20 Activities Every Main Line Area Resident Needs to Try

How many of these quintessential local activities have you done?



A family strolling through the Chanticleer gardens. Photo Courtesy of R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

1. Stroll Through Longwood Gardens

Looking for something all ages can appreciate? Look no further than Kennett Square’s Longwood Gardens. With over 1,000 acres to explore, along with a conservatory, it’s a great place to get in touch with nature and enjoy the great outdoors. Visit in winter for the iconic Christmas display, and in warmer months to see the massive fountains dance to lights and music.

 

2. Explore the Historic Chanticleer

The enchanting Chanticleer dates back to the early 20th century. Open part of the year, the historic home and gardens are on the National Register of Historic Places. Spring and summer are the perfect seasons for viewing the lush foliage and flowers.

 

3. Tour QVC's Studios

Since its founding in 1986, QVC has been a staple in American home shopping. The West Chester-based studio is undoubtedly one of the best-known businesses in the region. Take a peak inside this international giant with a studio tour.

 

4. Shop 'Til You Drop at King of Prussia Mall

One of the largest shopping hubs in the country, King of Prussia Mall boasts a robust dining scene and a vast array of retail options. Currently, KOP hosts four major department stores and over 450 other names, including high-end brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Burberry.

 

5. Taste the Wine Produced at Local Vineyards

The area has no shortage of vineyards. Spend the day tasting at Chaddsford Winery, Glen Mills’ idyllic Grace Winery, and Penns Woods Winery, which offers an outdoor wine bar in summer and flight tastings. Or head to Kennett Square’s Galer Estate Vineyard and Winery, which oozes rustic charm.

 

Photo Courtesy of Visit Philadelphia

 

6. View Exhibits at the Brandywine River Museum of Art

The region’s most renowned artist family, the Wyeths, called Chadds Ford home for generations. Pay a visit to the Brandywine River Museum of Art, where exhibits often highlight their work.

 

7. Hike Through a State or National Park

All major regional draws, Valley Forge National Historical ParkMarsh Creek State Park and Ridley Creek State Park offer thousands of acres of trees, lakes, streams, history, and hiking and biking trails.

 

Photo Courtesy of G. Widman for Visit Philadelphia

 

8. Attend an Equestrian Event

Don your best chapeau for some of the region’s top equestrian events, including Willowdale Steeplechase and Radnor Hunt Races in May. For family-friendly fun, head to the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair in late May and early June. And throughout the summer, you can stomp divots to your heart’s content at Brandywine Polo matches.

 

9. Get Lost in Baldwin's Book Barn

C-SPAN and Good Morning America saw something thoroughly unique in West Chester’s Baldwin’s Book Barn. Built in 1822, the five-story structure houses over 300,000 rare and second-hand books.


Related Article: 2019 Guide to the Towns of the Main Line and Western Suburbs


10. Tour the Herr's Snack Factory

Another option perfect for the family: A Herr’s Snack Factory Tour. Located in quaint Nottingham, it gives visitors a glimpse behind the scenes of the iconic snack empire.

 

11. Learn About Wildlife at the Elmwood Park Zoo

Norristown’s surprising Elmwood Park Zoo is a low-key gem for wildlife lovers young and old. It’s home to giraffes, American bison, cougars, elk and more.

 

12. Pick Your Own Fruits and Vegetables at Linvilla Orchards

Linvilla Orchards is a year-round family favorite thanks to it’s popular seasonal festivals. Depending on the season, it’s pick- your-own apples, pumpkins, blueberries and more. At the petting farm, kids can connect with white-tailed deer, calves, goats and horses.

 

Photo Courtesy of R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

 

13. Attend a Music Festival

Summer is the time for outdoor sounds. We recommend the Wayne Music Festival, Media’s State Street Blues Stroll, West Chester’s Turk’s Head Music Festival, the long-running Old Fiddlers’ Picnic in Hibernia Park, and the Philadelphia Folk Festival at Old Pool Farm. Relative newcomer Country Spirit USA brings big-name stars to the Ludwig’s Corner Horse Show Grounds in late August.

 

14. Channel Your Inner Child at the LEGOLAND Discovery Center

Young architects in the making will want to spend a day at LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Plymouth Meeting. The popular attraction features a 4D cinema, Pirate Adventure Island, a miniature Lego version of Philadelphia, and more.

 

\

Photo Courtesy of J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

 

15. Experience an Adrenaline Rush at a Spring Mountain Canopy Tour

Channel your inner Tarzan—or Jane— at a Spring Mountain canopy tour. It’s extensive series of zip lines and rope bridges traverse the leafy tree tops of the ski resort, offering three different experience levels.

 

16. Soak in the Historical Significance of Brandywine Battlefield

Explore a significant piece of history and get a bit of exercise in at the Brandywine Battlefield. The site features the Benjamin Ring Home, the Gideon Gilpin Home and Farm and encompasses 9.5 square miles of historic land.

 

Photo Courtesy of K. Ciappa for Visit Philadelphia

 

17. Take in Scenic Views on the West Chester Railroad

Grab the kids and hop aboard the West Chester Railroad for a scenic tour of the Chester Creek Valley. Stops on the 90-minute trip include a picnic park and historic Glen Mills station. During the holidays, rides are themed.

 

18. Sip Local Suds At Victory Brewing Company

Beer lovers take note: The nationally renowned Victory Brewing Company offers behind-the-scenes tours at its Downingtown and Parkesburg locations.

 

19. Watch a Performance at a Local Theater 

Great live music can be had almost any day of the week at 118 North, Ardmore Music Hall and the Locks at Sona. Or savor the restored beauty of the Colonial Theatre and the Keswick Theatre.

 

20. Celebrate the Holidays, Main Line Style

Can’t-miss holiday events include the West Chester Christmas Parade, which draws thousands, the London-themed Narberth Dickens Festival, and the old-school Christmas in Wayne tree lighting.