Part of the Amish tradition is to be self-sufficient; the families teach the children the skills and crafts of farming, woodworking, baking, and needlework at an early age. When the Amish crafts and confections, including an array of strudels, come directly from the farms to the shops of Lancaster County, they make roadside shopping in Amish country a unique event.
The Anabaptists of northern Germany had broken from Martin Luther's teachings and later founded a church led by Menno Simons based on strict interpretation of the bible and a doctrine of baptism after the age of 18. Persecuted in Europe, the Mennonites came to America at the invitation of William Penn, a Quaker who had been granted a huge territory by King Charles II of England. Penn dedicated the land in his 1681,"Holy Experiment" to religious freedom. The Amish, an Anabaptist splinter group founded by Jacob Amman in 1693 came to America and eventually split further into eight levels of strictness in the interpretation of the Bible.
For the most part, these farm folk choose to live without modern technology but they have outfitted their horse-drawn buggies with running lights for safety and they also use bottled gas for light and power to run their milking machines. Focused on humility, thrift, simplicity, and submission to a higher authority, these wholesome farm folk are no strangers to technology, they just prefer to live without electricity and the automobile.
Amish Penn Dutch Vacation
Amish Pennsylvania Dutch Vacation, Sightseeing Lancaster County
Amish Penn Dutch Tradition
Amish Penn Dutch Vacation: History
Strasburg steam Trains, sightseeing and dinner train rides from Strasburg
An Amish Penn Dutch Vacation Will Transport You To A Land Of Tradition, Simplicity and Self Sufficiency
Pennsylvania Dutch country gets its name from the many groups of farmers of Swiss, Dutch, and German descent who immigrated during the 1740s.
How to Reach Amish Penn Dutch Country:
By Auto: From the south take Route 95 to Baltimore, Route 83 to York (Harley Factory). Route 30 to Lancaster,
From the north, Route 95 to Philadelphia and then Routes 76, 202 and 30 to Lancaster. From the west, Harrisburg
By air: Philadelphia airport and rental car
Although the Amish prefer to avoid technology their Strasburg neighbors give steam trains their due at the State-run Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania where they display over 100 coal and wood-burning antique locomotives and rail cars.
Strasburg steam trains run dinner trips through Amish farm country
The State-run Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania displays over 100 coal and wood-burning antique locomotives and rail cars.
Visitors can experience the life on an early 1700s Pennsylvania Dutch farm two miles north of Lancaster where two brothers of German descent created the Landis Valley Museum. Costumed guides demonstrate open-hearth cooking, weaving, and horse-drawn plowing in a preserved traditional farm where visitors can also purchase heirloom seeds and handcrafts.
For another look at the religious history of the area, the nearby town of Ephrata preserves its Cloister, a group of buildings built by a German charismatic leader who in 1732 gathered followers for the practice of a celibate and mystical religion. The vegetarian sect, renown for their musical compositions in five part vocal harmony and for their Germanic calligraphy and printing press, grew to 300 in the 1740s but then withered after 1768, remaining as a 28-acre museum with many of the original antique buildings preserved.
When to Go To Amish Penn Dutch Country: April is a good month to visit because you might combine your visit to Amish country with a visit to Longwood Gardens where on the second or third week in April the tulip gardens are in full bloom. Otherwise May until October are good months to visit and enjoy outdoor activities.
Photo, Bucks County Tourism
An Amish Pennsylvania Dutch Vacation of Sightseeing in Lancaster County gets exciting when the Amish crafts, confections, and strudels come from the farms to the shops. The Amish of Pennsylvania Dutch Country make roadside shopping a unique event.