Do it for the ‘Gram at these Covered Bridges
Charming, romantic, historic, and a true testament of 19th-century craftsmanship, Pennsylvania’s rustic covered bridges are some of the most Instagram-worthy you’ll find anywhere.
With nearly 200 covered bridges across the state, Pennsylvania is home to the most remaining covered bridges in the U.S. Their various architectural styles and classic bold colors set against our natural landscapes make for some amazing shots, so don’t pass up your chance to capture these pastoral throwbacks to rustic Pennsylvania culture. We’re sharing the most Instagram-worthy covered bridges across Pennsylvania for you to map out your next photoshoot.
Knapp’s Covered Bridge
Nestled among the mountains of Bradford County, Knapp’s Covered Bridge in Luther Mills is the highest covered bridge in Pennsylvania. It’s the only covered bridge in the county and definitely one not to miss. Completely restored, the bridge sits 30 feet above Brown's Creek. Its natural gray wood, open sides, and spectacular mountain setting make this a favorite of covered bridge fans!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1853, 95 feet long, single span, Burr Arch design
Rishel Covered Bridge
What better place to start your covered bridge tour than at Pennsylvania’s oldest bridge (and possibly the oldest covered bridge still standing in the U.S.)! Linking East and West Chillisquaque Townships, the Rishel Covered Bridge retains all the charm and history as when it was first built in 1830 and is just waiting for you to stop by and snap a few pictures.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1830, 110 feet long, single span, Burr Truss design
Pomeroy-Academia Covered Bridge
The Pomeroy-Academia Covered Bridge in Port Royal has to be at the top of the list of Pennsylvania’s must-see covered bridges; it’s Nearly 300 feet long spanning the scenic Tuscarora Creek, this bridge is considered by some to be the grand show piece of them all, and is the longest covered bridge in the state. Come see why this particular bridge is an especially popular darling of Instagrammers.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1902, 278 feet long, double span, Burr Arch design.
Eric Benjamin Bridge
Quickly becoming a favorite among covered bridge fans, the Eric Benjamin Bridge in Bradford offers an opportunity to incorporate your visit into a day or weekend spent exploring the surrounding landscape of the Allegheny National Forest. Even though this structure is relatively young by covered bridge standards, its eye-catching diagonal truss design delivers on photo-worthiness. Built in 2004, the bridge spans the cascading waters of the Marilla Reservoir spillway — itself built back in 1898 — and is part of the one-mile Marilla Bridges Trail that circles the reservoir, offering an easy, family friendly hike through the surrounding woodlands.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 2004.
Sachs Bridge (aka, Saucks Covered Bridge) in Gettysburg is simply brimming with history — and perhaps a ghostly apparition or two! Used by both Union and Confederate soldiers during the Civil War, the bridge sailed about 100 yards down Marsh Creek after some heavy rains hit in 1997. Never fear — the bridge was repaired and placed back on its foundation. Now fully restored and secure, the bridge (with or without its rumored ghosts) invites you to stroll across its storied timbers for a step back in time and some pretty spectacular photos!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1854, 100 feet long, single span, Town Truss design
Martins Mill Covered Bridge
The Martins Mill Covered Bridge in Antrim Township has a different look and feel from most covered bridges you’ll ever see. It was built back in 1849 in a style known as the Town Lattice Truss design, meaning it has no arches or exterior supports, and is the largest lattice type covered bridge still standing in Pennsylvania. Its unique and beautiful design and setting among the woodlands surrounding Conococheague Creek provide some simply stunning photo ops!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1849, 205 feet long, single span, Town Lattice Truss design
Witherspoon Covered Bridge
Known locally simply as the “Red Bridge,” the Witherspoon Covered Bridge in Montgomery Township is tops 135 years this year, and was clearly built to last — it’s one of the few covered bridges in Pennsylvania that’s still open to vehicular traffic, albeit one car at a time. Relax and soak up some peace on the shores of the slow-moving Licking Creek adjacent to the bridge. Don’t forget to snap a photo or two of its best angles!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1883, 87 feet long, Burr Truss design
Harrity Covered Bridge
For almost 130 years, the Harrity Covered Bridge safely carried travelers over the Pohopoca Creek in Lehighton. In 1970, when the creek was dammed to create Beltzville Lake, the bridge was dismantled and reconstructed on dry land in Beltzville State Park. This sweet little bridge now awaits new travelers in the area to explore the great outdoors. Here’s your chance to take some unique covered bridge photos now that it rests on dry land!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1841, 66 feet long, Burr Arch design
Schofield Ford Covered Bridge
The Schofield Ford Covered Bridge (aka, Twinning Ford Bridge) in Tyler State Park in Newtown is a true phoenix risen from the ashes. After the original bridge was destroyed by arsonists in 1991, it was completely rebuilt at the same location using the original plans, specifications, and local wood as the original. Because the rebuilt bridge was left unpainted like the original, snaps of this bridge will have rustic character for days.
