Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
4.5
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
About
A visit to this quaint, historic community, at the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers, is like stepping into the past. Stroll the picturesque streets, visit exhibits and museums, or hike our trails and battlefields. Spend a day or a weekend. We have something for everyone, so come and discover Harpers Ferry! Hours: Park Open Daily from Sunrise to Sunset. Museums, Exhibits, and Visitor Center: Open 9:00am - 5:00pm Park Closed: Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day.
Duration: More than 3 hours
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  • Sarah Merly
    Purcellville, Virginia150 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A lovely view of the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers!
    Harpers Ferry is such a huge—and beautiful—national park! So many wonderful picture stops, and you can collect stamps from several national sites in the general store here. It's $20 a vehicle, though, so be prepared to spend money, unless you have a national park pass. The plus side is that your payment allows you unlimited access to the park for three days!
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled solo
    Written July 14, 2023
  • Mary F
    Floral Park, New York424 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great historic town
    Beautiful historic area. Lots of walking to do while you learn about the Civil War. So must history. The town is so cute with lots of little shops and eateries. I suggest you go in cooler weather if you plan and walking the entire area. We enjoyed ourselves even though they were having record heatwaves of 90+. Parking is hard in town. Can park at the National Park visitor center for $20 but it’s good for 3 days.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 29, 2023
  • SpanishteacherMD
    2,077 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Living history and a fantastic hike in Harpers Ferry
    Still by far the best hike around. If you're willing to try this challenging trek leading to a phenomenal overlook, you absolutely won't be sorry for having done so. Awesome view at the top. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the breeze, the view, and your incredible accomplishment. Be careful on the ascent, as there are plenty of switchbacks, change in terrain and surface. Make sure to bring plenty of water as well; hot and humid days will dehydrate you quickly. Highly recommend! When you're done, return to the town across the river and explore some of the architectural gems preserved. Stop by for a bite to eat or a cool snack at one of the eateries in town. Parking in the lot by the rail terminal or elsewhere. $20 to park and explore. Very much worth the trip.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 4, 2023
  • Martin Carroll
    Winchester, Virginia614 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Be Ready to Walk !
    We went to Harpers Ferry just because it was there with not a lot of research. The central area is along side the river. While we went on a hot day, it was hotter than I expected. I have to declare that I have some balance issues and use walking sticks to walk. You go to the parking area with $20.00 entrance fee and get on a park bus that will deliver you into central area of the town. Much of the town goes up from the main road. It is a little less than a one half mile walk from the bus delivery point to the area of the town. If you go up you will find a better view from a restaurant. The only close parking is in the "Railroad Station". However, the railroad Station is filled early with the staff of the many restaurants. There are still some open spots, but you have to arrive before 9:00AM to have any hope of parking @ The Train Station. The whole central area is relatively small and much of the area is up !! It is filled with restaurants & other shops. Because I would have trouble with the hill, we had lunch at one of the lower restaurants in the front area. We had lunch at The "Coachhouse Grill N Bar ( #160 High Street) I do not have any info about on the other walking available. The anger station in the bus arrival section of the park can address that issue. Come prepared to walk uphill !!! Interesting Place.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written August 5, 2023
  • howlin12013
    Amelia Court House, Virginia267 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    History and beauty all in one place
    Our trip to Harpers Ferry was both educational and beautiful. The history of Harpers Ferry is well documented and explained when visiting the Visitor Center (ample parking here) and the John Brown Museum (down the hill in Harpers Ferry). The Park Rangers are very knowledgeable and happy to spend time with you talking about this time in our US history. You can take the shuttle from the Visitor Center down to the town of Harpers Ferry (best bet) or drive to it (though parking is very limited there). The town is quaint and beautiful and rugged. It sits in West Virginia at the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers. There is a railroad bridge that runs from West Virginia to Maryland. You can walk across the people bridge (next to the actual railroad) and you are in Maryland. Some of the buildings in Harpers Ferry are hundreds of years old, built on the side of a mountain and are still solid and very charming. There are many shops to visit for local crafts, souvenirs, and treats. There are also many restaurants and cafes where you can sit a spell and enjoy some good food. The shop keepers and workers there are very friendly and helpful. Be prepared to walk a good bit and climb some awesome stairs constructed of stone slabs, most of which were built by hand. This whole area is part of the Appalachian Trail, actually sitting about halfway on the trail which runs from Maine to Georgia. This is a good trip for anyone who wants to be outside on a beautiful day, see some beautiful scenery, and get in some good walking, all while learning a bit of history. Great trip!!
    Visited August 2023
    Written August 11, 2023
  • Amy M
    Hingham, Massachusetts8 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A 3 (maybe 4) hour tour
    Great day trip. It was suppose to be our 'light' day and my husband said - let's hike up this trail - Maryland Heights Loop. They say the view is amazing and life altering...2 hrs later what he said was "a few hundred yards" was about a mile and a half up. And what goes up must come down. It was great and I am glad we did it, just wish we were better prepared, for the distance and terrain. Glad we did it in the afternoon though. If we did it in the morning, I think we would have been done for the day!
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written August 19, 2023
  • Mary Brown
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Hidden gem for history buffs and outdoor enthusiasts
    Harpers Ferry National Historical Park is a hidden gem for history buffs and outdoor enthusiasts alike! Nestled at the junction of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers, this place oozes history from every corner. The quaint town, with its charming 19th-century buildings, feels frozen in time. Exploring the historic streets, visiting the Civil War-era museums, and hiking the nearby trails that offer panoramic views is like stepping back into the past. However, it's important to know that it can get a bit crowded during peak tourist season. Finding parking and maneuvering through the narrow streets can be a bit of a hassle. Nevertheless, the historical significance and natural beauty of Harpers Ferry make it a must-visit destination for those eager to dive into America's past.
    Visited March 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written September 12, 2023
  • Liz J
    Lancaster, Pennsylvania103 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful and full of rich history
    We spent the entire day exploring Harpers Ferry and can now say we hiked the Appalachian Trail in two states😊. Highly recommend sitting in on Park Ranger talk provided near John Browns Fort, very informative. It’s a stunning area with spectacular views. Town is quite hilly if you explore beyond the National Park area but well worth the walk.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written September 23, 2023
  • italiabella9
    Scranton, Pennsylvania99 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Parking + stroller + dog
    Nice place to explore leisurely and walk the trails. Note to those who may be traveling with a stroller and a dog...the first time we went on a Friday morning and were lucky enough to get a parking spot at the river access lot. But the second time was a Sunday around 10 and we had to park at the visitors lot. We tried to take the lower town trail down but it is definitely NOT stroller friendly. There is a road (shoreline Dr?) That the visitor center buses take. You can walk the shoulder down to town. Dogs aren't allowed on the shuttle.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written October 23, 2023
  • Cheri D
    Yardville, New Jersey472 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    So much history!
    What a great National Park to visit with so much history. It really encompasses the town. Lots to do and explore. When you get to the Visitor's Center, there are regularly running shuttle buses that take you into the town since parking there is very tight and the streets are narrow. There are places to walk and hike that run along the canal and are part of the Appalachian Trail. There are several restuarants and shops to visit. There is a museum and various spots marked that are of historical importance, including the spot where John Brown was "hiding" and eventually caught.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written January 15, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Helen O
Kennett Square, PA241 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020 • Couples
We arrived from out of town around 11am and soon realized no parking downtown and the streets were lined with cars a mile plus out of town.

