Exploring Lancaster: A Quick Guide for Group Travel Planners

Welcome to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, a place steeped in history and culture. Whether you’re organizing a group tour for adults, students, or religious organizations, Lancaster has something to offer everyone. From its rich historical sites to its vibrant arts scene and scenic countryside, there’s no shortage of memorable experiences awaiting your group.

In this guide, we’ll take a detailed look at the must-visit destinations in Lancaster, carefully curated to suit group needs as well as their diverse interests. We’ll explore historical landmarks, cultural attractions, and more. Although we did split them up by interest, you can definitely mix and match from each category. So, let’s dive in and start planning an unforgettable trip to Lancaster!

Explore History

  • Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum: Step back in time and experience Pennsylvania German rural life at the Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum. This living history museum showcases authentic buildings and artifacts from the 18th and 19th centuries, providing visitors with a glimpse into the region’s agricultural and artisanal heritage.
  • Wheatland – Lancaster History: Wheatland, the former home of President James Buchanan, offers a fascinating insight into the life and times of one of America’s most enigmatic leaders. Tour the elegant mansion, explore the surrounding grounds, and learn about Buchanan’s presidency and his impact on American history.
  • Ephrata Cloister: Founded in the 18th century by German settlers seeking religious freedom, the Ephrata Cloister is a National Historic Landmark renowned for its distinctive architecture and spiritual heritage. Visitors can explore the meticulously preserved buildings, including the original meetinghouse and dormitory, and learn about the community’s unique way of life.
  • Historic Rock Ford: Nestled along the banks of the Conestoga River, Historic Rock Ford offers a glimpse into the life of General Edward Hand, a prominent figure in the Revolutionary War era. Tour the elegant Georgian mansion, stroll through the beautifully landscaped gardens, and immerse yourself in the stories of colonial America.
  • The Thaddeus Stevens & Lydia Hamilton Smith Center for History and Democracy: The Thaddeus Stevens & Lydia Hamilton Smith Center for History and Democracy will open in 2025 in Downtown Lancaster.While standing in the footprint of a documented Underground Railroad site, visitors will learn about slavery, resistance, and abolition in Lancaster County and along the Mason-Dixon Line.  The Center will address issues of slavery, freedom, and the continuing fight for equality in the United States through exhibits, immersive media experiences, and educational programs.
  • Historic Lancaster Walking Tour: Explore downtown Lancaster’s rich history on a guided walking tour. Learn about the city’s founding, its role in the Revolutionary War, and its diverse communities. Discover preserved architecture, significant landmarks, and local stories while immersing yourself in Lancaster’s vibrant culture.
  • National Watch & Clock Museum: Discover the fascinating world of horology at the National Watch & Clock Museum, which boasts a vast collection of timepieces from around the globe. From antique pocket watches to intricate grandfather clocks, visitors can explore the evolution of timekeeping and marvel at the craftsmanship behind each ticking masterpiece.

Amish & Farm Excursions

  • Aaron & Jessica’s Buggy Rides: Experience the picturesque countryside of Lancaster County from a traditional Amish buggy with Aaron & Jessica’s Buggy Rides. Guided tours offer insight into Amish culture, customs, and daily life, providing a memorable and educational experience for visitors of all ages.
  • Amish Experience: Immerse yourself in the fascinating world of the Amish at the Amish Experience, where interactive exhibits, multimedia presentations, and guided tours shed light on this unique and often misunderstood community. Learn about Amish traditions, beliefs, and values while gaining a deeper appreciation for their way of life.
  • Kreider Farm Tour: Discover the inner workings of a modern dairy farm at Kreider Farms, a family-owned operation that has been producing high-quality dairy products for generations. Guided tours offer behind-the-scenes access to the milking parlor, calf barn, and more, providing a fun and educational experience for visitors of all ages.
  • Eastland Alpacas: Delight in the adorable antics of these gentle creatures at Eastland Alpacas, a family-owned alpaca farm located in the heart of Lancaster County. Visitors can take guided tours of the farm, interact with the alpacas, and shop for luxurious alpaca products in the onsite store.
  • Countryside Road-Stand: Discover farm-fresh delights at Countryside Road-Stand. This quaint Amish operated roadside stand offers locally grown produce, homemade baked goods, and artisanal treats. From juicy strawberries to warm pies, it’s the perfect stop for food lovers and countryside enthusiasts alike.

Arts, Quilts and Shopping

  • The Quilt Shop at Miller’s: Browse a stunning selection of hand-stitched quilts and more at The Quilt Shop at Miller’s, where skilled Mennonite and Amish artisans showcase their intricate designs and craftsmanship. There is something for every quilting enthusiast to admire and enjoy. Open 7 days a week at The Shoppes at Miller’s, right next to Miller’s Smorgasbord.
  • Kitchen Kettle Village: Experience the charm of Pennsylvania Dutch Country at Kitchen Kettle Village, a bustling shopping destination renowned for its homemade jams, baked goods, and artisanal crafts. Explore quaint shops, sample delicious treats, and soak up the festive atmosphere of this beloved local landmark.
  • Bird-In-Hand Artisan Village: Discover the talents of local artisans at Bird-In-Hand Artisan Village, where craftsmen and craftswomen showcase their handmade creations in a picturesque rural setting. From pottery and woodworking to glassblowing and textiles, the village offers a diverse array of artisanal goods to admire and purchase.