Bridge Profile: Originally constructed in 1873, rebuilt in 1997; 170 feet long, double span, Town Truss design
Thomas Mill Covered Bridge
Philadelphia was the first place in the U.S. with a covered bridge, so it’s fitting that one can still be found within the city limits! While the Thomas Mill Covered Bridge is off the beaten path both literally and figuratively, you’ll enjoy the trek through the beautiful Fairmount Park woodlands to reach it. Painted barn red with stone and spanning the Wissahickon Creek, this quintessential covered bridge is simply picture perfect!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1855, 86.5 feet long, single span, Howe Truss design
Knox Covered Bridge
The Knox Covered Bridge in Tredyffrin Township was built decades after George Washington’s and his troops’ winter encampment. Nevertheless, no trip to historic Valley Forge can be considered complete without taking in this historic and beautiful bridge. Painted white, this distinctive bridge is hard to miss and happens to be the only bridge in the state owned by the federal government.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1865, 65 feet long, single span, Burr Arch design
Packsaddle Covered Bridge
Considered to be the most scenic covered bridge in Somerset County if not the entire state, Packsaddle Covered Bridge (aka, Doc Miller Covered Bridge) in Fairhope Township does not disappoint! Spanning a natural waterfall formed by a series of small drops along Brush Creek, the setting is almost too scenic for words. At a bit under 50 feet in length, the bridge offers a sweet ride over the creek and the chance for some stunning photos.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1870, 48 feet long, single span, Multiple Kingpost Truss design
Carmichaels Covered Bridge
Located a block away from the Old Town section of Carmichaels, Carmichaels Covered Bridge is one of a handful of covered bridges that remains a key part of the vibrant local community. Spanning Muddy Creek, the bridge offers a wonderful glimpse into what life was like in days past when covered bridges were vital conduits for Pennsylvania’s towns and cities. Visit the third weekend in September for the annual Covered Bridge Festival for some great food, fun, and photo ops!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1889, 64 feet long, single span, Queenpost design
King’s Covered Bridge
Covered bridges were once known as “kissing bridges” back in the day when young couples would sometimes steal a kiss as they went across. Try it yourself with your favorite someone as you stroll across King’s Covered Bridge in Middlecreek Township. Take advantage of the fact that it’s closed to traffic and take all the time you need to line up the perfect snaps of the bridge’s intricate inner structure!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1906, 127 feet long, single span, Burr Truss design
Shriver Covered Bridge
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1900, 40 feet long, single span, Queenpost design
Claycomb Covered Bridge
In the mood for a little living history with your covered bridge viewing? Drive across the Claycomb Covered Bridge to Old Bedford Village for a fun and informative step back in time. The bridge itself is almost 140 years old, 95 of which it spent in Reynoldsville before being moved to its new home welcoming visitors in Old Bedford.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1880, 126 feet long, single span, Burr Truss design
St. Mary’s Covered Bridge
It’s impossible to get a bad shot of St. Mary’s Covered Bridge in Shade Gap. And a bonus for those who know their covered bridge architecture, it’s one of only four covered bridges built in the Howe Truss design still standing in Pennsylvania. With its open framework providing views of Shade Creek, this is one bridge that’s a definite must-see.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1889, 65 feet long, single span, Howe Truss design
Jackson’s Sawmill Bridge
The Jackson’s Sawmill Covered Bridge (aka, Eichelberger’s Covered Bridge) in Quarryville has a slightly different look than most covered bridges, crossing the west Branch of the Octoraro Creek at an angle rather than straight across. There are photo ops galore with and the interplay of farmland and woods — especially when the trees are all decked out in their fall colors!
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1878, 143 feet long, single span, Double Burr Arch design
East and West Paden Covered Bridges
You’ll be seeing double the stunning photo opportunities at Twin Bridges Park in Fishing Creek Township. Known as the “Twin Bridges,” the East and West Paden Covered Bridges are truly one-of-a-kind and are the only twin covered bridges in the entire U.S. Though built simultaneously, they differ in size and design.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1884 (but West Paden was reconstructed in 2008 after the original was washed away by flood waters in 2006), 79 feet and 103 feet long, Queen Truss and Burr Arch designs
Kidd's Mill Covered Bridge
Want to stroll across a covered bridge with no worries of a car or truck suddenly appearing right behind you? The Kidd’s Mill Covered Bridge in Pymatuning Township is open only to foot traffic and sits right next to a beautiful park — perfect for pictures and a picnic lunch! Bonus: The bridge is a true treasure, as it’s the only Type 2 Smith Truss covered bridge still standing in the entire U.S.