We drove to the visitors center, which we knew was closed, but you can still park there, use restrooms and get maps from the park rangers. You pay $20 to park here, which is good for 3 days.

Most people parking here were walking to downtown using the Little town trail. It’s a 1.7 mile walk into town. The first .4 of mile was in the woods and a somewhat steep decline, with some stone steps. We saw a lot of people on this path that shouldn’t have been. Parents with strollers, elderly, women in heeled sandals. Park rangers should not recommend this path for everyone. For people prepared it was a nice walk.

As many others have stated, all museums are closed and restaurants are in limited capacity so if you are walking, bring water and snacks. Bathrooms are open downtown. If you don’t like to,walk, there isn’t much for you to do. We walked to the point, across the bridge, saw Jefferson rocks, Appalachian trial and the trail conservancy.

The next day we were at the train station parking lot at 8am to hike Maryland heights and got one of the last parking spots.
Written September 7, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jori H
3 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020 • Family
Normally, there are shuttle buses to bring visitors down to Lower Town. As many folks have noted, shuttles aren’t running due to COVID-19.

The lack of shuttles make Harpers Ferry a HUGE challenge to visit if you are physically unable to walk an almost 2-mile-long trail, a portion of which was down steep, uneven stone steps. Let me be clear: this trail is dangerous for anyone not able to climb the full length up and down.

There’s no reason why Harpers Ferry can’t run shuttles socially distant, with masks, and with reduced capacity. Parking is a nightmare. On a weekend, you cannot find parking anywhere except for the $20/car Visitors Center lot, which defeats the purpose if you can’t handle the walk on the trail.

Save your visit until after COVID.

