Fans of American history and war will find much to tour at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The site is historic for being the turning point for the American Civil War, and infamous for involving the largest number of casualties of the entire war. It is also the inspiration for President Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address.”
Before boarding the bus, grab a copy of the 1993 movie Gettysburg, featuring Tom Berenger, Jeff Daniels and Martin Sheen for some cinematic Hollywood storytelling. At a runtime of 271 minutes, you’ll have great entertainment to keep passengers occupied for even long trips. On BusRates.com, you can determine which buses have monitors and DVD players by looking for a checkmark next to “DVD” within each company’s fleet table.
Gettysburg is a tourist’s town, with quaint streets, old houses and townspeople dressed up in period-appropriate clothes, carrying reproductions of antique muskets and carbine rifles as they greet visitors on the streets. This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, and with it comes many special activities, so be sure to check out the calendar of events.
If your group is feeling hungry upon arrival, take the motorcoach on the Gettysburg Wine and Fruit Trail. Or park the motorcoach downtown for its plentiful options for food and drink. Stop in the Blue & Gray Bar & Grill for pub fare and burgers designed for Union and Confederate soldiers, or The Farnsworth House Tavern which proudly features a large collection of props and memorabilia from the aforementioned Gettysburg movie (it was the favored spot to grab a bite during breaks in filming).
In addition, historical actors and local tour guides provide almost endless living history opportunities along the streets. It’s not unheard of to sample a wine tasting at Hauser Estate Winery and witness a General Robert E. Lee reenactor step inside to tell stories of the battle. There are structures that still carry bullet holes from the war in the town, and there is evidence of America’s history around every corner. Many travelers say a trip to Gettysburg is incomplete without visiting the Jennie Wade House, a guided tour in the home of the only civilian casualty in the war.
Visitors can easily spend an entire day at the Gettysburg National Military Park
The Gettysburg National Military Park is where history buffs could occupy an entire day’s itinerary. Stroll along the fields of battle, now dotted with sculptures and statues memorializing various ranks and divisions of soldiers in the war. Tours on foot and by bus are available, with some tours providing CD audio that could be played aboard a motorcoach or minibus while traveling to the various sites. Stop by the Visitor Center and Museum to get an overview of the many touring options and to make sure you see everything your group wants.
As night falls, take a stroll along Steinwehr Avenue for a dozen opportunities to join a ghost tour. These tours provide history and theatrics and are often led by candlelight. The bloodiest battle of the American Civil War provides a palpable atmosphere for ghost seekers and paranormal investigators. Whether the area is haunted or not is up to you, but the stories these entertainment tours provide paint intimate portraits of the life of individuals in the years surrounding the war.
Ghost tours led by candlelight are a fun diversion for groups
If you’re thinking of organizing a group trip to Gettysburg, get started on BusRates.com to find the best motorcoach operator for your group trip.