LIGONIER, Pa. (Jan. 24, 2022) – Lovebirds looking to get away to celebrate Valentine’s Day will find no shortage of lovely things to see and do in Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands. GO Laurel Highlands, the region’s destination marketing organization, shares four diverse getaway itineraries to charm visitors and residents alike.
For the Outdoor Lovers
If you and your sweetie are in love with the great outdoors, here’s some inspiration that features snow, more snow, yummy food, a cozy fireplace, perhaps a hot toddy and a romantic night away.
Kick off your day with first tracks at Laurel Mountain ski area then warm up near the outdoor fireplace with your snow bunny. For added snow fun, get out and explore Forbes State Forest on a guided snowshoe tour. The forestry team is hosting a free Sweetheart Snowshoe tour on Feb. 18. The 2-2.5 mile tour does have limited availability, so be sure to reserve in advance.
By this point, you’ve certainly worked up a hearty appetite. Cruise over to the quirky, cool Fat Squirrel Eatery for a bite to eat. Their menu is super creative ranging from pan-seared local trout and pomegranate pepita salad to Greek nachos and pork belly tacos.
All that snow calls for a craft cocktail! Make a stop at the family-owned Rusty Musket Distilling Co. to pick up some locally-crafted whiskey to create some hot toddies for your post-snow thaw-out.
The Laurel Highlands is home to a bevy of cabins and cottages tucked away under the trees, like the Allegheny Front Experience. This charmer offers jaw-dropping views and plenty of peace and quiet. To explore more cabins, chalets, cottages and getaway retreats, click here.
For the Love of Luxury
Is this the year you go all out for Valentine’s Day? Is it a special anniversary or maybe you will be popping the big question? If you’re planning the ultimate Valentine’s Day getaway, then look no further than Nemacolin! Check out the resort’s Crystal Vase Package – it’s loaded with just about everything you could need, including a special hand-blown crystal vase, a dozen roses and breakfast. If a little extra relaxation is in order and you can make it a midweek escape, the Couples Escape is for you! This special offer includes discounted lodging, breakfast and a credit toward the Couples Escape Spa Day Package.
All you will need to do is make a dinner reservation at one of Nemacolin’s stellar dining locations including the one and only Lautrec or the stellar Aqueous.
For the Foodies
For the foodies who plan their getaways around creative culinary locations and cool craft beverage spots instead of things to do and see, here is a guide to eating and drinking like royalty in the Laurel Highlands.
Before you leave for your trip, be sure to request a Laurel Highlands Pour Tour passport online, or download the app onto a smartphone. As you make your way around the region, collect stickers with every purchase from participating locations and redeem your stickers for exclusive prizes.
Kick off your Valentine’s Day weekend with Bella Terra Vineyard’s Sweetheart Dinner Friday or Saturday night. Enjoy live music, a glass of wine and appetizers in the heated tent before indulging in a delicious meal capped with Oreo lasagna. If you didn’t have room for dessert at Bella Terra, make your way to Prantl’s Bakery in Greensburg and snag one of their world-famous burnt almond tortes.
After your bellies are full, head to Oak Lodge to hibernate for the night. Their stunning main lodge offers a variety of beautiful rooms or perhaps reserve one of their luxury king cabins for your romantic getaway. The next morning, rise and shine with their delicious breakfast array featuring Jimberg maple syrup – made right on site! To explore more places to stay, click here.
For the Creative Couple
Many artists, including Frank Lloyd Wright, have found inspiration for their creations in the Laurel Highlands. If you and your partner are artsy, or you’re just looking for a creative outlet during your getaway, we’ve got you covered.
Start your weekend in downtown Greensburg and take a spin around the Westmoreland Museum of American Art. The museum features the work of a variety of artists, from local quilt makers to national masterpieces. By the end of your visit, your creative juices will be flowing. Admission to the museum is free, but donations are greatly appreciated.
While you’re in Greensburg, grab lunch or dinner at Olives and Peppers, an authentic Italian restaurant located in the beautiful historic train station. Pair your pasta dish with a glass of wine or a seasonal cocktail as you relax and enjoy conversation with your partner.
Olives and Peppers is generous with their portions, but if you’ve saved room for dessert, seek out a banana split in Latrobe, the birthplace of the famous sweet treat! End the day in one of two brand new cute and cozy vacation rentals above 512 Coffee and Ice Cream in Latrobe.
The benefit of renting a room above a coffee shop? You only have to take a few steps to get your first cup! After you grab a drink and a muffin from 512, head to the Latrobe Art Center for their oil painting class, conveniently scheduled on Valentine’s Day. Doreen Currie will lead the class and instruct you through the entire process. Registration is required, and you have to bring your own materials, so plan accordingly.
About Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands
A magnificent mountainous region, the Laurel Highlands spans 3,000 square miles in southwestern Pennsylvania. Located an hour’s drive east of Pittsburgh, the beautiful four-season destination offers spectacular natural scenery, outstanding outdoor recreation, historic sites and attractions, family activities, and world-class resorts. Notable destinations within the region include four architectural masterpieces by Frank Lloyd Wright – Fallingwater®, Kentuck Knob, Mäntylä and Duncan House – Nemacolin, Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Flight 93 National Memorial, Idlewild and Soak Zone, whitewater rafting in Ohiopyle State Park, and more.
Located within 200 miles of the major metropolitan areas of Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Cleveland, and Washington D.C., Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands can be easily accessed from exits 67, 75, 91, and 110 of the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
Visitors to the Laurel Highlands can find information online at www.GoLaurelHighlands.com, calling 724.238.5661, www.facebook.com/laurelhighlandsPA and www.twitter.com/laurelhighlands. Established in 1958, GO Laurel Highlands, formerly known as Laurel Highlands Visitors Bureau, is the official destination marketing organization for Fayette, Somerset, and Westmoreland counties in southwestern Pennsylvania.