Written October 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

bethandterry2018
High Point, NC37 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020
The historic town of Harpers Ferry is amazing and we will go back but..... do not go and pay $20 to park at the National Park which is a challenging walk. The shuttles are not running due to Covid. The 1st part of the trail is very rough and steep with multiple rough hewn rock steps. The park ranger said “gentle slope“ followed by 1.6 mile walk to town. There were a lot people who by the time they got to the bottom of the steep path realized they had no option to get back to their cars except to climb back up. We ended up shuttling people in our car that were not able to do the return trip. Seriously! There is one small parking lot about .6 miles from town but it was full. Until Covid restrictions os lifted this park is a challenge.
Written September 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

James H
Collegeville, PA52 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
I love supporting the National Parks. Harpers Ferry has a $20 fee but that includes a roundtrip bus ride from the visitor's center to the town. If you like American history, you will love this place. For me, it filled in some blanks for the Civil War. You can visit several historic buildings and museums and if hiking is your thing, you can do that too. The Appalachian Trail even passes through the town. If you are into water sports, two rivers meet here and people were canoeing and rafting. The park pass is good for 3 days. The weirdest thing is there are NO trash cans in the town or at the visitor's center and signs to remind you of that.
Written June 21, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

runner24
Orlando, FL1,885 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2022
We planned this visit as a break from our recent trip from Florida to points further north. It's an easy drive to the downtown area or the park above for that matter. We found easy parking near the train depot, paid the parking fee via the phone app, and began wandering about town. The town itself strikes us as similar to St Augustine (which we love) with its rich history and restored buildings. We loved the confluence of the rivers, watched all the kayakers go by, and meandered along a few of the paths around town. We visited a couple of nice shops, including one that wouldn't take credit cards as the owner refused to pay their fees. Wonder how that will work?
We found a very nice taproom that we chose for lunch in the Rabbit Hole.
Enjoy!
Written August 16, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

akt85
Madison190 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2021 • Solo
Harper’s Ferry is a neat town. The old buildings have been converted to museums and shops. People inside the National Park Owned buildings were wearing masks. If you only have time to visit one or two shops, be sure to stop at True Treats Historical Candy for candy from the 1700s and 1800s and the bookstore where all proceeds benefit upkeep of the park.

Don’t bother looking for parking in town as there is hardly any there. Park at the visitor’s center and take the shuttle. Hope to be back again someday to visit the museums that were closed.
Written November 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Camper73129
Anna Maria Island, FL75 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2020 • Family
Having grown up hiking in Harpers Ferry, our two daughters planned an outing with the grandchildren on a gorgeous Saturday in November. We enjoyed the fall foliage and breathtaking vistas. People were wearing masks and making an effort to socially distance. We hiked through the cemetery to Jefferson rock, descended into the lower town and then to “the point” where we watched two rafting boats ride by. Walking across the train trestle added greatly to the adventure. We had a little picnic and then returned up the main street to the Appalachian Trail conference center. The children were great sports and walked most of the way! I have posted pictures of our day for all to enjoy!
Written November 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Stef4115
Annandale, VA1,273 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021 • Couples
We love Harpers Ferry and come here frequently to hike and enjoy the ambiance. The hiking is wonderful and everything from flat and easy to quite challenging. The views from the upper vantage points are fantastic and worth the effort. The town itself is quaint and chalk full of history.. all interesting and very well presented. This time of year it can get quite busy and if you want to park by the train station you need to be there before 8 am in the weekend. Otherwise you can park in the big lot and shuttle in. There are several restaurants and we’ve never had to wait when dining mid afternoon. There is also an vintage candy shop, which is fun.
Written June 21, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Martin Carroll
Winchester, VA614 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023 • Couples
We went to Harpers Ferry just because it was there with not a lot of research. The central area is along side the river. While we went on a hot day, it was hotter than I expected. I have to declare that I have some balance issues and use walking sticks to walk. You go to the parking area with $20.00 entrance fee and get on a park bus that will deliver you into central area of the town. Much of the town goes up from the main road. It is a little less than a one half mile walk from the bus delivery point to the area of the town. If you go up you will find a better view from a restaurant.

The only close parking is in the "Railroad Station". However, the railroad Station is filled early with the staff of the many restaurants. There are still some open spots, but you have to arrive before 9:00AM to have any hope of parking @ The Train Station. The whole central area is relatively small and much of the area is up !! It is filled with restaurants & other shops. Because I would have trouble with the hill, we had lunch at one of the lower restaurants in the front area.

We had lunch at The "Coachhouse Grill N Bar ( #160 High Street)

I do not have any info about on the other walking available. The anger station in the bus arrival section of the park can address that issue.

Come prepared to walk uphill !!! Interesting Place.
Written August 5, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

neverinn
Lancaster, OH56 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2021
Harpers Ferry played such a key role in several historical contexts--Civil War (Gen. Washington had the Federal Arsenal built here), John Brown abolitionist raid, transportation via rail, water, and overland, as well as a major stopping point on the Appalachian Trail. Take the time to go through the museums, hike over the water and up the various trails, spend time in town on Potomac and Shenandoah streets. Start at the Visitor's Center at the top of the hill and have the rangers provide you with an overview of the area. If the film is available, take the time to see it.
Written June 1, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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