COVID-19 has made it incredibly difficult to enjoy the summer this year, but the season isn’t over yet. There’s still plenty of time to visit the many sights and attractions located in and around Mount Laurel. Health officials agree that outdoor activities are much safer than crowding into bars, restaurants, movie theaters, and other enclosed venues.
With that in mind, here are 18 (mostly) outside sights and attractions to visit this summer in Mount Laurel and its surrounding areas:
Burlington County has a seemingly endless supply of parks for hiking, fishing, boating, and picnicking. Go on a relaxing walk with your dog, or have a socially distanced picnic with your grandkids. Here are just a few of the parks to visit in and around Mount Laurel:
Rancocas State Park: a 1,252-acre protected area suitable for hikers, cyclists, joggers, and nature enthusiasts. Check out the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection website for trail maps.
Laurel Acres Park: a lovely community park with a nature trail, small fishing lake, dog run, and more.
Strawbridge Lake Park: a 70-acre park that features an artificial lake with boat launches, a playground, picnic tables, and more.
Pennington Park: a park with picnic facilities, nature trails, a community garden, and more.
Adventure Aquarium: This impressive aquarium in Camden is only a 30-minute drive from Mount Laurel and just reopened to visitors at low capacity.
The Alice Paul Institute: the birthplace and childhood home of feminist, suffragist, and political strategist Alice Paul. The institute has suspended tours temporarily, but it is hosting Yoga for Her Rights on Mondays on its spacious lawn, with the option of joining virtually. The hourlong yoga class raises funds to support the institute's youth leadership programs and costs $5.15 per session.
If you consider yourself an oenophile, you might enjoy visiting one of the many wineries scattered in and around Burlington County. Though some are temporarily closed, many are open for outdoor imbibing and dining.
Iron Plow Vineyards: Located on a 62-acre farm established in 1690, Iron Plow Vineyards is now open for socially distanced outdoor consumption. Enjoy breathtaking views of the land on the garden terrace, explore the property, or picnic on the lawns.
Laurita Winery: Reserve a table at this beautiful, sprawling winery and enjoy some live music with your food and wine.
Sharrott Winery: This award-winning winery is open for tastings and dining. Reservations are highly recommended.
One of the perks of living in Mount Laurel is that Philadelphia is a mere 30-minute drive away. If you’re thinking about venturing into the city, check out these senior-friendly attractions:
Longwood Gardens: 1,077 acres of gardens, meadows, and woodlands. Buy a ticket and wander around for hours gazing at an overwhelming variety of flowers, including the infamous “corpse flower.”
Bartram’s Garden: a historic garden and arboretum founded in 1728 by John Bartram. The 50-acre garden is open for socially distanced recreation.
Philadelphia has an overwhelming supply of historical landmarks, and perhaps the best and safest way to enjoy them is by taking a walking tour.
Walking Tours: There’s the option of booking an organized walking tour with a guide, such as the Franklin Footsteps Walking Tour, or taking a self-led walking tour. GPSmyCity has an app that allows you to download tour maps, photos, and background information for featured attractions.
Independence National Historical Park: The outdoor portion of this historic location, where the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution were signed, is open to the public.
Valley Forge National Historical Park: Grounds, trails, and parking lots are now open at this historic site.
The Franklin Institute: a historic science museum, currently displaying “The Presidents” by Madame Tussauds. The museum reopened on July 8.
The Barnes Foundation: an art museum featuring a world-renowned collection of modern European paintings. The museum reopened to the public on July 25.
The Academy of Natural Sciences: one of the oldest natural science museums in the Americas. The museum plans to reopen to the public on July 31.
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