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Allentown

In 1762, William Allen, Chief Justice of Colonial Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court, former mayor of Philadelphia and successful businessman, drew up plans for a rural village known as Northamptontown. Folks didn’t care for the lengthy, formal name so they called it “Allen’s Town.” In 1838, the city officially adopted the name Allentown.

Allentown is a thriving metropolis with roots in the iron industry. In 1829, Allentown expanded from a small village of Pennsylvania Dutch farmers and tradesmen to a major area of commerce. When the Lehigh Canal opened, many canal workers made their homes here. In the 1830s-40s, the Lehigh Valley gave birth to America’s industrial revolution. Coupled with the impact of the Lehigh Canal and the railroads later, Allentown finally achieved the commercial success William Allen envisioned.

Today, the Allentown Art Museum is one of the city’s main attractions. The museum offers exhibitions of notable artists such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Andy Warhol’s Athlete Series, paintings by Flemish and Barocci, among many others. Visitors can also tour the Museum of Indian Culture, which honors the legacy of native Lenni Lenape people. Begin each year with a drive through Lights in the Parkway, a symbol of community spirit that burns brightly as it draws hundreds of thousands of visitors. Allentown’s Canal Park is nearby, providing easy access to the D&L Trail, plus opportunities for hiking, biking, jogging, fishing and access to the waterways for paddlers.

Things to Do

1

1803 House (The Ehrenhardt House)

The 1803 House serves as a living classroom for the community at large. Through scheduled tours and various special events throughout the year, children and adults can obtain a glimpse into the lifestyle of the inhabitants of colonial Emmaus. The... More

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2

America on Wheels

America on Wheels celebrates the history of over-the-road transportation and highlights future means of moving people and products. The museum showcases the nation’s transportation systems from its roots, including carriages, bicycles, motorcycles, automobiles and trucks, to the latest in transportation... More

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3 A historic covered bridge in the Lehigh Valley, part of the D&L Central Region

Bogert’s Bridge

The history of Bogert’s bridge dates back to the mid-1700s when the Bogert family moved into a log cabin next to the future site of the bridge. Dating back to 1841, and spanning 145 feet over Little Lehigh River, it... More

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4

Da Vinci Science Center

The Da Vinci Science Center believes that every young person, like Leonardo, is insatiably curious about the world around him or her, uses multiple modes of investigation, embraces creativity, and seeks to make connections among all things surrounding him or... More

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5

Discover Lehigh Valley

Vacations can be tricky. The destination needs to meet lots of requirements: stuff for the kids, exciting entertainment for the grown-ups, plenty of good restaurants and affordable lodging. And it would be nice if the place was convenient. Luckily, there’s... More

6

Haines Mill Museum

The Lehigh County Commissioners bought Haines Mill in 1972 and it was restored as working grist mill museum. As part of Lehigh County’s park system, visitors can watch a water turbine and rolling equipment operated by water power supplied from... More

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7

Ironton Rail-Trail

This 9.2-mile loop and extension passes through Whitehall, Coplay, and North Whitehall. It eventually will be connected to the D&L Trail. Part of the 5.5-mile loop is paved, with the remainder made up of fine gravel and millings. Along the trail... More

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8

Leaser Lake

This 540 acre park is owned by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission and in part by Lehigh County. The 117-acre lake provides fishing from boats or shore, and a 4 mile trail around the lake provides beautiful views and nature... More

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9

Lehigh Valley Heritage Center

Located in a stunning new building adjacent to Trout Hall, the Lehigh Valley Heritage Center is host to permanent and changing exhibits on Lehigh Valley history and it houses the library and offices of the Lehigh County Historical Society. Here... More

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10

Liberty Bell Museum

The British were about to seize Philadelphia in 1777. It was feared that the King’s Army would destroy the great bell in Independence Hall that symbolized the American Republic, so the bell was removed and taken to Allentown, and hidden... More

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11

Lock Ridge Park and Furnace Museum

Lock Ridge Park was opened in August 1976. The park includes the old Lock Ridge Iron Works complex and surrounding land. Swabia Creek offers limited fishing. There is a picnic pavilion with fireplace and rest rooms, a path system is suitable... More

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12

Pool Wildlife Sanctuary

The 77.5-acre Pool Wildlife Sanctuary headquarters Wildlands Conservancy's main office and the Air Products Environmental Education Center. Its place in our history is thanks to the vision of Air Products founder, Leonard Parker Pool, who bequeathed the sanctuary to the... More

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