Welcome to Hershey, Pennsylvania, a delightful town where the air is as sweet as the rich chocolates that have made it famous. Often referred to as the “Sweetest Place on Earth,” Hershey is a haven for chocolate enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike. This charming town has activities for all ages and interests, from Hershey’s Chocolate World to Hersheypark’s thrilling rides. Hershey, PA, has something for everyone, from chocolate fantasies to thrilling amusement park rides to rich history. This guide will reveal Hershey’s top attractions, making your visit sweet and memorable.
The Rich History of Hershey
Milton S. Hershey’s Legacy
Milton S. Hershey, the visionary behind Hershey’s chocolate, started his journey in the late 19th century. His determination and innovation led to the creation of not just a chocolate company but an entire town that reflected his ideals and ambitions.
Transformation of a Town
Initially a small rural community, Hershey transformed into a bustling town centered around the chocolate factory. This transformation was marked by the creation of a model town that included schools, churches, recreational facilities, and a trolley system, all thanks to Milton Hershey’s vision.
The Enchanting Town of Hershey
Founded on the rich legacy of Milton S. Hershey, the town is a testament to his dream of building a chocolate empire and a community around it. From its humble beginnings, Hershey has grown into a vibrant tourist haven, boasting an array of attractions, lush landscapes, and a warm, welcoming community.
More Than Just Chocolate
While Hershey’s association with chocolate is undeniable, the town offers a plethora of experiences that go beyond its sweet confections. From thrilling amusement rides and lush botanical gardens to cultural experiences and historical insights, Hershey is a destination with something for everyone.
Unique Things to Do in Hershey, PA
1. Hershey’s Chocolate World
Hershey’s Chocolate World is a must-visit destination in Hershey, offering a unique glimpse into the world of chocolate. This attraction includes interactive tours, where visitors can learn about the chocolate-making process, from bean to bar.
One of the highlights at Chocolate World is the opportunity to create your own candy bar. Visitors can choose their ingredients and design their own packaging, making for a memorable and personalized experience.
2. The Hershey Story Museum
The Hershey Story Museum offers an in-depth look into the life and legacy of Milton S. Hershey. Through interactive exhibits and historical artifacts, visitors can understand the impact of Hershey’s vision on the town and the world of chocolate.
The museum also provides engaging activities for visitors of all ages, including chocolate-making workshops and educational programs that delve into Hershey’s rich history.
Fun Things to Do in Hershey, PA
Hersheypark, originally created by Milton Hershey as leisure grounds for his employees, has evolved into a premier amusement park. It features a variety of thrilling rides, from roller coasters to water attractions, catering to adventure seekers of all ages.
Hersheypark also hosts a range of seasonal events. These include summer concerts, Halloween-themed celebrations, and Christmas festivities, offering unique experiences throughout the year.
ZooAmerica is a walk-through zoo that focuses on the wildlife of North America. Spanning 11 acres, it houses animals from various habitats, offering an educational and engaging experience for animal lovers.
The zoo not only provides an opportunity to view animals up close but also focuses on conservation efforts and educational programs, emphasizing the importance of wildlife preservation.
Romantic Things to Do in Hershey, PA
5. Hershey Gardens
Hershey Gardens is a 23-acre botanical garden and arboretum established by Milton Hershey in 1937. The gardens feature a breathtaking assortment of flowers, shrubs, and trees, making it an ideal location for a romantic stroll.
A highlight of Hershey Gardens is the Butterfly Atrium, home to hundreds of butterflies. This tranquil setting offers a unique opportunity to interact with these delicate creatures in a picturesque environment.
6. The Spa At The Hotel Hershey
The Spa at The Hotel Hershey, often referred to as the Chocolate Spa, offers a range of treatments infused with cocoa essence. From chocolate massages to cocoa baths, these luxurious treatments provide a unique and relaxing experience.
