You’ve been itching to get out of the house with your family or your partner and do something — anything! During the past few months of the COVID-19 pandemic, you’ve probably stayed at home more than you like, and you miss seeing the world outside your four walls. Luckily for anyone who’s feeling cooped up, a staycation can be a safer alternative to traveling long distances for a vacation.
If you live within Central Pennsylvania or the surrounding area, you have access to plenty of restaurants, fun things to do and romantic date ideas. Still asking yourself, “What places are close to me for a quick getaway?” In this ultimate guide to a staycation in York, Pennsylvania, during the coronavirus, you’ll see what’s open in the area for you to enjoy. Support local businesses and have fun on your staycation while doing it.
When Is York Going to the Green Phase?
York County entered the green phase of lockdown on June 12. This stage means there is an ease in restrictions, with plenty of businesses now operating at 50% capacity. You can again enjoy entertainment at venues like theaters, malls and indoor recreation facilities, but you may want to make appointments or schedule visits. With a maximum 50% capacity, venues will limit how many guests and customers they can have at once.
Stay abreast of the news as you plan your staycation in York. Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration has stated public health indicators could cause the return of stricter rules to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
With relaxed restrictions, you’ll create a safer staycation for yourself and others if you continue to follow health guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC recommends washing your hands often, wearing a mask in public if possible and maintaining a social distance of 6 feet.
The Best Hotels in York, PA, for a Staycation
You’ll uncover a lot in Central Pennsylvania while you’re looking for places close to you for a quick getaway. If you need to travel a bit and want to extend your staycation in York, or you want to be somewhere other than your house for a few days, consider the hotels in York, Pennsylvania, to complete your staycation. Wyndham Garden York would be happy to host you and your partner or your family on your staycation in Central Pennsylvania.
We’re minutes from downtown York, meaning you can enjoy plenty in the area without traveling too far. If you’re staying for a few days, you can easily plan day trips throughout the region to experience Harrisburg, Lancaster, Hershey and surrounding areas.
In light of COVID-19, we’re putting safety first. We’ve elevated our cleanliness standards and are following CDC guidelines. We’ll be cleaning and disinfecting areas frequently, including lobbies and elevators. We’ll also offer our guests personal disinfecting supplies, including wipes and travel-sized hand sanitizers. We suggest consulting travel advisories and the CDC, the World Health Organization and the U.S. Department of State for more information.
Wyndham Garden York will turn your staycation into a relaxing getaway with our full-service, comfortable accommodations. As a locally-owned location, we’re familiar with all that York and the region have to offer. Explore the suggestions below to plan your staycation, whether you’re visiting with family or for a romantic getaway.
What to Do in York, PA, With Family
With York, PA, lockdown restrictions eased, you’re ready for a family getaway without going too far away. York and surrounding areas offer plenty for families to enjoy, even during these times. Visit for an entire week of vacation or for a quick weekend getaway. You could visit for a day trip, but with so much to do for families and kids in Central Pennsylvania, you’ll want to extend your stay. Check out these things to do around York with your family:
1. Castle Creek Farm
Located in Dillsburg, Castle Creek Farm is a quaint setting that’s home to alpacas and beautiful natural scenery, all within half an hour of Wyndham Garden York. Take younger kids to see the animals, then visit the shop to buy homemade soaps, alpaca products, and a variety of lavender-scented creations. Soothe yourself during these hectic times with the relaxing smell of Castle Creek Farm’s lavender products and the sight of lavender plants growing amid the farm’s picturesque landscape.
While Castle Creek Farm had to cancel their annual Lavender Thyme Faire this year due to COVID-19, the shop is still open, and visitors are welcome to stop by and see the lavender and the animals on the farm. Snap a few photos among the scenery to commemorate this fun addition to your staycation.
2. Lake Tobias Wildlife Park
Adventure awaits you and your family at Lake Tobias Wildlife Park in Halifax. Get close to the park’s variety of animals, whether you tour over 150 acres of safari land or visit the petting zoo, the reptiles, or the other wild and exotic critters that call the wildlife park home. With an hour’s drive between the park and Wyndham Garden York, you can plan stops along the way in Harrisburg and surrounding areas.
Lake Tobias Wildlife Park reopened on June 5, with a few modifications to make their operations safer during the COVID-19 outbreak. While they’ve earned a reputation for their safari bus tour, they’re now putting visitors in control. You can maintain a safe social distance and drive through the safari in your vehicle, meaning you and your family won’t even need to wear masks as you see the wildlife. Read up on the rules and restrictions for driving through the safari tour before your visit.
The wildlife park has other outdoor portions that will be open to visitors, but they recommend wearing masks if you decide to explore those areas.
