Valley Forge Pennsylvania
Valley Forge Pennsylvania was the 1777-78 winter encampment of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War, and today it commemorates the heroism and sacrifices that took place during this difficult time in US history. Valley Forge National Historical Park invites visitors to experience the surrounding nature as well as learn about the heritage of the area through tours or just a simple stroll through the park. Nearby attractions include the King of Prussia Mall, and Philadelphia is only about 25 miles from Valley Forge, so visitors will have little trouble finding hotels, and a tour here can easily be combined with trips to other historic sites in the area, such as the Liberty Bell.
Under the command of General George Washington, the Continental Army set up camp at Valley Forge in the winter of 1777. The Prussian drill master Baron Friedrich Wilhelm Augustus von Steuben was charged with uniform training of the troops, and after arriving on site he helped create a changed regiment, matured and professionalized by their training during the long cold winter. This change is among the most important outcomes, of which there are several, of the Valley Forge encampment. The Baron assisted in creating a sense of purpose for the troops, allowing them to push forward and achieve their goal of independence.
Today, visitors to the park can enjoy a number of outdoor activities, including horseback riding, biking, boating, fishing, hiking, nature walks, bird-watching, driving tours, and interpretive programs. Valley Forge National Historical Park offers 21 miles of bike trails, seventeen miles of horse trails, and about twenty miles of hiking trails, paved as well as unpaved. A unique option here are cell phone tours, which are free audio tours offered to visitors. Upon entering the park, visitors will see signs offering cell phone tours—simply dial the number and prepare to be enthralled as you walk through the lovely scenery.
Auto tours are available as self-guided or with the option of a tour guide who will relate a wealth of information as you drive through the scenic byways of the park. Several guided tours are offered at Valley Forge Pennsylvania, including ranger tours, trolley tours, bike tours, and living history interpretations, and each one offers a unique experience of stepping or riding through the pages of history.
Out-of-town visitors can choose from a number of accommodations and hotels near Valley Forge, including campgrounds, inns and hotels, and retreat houses. Hidden Acres Campground, Camp Kweebec, and the Philadelphia West Chester KOA are the nearby camp sites; these campgrounds offer several amenities and activities, such as mini golf, go-karting, a zipline, pool and arcade rooms, and paintball, along with the everyday needs such as showers and restrooms. Marriott, Doubletree, Sheraton, Crowne Plaza, and Clarion are among the full-service hotels near Valley Forge, while the Malvern Retreat Center offers a 125-acre secluded haven from the rest of the world that allows visitors to experience nature at its most peaceful state.
Wherever you choose to stay, Valley Forge Pennsylvania offers a wealth of experiences, and whether you're interested in the historical tours or a restful outdoor vacation, you'll find that this important site is the perfect setting for a memorable vacation in Pennsylvania, and you're sure to be planning a return trip as soon as you leave for home.