many restaurants. One great spot for lunch is 403 Broad in a renovated home, with a menu full of unique food combinations such as the Pastrami Salmon Bagel and Fried Eggplant Pizza.
Driving into the Poconos is like making your way into a work of art with picturesque landscapes, cute colorful towns and plenty of smiling faces. Whether you visit to see the red and yellow foliage, falling snowflakes, or rich springtime greenery, there is always a reason to relax in the Pocono Mountains.