Westmoreland County, founded in 1773, makes up one-third of the Laurel Highlands in western PA (Somerset and Fayette counties making up the other two-thirds).
From historic forts to museums to state parks, here are 19 of the best things to see and do in Westmoreland County.
1. Fort Ligonier
Fort Ligonier in Westmoreland County is a historically accurate reproduction of a British fort originally constructed in 1758 during what would become known as the French and Indian War.
The museum at Fort Ligonier contains one of the most complete collections of French and Indian War artifacts in existence, many excavated from the ruins of the original Fort Ligonier itself.
2. Idlewild Park
Idlewild Park is Pennsylvania’s longest-operating amusement park!
Idlewild Park as been named “Best Childrens’ Park” by Amusement Today, and “Best Park for Families” by the National Amusement Park Historical Association.
3. Historic Hanna’s Town
Historic Hanna’s Town, established in 1773, was the first county seat of Westmoreland County, and hosted the first English courts west of the Allegheny Mountains!
Today, the historic site consists of the reconstructed Hanna’s Tavern, three re-located log houses, the reconstructed fort, and a wagon shed that houses an authentic 18th century Conestoga wagon.
4. Mill Creek Falls
Mill Creek Falls is a picturesque, cascading waterfall on an idyllic mountain stream in Westmoreland County.
Located on State Game Lands 42, Mill Creek Falls is an easy 1/2 mile walk along 2 forest roads to reach the falls.
5. The Lincoln Highway Experience
The Lincoln Highway Experience is a museum dedicated to telling the story of the Lincoln Highway, the first transcontinental automobile route linking the east and west coasts of the United States.
Some of the artifacts on display are authentically old, while others are eclectically modern and part of the efforts to revitalize tourism along the Lincoln Highway.
6. Fish Run Falls
Fish Run Falls in the Forbes State Forest may be the prettiest little waterfall in Westmoreland County that you’ve never heard of!
Not only is the waterfall beautiful, but it’s located next to a historic railroad aqueduct built more than 120 years ago!
7. Spruce Flats Bog
Spruce Flats Bog in Westmoreland County is one of the most unique ecosystems in all of Pennsylvania – a high altitude bog featuring plants and trees found nowhere else in the state.
The strong westerly winds at Spruce Flats Bog cause the trees to take on a bent shape known as Krummholz – German for “crooked wood”.
8. Adam Falls
Adam Falls at Linn Run State Park is a picturesque 12 foot tall waterfall in Westmoreland County.
Adam Falls is normally no gusher, but if you’re lucky enough to catch it after the spring thaw or a heavy rain it can be quite impressive!
9. Wolf Rocks
Wolf Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest is an outstanding west-facing scenic vista in Westmoreland County.
Wolf Rocks are quite expansive – nearly 150 feet of jutting cliffside to explore.
10. The Abandoned Hunting Lodge
The abandoned hunting lodge at Linn Run State Park is a remarkable set of ruins from the early days of “retreat camping” in Westmoreland County.
The abandoned hunting lodge at Linn Run State Park is located along the Flat Rock Trail, which runs parallel to Linn Run.
11. Linn Run State Park
Linn Run State Park is a 612 acre park popular with hikers, campers, and picnickers.
There are ten rental cabins at Linn Run State Park, nine rustic (no indoor plumbing) and one modern.
12. Laurel Mountain State Park
Laurel Mountain State Park is a 493-acre ski resort in Westmoreland County, donated to the state in 1964 by Richard K. Mellon.
Started in 1939 as a private facility by Mellon and other wealthy Pittsburgh industrialists, it was opened to the public following World War II and became popularly known as the “Ski Capital of Pennsylvania.”
Laurel Mountain boast the highest vertical drop on the Laurel Ridge in Pennsylvania at 761 feet.
13. The Jonnet Flea Market
The Jonnet Flea Market along Route 22 in Westmoreland County is one of PA’s largest indoor flea markets.
You could easily spend an entire afternoon picking through the treasures for sale in this former car dealership turned massive bazaar of bargains.
14. Keystone State Park
The 1,200-acre Keystone State Park in Westmoreland County is a great place for day-trips and family vacations year round!
Featuring a beautiful 78 acre lake as its centerpiece, Keystone State Park provides an ideal setting for camping, wildlife watching, hiking, fishing, swimming, or other outdoor adventures.
15. The Kecksburg UFO Festival
The Kecksburg UFO Festival is a 3-day fire company fundraiser inspired by a 1965 UFO crash that occurred nearby in Westmoreland County.
If you can’t make it to the festival, you can visit the Kecksburg “Space Acorn” any time of year, on the grounds of the Kecksburg Fire Department.
16. The Big Mac Museum
The Big Mac Museum in Irwin celebrates the Pennsylvania origins of the world’s most famous hamburger – the Big Mac!
17. The Cedar Creek Gorge Trail
The Cedar Creek Gorge Trail is a beautiful 1.5 mile loop hike featuring two suspension bridges at Cedar Creek Park.
18. The Compass Inn Museum
The Compass Inn Museum in Westmoreland County is a historically-accurate representation of what an early-to-mid 1800s stagecoach stop would have looked like.
19. Ligonier Beach
Ligonier Beach along the Lincoln Highway in Westmoreland County was once the largest swimming pool in the United States.
16 Must-See Attractions in Fayette County shows you the best things to see and do in Westmoreland County’s neighbor to the south!
20 Must-See Attractions in Somerset County is your guide to the best things to see and do in Westmoreland County’s neighbor to the east.
15 Must-See Attractions in Cambria County is your guide to the best things to see and do in Westmoreland County’s neighbor to the northeast.
7 Man-Made Wonders of the PA Laurel Highlands is your guide to the 7 most iconic structures in the region.
With one of its four locations along Route 22 in Westmoreland County, Gene and Boots Candies is a western PA tradition!
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