5. LANCASTER COUNTY, Southeastern Pennsylvania
The pastoral farmland that usually draws visitors to Amish country -- and takes them back a couple hundred years -- is temporarily upstaged by awesomely autumnal maple, oak and black gum leaves.
Take a hike!
At the 198-acre Trout Run Nature Preserve, you can hike several miles of heavily wooded trails. A local favorite is the trail marked by blue blazes (patches of color hand-painted on trees and rocks) that meander through a bird-filled bog to an old railroad tunnel.
The Southern Amish Countryside Covered Bridge Tour winds down foliage-flanked country roads, where you'll see farms, one-room schoolhouses and the tour's namesake: a series of old covered bridges.
A stop at Immergut Hand-Rolled Soft Pretzels (3537 Old Philadelphia Pike, 717-768-0657) is a must. Buttery and perfectly chewy, the pretzels are all made to order.
Kids will be psyched to stay at the Fulton Steamboat Inn (rooms from $80), a hotel designed to look like an old ship. After dinner, gather around the fire pit overlooking the duck- and koi-feeding pond.
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