Posted: 02/13/2023 | by Olivia

Nostalgic Experiences in Lancaster County, PA

Take a step back in time and relive the good old days when you visit Lancaster. Experience things that will illicit a sense of nostalgia for you and your loved ones.

1. Strasburg Rail Road

America’s oldest continuously operating railroad – the Strasburg Rail Road – is like taking a step back in time. Take a ride on an authentic steam train in one of their several accommodation choices. If you’re looking for an even more interactive experience, book one of their experiential train rides like their Escape Room, Murder Mystery event, Legacy of Sleep Hollow event, and many more. Enjoy the rustic resurgence of industrial Pennsylvania at the Rail Road.

2. The Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

With more than 100 locomotives and railroad cars on display, there’s no shortage of nostalgia at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. Learn more about the role railroads played and get an up-close view of some of the original cars on America’s oldest operating railroad.

3. National Watch & Clock Museum

The National Watch & Clock Museum features 13,000 timepieces, the largest collection in North America. They say visiting the museum is the closest you can get to time travel. From a table clock dating back to 1570, there are generations of watch and clock evolutions and advancements on display.

4. Barry’s Car Barn

Barry’s Car Barn is an antique car museum that features American muscle cards from the 50s, 60s, and 70s. The cars are kept in pristine condition and are the perfect backdrop for photos. The museum’s collection is sure to feature at least one car that makes memories come flooding back to you.

5. Vintage Candy Shop

Remember when candy cost a nickel? Vintage Candy Shop is your one-stop-destination for all the old school candy you can eat. Not everything in the shop is 5 cents, but there is a collection of candies for that price. In addition, there are novelty candies, caramels & toffees, fun and traditional classics, plus so much more. Come see all of the options for yourself, and don’t forget your sweet tooth!

6. Lancaster Central Market

Experience nostalgia when you step inside America's oldest farmers' market and shop at Lancaster Central Market in Lancaster City. Since the 1730's farmers have been bringing meats and vegetables to the market and many of the present-day stand holders have been "on market" since the early 1900's.

7. Fulton Theatre

The Fulton is Lancaster County's professional regional theatre, bringing Broadway caliber musicals, comedies, and dramas to both visitors and residents. The Victorian architecture, combined with the fact that this National Historic Landmark is also America's oldest, continuously operating theatre, makes the Fulton Theatre a destination sure to illicit the nostalgia of a classic theatre experience.

8. D.J’s Taste of the 50s

In Lancaster, dining out can be a whole experience in and of itself. If you’re looking for a unique and nostalgic option, you’ve found it. The aesthetic 50’s-style furnishings, menu selections and outstanding service – brings back the feeling of the “good old days”. Whether or not you experienced the 50’s firsthand, D.J.’s Taste of the 50’s is a great dining option that all ages will enjoy.

9. Ticket To the Past – Unforgettable Journeys

Step inside the Gettysburg Lincoln Railroad Station™ where U.S. history was made. Journey back to 1863 in this new immersive virtual reality experience. Find yourself at the center of the bustling station when it served as a hospital, supply lifeline and presidential arrival platform. During your virtual reality experience, you can choose to follow one of the three historic figures featured on a virtual journey to the station during the Battle of Gettysburg and its aftermath. Talk about taking a step back in time!

10. Lititz, PA

Visit the quaint small town of Lititz for a nostalgic and entertaining day out! Walk Main Street and pop in and out of the locally owned shops. Here, you can find one-of-a-kind handmade items. Stop into Julius Sturgis Pretzel Bakery, America’s first commercial pretzel bakery, to learn about its history. You can also become and Official Pretzel Twister
by participating in their fun, hands-on activity. Stay the night at the Wilbur Tapestry Hotel for a truly nostalgic experience. The hotel is full of history and once housed the now-closed Wilbur Chocolate Company factory. They even preserved original features, including the exposed exterior brick and somehow manage to keep the lobby smelling like chocolate! Right across the street sits the Wilbur Chocolate Store – a Pennsylvania-grown, family-founded brand, offering small-batch confections, chocolate gifts, and—its defining creation—silky smooth Wilbur Buds.

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Fun for the whole family in Lancaster. Photo Credit: Discover Lancaster /  Gabe McMullen

Lancaster is a great place to visit for all, so why not experience this cross-generational destination together!

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