Hershey & Gettysburg

Old May 5th, 2008, 04:27 PM
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Hershey & Gettysburg

My wife and I are planning a long weekend road trip from Detroit to Pennsylvania on Friday May 16 and returning home on Monday the 19th. The main purpose of the trip is to go for a first time visit to Gettysburg. I have also been advised to try and squeeze in Hershey and Lancaster-sounds like a lot to me. Can anyone advise me on a realistic itinerary ? How much time should we spend in Gettysburg to truly appreciate it and take it all in ? Also any recommendations for accomodations ? Any help would really be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old May 5th, 2008, 05:35 PM
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Well, if you don't have kids along, you can probably skip Hershey (is wife a chocolate addict? Do you like roller coasters?) It is a great-smelling town, though, so you might consider driving through it with the windows down.

You could spend a good long day in Gettysburg -- the visitors center (see the description of the battle with the light-up diorama map) and a driving/walking tour of battlefields are the two main essentials.

Maybe a couple hours and a meal in Lancaster -- it has the quaint Amish thing going on, with some olde fashioned shoppes, but if you want to visit an Amish farm, then try one of the nearby smaller towns.

But it would be fine to just see Gettysburg, if that's what interests you. You can also do some house tours/headquarters tours, and there are a dozen tiny museums.

Got no hotel recs, sorry.

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Old May 5th, 2008, 06:13 PM
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That's a lot for a long weekend, and they are not right on top of each other either. Gettysburg and environs is probably plenty. And there's always Boyd's Bear Factory if you have a longing for something terribly touristy.
I have not stayed there, but there is an historic hotel in Downtown Gettysburg that has been renovated by a national chain (Best Western, maybe?) that always looks really appealing to me. There are a number of other places in the area too.
We live close enough that it's a day trip for us, but if you are any kind of history buff you should find enough to do in a weekend. If you want more there is always the American Museum of the Civil War in Harrisburg, which would pair nicely with Gettysburg.
Lancaster and Hershey are very nice (I LOVE Hershey), but they might be better saved for another trip.
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Old May 5th, 2008, 06:36 PM
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Also, we visited an American President's residence while we were in Gettysburg. We really liked the tour, especially the house & the personal info. Now it is weird that I am not sure who it was (we've traveled so much), but I believe it was Eisenhower. Doesn't take that long, not that expensive, & enjoyable & informative.

Re: the battlefield - we have been there so many times & have never gotten thru the entire audio tour. I couldn't resist jumping out of the car to investigate further & read all of the signs, monuments, etc. So, it can take as long or as short as you desire!

We also took a guided tour thru the visitors' center. It was very good & we got to stand on big & little round top & listen to the history & even some info on the Gettysburg movie with Martin Sheen & Jeff Daniels.

There is a lunch buffet in the town, Pickett's, I believe it is called. Has lots of signed photos from the actors & movie items.

For us, we would spend the entire time in the Gettysburg area & forget Hershey (been there too).

Have fun.
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Old May 5th, 2008, 07:30 PM
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Good advice here. Also, are you aware that Gettysburg has a brand new Visitor's Center that just opened a couple of weeks ago? Unfortunately, the Cyclorama won't be open later in the year.
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Old May 6th, 2008, 06:04 AM
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Use to live within 45 min. of Gettysburg for half my life. I still fiind new things to explore when there. My Dad was quite an expertand would take us there on weekends when we were little. My DH loves it so much, he would like his ashes spread at Little Round Top. Spend your time in Gettysburg IMO. I love Hershey..but Gettysburg is so incredibly moving and profound.
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Old May 6th, 2008, 06:28 AM
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try to get the gettysburg tour cd or tape for your car before you get there. it is a great audio tour that you listen to as you drive the route. you can get out at the points of interest and follow along with the tape. gives you great information as to what you are looking at and what happened there rather than just looking at a big open field.
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Old May 7th, 2008, 02:56 PM
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Thanks everyone for your help=Gettysburg it is and skipping Hershey. Hotwire has some great hotel deals for Harrisburg so we will make that part of our trip. The CD for the car-can his be purchased when we arrive ?
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Old May 7th, 2008, 03:23 PM
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lindmar, your trip sounds great. We are planning this trip as part of a family reunion in July 09. Could you please share any tips when you get back?

