How to have a Fantastic Time as an Amish Tourist
Tour Authentic Amish Living, Lancaster, PA
As an Amish tourist, Lancaster Pennsylvania is a great place to take your kids. This area is home for one of the largest Amish communities in the United States of America. Lancaster, PA is the perfect place to visit this interesting and rare community. Many visitors come here to learn more and also have some unique experiences based on the Amish culture.
As you might already know, the Amish are very private people, as such, finding an authentic experience is a challenge. This is why we are writing this article, as an Amish tourist it will point you to the best places and help take the hassle out of boring research.
As such, from visiting the original Amish farms to taking some buggy rides or doing shopping at an authentic Amish quilt shop market, you can do all of these. Just scroll through the article below to find some wholesome family fun.
We have gathered all the information you need, so once you reach this destination, you will know how to peek into this Amish way of life.
Things to do in Lancaster Amish Country
Here are some of the most authentic, yet exciting things to do when traveling to Lancaster, PA. If you want to experience the Amish culture, check these activities:
The Amish Village
If you want to learn about today’s Amish way of living, you need to go on a guided tour of an authentic 1840’s Amish farmhouse. Once you are enrolling in this farmhouse tour, you will have the chance to explore the 12-acre village grounds.
The Amish staff will be kind enough to explain to you everything you need to know about this village. You can also meet Mr. Ed, the horse, and then have a photo of a real Amish buggy.
The activities here won’t end only with this, but visitors can also have lots of fun while learning more about this area during the authentic Amish lessons. These lessons take place in the one-room schoolhouse and during the summer months, you will be lucky enough to learn all this information from an actual Amish school teacher.
As such, you will have a real Amish lesson. On the other hand, if you will go to Lancaster PA during Christmas or nearby, you will see how the Amish decorate their houses for Christmas and also how they enjoy the Amish Holiday Tradition Tour.
All these decorations are mesmerizing and will captivate all the eyes. Moreover, visitors can try the Amish delights, as well as some of the traditional Amish Christmas gifts. Don’t go back home with your hands empty, and buy some holiday items for the loved ones.
The Amish Experience at Plain & Fancy Farm
If there are visitors who want to learn and also interact with the Amish community, they should go to the Plain & Fancy Farm. This place offers a complete cultural interpretive center to everyone who wants to experience how Amish people work and live.
Before going there, you should ask the provider of these tours about the schedule, as well as the prices. If you want to offer someone a unique experience, you should know there are gift cards for future trips.
These gift cards are also accessible to a free-on-year subscription to the Amish Country New magazine.
Also in here, you will find the “Jacob’s Choice” Amish Experience Theater, which is very interesting to visit, considering that it mainly focuses on the Amish today. Of course, everything is presented through the eyes of the traditional Fisher family.
Here you will have the chance to see historical scenes, recreated with multiple screens. The exhibition comes with special effects, as well as some ghostly images of the most important historical figures.
Also in this site, you will find the Amish Country Homestead & One-Room School, which is actually the only authentic Lancaster County “Heritage Site” Amish house tour, which happens all throughout Lancaster County.
Mennonite Information Center
If you need much more information about the Amish and Mennonites communities, then go to the Information Center, which will offer the tourists lots of insights about the life and beliefs of these communities.
For instance, you can have the Mennonite Step-on-Guides, which are made especially for personal tours all along with the Amish country. The tourists have access to the movie and exhibit through the area as well.
This center has lots of maps, informational brochures, as well as any other information about the area. You will also find books, as well as the unique Ten Thousand Village gifts.
Old Windmill Farm
You cannot miss either the Old Windmill Farm, which is an authentic working Amish dairy farm, right in Lancaster County, PA. As long as you will visit this farm, you will be able to do all the activities below:
- Petting farm;
- Guided tour for one full day of working in the farm;
- Picking fresh flowers during the perfect season;
- Milk a cow;
- Feed pygmy goats;
- Gather eggs;
- Feed pygmy goats.
How can you better experience the Amish lifestyle than traveling just like them? Once coming to visit this community, you can travel with a horse or take the buggy rides all through the countryside.
Just for you to be well documented, there are some places, such as A is for Amish, AAA Buggy Rides, and Aaron & Jessica’s which are specialized in offering short rides through the countryside.
You will have a personal Amish or Mennonite drive right at the reigns or while taking longer rides or a buggy tour on an Amish farm.
The buggy will stop from time to time, so you will have the chance to chat with the admins of different Amish farms, buy some sweet treats, such as whoopie pies or cookies, even learn about how these farms and people can do their work without the help of electricity.
Along with these buggy rides, you can ask whatever you want, as people here encourage visitors to ask for more about their way of living.
Amish-owned shops and Farmers Markets
Amish communities are well-known for their quilt and fabric shops all around the county, so it’s totally worth it to stop there if you want to buy some specially crafted quilts.
For instance, you can have a stop at Hannah’s Quilts and Fisher’s Quilts, where you can learn everything you have to know about crafting the quilts from the makers themselves.
If your desire is to have and taste some freshly-picked meals, then make sure you pass the Amish families market stands as well, and also the roadside stands. You can find these around almost any corner on the backroads.
Mentzer Road South of New Holland
Speaking of delicious food, you need to try the tasty Ice Cream from the Old Order Mennonite Farm. This ice cream is special, as it is made of the farm’s own cow’s milk. You can find a sample of their delicious desert from their stand at Kitchen Kettle Village too.
Amish Country Attractions & Tours
As we have previously mentioned, the best way to have an authentic Amish experience is by taking one of the farm tours. Some of them are open to the public and are also organizing some tours for them.
During these guided trips, you can help the people from the farm to do their daily activities, such as milking the cows, gathering eggs, feeding a calf may be, and many more. Just ask for these activities and they will be happy to help you experience them.
Let’s not forget about the countryside tours, which are actually some bus tours. They will pick you up from an exact place and take you through the backroads. You will have a knowledgeable guide, who will share with you lots of information all along the way.
They are also prepared for answering most of the questions about the Amish communities. For instance, there are the Amish Village and Amish Farm & House bus tours which can be paired if you wish, so you can have a guided or self-guided tour.
There is also this VIP program, which works after the “Visit-in-Person” model. This is a 3-hour tour, which enables you the chance to have more authentic and meaningful connections with the Amish people.
Best time to Visit Lancaster Amish Country
There is no actual best time to visit Lancaster Amish Country but it all depends on your preferences. So what are you willing to see and do?
First of all, you should consider that the biggest crowds during the year are in July and August. And this time of the year, farmers’ markets are in full progress. On the other hand, May and June do have the best weather, it’s not too cold, it’s not too hot.
But there are not so many local products available for tourists. However, March and April are the least crowded, and these months have a lot of farming activities, such as plowing. The colder weather might not be so pleasant though, and not all the activities and attractions will be open during these times.
We would recommend you to go at the end of summer, the beginning of the fall, so you will enjoy all the attractions and also taste the crop.
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