Harrisburg may be Pennsylvania's capital, but it has a small town feel. The Susquehanna River is a big draw and the ornate capitol dome wows – President Teddy Roosevelt described it as "the handsomest building I ever saw." You'll find historic sites, leafy nature trails and friendly locals eager to show off their hometown.
The action is at the waterfront in this river city. Hire kayaks for the afternoon, take a cruise on an old-fashioned paddle wheeler or enjoy a picnic in Riverfront Park. Cross a pedestrian bridge to City Island for carriage rides, quaint shops and minor league baseball as the Harrisburg Senators take the field. Don't miss the state capitol and Fort Hunter Mansion, both architectural treasures. There's also the outstanding National Civil War Museum and the pleasant trails of Wildwood Park, right in Harrisburg's backyard.
For a delicious detour, head to Hershey, just 15 miles east of town. Here you'll find the thrill rides of Hershey Park and the sweet-toothed seduction of Hershey's Chocolate World, a must for chocoholics.