I ask because DH is a Civil War buff and we are thinking of driving out one day early so we can spend two full days (one day on our own and one with the group) in Gettysburg, and then one day in Hershey (for the teens and their cousins). The reunion will be based in Harrisburg, but I think we'd also like to stay in Gettysburg the first night so we can walk around the battlefields early in the morning as well.

Have a nice trip!
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Old May 8th, 2008, 05:44 AM
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you can buy the tape for the car at the visitor's information center. if you use Ebay , often people are selling it there.
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Old May 8th, 2008, 08:46 AM
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I'm planning a few nights in Gettysburg this summer and have been looking into bed and breakfasts - I've never stayed in one, but some of these look fabulous:

http://www.bedandbreakfast.com/getty...nsylvania.html

gettysburg http://www.gettysburgbattlefield.com/index.htm
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Old May 13th, 2008, 06:18 AM
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We stayed at the Battlefield B&B a few years ago. We loved it although it is pretty far away from the town and in a very rural setting. The morning we were there a man dressed as a confederate soldier educated us about the battle and gave us a musket demonstration and the chance to fire a musket.
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Old May 13th, 2008, 06:40 AM
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lindmar
We stayed at the Historic Hotel the above poster mentioned and found the location to be great and accomodations good: http://www.hotelgettysburg.com/ also, if you are there on a Sat, there is a farmers market set up on the square which we found fun.

We also ate dinner at the Farnsworth Inn which is 'haunted' and also a B&B http://honeymoons.about.com/od/palod...sworth_inn.htm

We also took time to drive to Harper's Ferry which is about an hour and a half from Gettysburg and enjoyed our time there.

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Old May 13th, 2008, 07:01 AM
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If going to Gettysburg is your primary goal, then it doesn't make sense to drive the 50 miles from Gettysburg to Hershey. There is more than enough to see in Gettyburg for the 24 to 48 hours that you are likely to be there.

I think is Hershey is fun and a nice family town. But, I also have two young kids and our primary reason for going is Hershey Park. The Hotel Hershey can be nice but not, IMO, worthy of being a destination unless you want to tour their garden, golf, or use the spa. If you do go there, I suggest doing so on Saturday night and enjoy their Sunday brunch.

The chocolate factory is no longer open to the public and the replacement, Chocolate World, is really geared towards kids and merchandising.

If you have any interest in the Civil War, you could easily spend the entire weekend at Gettysburg. I've been twice, for day trips only, and have barely explored the Southern side of the battlefield and the First Day sites.

At Gettysburg, do yourself a favor and climb up the Little Roundtop to the marker that signals the "end of the line" where the 20th Maine was stationed.
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Old Sep 1st, 2008, 01:20 PM
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Gosh - I never did get back to this forum. Our vacation had to be postponed due to a last minute demand from work to cancel my vacation.This is the second time this year and it may be time for a new job. Anyways we have finally re-booked and are on our way to Gettysburg leaving Sept.6. We have 2 days booked at the Doubleday Inn in Gettysburg- Sept. 8 & 9.So I am looking for some advice on a scenic route for 6-7 hours on the 7th and the rest of the drive on the morning of the 8th. I have been told to pick up route 30-does anyone have experience with this drive and any recommendations where to stay ? I was also thinking of making a quick day trip to Washington DC on the 10th- is it worth going to ? Following that I would like to head towards Buffalo and cross over into Canada-again looking for a scenic drive. Anymore recommendations ? Thanks everyone for you help-again!!
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