This outdoor facility, which includes the HO Smith Botanic Gardens, is probably the most peaceful spot for a breath of fresh air in greater State College. Landscapes range from marsh meadows and lotus pools to preserved ancient plants that seemingly stand outside of time.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Pennsylvania attractions

1. Palmer Museum of Art

0.38 MILES

This eye-catching building houses 11 galleries and a contemporary sculpture garden, making for a fun, free diversionary day trip into the arts. The main…

2. Matson Museum of Anthropology


This small museum is packed with ethnographic artifacts from around the world (mainly Africa, the Middle East and the Americas), and is open to self…

3. Black Moshannon State Park

11.43 MILES

Tucked away west of Julian, PA, Black Moshannon State Park is 43,000 acres reserved for boating, fishing and hiking. Of note are its unique lake and bogs,…

4. Penn's Cave

14.4 MILES

At Penn's Cave, boats glide you through a long tunnel filled with pretty rock formations, stalagmites, stalactites, and even 'cave bacon' (it's a real…

5. Bald Eagle State Park

19.37 MILES

Almost 6000 acres of craggy Central Pennsylvania highlands form the foundation of this state park, which encompasses the Bald Eagle Valley and (you…