Local Lifestyle: Reading, PA
Local Lifestyle is a series meant to highlight the sites and events in Eastern Pennsylvania, Delaware and Northern Maryland. Let me help you travel like a local!
Listed as the fifth largest city in Pennsylvania, Reading might not be on the top of most people’s ‘Must See’ list. Whether you find yourself passing through, or see something on the list worth a special trip, here are a few of my favorite spots!
If a Japanese style pagoda in the middle of Pennsylvania seems random to you, you’re not alone. However, the fact that you can see it from nearly anywhere in the city makes it something of a staple of any Reading itinerary. For only $0.50 you can climb each layer and watch the buildings slowly dwindle beneath you. A photo outside of the Pagoda is also a must, so take a moment in the parking lot to snap a few photos.
Chatty Monks Brewing
Any brewery with a name as unique as Chatty Monks is worth a stop. Plus, having heard our friends from Reading (Hi Alysha and Chad!) constantly talk about it, we knew we had to make room in our itinerary. With their location in West Reading, sit outside and enjoy the hustle bustle of the neighborhood around you.
Based on the website billing, I have to admit that I thought the castle would be bigger. However, a castle in the middle of Pennsylvania (similar to the aforementioned Pagoda) is a sight in itself to see. Stokesay Castle is mostly an event venue or a fine dining establishment, but they do have a spot off to the side for those of us peasants who want in on the medieval magic. The Knights Pub is a much more affordable option that stills get you into the castle mood and the staff was open to letting us wander the rest of the rooms, to see the opulence of the ballroom and other dining rooms. (If you’re wondering which day to go, the place was practically empty early Sunday afternoon and we were pleasantly surprised by their Happy Hour deals.)
Hidden River Brewing
Just outside of Reading, this is one of the most eclectic breweries we’ve been to. If you go in nice weather, wander the strangely decorated rooms until you get out onto the porch near the, aptly titled, hidden river. Breweries can be found in all sorts of locations, but industrial parks can be a very common space, as they usually afford room for tasting and production. I love that Hidden River is in a more bucolic and relaxing setting.
Do you like exploring more unknown cities? Do you have any other Reading suggestions? Let me know in the comments!