This post and our hosted stay is in partnership with The Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau. All opinions are my own. You can read my full Disclosure Policy here.
If you live in the Philadelphia Greater Metropolitan Area or are within driving distance of the Pocono Mountains region of Pennsylvania and have not experienced a week-long stay or a long weekend, you are missing out on beauty, adventure, relaxation and so much more! I’m sharing all the basics on planning your trip: things to do, where to stay, and why this is the place your family will make amazing memories!
Planning A Pocono Mountains Vacation
When I think of family-friendly places to visit that don’t require a ton of planning and won’t break the bank, the Pocono Mountains is at the top of the list. There is just SO much to do in the Pocono Region, literally something for everyone! The area is brimming with activities, attractions and festivals every season of the year, plus skiing, mountain biking, fishing, golfing, swimming, NASCAR and so much more.
Why Visit The Pocono Mountains?
The Pocono Region encompasses 4 counties over 2,400 square miles. Northeast Pennsylvania’s Carbon, Monroe, Pike and Wayne counties are home to rolling mountain terrain, breathtakingly beautiful waterfalls, thriving woodlands, 150 lakes, 170 miles of winding rivers and 261 miles of hiking trails via 126 trails.
You will find world-class destination spas (Woodloch Lodge is seriously amazing – my husband and I were there recently!), family friendly resorts (Skytop, Silver Birches, Woodloch and more) and gorgeous lakes (Lake Harmony, Lake Wallenpaupack and about 50 other hidden gems) to boat and fish on, incredible hiking trails, even the cutest zoo I have ever seen.
So why plan your next family vacation in the Poconos? Because there is something everyone in your family will love!
Things To Do in the Pocono Mountains
There’s no shortage of activities to keep you happy in the Poconos, but here are some that you won’t want to miss.
National and State Parks
Take a breath of fresh air. Explore the 2,400 square miles of natural areas in the Pocono Mountains including nine state parks, two national parks, and hundreds of acres of state game lands. These parks are a preservation of land perfect for hiking, horseback riding, camping, swimming, fishing, and picnicking.
Whitewater rafting, kayaking, canoeing, and inner tubing down the Delaware River and Lehigh River have long been popular activities to soak up the summer sun while enjoying quality time disconnected from the everyday hustle to reconnect with family and friends. Boating and jet skiing on Lake Wallenpaupack, stand paddle boarding, fishing and paddle boating on the smaller lakes or just going in for a swim are some of our favorite water activities!
Adventure parks are becoming an increasingly popular activity in the Pocono Mountains, containing family-friendly activities like ropes courses, all-season tubing lanes, mountain coasters, climbing walls and zip lines. OR for an no-cost day of fun, hike one of the many waterfall trails sprinkled throughout the Poconos. Who know what magic you may find!
Indoor and Outdoor Water Parks
Water Parks are the perfect place to cool off on a hot day. Explore water slides, rides, and attractions under the summer sky. And with a collection of indoor water parks in the Pocono Mountains, the fun doesn’t stop when it’s a winter or rainy day!
Choose to rent a lakefront home or woodsy home for your family vacation, or choose from one of many amazing resorts. The Poconos will not disappoint!
Places to Stay on your Pocono Mountains Vacation
There are tons of options here, but we’ve got a few stand-outs to suggest to get you started:
Built in the 1920’s, Skytop Lodge is a breathtaking piece of architecture. Families continue to return year after year, generation after generation and I see why! Located on 5,500 acres, Skytop has activities scheduled throughout the day and night, has an Adventure Area which has paintball, tree top obstacle courses, skeet shooting and zip lines, skiing and more! Shuttles take you wherever you want to go on the property, including over 30 amazing hiking trails, some with waterfalls and all trails are clearly marked. They even have a naturalist that runs guided walks. If you enjoy golf, they even have an award-winning golf course.
The private swimming lake on Skytop’s property has a floating trampoline, slide and obstacle course and this year they added one of the popular floating “blob’s that kids love to bounce each other off of. They also have an indoor and an outdoor pool. Skytop has 3 restaurants, a tea room and a deli each with delicious menu offerings, plus a large multi-room bar area complete with antique books lining the walls. Stay at the Lodge, which is hotel-like or in one of the streamside cottages.
The Silver Birches Resort is the only resort ON Lake Wallenpaupack. Stay in one of the newly renovated cottages, bunk houses, guest rooms or houses. Play all day on the lake on paddle boards, kayaks, canoes. Pocono Adventure Sports, the lake’s premier place to rent boats, wave-runners and more, comes on-site with parasailing fun as well. Later, gather in the evening for champagne toast and a lakeside fire. The setting is stunning. Located on the property is their restaurant The Dock, which offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner plus a fun “Lake Break” Happy Hour from 4-6pm. The outdoor dining area was just renovated and is gorgeous. A favorite there is the Chicken Caesar Salad Pizza!
Rent a lakefront or lake access home on Lake Wallenpaupack
Lake Wallenpaupack is the 3rd largest lake in Pennsylvania (52 miles of shoreline and 13 miles or lake). Boat, jet ski, get pulled on tubes, fish or swim. You will love this area! Nearby is Claws and Paws, a zoo in the woods. It’s such a cute place! Homeaway and VRBO have a great selection of rentals for this area.
This is a hidden gem and an a great adult only escape! Go with mom, your sisters or as a couple. The food is incredible, the accommodations top notch and the amenities, treatments and classes are memorable. Rated by Conde Nast as one of the country’s top destination spas, one trip and you will fall in love! Body scrubs, massages, facials, power napping classes, snowshoeing, ice fishing, forest bathing, pilates and cooking classes are just a small sample of what you can enjoy while at The Lodge at Woodloch! I have TONS of photo and video from my recent stay here.
Fun for the whole family! A huge resort tucked away in the Pocono’s a la Dirty Dancing style! Families compete in optional activities and medal throughout the week. Daily activities, the gorgeous private lake and all its toys as well as all kinds of additional things to do like indoor rifle shooting, rock wall climbing, go kart racing and more keep the kids active. They even have a cool teen lounge where the older kids hang out and evening entertainment shows the whole family will enjoy!
The options are almost endless in the Poconos! When are you planning your visit?!
Pocono Mountains visitor information is available online at PoconoMountains.com or by phone at 800-POCONOS (800-762-6667). Follow @PoconoTourism on Twitter to stay current with up-to-date information. Established in 1934, the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau is a private, non-profit, membership organization. The Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau is the official destination marketing organization for the four counties of Wayne, Pike, Monroe, and Carbon in Northeastern Pennsylvania.