Bucks County has been adored and enjoyed for generations. With its wooded, rolling hills, free-flowing rivers, Dutch stone farmhouses, sprawling fields, and picturesque towns, Bucks County offers residents and visitors with a mix of rural retreats and small-town charms. Everywhere you look, you will find history and beauty. You can bike along the old Delaware towpath in summer. Or admire castles and colorful fields as you drive down unpaved country lanes come fall. Whatever you do, you will never run out of things to do in Bucks County.
Whether you’re looking to eat and drink your way through every town or, relive—and relish in—its rich history, we’ve got you covered like its bridges. Here’s a list of Bucks County’s 25 greatest hits, from a local’s point of view. You will find plenty of Bucks County activities, restaurants, landmarks, events, and more.
25: Explore the Mercer Museum and Fonthill Castle
If the kids don’t like museums, just tell them you are heading to a castle. Housed in a six-story concrete castle, the Mercer Museum features a core collection of over 50,000 pre-industrial era tools. Located in Doylestown, the castle was designed by jack-of-all-tradesman Henry Chapman Mercer and completed back in 1916. You will find revolving national exhibits, as well as an eye-opening collection of American materials, tools, and more. Be sure to bring a camera, as it’s interior looks like it could have been pulled straight from a Harry Potter book.
When you’ve had your share of fun and exploration, head on over to Fonthill Castle, which stands just one mile from the Mercer Museum. Built by Mercer, Fonthill Castle was completed in 1912 and served as his home and print gallery. Famous for its eclectic mix of Medieval, Byzantine, and Gothic architectural styles, adults and children alike will be fascinated by its ornate design, steep stairs, narrow passages, expansive art collections, and more.
Plan your visit to Mercer Museum and Fonthill Castle online today.
24: View Centuries of Architecture Along the Delaware Canal
You don’t need to visit Venice to experience the beauty and majesty of a historic canal. Simply drive over to the Delaware Canal State Park, where you can bike or stroll along the 60-mile two path that runs along the water. Steeped in history, the canal once served as a barge towpath. Between the 1830s and 1930s, mules would pull barges through the canal, transporting materials to and from countless destinations along the canal—and beyond.
The park boasts:
A 60-mile historic canal and path ideal for running, biking, and walking
A 90-acre pond perfect for relaxation recreation
11 river islands and miles of shoreline
Endless vistas and ever-changing scenes, ranging from farm fields to historic Bucks County towns
For more information, visit the DCNR website.
23: Sip Wine at Sand Castle Winery
Only 5% of U.S. wineries grow, harvest, and bottle their own wine on-site. Sand Castle is one such place. Located on a lush, 72-acre piece of land 12 miles north of New Hope in the Central Delaware Valley, the winery stands in the heart of one of the world’s only regions where Cabernet, Chardonnay, Riesling, and Pinot Noir all grow successfully. Sand Castle's centerpiece is its gorgeous bottling and tasting facility, a European-style castle that overlooks the Delaware River.
Visit their site to book a tour and tasting online today.
22: Explore the 1,700+ Acres of Land in Tyler State Park
Tyler State Park is a place to rest, relax, and unwind. Spread over 1700 acres of lush wooded green space, the park is home to a diverse array of wildlife. Neshaminy Creek runs through the heart of the park and provides a getaway haven for fishermen, boaters, and city dwellers in search of solitude. The park offers countless recreational opportunities, including mountain biking, disc golf, bird watching, picnicking, and more. You can also take the park’s interconnected trails by bike or take a hike through one of many dirt trails that cut through both forests and country fields.
For more info, visit the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation & Natural Resources online.
21: Cross the Delaware River
If the story of America could be told in entirety in one book, the Delaware River would certainly stake claim to an entire chapter. The famous waterway flowed front and center during a key moment of America’s revolution. Visit Bucks County’s historic Washington Crossing to take yourself back in time and to the site where George Washington and some 2400 men crossed the Delaware on December 25th, 1776 en route to a surprise attack against enemy troops in modern-day Trenton, New Jersey. The battle was a turning point in the war, which turned the river crossing into a monumental event.
Visit Washington Crossing State Park to explore this national landmark, which spans both the New Jersey and Pennsylvania sides of the river.
20: Eat Your Way through Bucks County Restaurant Week
Every Spring, foodies descend on Bucks County to try some of the best food in the Mid-Atlantic region. Bucks County Restaurant Week, running April 26th through the 2nd in 2020, gives participating restaurants the chance to showcase their very best dishes. Patrons can sample spectacular food from prix fixe menus.
Be sure to save the date. You won’t want to miss the Bucks County foodie event of the year.
19: Walk the Rocks at Ringing Rocks County Park
Ringing Rocks Park is home to a massive 7-acre boulder field. Bring your own hammer and strike the stones to hear a resounding ringing noise. The sound might remind you of a bell or wind chime. Nobody knows how the rocks got there but you’ll be glad they did. In total, the park is 128 acres. The park's rocks are piled about 10-feet high. A short trail leads to the rock field, as well as High Falls, which happens to be the tallest waterfall in all of Bucks County. Furry friends are welcome—just be sure to keep them on a leash.
