Harrisburg Tourist Attractions and Sightseeing

(Harrisburg, Pennsylvania - PA, USA)

A highly walkable city with many of its best attractions being centrally located, Harrisburg offers a varied assortment of activities and places of interest for visiting tourists. Numerous scenic trails line the banks of the Susquehanna River and are suitable for both cycling and walking, as is the Market Square area of the downtown district.

One of the easiest and most relaxing ways that you can sightsee in Pennsylvania's capital is by joining a cruise along the Susquehanna River, starting out from the riverboat docks at City Island (connected by Walnut Street Bridge). Afterwards, a horse and carriage tour of City Island can be arranged, or alternatively, you may prefer a trip onboard the island's very own steam locomotive, which dates from the days of the American Civil War and has been lovingly restored.

If you are a tourist looking for evening attractions and entertainment in Harrisburg, then you may well like to pencil in a trip to one of the capital's theaters, such as the Gamut Classic Theater on Strawberry Square, or Theater Harrisburg on Hurlock Street.

Cruises / Boat Trips

Address: 107 North Front Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (PA), 17101, USA
Tel: +1 717 234 6500
Particularly popular and notable is the traditional red and white paddleboat named the Pride of the Susquehanna, which moors up on City Island and regularly takes passengers for a trip along the river all through the busy summer season. This cruise lasts in the region of 45 minutes or thereabouts and takes you past waterfront attractions along the way. The captain provides informal commentary about the sights and city's history on the main tourist-themed cruise, while other packages including family nights, wine cruises, live jazz music and even murder-mystery evenings, complete with a sit-down meal.
Open hours: May to October, times vary according to type of cruise
Admission: charge, discounts available for children, children three years and under are free

Forum Auditorium

Address: 500 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (PA), 17101, USA
Tel: +1 717 783 9100
The semi-circular Forum Auditorium stands next to Capitol Park and alongside the Pennsylvania State Library, where it dates back to the early years of the 1930s. This grand lecture and concert hall is managed by the state of Pennsylvania and is called home by the acclaimed Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, which regularly performs concerts here to audiences of close to 1,800 people. If you are able to step inside, do look out for the opulent use of marble and the elaborate ceiling murals, which depict both mankind and the heavens.
Open hours: varies with performance
Admission: charge

Market Square

Address: South 2nd Street / Market Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (PA), 17101, USA
The Market Square area of the city serves as the very heart of downtown Harrisburg. It was originally laid out way back in the middle of the 1870s and began life as an integral part of the city's initial plans. Now surrounded by modern offices, shops and apartment blocks, the 'square' is situated close to the Market Street Bridge, which spans the neighboring Susquehanna River. The past few decades have seen this part of the city utilized for a number of major local events, including large open-air concerts.
Open hours: daily - 24 hours
Admission: free


Standing on Strawberry Square, the Gamut Classic Theater is known for its fondness of Shakespeare plays and fairytales, while the Theater Harrisburg on Hurlock Street remains one of America's most historic community theaters, dating back to the mid-1920s. Considerably less formal is the Stage On Herr, which stands on Herr Street and offers live mic nights, comedy gigs, live music and an assortment of themed plays. If independent movies are more your thing, then the Midtown Cinema on Reily Street may well be screening a film of interest.