Sprawling along the western bank of the Lehigh River, Lehighton, Pennsylvania is a picturesque town with a rich German heritage. It was founded in the mid-18th century on the site of the German Moravian Brethren's mission station "Gnadenhütten." But it wasn’t until the completion of the Lehigh Canal in the mid-19th century and the construction of the Lehigh Valley Railroad that the settlement really began to thrive.
Today Lehighton is a popular destination for out-of-towners wanting to rent an RV while exploring the sights of Carbon County. It’s within easy access of scenic reserves and recreational pursuits, as well as boasting plenty of family-friendly attractions of its own - all less than two hours' drive from Philadelphia.
The Great Outdoors
Pick up your motorhome rental in Lehighton and make the short drive east to the Beltzville State Park, a 3,000-acre natural area that encompasses the Beltzville Dam on Pohopoco Creek. Discover the local history while hiking to the old gristmill and abandoned slate quarry or cool off with a dip at the park’s swimming beach. The Beltzville State Park is also deservedly popular with anglers who come to lure a variety of bass and walleye, as well as trout that’s regularly stocked in the Pohopoco Creek.
If you want to spot some of the local wildlife, drive north to the Hickory Run State Park in the Pocono Mountains, which is home to white-tailed deer, black bears, and squirrels. There are around 44 miles of hiking trails to explore, including the Shades of Death Trail that ignites with colorful rhododendrons during the summer months. Trek to see the picturesque Hawk Falls and go swimming in the Sand Spring Lake or visit during the winter months when the park transforms with cross-country skiing trails and ice skating.
Also nearby is the Nescopeck State Park, a 3,550-acre protected area that’s one of the newest to be established in Pennsylvania. Begin your visit at the Environmental Education Center to learn about the park’s ecological systems, then head out to explore the 19 miles of hiking trails that traverse the surrounding forests, meadows, and wetlands. Keep your eyes peeled for the myriad species of birds that have been recorded in the park, or try your luck at catching bass and trout in the waters of Lake Frances.
Pick up your RV rental in Lehighton and pull into one of the sites at the Riders Resort, which lies just to the east of the town center. It’s the first motorcycle enthusiast campground in the area and features a large in-ground swimming pool, game room, and a community barbecue area.
Also in Leighton is the StonyBrook RV Resort, a family-friendly campground that can accommodate even big rigs. Book one of their 50-amp RV sites, then take advantage of the complimentary Wi-Fi, cable TV, picnic tables, and fire rings.
Or, you can stay at the Lizard Creek Campground, a family-owned RV destination that nestles between the Lehigh Valley and the Pocono Mountains. It features a large swimming pool and a camp store that’s well-stocked with necessities, as well as a creek running through the property where guests are welcome to fish.
There’s also a Walmart in the far south end of the town where you may be able to set up for a night or two with the manager’s permission.
Exploring the City
Park your RV rental near Lehighton and head to the Pocono Museum Unlimited, which houses an impressive model train display that includes more than 2,000 feet of track. Aside from its 14 trains and a landscape that replicates the countryside of rural Pennsylvania, it also features a model highway with moving vehicles, a zoo, a drive-in theater, and an amusement park. It’s a must-see for model train enthusiasts, with a collection of rare O-scale train sets dating back to the 1940s also on display.
If you’re visiting over the weekend, don’t miss the opportunity to soak up the local community atmosphere at the Mahoning Farmers Market. In addition to farm-fresh produce, herbs, and meats for sale, there’s also an inspiring collection of flea market-style stalls and locally made crafts. It takes place every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday throughout the year.
Lehighton makes a good base for visiting Allentown, which is home to excellent museums and the historic Zion’s Reformed United Church of Christ where a full-size replica of the Liberty Bell is housed. You can browse the ancient tools and artifacts on display at the Museum of Indian Culture, then continue to the historic district of Quakertown to stroll amidst its diverse architecture. See where the Liberty Bell was hidden on its way to Allentown at the Liberty Hall, then admire the Federal, Greek Revival, Italianate, and Victorian-style buildings that cluster in its streets.
Lehighton is home to a couple of supermarkets where you can stock up on grocery supplies and a handful of eateries if you want to dine out, as well as a gas station if you need to fill up your Lehighton camper rental.
Whether you’re visiting Carbon County for its model train museum or fishing lakes, book an RV in Lehighton and start exploring!