I had $28.24 in Orbitz reward points expiring so I decided to book a weekend trip. I loaded up Google maps and zoomed out. Allentown, PA was picked after deciding it wasn’t too far of a drive and I had never been there before. I researched and saw a few things worth doing, so I booked a Saturday night stay there. Allentown is located in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania, and is often grouped with neighboring towns Easton and Bethlehem.
The Econo Lodge in Allentown had a rate for $59.40 which included a free breakfast (I wasn’t expecting much going in). After my Orbitz reward points were applied, the total came out to $31.16 for the room. I invited a few friends to tag along and we set out to explore life in the Lehigh Valley.
Our first stop was the Hijinx Brewing Company on the outskirts of Allentown. I’m a casual beer drinker, but for connoisseurs there is no shortage of local small breweries in the area to visit.
Our next stop for dinner was Wert’s Cafe, which had great onion rings (more like strings) and meaty burgers. This place is a bit popular among the locals and there was a short wait to get seated. We were not disappointed.
We ended the night at the Liberty Street Tavern, which is across the street from Muhlenberg College. The bar had a great beer selection along with very friendly locals. The next morning we went to Zandy’s Steak Shop where you can get a cheesesteak that’s slightly different than the traditional cheesesteaks you’ll find in Philadelphia. There’s no cheese whiz and instead a great red sauce with hot peppers. This place is a blast from the past, and definitely one of the highlights of the trip.
After lunch, we went to the Allentown Art Museum. The museum is free on Sundays and also participates in Bank of America’s Museums on Us program, in case you plan on visiting on the first Saturday of the month. One particular item of interest is the library designed by Frank Lloyd Wright from the second Francis W. Little house is on display. Another room from that house is Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
Allentown was a great weekend trip and under two hours drive west of New York City. If you’re ever passing through the area, don’t miss Zandy’s Steak Shop.