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Gettysburg

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1 Day Trip


Jump to our 3 day trip!

Family friendlyHikeGreat view

If you have one day for this trip, spend it exploring the iconic Gettysburg National Military Park, site of the one of the most important battles of the Civil War and one of the greatest speeches of all time.

Before you go:

How to tour Gettysburg National Military Park:

 Time: 4-6 hours  Sites: 1  Distance: 2 miles

1. Museum and Visitor Center:

  • Find out what Ranger Programs are scheduled for that day.
  • View the film, A New Birth of Freedom, and see the Cyclorama.
  • Tour the museum.

2. Little Round Top - Location of the Union right flank, famously held by the 20th Maine and Col. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain.

3. Devil's Den - Site of vicious fighting just below Little Round Top.

4. The High Water Mark - The point on Cemetary Ridge where the Confederacy reached the Union center after Pickett's Charge, on the third and final day of battle.

5. Soldier's National Cemetery - The resting place for more than 3,500 Union troops killed in battle.

Extras:

  • Visit the David Wills House, where Lincoln stayed the night before he gave the Gettysburg Address.
  • Take a battlefield hike on one of Gettysburg's trails. Hike the Fish Hook for a rigorous walk.

Insider Tip


INSIDER TIP:
Check out the Sachs Covered Bridge on your drive to or from Gettysburg – it was used by Union forces marching to the battle and by Confederate forces on their retreat.

Gettysburg Cannon

3 Day Trip 


In three days, you will be able to cover the area very well. You can choose to spend as much or as little time as you like at the various sites, you can also skip or add sites to fit your needs. No matter what, make sure you spend ample time at the Gettysburg Battlefield.

 Time: 3 days  Sites: 10  Distance: 40 miles

Jump to one of our sites:

1.   Gettysburg National Military Park
2.   David Wills House
3.   Gettysburg Heritage Center
4.   Seminary Ridge Museum
5.   Adams County Historical Society
6.   Gettysburg Museum of History
7.   Caldonia State Park
8.   National Civil War Museum
9.   State Museum of Pennsylvania
10. The John Harris-Simon Cameron Mansion

Gettysburg Morning

1. Gettysburg National Military Park 

Family friendlyHikeGreat view

Time: 1 day

What to do:

Refer to our 1 Day Tour. Then, visit these additional battlefield sites:

  • McPherson Ridge - Location of the Union right flank, famously held by the 20th Maine and Col. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain.
  • Eternal Light Peace Memorial - Located in the area of a Confederate attack on the Union flank during the first day of fighting, this memorial was dedicated on July 3, 1938, on the 75th anniversary of the battle.
  • Sprangler's Spring/Culp's Mill - While Little Round Top on the left flank of the Union position is a focal point for visitors, be sure to visit this area that was the right flank of the Union army. Fierce fighting occurred here on the second day of the battle, as Confederates took Culp’s Hill but then were driven off by Union forces.
  • Virginia Memorial/Pickett's Charge - This beautiful memorial occupies the position of Confederate troops who participated in Pickett’s Charge on July 3.
  • The Wheatfield and Peach Orchard - Fierce attacks occurred here on July 2 before Union forces retreated to Little Round Top.

David Wills House

2. David Wills House (kids icon)

Family friendly

This National Park Service museum is the former home of David Wills, a Gettysburg resident who hosted Abraham Lincoln the night before his Gettysburg Address. A great way to get 'inside' the Gettysburg Address and learn about the town of Gettysburg following the horrific three-day battle.  

Time: 1.5 hours

Before you go:

What to do:

  • Tour the house, stopping in each of the five galleries.
  • While in Lincoln's bedroom, take a moment to contemplate what he might have been thinking, in the midst of this terrible war, on the eve of a very important opportunity to address the nation.

Gettysburg Address

3. Gettysburg Heritage Center

The center provides artifacts, displays, historical documents, and other 3D productions to teach visitors about the civilian experience during the battle.

Time: 1.5 hours

What to do:

  •  Check out the interactive exhibits and the gift shop.

Seminary Ridge Soldiers

 4. Seminary Ridge Museum

This beautiful brick building, which was a Lutheran seminary at the time of the battle, served as an important observation post and field hospital for both sides.

Time: 1-2 hours

Before you go:

  • Read about the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg, when Union Brig. Gen John Buford used the seminary's cupola as an observation point.

What to do:

  • Tour the 20,000 square feet of interactive exhibits.

Soldier's art

5. Adams County Historical Society

The Adams County Historical Society offers a very comprehensive collection of primary and secondary source material including books, manuscript collections, artifacts, and research related the Battle of Gettysburg.

Time: 1-2 hours (may be longer depending on your research needs)

Before you go:

  • Check out the Society's genealogy page for helpful tips if you are preparing to research a Civil War ancestor.

What to do:

  • Explore the museum’s collections of primary and secondary sources.
  • Conduct research if you know you had a relative who fought at Gettysburg.

Lincoln's Wallet

6. Gettysburg Museum of History

This museum features over 4,000 Civil War relics, including Gettysburg battle artifacts and Lincoln’s wallet and opera glasses.

Time: 1.5 hours

What to do:

  • Browse the exhibits and artifacts.

Caldonia State Park

7. Caldonia State Park

HikeThis 1,125 acre park, located 25 minutes from Gettysburg, was the site of an iron furnace owned by Thaddeus Stevens and destroyed by Confederate forces during the Civil War.


Time: 1-2 hours

Before you go:

  • Read more about Senator Thaddeus Stevens and his advocacy of African-Americans before, during, and after the Civil War.

What to do:

  • Visit the site of the ruined iron works and blacksmith shop.
  • Hike the miles of trails.

National Civil War Museum

8. National Civil War Museum

Located in Harrisburg, this museum features extensive permanent collections and fascinating current exhibits covering topics such as “Women and the War” to “Weapons and Equipment.”

Time: 1.5 hours

What to do:

  • Tour the museum’s collections and check out any special exhibits or events.

State museum of Pennsylvania.

9. State Museum of Pennsylvania

Also located in Harrisburg, this museum features Civil War materials, including flags, uniforms, firearms, swords, accoutrements, and soldiers' personal gear.

Time: 1 hour

Before you go: 

What to do:

  • In addition to the exhibits, check out the famous “Battle of Gettysburg” painting by Peter Frederick Rothermel, which measures 16 feet high by 32 feet long.

John Harris Simon Cameron Mansion

10. The John Harris-Simon Cameron Mansion

Another Harrisburg stop, this mansion was the home of Lincoln’s first secretary of war.

Time: 1 hour

What to do:

  • Take the mansion tour to learn about Cameron’s service in Lincoln’s cabinet during the war.

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