THINGS TO DO IN PROMISED LAND STATE PARK

If you’re looking for a back-to-nature vacation, Promised Land State Park in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania delivers a perfect ground for that. It invites you with 3,000 acres of land, 50 miles of trails, two lakes, 9 miles of shoreline, 170 mooring spaces, and numerous camping areas, some offering picture-perfect waterfront sites. Boating, fishing, swimming, hunting, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling are leading activities in the park. In this post, you will learn in detail about things to do in Promised Land State Park.

Promised Land State Park. Water lilies.
Promised Land State Park delivers beauty and relaxation.

I thought I knew Promised Land State Park by heart after camping there more times than I could remember. But after my recent trip there, I realized that a lot has changed in recent years. One thing for sure, thanks to new facilities, the park is up to date with the current health standards. Despite these modern-day improvements, many areas of the park seem almost untouched and offer a peaceful escape.

Description

About 3,000 acres in size, Promised Land State Park is located on the Pocono Plateau, 1,800 feet above sea level. It is surrounded by 12,464 acres of Pennsylvania’s Delaware State Forest, primarily consisting of beech, oak, maple, and hemlock trees. Two lakes and several small streams add to the park’s scenic beauty.

Things to do in Promise Land State Park. Green forest.
You can easily find solitude at Promised Land State Park.

Getting There:

Promised Land State Park is in Pike County, 10 miles north of Canadensis, along PA Route 390. The park is easily accessed from interstate highways 80 and 84. The park is about 100 miles north of Philadelphia and 35 miles from the New York and New Jersey state borders.

GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
41.29942, -75.21412
41°17’58″N, 75°12’51″W

Contact 

PROMISED LAND STATE PARK
100 Lower Lake Rd
GREENTOWN  PA  18426

Phone Number:

Park Office: (570)676-3428

THINGS TO DO IN PROMISED LAND STATE PARK

Looking for activities in the Pocono Mountains, PA? You will find a wide variety of things to do in Promised Land State Park - where nature awaits!

Picknicking

Even if you don’t have a lot of time to spend at Promised Land State Park, you can at least have lunch there. Pack up your family and a picnic and head over. The Day Use Picnic Area is next to Promised Land Lake, in a scenic woodland setting.

The main beach, boat rental, and refreshment stand are all within a short walk. The area gets crowded on weekends close to the lake, but many tables in the wooden area remain empty. 

Hiking in Promised Land State Park

Hiking is another popular day trip activity in Promised Land State Park. Visitors can explore 50 miles of trails. My favorite, Bruce Lake Trail, leads to a picturesque natural glacial lake. Little Falls Trail offers views of small cascades. Visitors can also take a loop trail around Conservation Island.

In early summer, blooming mountain laurel and rhododendron add to the beauty of the area.

Things to do in Promised Land State Park. Pink rhododendron.
Promised Lands State Park bursts with rhododendron in early summer.

Swimming in Promised Land State Park

From late May to mid-September, two sand beaches are open from 8 a.m. to sunset. Main Beach is located in the picnic area. It gets crowded on weekends when people arrive for an outing by the lake.

Another smaller beach is situated at Pickerel Point Campground at the far end of the peninsula. This one remains relatively empty. Both beaches are unguarded.

Things to do in Promised Land State Park. Sandy beach at Pickerel Point Campground.
Sandy beach at Pickerel Point Campground.

Boating

Boating is another popular activity in the park. The 422-acre Promised Land Lake offers approximately nine miles of shoreline, while the 173-acre Lower Lake has almost four miles. There are five boat launching areas. Five boat mooring areas provide a total of 170 mooring spaces, which may be rented from April through October each year.

Bring your own boat or take advantage of Promised Land State Park’s boat rental. Rentals offer rowboats, canoes, paddleboard, and one or two-person kayaks.

Sandy beach at Pickerel Point Campground. Main picnic area and the canoe.
Canoeing is a popular activity at Promised Land State Park.

Fishing

Largemouth and smallmouth bass, pickerel, muskellunge, yellow perch, sunfish, and catfish are all found in the lakes here. Ice fishing is popular on both lakes, with bass, pickerel, and panfish are the most common fish caught through the ice. A fishing license is required. 

Hunting

During established seasons, about 1,528 acres are open to hunting, trapping, and training of dogs. Common game species are deer, bear, and turkey.

Camping at Promised Land State Park

With six camping areas, Promised Land State Park delivers as an excellent destination for nature seekers. Campgrounds vary from rustic (flush toilets, no showers, and no electricity) to full hookup (sewer, electric, and water hookup on-site). All campgrounds are located near swimming, boating, fishing, and hiking.

Promised Land State Park what to do. Camping cottage.
Three camping cottages at Pickerell Point State Park are a great deal, but a summer reservation will challenge your skills.

Pickerel Poing Campground – the most popular!

