The 10 Best State Parks in Pennsylvania!

No matter the time of year, Pennsylvania’s beautiful state parks offer plenty to explore. From Hickory Run’s wonderful picnicking areas to Raccoon Creek’s great group camping spots, there’s something for just about every kind of outdoor enthusiast. Here are our favorite state parks in Pennsylvania.

Nockamixon State Park, Quakertown, PA

Covering a total of 5,286 acres, Nockamixon State Park is a true Bucks County gem. Pack a picnic, go for a swim, hike, bike, or boat—you can pretty much do it all. It’s not too far from the City of Brotherly Love (or Shove—as locals say!), so it’s perfect for a quick day trip, while still feeling like a vacation. And if you work up an appetite after your day of exploring, you won’t regret stopping by Owowcow Creamery for handcrafted, locally-sourced ice cream. We promise!

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Bucks Happening (@buckshappening) on

Hickory Run State Park, White Haven, PA

Locals love Hickory Run State Park because it offers a wide array of activities year-round. In the summer, there’s swimming, fishing, and picnicking. The fall brings hunting season—and in the winter—there's cross-country skiing, ice skating, and snowmobiling. And if that’s not enough, you can hike, watch for wildlife, and stay the night, too.

French Creek State Park, Elverson, PA

Stretching over the Schuylkill Highlands, French Creek State Park is a 7,730-acre park featuring the biggest block of adjoining forest from Washington D.C. to New York City. Residents of southeastern PA and the surrounding area enjoy hiking through forests, fishing in lakes and wetlands, mountain biking, camping, and a whole lot more.

Ricketts Glen State Park, Benton, PA

Straddling three different counties and over 13,000 acres, Ricketts Glen State Park is “one of the most scenic areas” in the state, according to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The park is home to the Glens Natural Area, which is a national landmark comprised of a series of waterfalls. Whether you come just to watch the waterfalls cascade or another activity, you won’t forget Ricketts Glen.

Codorus State Park, Hanover, PA

In southern York County, Codorus State Park is a popular destination for fans of fishing, picnicking, swimming, and camping. Lake Marburg’s 26 miles of shoreline attracts shorebirds and migrating waterfowl, while the lake itself draws sail boaters, motor boaters, and warmwater fishing. Come for the lake or pool, stay for the memories.

Pymatuning State Park, Jamestown, PA

Pymatuning State Park is one of the most-visited parks in the state of Pennsylvania. Everything about the park is big—from its acreage, number of visitors, to awesome recreational options. Have fun boating, fishing, swimming, camping, and more at Pymatuning today.

Worlds End State Park, Forksville, PA

Believe it or not—Worlds End State Park isn’t actually at the end of the world. It’s located in a valley of Loyalsock Creek in Sullivan County, surrounded by the Loyalsock State Forest. The landscape of the Endless Mountains provides many a photo op, and there are plenty of other activities for park visitors to enjoy, too. From hiking to whitewater rafting and swimming—you can do all of the above and more don’t miss out!

Raccoon Creek State Park, Hookstown, PA

First opening in the 1930’s with the Civilian Conservation Corps, Raccoon Creek State park is currently one of the top-visited parks in the state. The park features Raccoon Lake, a beautiful lake spanning 100 of the park’s 7,572 acres. Among the park’s facilities are group campsites from the Conservation Corps era, making for a mix of rustic and modern.

A post shared by Zac Felton (@thehikinghippie) on

Caledonia State Park, Fayetteville, PA

Caledonia State Park is comfortably nestled in South Mountain, which is located in the Blue Ridge mountain range. It lies between Chambersburg and Gettysburg, drawing a large number of visitors every season. Visitors may enjoy many activities such as golfing, hunting, swimming, fishing, and camping.

Greenwood Furnace State Park, Huntingdon, PA

Greenwood Furnace State Park provides visitors with an image of historic Greenwood Furnace, which was built around the ironmaking community in the 19th century. They can explore the historic district and also enjoy backpacking, hiking, mountain biking, hunting, and fishing in the park and surrounding Rothrock State Forest.