With a range of couple’s treatments available, the spa is a perfect getaway for those looking to indulge in a romantic and rejuvenating experience.
Free Things to Do in Hershey, PA
7. Hershey’s Chocolate World’s Free Chocolate Tour
Explore the delectable world of chocolate with Hershey’s Chocolate World’s Free Chocolate Tour. This renowned attraction invites visitors on an educational and enjoyable journey through the chocolate-making process.
Watch the cocoa bean become a chocolate bar and learn about Hershey’s history and craftsmanship. The immersive Free Chocolate Tour at Hershey’s Chocolate World will make visitors appreciate chocolate making. Don’t miss this must-do activity on your visit to Hershey, where sweetness and learning blend seamlessly.
8. Hershey Community Archives
Immerse yourself in the rich history of Hershey at the Hershey Community Archives. This treasure trove is a haven for history enthusiasts, offering free admission to explore a wealth of documents, photographs, and artifacts. Discover the fascinating evolution of the town, from its humble beginnings to the bustling community it is today. Delve into the life and legacy of Milton Hershey, the visionary behind the chocolate empire, through captivating exhibits and historical records. With its invaluable resources and insights, the Hershey Community Archives provide a captivating journey through time, offering visitors a deeper understanding of Hershey’s enduring legacy.
Best Things to Do in Hershey, PA
9. Tastings and Tours
Embark on a culinary adventure with Hershey’s array of Tastings and Tours. Dive into the town’s signature flavors with chocolate tasting tours that showcase the essence of Hershey’s sweet legacy. Sample an assortment of delectable treats, from creamy milk chocolates to rich dark varieties, and savor every decadent moment. But the indulgence doesn’t stop there – Hershey’s local wineries offer tastings that complement the chocolate experience, providing a comprehensive culinary journey. Immerse yourself in the flavors of Hershey, where every taste tells a story and every sip delights the senses. Experience the town’s culinary delights like never before with Tastings and Tours in Hershey.
10. Broad Street Market in nearby Harrisburg
Just a short drive from Hershey lies the Broad Street Market in Harrisburg, a culinary gem and one of the oldest continuously operating markets in the United States. Step into a paradise for food enthusiasts, where an eclectic array of local and international cuisine awaits. From farm-fresh produce and artisanal cheeses to exotic spices and global delicacies, the market tantalizes the taste buds with its diverse offerings. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere as you wander through bustling aisles, sampling gourmet treats and discovering culinary treasures. The Broad Street Market is a celebration of flavors, culture, and community, inviting visitors to indulge in a truly immersive gastronomic experience.
Seasonal Activities in Hershey
11. Hersheypark in the Dark and Hershey Sweet Lights
Experience the enchantment of Hersheypark in the Dark and the mesmerizing Hershey Sweet Lights, two seasonal delights that add an extra layer of magic to Hershey’s year-round charm. Hersheypark in the Dark transforms the beloved amusement park into a Halloween wonderland, with spooky decorations, thrilling rides, and festive entertainment for all ages. Meanwhile, Hershey Sweet Lights dazzles visitors with a spectacular drive-through light display, illuminating the holiday season with shimmering lights and festive cheer. These seasonal activities capture the essence of the holidays and infuse Hershey with a captivating allure, making it a destination worth visiting throughout the year.
Hershey, PA, is more than just a name synonymous with chocolate; it’s a vibrant destination brimming with activities that promise fun, excitement, and sweet memories. Whether you’ve spent your day exploring the chocolate wonders at Hershey’s Chocolate World, screaming with delight on the roller coasters at Hersheypark, or simply soaking in the rich history and beauty of this quaint town, Hershey leaves you with a lasting impression. Its unique blend of sweet attractions and engaging experiences makes it an ideal getaway for families, couples, and solo travelers. As you plan your trip to the Sweetest Place on Earth, remember that Hershey is a place where fun meets chocolate and where every visit is an opportunity to create sweet, lasting memories.