Tent area

With many waterfront sites, Pickerel Point Campground offers one of the best camping experiences among Pennsylvania state parks. The area has 75 campsites and three camping cottages. Limited sites and the camping cottages are open year-round.

The area has two shower houses with laundry facilities and one restroom. An unguarded swimming area is located at the end of the peninsula. Mooring and boat rental facilities are also available.

Things to do in Promised Land State Park. Blue tent on the lake.
The Pickrell Point offers many stunning campsites.

The campground offers rustic walk-in sites, electric sites, and full hookups with sewer, water, and electricity. Keep in mind that the most desirable sites in this area are walk-in, so you will need to carry all your things. But the distance is short, and your effort will pay off with the privacy and the scenic beauty of the waterfront.

RV and drive-in sites are available, but most of them do not offer much seclusion. If you want to be close to the water, look at the spots toward the end of the peninsula. I like sites 126 to 131 and 140 to 147.

Things to do at Promised Land State Park. Camping trailer.Camping in style at Promised Land State Park.

Camping cottages

These cottages are not directly waterfront but offer lovely views of the lake, electric heat, and outlets, bunk beds, table and benches, a grill, and a fire ring. Bathrooms and showers are nearby. In my opinion, this is the best accommodation in the park.

Things to do at Promised Land State Park. Camping cottage.
Camping cottages at Promised Land State Park are extremely popular.
Other camping areas

Other camping areas in the park do not offer a waterfront location, but they still let you relax in the woods.

Stay at Rustic Cabins at Bear Wallow Colony

Nestled within evergreens and adjacent to Lower Lake, the Bear Wallow Cabin Colony has 12 rustic rental cabins that were constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) during the 1930s. Linens are not provided. These rustic cabins each have a fireplace insert, refrigerator, stove, electricity, bathroom, and an outdoor fire ring. Make your reservation here.

Things to do in Promised Land State Park. Memory plate.
A little bit of history at the entrance to Masker Museum.

Making a reservation at Promised Land State Park

Make your reservation for camping in Promised Land State Park well in advance! Most campsites in Pennsylvania state parks can be reserved 11 months in advance to noon on the day of arrival. Advance reservations are available for almost all campsites.

Unreserved sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Act fast if you want to catch camping cottages or waterfront sites at Pickerell Point!

View the eagles’ nest from the Wildlife Observation Station

An active bald eagle nest sits in a large tree at the edge of Lower Lake. This nest is visible from the wildlife observation station, which is accessible from Bear Wallow Road, the same road leading to Bear Wallow Boat Launch.

The nest is active by early spring when the lake’s surface is no longer frozen. The eagle nest is located directly across the lake from the established wildlife observation station.

Things to do at Promised Land State Park. Hiking trail with rhododendron.
A hiking trail at Promised Land State Park.

Visit the Masker Museum

In addition to outdoor activities, visits a museum. The Masker Museum at Promised Land State Park is one of the largest Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) museums features interactive stories, displays, artifacts, mounted animals, field guides, and bird observation area.

Look for the museum off of Pickerel Point Road by the amphitheater and Pickerel Point Campground. Admission to the museum is free. Please check with the park office to confirm hours.

A statue of CCC boy in front of Masker Museum at Promised Land State Park.
A statue of CCC boy in front of Masker Museum at Promised Land State Park.

Attend an environmental education program

Environmental Education programming is offered from April through October at both Promised Land State Park and Varden Conservation Area. From Memorial Day through Labor Day, recreational programming is offered on Fridays and Saturdays.

From late June through early September, the park provides a weekly nature arts and crafts program for children of all ages that is organized by conservation volunteers.

Winter Activities

Winter activities include snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and ice fishing.

Explore Delaware Forest

Alternatively, you can find many activities at Delaware State Forest totals 83,519 acres in Pike, Monroe, Northampton, and Carbon Counties that offers a great variety of outdoor activities. Named for the Delaware River, the forest represents characteristics of the Pocono region, with remote glacial lakes and bogs rich with plants, wildlife, and scenic beauty.

Visitors have access to over 30 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails, 28 miles of ATV trails, and 13 lakes and ponds stocked with native species for fishing.

Things to do in Promised Land State Park.
A beautiful conservation area at Promised Land State Park.

Explore Pocono Mountains

In addition to the park’s activities, you can venture our to explore the beautiful Poconos Mountains Region that has attracted nature lovers for generations. The top activities in the Poconos include hiking Mount Minsi in Delaware Water Gap, Pocono TreeVentures obstacle course in East Strausburg, Claws ‘N’ Paws is a petting zoo and animal park, and much more.

Thing to do at Promised Land State Park. Make sure to hike Mount Minsi for beautiful views of Delaware Water Gap.
Make sure to hike Mount Minsi for beautiful views of Delaware Water Gap.

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