View more Pennsylvania Parks.
Share your favorites!
Pennsylvania Search
Find Parks Near You
Find Parks Near You
1405 New Lancaster Valley Road, Milroy, PA
Reeds Gap State Park is 220 acres of wilderness in the New Lancaster Valley of Mifflin County. Large hemlocks and white pines cast cool shadows ove... Read More
136 Poe Valley Park Circle, Coburn, PA
Cozy Poe Valley State Park is nestled in a rugged mountain valley in Centre County. Seemingly endless forests surround the 25-acre Poe Lake.The 620... Read More
Broad Mountain Road (from 15795 Greenwood Road), Huntingdon, PA
This 41-acre park is in an isolated area of the Seven Mountains region known as the Stone Creek Kettle. While this Centre County park is small in s... Read More
222 Penns Cave Road, Centre Hall, PA
America's only all-water cavern and wildlife park are nestled in Central Pennsylvania's scenic Penn State Country.The cavern tour is a guided one-h... Read More
East Off PA 26, Huntingdon, PA
The 256-acre Whipple Dam State Park is a delightful and quiet place to visit. The lake is the perfect place to indulge in a refreshing dip, bird wa... Read More
15795 Greenwood Road, Huntingdon, PA
The park is on the western edge of the Seven Mountains in northeastern Huntingdon County, an area of rugged beauty, abundant wildlife, breathtaking... Read More
5700 Fowler Hollow Road, Blain, PA
The 104-acre Fowlers Hollow State Park is in a narrow valley created by Fowler Hollow Run.The park is on the edge of Tuscarora State Forest at the ... Read More
1087 Poe Paddy Drive, Woodward, PA
Poe Paddy State Park is at the confluence of Big Poe Creek and Penns Creek, a trout angler’s paradise featuring the nationally recognized gre... Read More
1599 Doubling Gap Road, Newville, PA
Colonel Denning State Park, in north central Cumberland County, is in Doubling Gap, so named by the "S" turn where Blue Mountain doubles back on it... Read More
4455 Big Spring Road, Blain, PA
In the mid-1800s to the early 1900s, logging companies lumbered the area. Trees were hauled from the stump to the mill on the Perry Lumber Railroad... Read More
1579 State Park Road, Newport, PA
Certain places just attract people. The cool, clear water of Little Buffalo Creek has been attracting people for centuries. American Indians freque... Read More
149 Main Park Road, Howard, PA
The 5,900-acre Bald Eagle State Park is in the broad Bald Eagle Valley of northcentral Pennsylvania. The 1,730-acre lake laps the flanks of Bald Ea... Read More
17215 Buffalo Road, Mifflinburg, PA
R.B. Winter State Park covers 695 acres of the Ridge and Valley Province in central Pennsylvania. Located within Bald Eagle State Forest, the park ... Read More
17215 Buffalo Road, Mifflinburg, PA
Raymond B. Winter State Park covers 695 acres of the Ridge and Valley Province in central Pennsylvania. Located within Bald Eagle State Forest, the... Read More
1258 McCalls Dam Road, Rebersburg, PA
The sound of White Deer Creek pervades the quiet, remote McCalls Dam State Park. Majestic pines, hemlocks, maples, and oaks reach for the sky aroun... Read More
4216 Beaver Road, Philipsburg, PA
Black Moshannon State Park covers 3,394 acres of forests and wetlands and conserves unique, natural environments. More than 43,000 acres of the Mos... Read More
2388 Rauchtown Road, Jersey Shore, PA
The park lies in a cozy, steep-walled gorge carved by Rauchtown Run through the side of Nippenose Mountain. A northern hardwood forest blankets the... Read More
13180 Buffalo Road, Mifflinburg, PA
Rapid Run's lovely murmur and the sounds of birds pervade this lovely picnic spot. Rustic picnic pavilions hug the side of Seven Notch Mountain, co... Read More
500 Kings Gap Road, Carlisle, PA
Kings Gap’s unique attractions are its mountainous terrain, extensive forest and panoramic views, which may be experienced while driving the ... Read More
16362 Little Valley Road, James Creek, PA
The 541-acre Trough Creek State Park is a scenic gorge formed as Great Trough Creek cuts through Terrace Mountain before emptying into Raystown Lak... Read More
Show More
Select a Pennsylvania town to find
the Best Things-To-Do and Places To Go around you
Philadelphia County