3. Colony Park Lanes North
Hit the lanes at York’s Colony Park Lanes North bowling alley, less than a 10-minute drive from Wyndham Garden York. Bowling is a great way to spend some time on a trip, especially if the weather isn’t cooperating when you take your staycation. Colony Park Lanes North also features a snack bar, perfect for fueling up for a game or two of bowling and family fun.
With enhanced safety features and cleaning procedures, Colony Park Lanes North decided to open on June 12. The bowling alley will follow green phase guidelines to open to 50% capacity, so you may want to call ahead before your visit if you’re close by to make sure there’s a lane available for you and your family.
4. Carlisle Sports Emporium
For a local day trip, visit this entertainment complex in Carlisle, about a 45-minute drive from Wyndham Garden York. Cumberland County also went to the green phase of lockdown restrictions on June 12, and Carlisle Sports Emporium has opened its:
- Outdoor and indoor go-karts
- Miniature golf courses
- Batting cages
- Laser tag
- Arcade and VR
Make your reservation to team up with your family or challenge each other in Carlisle Sports Emporium’s 7,500-square-foot, two-tier laser tag arena. Play on one of the two 18-hole miniature golf courses at the complex, or see who comes out a winner in South Central Pennsylvania’s largest arcade.
5. Shank’s Mare Outfitters
Spend a day of your staycation with your family traversing the Susquehanna River. Go paddle-boarding, kayaking or fishing with rentals and equipment from Shank’s Mare Outfitters. As the weather gets a bit cooler and you prefer to stay off the water, the area offers hiking options, ideal for families who love spending time in the great outdoors.
With paddling tours suitable for beginners, a trip with Shank’s Mare Outfitters is fun for the whole family. Make your reservation and rent your equipment to add a bit of adventure to your staycation. Shank’s Mare Outfitters’ shop and headquarters is less than 40 minutes from Wyndham Garden York in Wrightsville.
For things to do in York, PA, during the coronavirus, exploring the outdoors or the Susquehanna River are excellent options. Shank’s Mare Outfitters has been open since May 23, thanks to kayaking being a fun activity that helps you maintain a safe social distance.
Romantic Weekend Getaway in York, PA
Maybe you and your significant other need to de-stress during these times. Turn your staycation into a romantic weekend getaway and leave the hectic world behind. York and surrounding areas offer plenty of things to do for couples, so fill a weekend with fun using these suggestions.
1. See a Show at the Belmont Theatre
Take your significant other to the Belmont for an evening of entertainment. Located on Belmont Street, around a 15-minute drive from Wyndham Garden York, the community theater would make a great addition to your romantic weekend getaway in York.
Since 1933, when it was originally the York Little Theatre, the Belmont has united the community around local performance. With a mission for diverse productions and educational opportunities, the theater hosts a wide array of plays. Check if the Belmont is putting on your favorite show or see something new with your significant other on your next romantic staycation.
In light of COVID-19, the Belmont has postponed show dates to late August and mid- to late-October. They’ve committed to creating a safe environment for both their performers and their audience, and will gladly answer any questions you have about visiting for a show. The Belmont also says they’re monitoring the situation and will post updates on their website as they have them.
2. Walk the Heritage Rail Trail
While York County and others in the region are opening in the green phase, you can still enjoy safe activities outside if you aren’t quite ready to head into public spaces. Spend part of your romantic weekend getaway walking the Heritage Rail Trail, hand in hand. Take pictures together among the greenery and get to know the green spaces of York.
Heritage Rail Trail features over 27 miles of paved trails to explore with your love. Those paved paths are ideal for casual hikers and those looking to take a stroll outside. Parking is available at Brillhart Station, 15 minutes from Wyndham Garden York, or you can find an access point near other spots you’re visiting for your romantic getaway.
3. Take a Ride With Northern Central Railway of York
The Northern Central Railway of York has canceled their trips in light of COVID-19, but the railway is monitoring the situation and plans to reopen safely when they can. You can visit the Northern Central Railway of York’s website for updates on when to plan your future romantic excursion. Despite not currently being open, a ride on the Northern Central Railway is a must, so check for updates often and plan to visit soon.
Northern Central Railway of York hosts couples’ dinner and train ride excursions and other ride options that let you tour the Central Pennsylvania landscape with your significant other. Share a sweet train ride that’s sure to spark nostalgia as a part of your romantic weekend. Find the Northern Central Railway of York’s station half an hour from Wyndham Garden York.
