Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do with Kids in York, PA

  • Published 2022/10/23

The historic city of York is in York County, located in the south-central Pennsylvania region.

Most of its charm comes from the numerous well-preserved historical sites.

In the mid-18th century, York had the name Yorktown; Philadelphia settlers founded the city in 1741.

Moreover, the name “United States of America” was first used in York.

At the same time, it’s a city with a rich cultural tradition, particularly in the arts and music.

Bring your kids to York so they may learn more about the world and history.

There’s a lot of adventure to anticipate in every corner of this remarkable city, from bowling, skating, and fishing to more child-centered programs like museums and exhibits.

Here are the best things to do in York, PA, with kids.

Rent a Boat at Lake Redman

Welcome sign of Lake Redman

Jon Bilous /

If you want to share an aquatic adventure with your kids, head to Lake Redman.

As part of the William H. Kain County Park, this lake offers a local dive into York’s most common fish species.

While at this 290-acre scenic lake, rent a boat to explore the waters and help your kid experience a peaceful boat ride they won’t find elsewhere.

Designated as a Big Bass Lake by the PA Fish Commission, this lake is also a good spot for some light fishing.

The waters of Lake Redman

Christian Hinkle /

While your kid may choose not to join your fishing, you can introduce them to the crappies, catfish, largemouth bass, or pikes after every catch.

Skip pebbles from the lakeside with your little one, too.

Lake Redman on Hess Farm Road is an idyllic location for afternoon or evening relaxation.

Ducks on Lake Redman

Christian Hinkle /

Take a Swim at Wisehaven Swimming Pool

Wisehaven Swimming Pool keeps you excited and energized if you’re in York for the summer.

This private swimming pool on East Prospect Road has existed since the 60s.

The family-operated pool has also seen four generations of legacy ownership.

The pools have fountains and a wide beach entry 18 inches deep.

You can feel secure that your kids are swimming safely at the roped pool designated for kids nine and below.

A jumping rock can also elevate their fun when they splash around the pool.

There’s also a bizarre, adrenaline-inducing slide for adults and older kids.

The pool facility also offers summer job openings for your teenagers, so check that out, too.

Wisehaven Swimming Pool also has a large expanse of lawn to lay a blanket over for tanning or just setting your things down.

Teach Your Kids about Skating at York Ice Arena

Keep your York trip cool and seamless with a drive to the York Ice Arena.

This skating facility specializes in hockey and freeform skating.

Are your little ones interested in these sports?

Then, it’s time to accompany them to York Ice Arena for some lessons, playing around, or honing their learned skills.

Public skating is also available for those who don’t mind sharing the rink with others.

The site also has party rooms where you can celebrate your child’s best moments.

If you choose the Cool Party package, your child and their guests may even receive a skating lesson to go with your festivities.

York Ice Arena is on Vander Avenue.

Play a Round of Friendly Bowling at Colony Park Lanes North

Located on Pennsylvania Avenue, Colony Park Lanes North brings all the family fun together.

With its variety of bowling themes and competitive ranges, there is no such thing as boredom when you spend a few hours at this place.

Glow Bowling is one of the crowd favorites in York because of the aesthetic lighting and dramatic atmosphere it brings to your usual bowling bonanza.

Your child may also like Clutch Bowling, which adds graphic and technological elements to the lanes.

This gives your bowling experience a fascinating perspective.

Aside from its standard bowling amenities, you can also find enjoyment in its arcade center and lounge.

With over 15 arcade booths and interactive game machines, it’s a gaming haven for your youngsters.

Colony Park Lanes North’s lounge is present to satisfy you and the whole family after a grueling match at the bowling lanes.

View the Exhibits at York County History Center

On East Market Street, York County History Center provides a quick trip to the past of the colorful county.

The center’s wide range of artifacts collection tells the story of York for over 300 years.

This includes the early American and Civil War periodical pieces and souvenirs.

The center also prides itself on genealogical heritage and decorative arts through interactive displays.

At the Library and Archives, you can also learn about military history.

Special exhibits come from time to time, offering an in-depth look at artists, masterpieces, inventions, and various topics.

York County History Center sits at the forefront of historical knowledge; your kids will love and enjoy the place.

Watch a Baseball Game at PeoplesBank Park

Exterior of PeoplesBank Park

Gnome8910, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Located on Brooks Robinson Way, PeoplesBank Park offers an all-around entertainment experience for the whole family.

This event venue location is home to York’s infamous 7,500-seat baseball stadium.

Besides this landmark, it’s also a convenient location to downtown York where all the best recreational spots are aplenty.

Its adaptable indoor and outdoor spaces are the ideal places to host a party or unwind and feel York beneath your feet.

Whether you travel with a large group or a friendly number, you can still have fun.

There are private spaces with enough technological equipment and a comprehensive menu to gather your colleagues for a business event.

At the ballpark, try out some grilled food with your little one while you find seats among the crowd.

If you’re lucky, you might just come across a big match.

It’s an excellent opportunity for you to bond with your kid over your shared love for baseball, too!

Put PeoplesBank Park on your itinerary for York, Pennsylvania.

Play Horseshoe with Your Kids at Rocky Ridge Park

The mature oak forest of Rocky Ridge Park is an immersive refuge of outdoor recreation that the whole family can enjoy.

Acquired in 1968, this park overlooks an expanse of forest on top of a hill.

Beyond a leisure spot, this place is famous as one of the first locations where the original settlers built their homes.

