On the outskirts of Pennsylvania’s capital city of Harrisburg, the unique little town of Carlisle welcomes travelers and tourists from near and far. Conveniently located near Interstates 81 and 76, Carlisle makes for a one-of-a-kind place to rent an RV and explore the big cities and massive wilderness areas of Pennsylvania. The town of Carlisle is especially worth visiting for all those that love history and cherish the heritage of the United States.
Carlisle is rife with old historical buildings, cozy cafes, fun eateries, and art galleries along the tree-lined streets of its downtown area, and at night, the vibrant street lights make the town look like a work of art. The nightlife is grand in this college town.
Carlisle has developed a reputation as a hub for car enthusiasts and has hosted many automotive shows and events to cater to this passion for automobiles. In spring, summer, and fall, there are usually multiple events each week, and people come from far and wide to show off their sweet rides. When you search for an RV in Carlisle, PA, it’s a great way to start planning your vacation in the heart of one of America’s oldest and most incredible states.
Experience the Sites and Scenery
Pennsylvania is heavily populated, but despite this, it is one of the best places to see the great forests and mountains of the northeastern United States. During the summer months, there are thousands of outdoors enthusiasts camping in parks, hiking on trails, or enjoying any number of recreational activities, even within tiny Carlisle. More than 15 city-run parks enable residents and visitors to hike, play sports, or even swim in the summertime.
Thornwald Park is one of the biggest and best that Carlisle has to offer with its lovely walking paths and peaceful scenery. Dickinson Park is owned by Dickinson College but the space is open to the public. A series of walking and biking trails link cyclists and pedestrians to other parts of the city in the town’s network of routes.
Gettysburg National Military Park, down by historic Gettysburg, is the site of one of the most infamous battles in the country’s history. This federally owned park is dedicated to remembering the soldiers that lost their lives during the horrific conflict, and 43,000 artifacts are on display in a museum located onsite. Lots of statues and memorials can be found around the park as well when you arrive in your Carlisle camper rental, and helpful guided tours offer fantastic insight into the three-day skirmish that resulted in one of the largest losses of American life in the country’s history.
Michaux State Forest is close by when you rent an RV in Carlisle, and is one of the best places to seek peace and quiet in all of central Pennsylvania. Named for a French botanist, Michaux State Forest was created to remedy the dying ecosystem as a result of the industrial revolution. The area is now a thriving second-growth forest that is ideal for recreational activities throughout the year, rain or shine. Hunting, fishing, mountain biking, and swimming in the wonderful lake, are all great ways to enjoy the forest. Tuscarora State Forest in another great place to camp or enjoy the sweet solitude of the forest.
Allegheny National Forest is a little farther away, but it is well worth the visit with the Carlisle rental RV. This stunning swath of wilderness in the northwestern parts of Pennsylvania once suffered the aftereffects of industrial logging and mining, but now features a thriving ecosystem with numerous black cherry and maple trees. Campgrounds, boat launches, picnic pavilions, and hiking paths make this a fun place to be during the summertime, and in the winter, many take to the forest for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, or snowmobiling in the deep snow.
Aside from visiting the local businesses or walking the charming streets of Carlisle, you will find there are other hidden treasures within the town to visit and see. Carlisle Theater and the Carlisle Regional Performing Arts Center provide the community with a space to see live theatrical productions, concerts, and many other public events. Established in 1939, this gorgeous theater is often referred to as the “gem of downtown”.
Another incredible, old building worth visiting is the Cameron-Masland Mansion, built in 1908. This 32-room villa was created to resemble an Italian villa with lush gardens and beautiful walking paths. This establishment now hosts weddings and serves as an upscale hotel, although walking tours of the premises are open to the public. The Carlisle Barracks is the second oldest Army post in the US, and was built in 1757, nearly 20 years before the Revolutionary War.
Speaking of the Army, the US Army Heritage & Education Center is a fascinating place to learn about the history of the nation’s warfare, with vivid imagery and exhibitions retelling the story of all instances of combat. The Cumberland County Historical Society is yet another fascinating place to learn about local history in this incredible town.
There are many places to park and stay overnight with an RV rental near Carlisle, especially in the surrounding areas. Family camping can be found at Paradise Stream Family Campground, with ample space to canoe, kayak, or swim, and a convenient campground store for all your needs. Dogwood Acres Campground has a variety of spacious sites for your Carlisle luxury motorhome rental, each with electricity and water. Harrisburg East Campground leaves visitors close to the capital city, so new sites and attractions can be discovered when you stay there. Walmar Manor Campground is open all year round and has a nice pool, laundry facilities, and lots of open space where pets are welcome. There are many more parks and campgrounds nearby, each catering to specific needs and people, so enjoy finding the right one for you!