Where are Western Pennsylvania travelers headed this summer?
Western Pennsylvanians love their summer beach vacations.
According to data compiled from AAA East Central TripTik requests, “the beaches of the Carolinas are the most popular destinations,” says Jim Garrity, the region’s public and legislative affairs manager.
The AAA East Central region includes Western Pennsylvania and parts of Kentucky, New York, Ohio and West Virginia.
“By and large, people are headed to the beach at this time of year,” Garrity says. “But there’s also a trend to try something different, like a hike, a camping experience or a visit to a lake.
“Living here in Pennsylvania, we shouldn’t take for granted the beautiful and diverse locations that we have closer to home,” he says.
Popular in-state road trip destinations include Philadelphia, the Lancaster area and the Erie wine country. For people looking to get out into nature, the Kinzua Dam area of Warren County, Cook Forest State Park, Allegheny National Forest, the Pocono Mountains, “even places closer by like Ohiopyle” are big draws, Garrity says.
Western Pennsylvanians heading farther north often request TripTiks to Ontario. Lots of people head to Florida, too, “even as far south as the Keys,” Garrity says.
AAA also has a new trip-planning tool available to everyone, not just its members, at aaa.com/roadtrips/.
The tool includes hundreds of preplanned routes — including recommended stops — for 15 regions across the continental United States, Alaska and Hawaii.
For example, the 46 trips listed in the Mid-Atlantic region include Keystone State destinations such as the Pennsylvania Dutch Country of the Hershey area, an Allegheny National Forest scenic drive and Pennsylvania’s Historic National Road, among others.
Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, [email protected] or via Twitter .