Bridge Profile: Constructed in 1868, 125 feet long, single span, Type 2 Smith Truss design
Kreidersville Covered Bridge
Allen Township residents deeply love the Kreidersville Covered Bridge, and we know you will too . They saved it from the wrecking ball, have repaired and maintained it, built a park around it, and throw a biannual festival to celebrate it. The bridge even has its own website! Sit in the nearby gazebo and enjoy views of this beautiful bridge as the Hokendauqua Creek gurgles by.
Bridge Profile: Built in 1839, 116 feet long, single span, and is of the Burr construction with a curved truss support
Events & Festivals:
Celebrate the beauty, history, and charm of Pennsylvania’s covered bridges at one or more of these festivals.
48th Annual Washington & Greene Counties’ Covered Bridge Festival (September 15-16, 2018)
Held the third weekend of September each year, this signature event kicks off the fall festival season! Each of its 10 festival locations offers a charming atmosphere and an array of activities, including handmade arts and crafts, homestyle food, historic reenactments, demonstrations, children's activities, and live entertainment.
Columbia-Montour Covered Bridge Festival & Covered Bridge Bus Tours (October 4-7, 2018)
Situated in the beautiful surroundings of Knoebels Amusement Resort, the 37th Annual Covered Bridge & Arts Festival has something for everyone, with 400+ craft vendors, 38 food vendors, free parking, free admission, and select Knoebels’ rides open all four days.
Mark your calendars for the next festival, which is scheduled for early summer 2020.
More Covered Bridges:
Can’t seem to get enough of Pennsylvania’s covered bridges? Here are some self-guided tours that will take you by some of the state’s most well-known and some lesser known, but no less spectacular, covered bridges.
Discover Lancaster has developed five driving tours of the county’s covered bridges, each with directions to several of the historic covered bridges, ideas for things to do along the way, and unique Lancaster County towns and villages lined with restaurants, shops, galleries, and attractions to explore.
Discover Lehigh invites you to journey back in time to a quieter, more idyllic way of life on its Lehigh Covered Bridge Tour. With detailed directions and a bit of the history surrounding each of the seven historic covered bridges, it’s a perfect way to spend a quiet late summer or early fall day.
The tour of Bucks County’s 12 remaining covered bridges is designed so you can start at the tour’s official starting point at the Memorial Building in Washington Crossing State Park or hop on the tour at any point. With detailed directions, the 90-mile tour takes you all over Bucks County —some rural unmarked back roads that are just waiting for you to discover them.
Pennsylvania’s Americana Region invites you to “Shake up the ghosts, Rattle the boards, ‘n Roll through our countryside” on its Covered Bridge Driving Tour. With detailed directions, the tour takes you by the county’s five history-filled covered bridges, along with ideas of other sights and attractions to see along the way.
9 Bridges, 90 Minutes, 40 Miles. With detailed directions, this tour takes you by nine of Bedford County’s 14 covered bridges. Or take the 16.6-mile Covered Bridge Loop, which is designed as a bicycle tour, that takes you by four of the county’s covered bridges. Whatever your choice, you’ll see some beautiful covered bridges in some equally beautiful and picturesque settings.
Sullivan County invites you to tour its three historic covered bridges, all built in 1850: Forksville Covered Bridge, Sonestown Covered Bridge, and Hillsgrove Covered Bridge. All are equally charming and beautiful!
The Washington and Greene Counties Covered Bridges Driving Tour provides all the essential information (directions, stats and facts) you’ll need to tour the two counties’ 30 covered bridges. There are four regional tours — Northwest, Southwest, Eastern, and Greene County — with detailed directions for each tour and “fun facts” on each covered bridge.
Indiana County is home to four covered bridges, all within easy driving distance of one another and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Request the “Covered Bridges of Columbia and Montour Counties” brochure and driving map from the Columbia-Montour Visitors Bureau for a detailed driving map and turn-by- turn directions of the area’s 25 covered bridges. The brochure will take you on a historical and educational journey along our scenic back roads to visit the beloved bridges. Want to leave the driving to someone else? The Visitors Bureau offers a bus tour each spring and several bus tours in the fall (associated with the annual Covered Bridge & Arts Festival).
To learn about more hiking trail adventures, check out the visitPA website. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram to stay up-to-date on even more great ideas and places to visit around our state. Don’t forget to never miss an update and sign up for our monthly Happy Thoughts e-newsletter.