Pennsylvania is a state rich in early American history, strikingly beautiful landscapes and lots and lots of chocolate. Add on the fact that the state offers plenty of affordable neighborhoods and a strong job market bolstered by a high rate of Fortune 500 companies, and you've got your next move all figured out.
1. One Word: Chocolate
Hershey, Pennsylvania is quite possibly the sweetest place on earth. As its name suggests, this town was once home to Milton S. Hershey and now boasts The Hershey Company. If you’re a chocolate lover, Hershey’s Chocolate World offers chocolate tasting and tours, while Hersheypark serves up some seriously chocolaty thrill rides. All of this, combined with its great livability, made Hershey one of the 100 Best Small Towns 2015.
2. Pennsylvania is Truly a National Treasure
The Keystone State has the kind of history that would make Nicholas Cage proud. Philadelphia is packed to the gills with it, containing such treasures as the Liberty Bell. Just a few short steps away from that is Independence Hall, where both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution were written. No big deal.
3. Excellent Job Market
Home to 21 Fortune 500 companies, Pennsylvania’s job market is nothing to turn your nose up at. Out of the 21, Comcast and Amerisource Bergen, a global pharmaceuticals company, lead the pack as the state's largest employers. Plus, the Comcast Center has a killer video wall. For a full list of the top employers in PA, check out our guide, here.
4. The Seasons Are On Point
Autumn in Pennsylvania has long been revered. The state is at the ideal latitude and longitude for one of the most beautiful and varied fall foliage displays on Earth. The pleasant fall temperature is ideal for apple picking, biking and hiking. The state also gets healthy doses of the other three seasons, so if you’re looking to go from hot, muggy summers to cold and snowy winters, Pennsylvania is definitely one to keep on your list.
5. It's Extremely Affordable
There’s no shortage of affordable places to live in PA, which is why we figured it'd be easy to name the 5 Most Affordable Cities in Pennsylvania. Spoilers: Bethlehem came in at #1. This city is home to one of your favorite Easter treats—Peeps—and has a wide array of shopping as well as a strong economy. The city boasts a healthy median home value of $171,300, while residents typically rake in $46,902 in median household income.
6. It Has Its Own Grand Canyon
We bet you didn’t know Pennsylvania had its own Grand Canyon. Stretching 50 miles and at some points a whopping 1,000 feet deep, the Pine Creek Gorge is a sight to behold. There’s plenty of outdoor activities here ranging from top-notch hiking trails, waterfalls, camping and even snowmobiling in the winter.
7. It Has Some of the Best Skies for Stargazing
Coudersport, PA ranked #1 on our list of the Best U.S. Cities for Viewing Meteor Showers. A gem in this tiny town, Cherry Springs State Park boasts some of the darkest skies in America. In fact, in 2008 it was dubbed a Gold Level International Dark Sky Park. Sky watchers from all over the state flock to Cherry Springs to view various meteor showers, while some even opt to camp overnight.
8. It's Jam-Packed With Excellent Colleges and Universities
If you’re looking for top colleges and universities, Pennsylvania is the place to be. One of every eight Pennsylvanians will join the ranks at Penn State, but there’s also prestigious Carnegie Mellon, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Pittsburgh and Temple University to choose from as well.