4. End Date Night at a Local Bar
York is home to handfuls of bars that make the perfect setting for a date. Whether you grab dinner or just have a few drinks, these spots throughout the area will help you celebrate a successful romantic weekend getaway in Central Pennsylvania:
- The Fig & Barrel Pub, open for outdoor dining
- Holy Hound Taproom, open for outdoor dining and preparing for indoor service
- Brickyard Tavern, open for patio and outdoor dining
You’ll also find breweries and wineries throughout York if you’d like to go for a tasting or pick up something for later. Allegro Winery’s Tollgate location, around 20 minutes from Wyndham Garden York, is offering curbside pickup in light of COVID-19. Sunset View Farm and Vineyard, around 10 minutes from Wyndham Garden York, provides bottle pickup and plans to offer open house tours soon.
5. See What Harrisburg Has to Offer
If you’d like to make the 45-minute drive from Wyndham Garden York to Harrisburg, you’ll discover plenty to do in the city. The capital city is full of history with an array of museums, but it’s also home to green spaces and outdoor opportunities. Take in the Harrisburg skyline, witness historical architecture or spend time with your significant other while outdoors.
Dauphin County is currently in the yellow phase of COVID-19 precautions, but Pennsylvania could see its capital be in a green phase candidate county with a bit of time. While Dauphin County is in the yellow phase, you and your significant other can enjoy an outdoor getaway at locations around the city and:
- Tour the grounds at Fort Hunter Mansion and Park.
- Walk around City Island for views of the city skyline.
- Bike the Capital Area Greenbelt trail.
On your outdoor visit, scope out the city and see what you’d be interested in doing on a future romantic getaway.
Open Restaurants in York, PA
You need to eat on your staycation, so why not support local restaurants on your visit? The following are a handful of open restaurants in York, Pennsylvania, following the green phase of COVID-19 openings.
1. Blue Heron Restaurant
Open for indoor and outdoor dining and carryout, Blue Heron Restaurant offers lunch and dinner hours. With a variety of salads, sandwiches, burgers and entrees, the menu at Blue Heron suits a family meal or date night dining. The menu features seafood, meat, and a three-course special.
Whether you’re craving French cuisine or another global delicacy, you’ll get it here. Find Blue Heron Restaurant on East Market Street in York, about a 20-minute drive from Wyndham Garden York.
Make the ending of your staycation perfect with a handcrafted pizza from BrewVino. Pair your meal with something from their selection of craft beer and fine wine. This York dining spot off Carlisle Road, less than 10 minutes from Wyndham Garden York, also features a menu with cheesesteak, burgers, hand-cut fries and plenty more delicious options any visitor will love.
Take advantage of the surrounding Grandview Golf Course’s beautiful views with BrewVino’s outdoor dining option that helps you meet safety guidelines during these times. Don’t compromise on an evening out during your staycation. Enjoy dinner with a view at this restaurant.
3. Greystone Brew House
Greystone Brew House is open for takeout and service on their patio to help make a safer dining service during these times. As a seasonally inspired dining option, Greystone Brew House has a shifting main menu that’s fresh and exciting.
Munch on snacks that pair well with a brew, get a refreshingly flavorful salad or go for something more filling. From ribs to a variety of unique sandwiches, like the tequila lime grilled chicken, the menu will have you wanting to come back for more. Located in Dillsburg, Pennsylvania, Greystone Brew House is about a 30-minute drive from Wyndham Garden York.
4. Rockfish Public House
For fresh seafood and American fare, look no further than Rockfish Public House. Less than 15 minutes from the Wyndham Garden York, Rockfish Public House works with premier seafood suppliers along the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico to serve up fresh, premium meals. Pair top-shelf seafood with an equally excellent beverage, whether you choose from beer on tap, wine, or cocktails.
Rockfish Public House opened for limited indoor dining on June 12, but seating is by reservation only. The restaurant requests that guests wear masks as they walk to their tables, but visitors will not need to wear masks at their tables. Rockfish Public House also asks that visitors exclusively use the main entrance on North George Street.
5. District Thai
Sample Thai cuisine at this York restaurant. Flavorful, marinated, and grilled chicken satay with peanut sauce and classic Pad Thai are just two of the many delicious options on the menu at District Thai. This spot is casual enough to visit for lunch and filling enough to stop by for dinner. Get your fill of Thai food and the other offerings at this North George Street dining option, 10 minutes from Wyndham Garden York.
District Thai is open for takeout and delivery in light of COVID-19. Stay tuned to their website for updates about dine-in options during this time.
Book Your Staycation With Wyndham Garden York
If you’re ready for a getaway without going too far away, extend your staycation with Wyndham Garden York. Our comfortable accommodations will make the perfect addition to your weekend escape or a longer vacation not far from home. See all that Central Pennsylvania has to offer, then reconvene at our full-service accommodations. Relax and rest assured that we’re taking steps to make Wyndham Garden York a safe and clean place for our guests during these times.
Book your staycation with Wyndham Garden York today, or contact us with any questions you have about staying with us.