Hershey’s Chocolate, Hershey’s Chocolate, It’s a Hershey’s Chocolate World…and when you are at Hershey Park in Hershey Pa it truly is! I lived in Hershey Pa for many years when my kids were young and it truly is the sweetest place on Earth. There is so much more to Hershey PA than just the amusement park–although when you tell people that you are going to Hershey they automatically think of roller coasters.
Now that I don’t live in Hershey anymore I still make sure to visit as often as I can since I live just a 2 hour drive away. I take my kids back and get to experience everything that Hershey has to offer with them.
Mention Hershey and everyone automatically thinks of Hersheypark and the park is really fun, no question about it! However there is so much more to Hershey than just the park.
#1 Tip: If you are planning on visiting Hershey and you are arriving the night before then make sure to take advantage of their twilight hours. You can actually go into the park the night before (up to 3 hours before closing ) on a single day ticket. This means that if you are going on Saturday you can visit the park Friday night for no extra charge. Lines are typically shorter in the evening and the temperatures are cooler so this is a great time to get into the park and ride the roller coasters and to figure out the layout of the park. This will help you save time the next day.
What to do:
Zoo America— Depending on the ages of your children I typically recommend that you visit Zoo America when you visit Hershey. Zoo America is fabulous for younger kids and because it is shaded in many places it is a great way for kids to relax and unwind from the hustle and bustle of the park. It isn’t a huge zoo so you can typically walk through in an hour or two and it is easily accessible from inside of the park. If you don’t feel like visiting Hersheypark you can purchase a ticket for just Zoo America as well.
Hershey Gardens–do you enjoy flowers and nature? Then you need to head to the Hershey Gardens where something is always in bloom! This gorgeous, large garden is a treat for nature lovers and offers one of the best views of Hershey. There is a fun Children’s Garden that your kids are sure to enjoy and during the summer you can visit the Butterfly House, where you can get up close and personal with butterflies. The Hershey Gardens also has many seasonal programs available so there is sure to be something going on no matter what time of year you go.
Hershey Trolley–hands down my favorite attraction in Hershey. The Trolley ride leaves from Chocolate World and takes you on a tour of the highlights of the life of Milton Hershey–and at each stop you get a piece of candy! This tour is very informative and kids love to be able to ride the trolley–and many a baby has been lulled to sleep by the rocking of the trolley.
Chocolate World–No visit to Hershey would be complete without a trip to Chocolate World. Make sure to take the free Chocolate World ride and have fun with the singing cows Harmony, Olympia and Gabby. Chocolate World is a great place to grab a quick lunch or dinner before you head into the park, you can stock up on all your favorite Hershey products and make sure to check out the 4D show as well. It is fun for everyone!
The Hershey Story–The Hershey Museum was built to tell the story of the man behind the town of Hershey–Milton Hershey. Learn about his life, his success and failures in the chocolate business and how he has impacted the lives of countless youth in PA. There is also a nice cafe in the Museum to grab a quick meal.
Where to stay:
The Hotel Hershey–The Hotel Hershey is a magnificent hotel overlooking the town of Hershey. It is a top notch, upscale facility with comfortable rooms, a fun indoor pool and a world class spa. It has multiple dining options on site and the food is fabulous. If you want to treat yourself and your family then the Hotel Hershey is the place to stay!
The Hershey Lodge–The Hershey Lodge is a family friendly hotel located in the heart of Hershey. This facility is HUGE and offers something for everyone in your family. Again there are multiple dining options available, a shuttle to the park and many family friendly events occur at the Lodge. Check the schedule of events and you can even meet up with your favorite Hershey characters in the lobby. There are nice indoor and outdoor pools, a game room and mini-golf so it is a fun place to stay.
Where to eat:
The Hotel Hershey Circular Dining room–this is a grand restaurant, yet still family friendly. They have an incredible breakfast buffet so if you are looking to fuel up for the day this is a great option.
The Bears Den–located at the Hershey Lodge it offers family friendly food options at affordable prices. With its noisy, casual atmosphere it is a great place to take the kids.
Soda Jerk–every time we go to Hershey this is where we go for a quick bite to eat. Located in Hummelstown just a few minutes outside of Hershey it offers good food in a casual, family friendly atmosphere. Prices are right, portions are a good size and they have a huge menu that offers something for everyone!
Where to shop:
Hershey Outlets–the Hershey Outlets are one of my favorite places to shop and I make sure to stop by whenever we are in town. There is a large selection of stores offering everything from kids apparel, to adult apparel, shoes, purses and more! Make sure to check it out!
Click on the links below to read about my visits to Hershey Park in Hershey Pa:
Looking to make some yummy treats that feature Hershey products?
Other chocolate news: