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The Lehigh Valley is a Great Appalachian Valley region that encompasses part of eastern Pennsylvania and a smaller portion of northwestern New Jersey. A fast-growing region, it was once a major center of industry and offers proximity to some of the East Coast’s biggest cities, including New York City and Philadelphia. These days, the Lehigh Valley has shed its reputation for industry and reinvented itself as a center for financial services, health care, technology, and life sciences.
Tourism is also a growing industry in the Lehigh Valley, with shopping and wine tasting figuring among the many options for things to do. No discussion about the region would be complete without also mentioning some of its larger cities and schools. Among the region’s main cities are Allentown, Bethlehem, and Easton. The regional schools include several four-year colleges and universities, including Lafayette College, Lehigh University, and Moravian College.
Many people who hail from the northeastern United States know the Lehigh Valley as a fun travel destination, thanks to such attractions as the Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom amusement park, the C.F. Martin & Co. guitar factory, and the Lost River Caverns. Another area attraction of note is the Lehigh Valley Zoo. Found within the realms of the 1,100-acre Trexler Nature Preserve, this zoo provides a home for more than 290 animals. These animals represent no less than 88 species and range from alpacas to zebras.
Various events for the general public are held at the Lehigh Valley Zoo, and there are onsite venues that can be rented for private events, including birthday parties and company picnics. The address for the Lehigh Valley Zoo is 5150 Game Preserve Road in Schnecksville, PA. Special group rates are available, and from late spring through early fall, the zoo offers paddleboat and wagon rides. As a side note, the Lehigh Valley is also home to the Hawk Mountain Sanctuary. Straddling a mountaintop in Kempton, this 2,400-acre reserve specializes in conserving and educating people about birds of prey. Found among its expansive grounds are miles of trails and various lookout points. Bring your binoculars!
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