To learn more about this unusual and fascinating site (and sound), visit BucksCounty.Org.
18: Ride a Train through the Countryside
Why drive when you can take a train? Ride in a classic, 19th-century train along the New Hope Railroad. The 9-mile journey will take you through some of Bucks County’s most picturesque scenery, beginning in New Hope and ending in Lahaska.
The line is over 150 years old. The train itself is powered by a 1925 Baldwin steam locomotive. Whether you ride in a vintage passenger coach car or the old bar car, you will truly feel like you blasted to the past. Be sure to check out New Hope Railroad’s Fall Foliage tour ride, which stretches over 35 miles en route to Warminster. The North Pole Express is the railroad’s annual Christmas event. Train passengers can enjoy hot chocolate, cookies, and a special visit from Santa.
17: Hike Along the Cliffs of Ralph Stover State Park
Ralph Stover State Park is a sight to behold. And it's undoubtedly one of the top things to do in Bucks County, especially for nature lovers. Hike to the High Rocks section to catch a view of a breathtaking horseshoe bend at Tohickon Creek, which cuts through the 45-acre park. In the wake of heavy storms in the warm weather months, you will spot kayaks and canoes shooting through the rapids.
The park is open 365 days a year.
16: Bury a Hatchet in Bensalem
Ever hurled an axe through the air? Axe throwing didn’t die in the middle ages. In fact, it’s alive in well at Bury the Hatchet in Bensalem, PA. Come experience the rush of throwing an axe into a wooden target. Bury the Hatchet offers many lanes for customers to throw axes with friends, coworkers, family, and strangers.
In between throws, you can have drinks at the bar or sip on the sidelines with friends as you cheer people on.
15: View Fine Art In a Jail-Turned-Museum
The Doylestown-based Michener Art Museum was named after Bucks County’s most famous son, Pulitzer-Prize winning writer James A. Michener. Formally the Bucks County Jail, the 135-year-old building was transformed into a museum and opened to the public in 1988.
Surrounded by towering and historic stone jail walls, the museum’s art stretches across 40,000 square feet and includes a converted prison yard and warden’s house. Visitors enjoy its expansive landscaped courtyard, as well its beautiful sculpture garden, reading room, and in-house cafe.
14: Quakertown Farmers Market
Since 1932, people have been putting off their weekday shopping in favor of weekend excursions to the Quakertown Farmers Market and Flea Market. Open throughout the year on Fridays and Saturdays, the market offers over 100 departments. The flea market spans 225,000 square feet, with up to 400 vendors selling everything from vintage clothing and handmade crafts, to antiques and collectibles.
13: Visit the Shops at Valley Square
If you aren’t done shopping, visit The Shops at Valley Square, where you’ll find a walkable outdoor shopping mall complete with stores, coffee shops, restaurants, and more. With over 200,000 square feet of retail space, The Shops at Valley Square is tucked away in scenic Warrington, PA.
Grab a coffee, enjoy a romantic date, gather with family, or go shopping with friends. Whatever you’re searching for, you can find at Valley Square.
12: Take a Walk through Town … Any Town
Doylestown. New Hope. Yardley. Newtown. Quakertown. Bristol. The list goes on. A walk down the main street of any Bucks County town will delight and inspire you.
In all of Bucks County, perhaps no town street as picturesque as Main Street in New Hope. Indulge in stout chocolate cupcake at Factory Girl Bake Shop or dig into a slice of “The New Hope” at Spatola’s Pizza. The street has a near endless stream of shops, restaurants, bakeries, coffee shops, and boutique stores. Take a stroll and take your pick.
Doylestown’s main street, which is both bikeable and walkable, boasts a beautiful historic district filled with pubs, eateries, and shops. You can find loads of attractions along the Delaware in Bristol, a quaint town known for its history as a river transport hub. And the historic towns of Newtown, Quakertown, and Yardley are all unique in their own ways, with main streets that spur nostalgic thoughts and inspire childhood dreams.
11: Catch a Concert at Penn Community Bank Amphitheater
Located in Bensalem’s Central Park, Penn Community Bank Amphitheater serves up entertainment for over 3,000 people. Its open-lawn setting welcomes music from all genres, and people of all ages. Every summer, thousands come out for summer concerts under the stars. The venue, famous for attracting top-of-the-line tribute bands, sells individual and season tickets. Whether you want to stay glued to the stage or mingle with neighbors in the back, Penn Community Bank Amphitheater has you covered.
10: Drink Your Way Along the County Ale Trail
Bucks County is filled with top-notch beer producers. Visit any Bucks County brewery to grab an Ale Trail Passport. Or grab a passport online. When you check-in at 5 or more area breweries, you will get a free Bucks County Ale Trail T-Shirt. And be sure to post pics of your adventures using the hashtag #DrinkInBucksCo.
Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co, Triumph Brewing Company of New Hope, Free Will Brewing Co., and Yardley Brewing Co. are four popular spots in the Bucks County area.