Theater Experiences

  • Sight & Sound: Experience epic biblical stories brought to life on stage at Sight & Sound Theatre, a world-renowned theatrical venue known for its elaborate sets, stunning special effects, and live animals. From the story of Noah’s Ark to the life of Jesus Christ, each production offers a captivating and immersive theatrical experience for audiences of all ages.
  • American Music Theatre: Enjoy a night of entertainment at the American Music Theatre, where top-notch performers dazzle audiences with a diverse range of musical genres, from Broadway hits to country classics. Plus, you won’t want to miss their annual Christmas show.
  • Fulton Theatre: Immerse yourself in the magic of live theater at the historic Fulton Theatre, one of the oldest continuously operating theaters in America. From Broadway musicals to classic dramas, the Fulton offers a diverse lineup of productions year-round, ensuring there’s always something exciting to see on stage.
  • Magic & Wonder Show: Experience the thrill of illusion and magic at the Magic & Wonder Show, where master magicians and illusionists perform jaw-dropping feats of prestidigitation and mind-bending tricks. Perfect for audiences of all ages, the show promises to delight and amaze with its spellbinding spectacle.

Trains & Railroads Enthusiast

  • Strasburg Rail Road: Embark on a nostalgic journey aboard the Strasburg Rail Road, a historic steam-powered locomotive that traverses the picturesque countryside of Lancaster County. Enjoy breathtaking views of rolling farmland, quaint villages, and iconic covered bridges as you ride in vintage passenger cars dating back to the 19th century.
  • Rail Road Museum of PA: Delve into the rich history of American railroading at the Rail Road Museum of PA, where exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays chronicle the evolution of locomotives and railroads from the early 19th century to the present day. From steam engines to diesel locomotives, the museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the golden age of rail travel.

Christian Tours

  • Biblical Tabernacle Reproduction at Mennonite Life Visitor Center: Experience the ancient world of the Old Testament at the Biblical Tabernacle Reproduction, a faithful recreation of the sacred tent described in the Bible. Guided tours provide insight into the rituals and traditions of ancient Israel, offering a unique opportunity for spiritual enrichment and reflection.

Plus, check out Ephrata Cloister, Amish Experience and Sight & Sound.

School Groups

  • Lancaster Science Factory: Ignite curiosity and inspire learning at the Lancaster Science Factory, a hands-on science museum dedicated to fostering STEM education and exploration. With interactive exhibits, workshops, and demonstrations, the museum provides a dynamic learning environment where students can engage with science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in fun and innovative ways.
  • Refreshing Mountain: Escape the hustle and bustle of city life and reconnect with nature at Refreshing Mountain, an outdoor adventure center nestled in the scenic woodlands of Lancaster County. From ziplining and challenge courses to hiking and wildlife viewing, the center offers a wide range of activities designed to promote teamwork, leadership, and outdoor recreation.
  • Cherry Crest Adventure Farm: Experience farm-themed fun and excitement at Cherry Crest Adventure Farm, where families and students can enjoy a variety of attractions, including corn mazes, wagon rides, and pedal kart races. With interactive games, educational exhibits, and hands-on activities, the farm offers a unique blend of entertainment and agriculture education. Great for elementary students.
  • Turkey Hill Experience: Turkey Hill Experience offers an engaging and interactive opportunity for group tours to explore the world of dairy production. Visitors can learn about the process of ice cream making, milk bottling, and tea processing through hands-on exhibits and activities. It’s an educational and fun experience suitable for all ages. This is located mid-way between Gettysburg and Lancaster so it can be a good break in travel.

Plus, consider Lancaster History’s Wheatland, Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum, Ephrata Cloister, Amish Experience, The Thaddeus Stevens & Lydia Hamilton Smith Center for History and Democracy (coming in 2025) as part of your Lancaster County visit with students as well.


From its rich history and cultural heritage to its scenic countryside and vibrant arts scene, Lancaster offers a diverse array of attractions and activities for group travelers of all interests and ages. Whether exploring historical landmarks, learning about Amish culture, or enjoying live theater, Lancaster promises an unforgettable experience for your group.

So, gather your fellow travelers and start planning your next group trip to Lancaster. With so much to see and do, you’re sure to create memories that will last a lifetime in this charming Pennsylvania destination. Plus, don’t forget to book your dining reservations early whether that is a traditional Family-Style Meal at Plain & Fancy or a PA Dutch buffet at Miller’s Smorgasbord. Both are great for groups of all sizes. Request your reservation today.