Hotel at a Glance: Comfort Inn at the Park – Hershey
Founded in 1903 by candy magnate Milton Hershey, the town of Hershey, Pennsylvania often draws comparisons to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory for its confection-themed amusements and fairy tale-like setting. One of the attractions, Hershey Park, has more than 65 rides including a massive wave pool and a rollercoaster that goes from zero to 72 mph in two seconds (the park opens in early May). You can get a behind-the-scenes look at how chocolate is made next door at Chocolate World. Just two miles from here is The Comfort Inn at the Park – Hershey.<p>
- Complimentary hot breakfast of eggs, sausage, home fries, and fresh Belgian waffles
- Hershey Tanger Outlets is home to nearly 100 shops, including J. Crew, Coach, and the Disney Store
- Justin Timberlake, Jay-Z, and Dave Matthews Band have all performed at nearby Hersheypark Stadium, which hosts events all year long.
- Access to Gold’s Gym is included in your stay.
Hershey, Pennsylvania: Chocolate Empire with Amusement Parks, Museum, and Tours
Hershey bills itself as “The Sweetest Place on Earth,” a claim that’s hard to dispute considering the whole town smells like chocolate. The confection empire dates back to 1903, when rags-to-riches entrepreneur Milton Hershey founded the area as a company town for his factory workers. The factory now churns out more than one million chocolate bars a week, and the property now includes candy-themed amusement parks and museums.
At Hershey Park, you can ride 12 roller coasters and an intercoastal waterway. Next door at Chocolate World, there’s a trolley tour that takes passengers to Hershey’s boyhood home and the mansion he built across from his factory. Even when you’re not in the park areas, you’re reminded of the sacred saccharine treat—there are street lamps shaped as foil-wrapped chocolate kisses and hand soaps made with cocoa beans.
The area has a few sugar-free attractions as well. The recently opened National Civil War Museum chronicles the war from both the Southern and Northern perspectives. Robert E. Lee’s pocket bible and Ulysses S. Grant’s sword belt are among its more than 12,000 artifacts. And about 25 miles south, the Amish community of Lancaster County is colored by pastoral farmlands, covered bridges, and horse-drawn buggies.<p>