Lancaster County

Lancaster County is in Pennsylvania Dutch Country. It is noted for its high Amish population, countryside, Pennsylvania Dutch food and crafts and historic Lancaster city and other towns.

Baumgardener's Covered Bridge in Martic Township

Cities

Other destinations

Amish towns have colorful names, most are unintentionally humorous.

Understand

The Market House in the Borough of Columbia

The Amish are a community of Christian Anabaptists, related to the Mennonites and Church of the Brethern. The name "Pennsylvania Dutch" is actually a mispronunciation of "Deutsch" or German. The Anabaptists originally came from Switzerland and were welcomed to Pennsylvania by William Penn and his descendents.

Although Lancaster county thrives on tourism, the Amish community does not particularly like visitors, tourists, or sightseers. They are generally an intensely private religious community doing their best to go about living according to the ways of their religion and culture, and very much wish to be left alone unless you are invited. Don't take photos without permission, or harass or otherwise pester them about their way of living. Above all else, don't trespass on private property.

There are official tourist exhibits set up by the local government and various private enterprises that will allow you to learn about the county and the Amish in a way that is respectful and positive for everyone involved.

Talk

Amish have some of their own vocabulary, related to German (Pennsylvania Deutsch). Non-Amish Americans are called "English".

Get in

The closest international airport to Pennsylvania Dutch Country is Harrisburg International. (MDT) Rental cars are widely available and the city of Lancaster is a short, 30 minute drive along Interstate I-283.

Do

Water wheel in Kirks Mills Historic District, Little Britain Township

An excellent way to see the Amish by automobile is to travel along Rt 896. Follow Route 30 East from Lancaster for 3 or 4 miles and make a right turn when you come to Rt 896. It will be directly past the outlet centers. This road will take you to the little town of Strasburg which is a very picturesque place in its own right. Along the way, you will see numerous farms and probably a decent number of horse and buggies. Please remember to drive slowly around the Amish horses in order to avoid scaring them.

Buy

Amish are known for their well-made wooden furniture. Showrooms are clustered along main roads.

Sleep

Go next

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