The city of Scranton is often overlooked by tourists in the state of Pennsylvania. This is unfortunate because there are many things to do in Scranton PA, and it deserves more attention! In this blog post, we will discuss 13 things you can do when visiting Scranton PA that will make your trip a lot more fun. Whether it’s exploring a museum or going on a hike, these things to do in Scranton PA offers something for everyone.
Why should you Visit Scranton PA?
A city with history, culture, and charm that’s often overlooked by travelers simply looking for bigger cities.
In Scranton PA you will find a real sense of community amongst the locals, and they’re always happy to chat about what their hometown has to offer. In the city, you can enjoy outdoor amenities such as biking on Rail-to-Trail pathways, hiking in the Appalachian Trail corridor, or sitting outside in one of many parks throughout.
You can also explore our historic district, where buildings from more than 100 years ago still stand strong today against time and major fires over the years which have caused great destruction but left a better sense of history in its wake. We hope these reasons inspire you to visit this underrated Pennsylvania gem – we know it did for us.
1. Everhart Museum
The Everhart Museum is a museum in downtown Scranton. It was named for prominent physician Dr. Isaiah Fawkes Everhart, who gifted the city with what is now the Everhart Museum in 1907.
The museum houses exhibits featuring art, science, and natural history. The museum provides hands-on learning events for K-12 students as well as summer camps and adult education courses.
In September, it hosts the annual Farm to Table meal, which features local produce. It is open daily, with the exception of Wednesdays, from February through December, and it is closed in January for maintenance.
2. Electric City Trolley Museum
Because of its passenger trolley line, the first in the state of Pennsylvania, Scranton was dubbed “The Electric City” in the late 1880s. The Electric City Trolley Museum, which is located in the city of Scranton, Pennsylvania, today strives to preserve the history of the railway line.
There are several models of trolleys and railroads, headlights, railway lights, mine train equipment, a restored trolley car, and an interactive trolley exhibit for youngsters. The museum houses a functioning trolley car that travels the route beginning at the museum and going through several historical locations. It is open seven days a week, with the exception of major holidays.
3. Lackawanna Coal Mine Tour
It would be incorrect to denigrate the importance of coal to Scranton, which is often referred to as “The Electric City.” The Lackawanna Coal Mine Tour takes you into an actual coal mine.
While it isn’t in use any longer, you can still see how miners used to operate. Goodbye to the bright blue sky, and welcome to a coal mine that plunges you 300 feet below ground, dating back more than 160 years.
You’ll see and hear things you’ve never seen or heard before. This is one of Scranton’s most popular tourist destinations, especially if you’re from the coal industry. Few locations in the world provide as much excitement as a Lackawanna Coal Mine Tour.
The trips are offered from April 1 through November 30, with the exception of Easter and Thanksgiving. Adults pay $10 for admission, whereas seniors and military personnel pay $9.50. Children aged three to 12 are charged $7.50.
4. Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den
The Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den is home to a slew of exotic creatures, many of which have fins and scales. It’s what you’ll see when you care about animals, no matter how fuzzy they are.
The Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den is located in the Marketplace at Steamtown, a downtown shopping center. It’s an underwater experience like no other. It takes you on an exciting tour of the ocean with its fish, octopi, sharks, and more.
Snakes, lizards, and tortoises are just a few of the reptiles and amphibians that may be seen at the reptile house. At the same time, they offer feedings, which demonstrates how enormous some of these animals’ appetites are.
It’s a lot of fun to visit the Electric City Aquarium & Reptile Den. If you’re visiting Scranton with your children this weekend, make a point of taking them here. It’s open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m.
5. Steamtown National Historic Site
As you enter the city, keep an eye out for a puff of puffy steam or the harsh whistle of a train racing across the bridge. A 30-minute narrated journey in an authentic commuter coach from the early 1920s-30s along with the wind from the Lackawanna River takes visitors along for the ride.
Scranton’s Lackawanna County is home to a museum dedicated to the steam engines that give Scranton its second “Steamtown” moniker. In the mid-nineteenth century, Scranton was the country’s greatest iron production center. People flock to visit this national park nowadays, eager to learn about the bygone train era.
It is free to visit and is located near Lackawanna Avenue. The location is jam-packed with antique relics, hands-on activities for kids, preserved railway cars, and fascinating stories about the city’s history told by local rangers, short films, and more. For those who are interested in seeing the remnants of the Lackawanna Iron & Steel Company’s iron furnaces, they are also close by.
6. Montage Mountain
There’s always stuff to do at Montage Mountain, no matter what season you come. Ski, snowboard, or tube on the slopes of Pennsylvania in the winter! With all of you and your family, take a journey to Scranton. There are 26 trails for beginners, intermediates, and experts to enjoy. Prepare for a plethora of new options in the summer.
The Water Park at Montage Mountain is filled with a gentle wave pool, lazy river, and winding slides for hours of fun. There’s even a zip line! Climb to the top of their five-story tower on the ski lift to experience the ZipRider (the highest point in Northeast Pennsylvania), which soars 50 miles per hour over lovely terrain.
Rent your own private cabana, dine at their restaurant, or quench your thirst with a cold drink from the bar to make the most of each day. There’s always music and events going on, such as a fall wine festival, for year-round enjoyment.
7. Take Photos of Vibrant Murals
There are no street art pieces in Scranton, but there are a couple of bright murals to see while in town. According to what I’ve heard, more murals will be added soon as a result of the Northeast Art Project. The SCRANTON Mural is the first one you’ll encounter. This one may be found at Courthouse Square, on the side of Levels Bar and Grill on Linden Street.
