How to Make Your Own Beer(STAY)cation

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Beercations are a real thing, and beer tourism is at its all-time high. From people traveling to Vermont to grab the fresh IPAs to running wild in the streets of Asheville’s unbelievable craft beer scene, beer has become more of a reason to travel than ever before.

But, you don’t need to travel far to have a great beer trip experience. There’s no question that our area is brewery rich and getting more so all the time that staying local to grab some local brews is easier than ever.

You could take a trip down Route 230 and hit four different breweries, or take a short jaunt to Hanover to see what this small town has to offer.

No matter where you go, near or far, you’re going to need some sort of plan to get the most out of your trip.

How to plan:

1. What makes most travel sense?


»» Use the Booze Trail Map!

You don’t want to trade gas money for beer money just because you have to backtrack 20 miles to the next spot. To be most efficient, make sure you design your own route to hit the ones you can in an order that makes the most sense.

PLUS, not all places have the same hours. Don’t show up to a brewery at noon only to find out they don’t open until 4 p.m.

2. Who offers food?

*AMAZING* Cuban Sandwich from Mad Chef Brewing in East Petersburg
*AMAZING* Cuban Sandwich from Mad Chef Brewing in East Petersburg

We are all aware that not every brewery, vineyard or even bar for that matter offers a wealth of food. Make your first stop somewhere you can get a good “base” and one at the end to fill up after a day of tastings.

Don’t restrict yourself to just breweries either. Most bars and restaurants offer local beer selection so you can kill two birds with one stone.

3. Be prepared!


There are few worse feelings than being at a brewery with a pint of the best beer of the trip without a way to take it home. Growlers are a must for any beer trip and a small cooler could be perfect for some of the longer trips.

Be sure to bring car necessities like a phone charger (maps use up a lot of battery), a killer playlist and of course a great drinking buddy.

4. Make other travel plans

Along with knowing your route, you should also see if there are other ways to get around. Taking the train to Lancaster is a great way to sample the whole city without the tedious drive down and back 283. It’s also only $22 round trip and extremely flexible.

Uber is also a great tool to utilize in every city. It’s cheap and easy to request a car to take you wherever you want to go.

Train trip: Start at Tattered Flag in Middletown then hop on the train to make a stop at Moo-Duck and Funk in Elizabethtown before reaching your final destination of Lancaster.


Lancaster is a popular destination because of the proximity of bars and breweries, but you can make basically make a beercation in most of the greater Harrisburg area.

»» Check out our Lancaster Brewery Guide

A favorite of mine is St. Boniface in Ephrata, Union Barrel Works in Rheemstown and then finishing up with great beer and burger at the one and only Stoudts in Adamstown.

Where do you like to beer trip?

James Werner
Author: James Werner

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