Lancaster, PA

Hiking Spots you Don't Have to Travel Out of Town for in Lancaster, PA

Melissa Frost
Photo by Sara Melissa Frost

Looking to get one last hike in before the winter cold kicks in? There are actually several places within the county suitable for a hike. Pennsylvania Dutch Country is more than just farmland. The stunning fall foliage and the slightly cooler breeze make this time of the year ideal for hikes.

Heritage trail

Pictured above is Landis Woods. Landis Woods at 69.9 acres, is one of the Township's largest tracts of natural undeveloped land. Here, you'll find the mile-long Manheim Heritage Trail, which was officially opened to the public in the summer of 2010. Part of a network of greenways that Manheim Township is developing, the paved, multi-use trail begins at a parking lot off Landis Valley Road about 1/2 mile west of the Landis Valley Museum. The trail winds through serene woodlands, passing between suburban subdivisions and the Landis Woods to Delp Road, where it turns east, running alongside the road back to Landis Valley Road, ending approximately a quarter-mile east of where it starts.

Warwick to Ephrata

The Warwick to Ephrata Rail-Trail extends 7.5 miles through villages, farmland, and forested areas.  The trail features 8 access points with parking and several restroom stops. Historic downtown Ephrata and Lititz bookend the trail, making it a 15-mile round-trip.

This trail is very popular for walkers and runners and bicyclists year-round and skiers in the winter.  The trail features a mild grade running across paved and unpaved sections. If you're up for a workout in the beautiful scenery, this nature experience is worth a try.

Hike along the river

The Conestoga Greenway Trail runs along the Conestoga River. If you prefer walking on a paved, well-maintained and mostly flat path, this one is ideal. There are also several benches along the trail where you can take a break. If you're bringing children, this trail is very kid-friendly with not too many hills and not too physically hard.

The Conestoga Greenway Trails follows the river on one side and the other side, you see varied nature. The Lancaster Inter-Municipal Committee completed the Conestoga Greenway Plan in 1999, and the purpose of the plan is to provide for active and passive recreation, education, and environmental preservation along the Conestoga.

Turkey Hill, scenic overlook

The Turkey Hill Trail begins at the Manor Township trailhead of the Enola Low Grade Rail Trail and quickly climbs and traverses along a ridge above the Susquehanna River. During this trail, you'll be met with several scenic views. Starting at the Turkey Hill Nature Preserve, the trail is 3.7 miles in length with the option to return 2.5 miles by hiking the Enola Low Grade Rail Trail north back to the Preserve. Halfway through you'll find a crossing of Mann’s Run that requires the hiker to get their feet wet which provides the view of a gorgeous waterfall.

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Journalist and writer. I cover local stories + food, mostly from PA.

Lititz, PA

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