Take your child on a hike or a walk along the multi-use trails.

Get them up on the observation decks and feel the breeze surround you as they admire the Susquehanna Valley from on top of the platform.

A horseshoe pit and a playground are also within the property to ensure your kids get the physical exercise they need.

Visit Rocky Ridge Park on Deininger Road.

Play Classic Games at the Timeline Arcade

As the largest retro arcade in the south-central region of Pennsylvania, Timeline Arcade checks off every requirement you might want in a video arcade center.

It has over 300 games (and counting!) onsite so everyone can find their favorite game.

From the little ones and teens to your adult relatives, every family member can have fun with the machines and other equipment within the facility.

You can also reserve a place for a private party with your family, friends, and guests.

Timeline Arcade is next to Old Forge Brewing Company on West Market Street.

This facility is open seven days a week for unlimited fun.

Pet the Animals at Perrydell Farm Dairy

Howard Perry bought the Perrydell Farm Dairy in 1923 and turned it into a phenomenal place to visit while in York.

This farm has thrived on milk bottling since 1963 and has become a tourist attraction.

Sign up with your kid for a guided tour around the place and learn more about farming and dairy products.

The calves and cows are also very friendly, so your kids can have fun petting and getting to know them.

Create a delicious sundae while you’re there, and bring home some dairy products!

Perrydell Farm Dairy sits in the rolling landscapes alongside Indian Rock Dam Road.

Ride a Bike with Your Kid at William H. Kain County Park

Trail at William H. Kain County Park

Christian Hinkle /

William H. Kain County Park on Hess Farm Road stands out from the rest of this list with its luxurious facilities.

Spanning 1,637 acres, it’s a recommended spot for some intimate family gatherings or outdoor escapades.

Besides, it is also home to two lakes, Lake Williams and Lake Redman.

The site’s most sought-after activities are kayaking, boating, and paddling.

The grounds of William H. Kain County Park

Christian Hinkle /

Limited hunting is also an activity worth exploring while at this park.

William H. Kain County Park’s multi-use trails allow horseback riding and biking for those interested.

When the day ends, spend the last of the sunlight at the rented pavilions for a picturesque view of the entire property while enjoying a snack.

Great egret on the waters of William H. Kain County Park

Walt Bilous /

Let Your Kids Learn Soap Making at the Sunrise Soap Company

The Sunrise Soap Company provides high-quality beauty products and supplies for residents and travelers passing by York.

Moreover, what separates this store from the rest is its creation station.

Its creation station allows kids and adults into soap-making and product formulation.

You and your child can try crafting a beauty product by hand, from bath bombs and glycerin soaps to lotions and scrubs.

The Sunrise Soap Company is on North Beaver Street.

Host Your Child’s Party at Suburban Bowlerama

On South Queen Street, your family can play a few rounds of bowling at the Suburban Bowlerama alley.

Suburban Bowlerama has existed since 1958, featuring 30 lanes for maximum fun.

Its retro theme lanes can also spice up your game and bring a new challenge to your regular swing-and-hit moment.

There are kid-friendly bumper bowling lanes within site, too, so your kid can catch up with the fun the adults are having.

Suburban Bowlerama also hosts private events and parties.

Come to this bowling alley and don’t miss a lot of excitement with your bowling shoes and competitive spirit.

Play a Story at Curious Little Playhouse

Curious Little Playhouse takes the top spot of York’s child-friendly sites when it comes to simulating your kids with hands-on play.

Found on West Market Street, this indoor playground promises open play with a mix of learning and adventuring.

Take them around stalls, historical places, diners, and all sorts of replica venues that serve to integrate them into the real world outside.

There are special sensory sessions for children and adults too!

Curious Little Playhouse is in downtown York on West Market Street.

View the Vintage Cars at the Agricultural & Industrial Museum

York County’s contribution to the agricultural and industrial sectors of the country is as vast as its historical significance.

At the Agricultural & Industrial Museum, your journey to this specific historical excursion is a guarantee.

With two floors and more than 20 exhibits onsite, the Agricultural & Industrial Museum keeps the past alive.

What’s more, you don’t just learn about the past.

You also relive it.

At the Agricultural Gallery, learn firsthand how to milk a dairy cow or discover the workings of a grist mill.

The Local Industry Galleries also allow you a glimpse of rotary phones and other vintage machines and inventions.

You also experience what it’s like to ride a trolley car from before the 20s.

The art scene is also represented beautifully at the exhibits.

Get the chance to learn pottery making, wallpaper creating, and even ice producing.

The Agricultural & Industrial Museum is on West Princess Street.

Enjoy Breakfast at York Central Market

Exterior of York Central Market

Acroterion, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Don’t leave York without stopping by at least once at York Central Market.

This market, right along West Philadelphia Street, gathers the whole community for a shared love of local products and goods.

Bring your child for breakfast and indulge in local York flavors by seasoned producers and cooks.

While you’re there, enjoy the live music from artists while you do your shopping.

Remember to buy a unique artisan gift to give to a loved one or serve as decor for your home.

All this and more await you at this historical building of York Central Market.

Final Thoughts

With its array of multi-purpose museums and outdoor recreation options, York stands proud as a family-friendly and flexible city.

The occasional fun experience for kids at unique landmarks is only a bonus.

So, the next time you plan to go to Pennsylvania, remember to go to York.

Don’t forget to try the best things to do in York with your kids!

© All rights reserved.