9: Drive Across One or Many of the County’s Covered Bridges
Bucks County is famous for many things. But it’s covered bridges may very well be one of its most beloved and recognizable attractions. The area has 12 covered bridges in all, each unique and stunning in their own way.
You will find most of the covered bridges on the scenic, rural roads of Upper Bucks County. The area was once home to over 50 covered bridges. Today just 12 remain—10 that still support cars. Three of the bridges date back to 1832, including the Erwinna, Uhlerstown, and South Perkasie Bridges.
To learn more about Bucks County’s bridges, check out VisitBucksCounty.com.
8: Honor Victims and Heroes at the 9/11 Memorial Garden of Reflection
18 members of the Bucks County community lost their lives in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. A beautiful memorial was created in their honor. It was inspired by Bucks County families who imagined a place they could come to pay respects to their loved ones and all others who died that tragic day. The memorial features beautiful trees, twin fountains, and a spiraling path, as well as etched glass that includes all 2,973 victims’ names.
The memorial is located in Lower Makefield. Visit 9-11MemorialGarden.org to learn more.
7: Go for a Drive
Life gets busy and stressful. Maybe it’s time to take a drive. Across bridges. Through rolling farm fields. And towards castles made of stone, and towns built with sweat and heart. Who needs a destination when you can cruise your car through backcountry roads, idyllic towns, and historic revolution-era sites?
When it comes to beautiful drives, River Road surpasses them all. Running parallel to the Delaware River for nearly 40 miles, River Road winds through some of Bucks County's most beautiful countryside. You will encounter restaurants, shops, and wineries along the County’s favorite thoroughfare. Some days you just need to get in the car and go. Is today the day?
6: Dine at Stella in New Hope
Named after the owners’ one-eared pitbull, Stella is the culinary creation of James Beard award-winning chef Jose Garces. Located on the banks of the Delaware River in New Hope, Stella's cuisine is inspired by local ingredients sourced from the area’s best farmers.
The restaurant offers seating for 80 patrons, in addition to private dining and event spaces. Housed in the hip and elegant Ghost Light Inn, Stella is a true riverside gem. The dishes put worldly spins on approachable American classics. Menu highlights include Spaghetti Pie, Wagyu Skirt Steak, and Pocona Rainbow Trout.
Book a table today to experience Jose’s incredible dishes.
5: Take an Epic Staycation
If you live in Bucks County and need a getaway, maybe you can get away with staying put instead. If you are about to have a baby, how about a babymoon? After all, staycations are more convenient, affordable, and less stressful. So grab a room at the 1740 House, Hargrave Bed & Breakfast, the Washington House Hotel, or any of the many hotels in the area.
4: Go Antiquing and Vintage Shopping
Bucks County is a destination for vintage clothing shoppers and antique collectors. Given the long history of the area, you will find an endless supply of vintage gems, timeless antiques, and other valuable vestiges from a distant time. Stop by the Quaker Antique Mall, Golden Nugget Antique Flea Market, or Rice’s Market to find antique furniture, jewelry, and more.
If its vintage clothing you’re after, you won’t want to skip Thirteen Vintage, Night Bird Vintage Clothing, and Vintage Funk. And if you’re up for some sifting, stop by any area thrift store. You will surely find some gems.
3: Explore the Arts
Bucks County is a true haven for the arts. From the rotating artwork at Gathering, An Art Gallery and Boutique to the mainstays at the Mercer Museum, you can find impressive Bucks County art collections at every turn.
Bucks County is also home to many performing arts theaters, where you can see musicals, plays, and more. Be sure to catch a show at Bucks County Playhouse.
2: Shop at Peddler’s Village
Peddler’s Village is chock full of family-owned stores and boutique shops. Its colonial-style setting is ideal for seasonal festivals, one-of-a-kind events, and everyday enjoyment. Located in Lahaska between New Hope and Doylestown, Peddler’s Village features over 65 stores and an elegant country inn, in addition to restaurants, coffee shops, and pop-up shops.
Stores range from pop-up cheese shops to vintage boutiques. There’s even an old carousel, an arcade, and weekly happy hours.
1: Float Down the Delaware
If you're looking for the best things to do in Bucks County, what better way to spend a late spring or midsummer’s day than by floating down the Delaware River on a tube, kayak, or canoe? Your worries will drift with you as you pass from town to town, admiring homes, barns, bridges, and buildings—many built centuries ago. Hoards of people come from New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania to float or paddle their way down the Delaware in Bucks County. So call your friends and make a day of it.
There are many, many more things to do in Bucks County. But this list will send you on your way towards more than a few perfect days.
Russell Volk is a top Realtor® with RE/MAX Elite with years of experience in the Bucks County Real Estate market. He specializes in helping buyers find the perfect home. Whether you're looking for a townhome, single family home, new construction, 55+/active adult home or a luxury property, contact Russell Volk for professional guidance and expert advice. Russell is also well equipped to handle the sale of properties, and loves helping people sell their home quickly and profitably. To contact Russell directly, call him at 267-566-0999.