The pastel-colored “The Electric City” mural is the second must-see artwork. You may see it as you drive by or park (briefly) at the historic Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel while traveling through Scranton.
For a fantastic shot of this one, park on the grass beside the chain link fence. It’s a lot safer than attempting to shoot while driving by on the road below.
8. Choke Creek Falls
One of the most beautiful areas in Lackawanna County is Choke Creek Falls. Choke Creek Falls is located in the southern portion of Lackawanna County. This gorgeous waterfall is little-known outside of the region, but it should be on every outdoor enthusiast’s list.
Pinchot State Forest, which covers a large portion of the southern border of Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania, is home to Choke Creek Falls. Choke Creek Falls is one of my favorite waterfalls in northeastern Pennsylvania, and it’s tucked away in Pinchot State Forest.
The waterfall is 20 feet tall over two drops, which are around 10 feet apart. It’s at least as broad as it is tall.
Choke Creek Falls is located in Pinchot State Forest, which also includes Seven Tubs and Rattlesnake Falls. (Note: Prior to its renaming, this forest was known as Lackawanna State Forest.) Choke Creek Falls is found within the Thornhurst Tract of the forest, which contains several distinct areas.
The walk to Choke Creek Falls is 3/4 of a mile through this lovely wood. It’s mostly on abandoned roads, but the forest isn’t diminished in beauty.
9. Rattlesnake Falls
Waterfalls, regardless of size or renown, are always some of the most stunning attractions to visit.
Rattlesnake Falls, nestled in Pinchot State Forest in Spring Brook Township, is what the ideal tourist destinations should be. It’s well worth the trek to see this piece of natural beauty. Reaching Rattlesnake Falls isn’t all that difficult.
Keep your ears open for the sound of water gushing out. The thrill of discovery is still there, and it’s easy to imagine yourself living in a loft with a view like this one.
You may feel like an explorer as you feast your eyes on the stunning sights of an uncharted location. With how incredible Rattlesnake Falls is, it’s easy to be knocked off your feet.
This is also a wonderful option if you’re seeking romantic things to do in Scranton. It’s an attraction that will make you smile and cry as you appreciate how beautiful nature is.
10. Anthracite Heritage Museum
The significance of coal to Scranton, Pennsylvania, has previously been discussed, but the unique importance of anthracite coal must not be discounted. Anthracite Heritage Museum is one of the finest places to learn about coal mining. It’s a hallmark of all-time great Scranton attractions.
You’ll learn about the importance of anthracite coal to the region as a whole. Learn about the impact immigration had on coal mining, as well as miners’ tales, while you tour the Anthracite Heritage Museum. There are several amazing things from this era, including an antique lace machine.
Visiting the Anthracite Heritage Museum is a must-do activity in Scranton, Pennsylvania, especially if you’re interested in the history of mining and its workers. The museum is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., and on Sundays from 12 p.m. until 5 p.m…
11. Nay Aug Park
You may forget you’re still in the city of Scranton while visiting Nay Aug Park. This is the city’s most extensive park, and it makes a huge difference. This park has been planned so well that it utilizes every bit of this incredible plot of land.
This park has a lot of great free activities on offer. Prepare to see a waterfall when walking one of its paths. There’s also some swimming going on in the summer. Some enormous water slides and a massive treehouse are also available at Nay Aug Park.
Traveling to Nay Aug Park is a genuine pleasure, and it illustrates how Scranton is one of the finest Pennsylvania vacation destinations. The Everhart Museum is also located here. They stay open all day, from noon to 6 p.m.
12. Lucchi Family Wine Cellars
For those who enjoy Italian wine, Lucchi Family Wine Cellars is the place to go. Robert Lucchi, the winemaker’s father, migrated from Bologna, Italy, to this area in the early 1900s, and today he continues the family tradition of winemaking in the lush hills of NEPA.
The original vines, established in the 1970s and still producing barrel after barrel of Concord Estate wine, are now being cultivated. This winery is a quick drop-in for a tasting of local grapes, sure to please both dry and sweet drinkers alike.
13. Scranton Cultural Center
The Scranton Cultural Center, with its large black doors, intricate stone mosaics, and Neo-Gothic architecture, resembles a magnificent temple in reality. Originally constructed as the Masonic Temple and Scottish Rite Cathedral in the early 1930s to serve as Scranton’s major arts venue, this historical building on North Washington Avenue now serves as the city’s cultural center.
The temple has been used today as an event venue, with national Broadway, dance, concert, and comedy tours in residence. Musical greats such as Frank Sinatra, Barry Manilow, and Britney Spears have visited the center over the years, but it welcomes both national and local artists alike.
The center’s vintage theater, beneath its artfully-dressed ceilings and surrounding antique craftsmanship, provides a performance from the vaulted seats. Make a point of browsing their calendar to save some seats at this famous cultural center.
In this post, we’ve highlighted 13 of the best things to do in Scranton PA. Whether you’re looking for a new experience or something that will make you smile and cry as you appreciate how beautiful nature is, there’s plenty here for everyone. From museums like Anthracite Heritage Museum to parks like Nay Aug Park, these places are sure to please visitors of all ages with their variety of offerings.
Visiting the Scranton Cultural Center is one of our favorite things to do in Scranton. You will love its Neo-Gothic architecture and vintage theater, making it an ideal place for a fun night out with friends or family during your trip.
We hope you’ll enjoy these 13 great ideas on what to do in Scranton PA!