Journey Through Civil War History at Gettysburg

Nestled in the hillsides of southern Pennsylvania, discover the site of one of America’s most important events – the turning point of the American Civil War – the 1863 Battle of Gettysburg. In partnership with the National Park Service, the Gettysburg Foundation preserves the 6,000-acre battlefield. Featuring more than 1,300 monuments, markers and memorials, as well as iconic landmarks and historic sites and experiences across Gettysburg’s hallowed grounds, connect with the lessons and stories of the past – the battle, the men who fought here and the civilians who experienced the impact and the aftermath.

Explore Gettysburg beyond the history books and movies and understand what happened here and the impact the battle and its aftermath have on our lives today.

Begin your experience in Gettysburg with the official start to your visit at the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum & Visitor Center. Your hub for activities and experiences during your visit, the Museum & Visitor Center provides exclusive resources and unique experiences to introduce you to the battle and prepares you for a tour of the battlefield. One ticket grants you admission to three distinct experiences in the multi-dimensional Film, Cyclorama & Museum Experience. You will gain a deeper understanding of the battle with the film presentation of A New Birth of Freedom, detailing the war’s first shots to President Abraham Lincoln’s monumental Gettysburg Address. Then, immerse yourself in the midst of battle with the iconic Gettysburg Cyclorama, the 360-degree historic painting—taller than a four-story building and longer than a football field. Painted by French artist Paul Philippoteaux in 1884, the Cyclorama depicts the fire and fury of Pickett’s Charge during the decisive third day of the battle.

Explore the rare artifacts and interactive stories with the exhibits in the world-class Gettysburg Museum of the American Civil War.

After gaining an overview of this pivotal period in American history, you will go prepared in your adventure on the battlefield to stand in the very place where Union and Confederate soldiers charged into conflict, where cannons thundered; gunfire echoed; and blood spilled. When you explore the Gettysburg battlefield with a Licensed Battlefield Guide, you will hear stories about the generals, soldiers and civilians who changed the course of history, and you will see iconic landmarks that have been made famous in books and film and an array of state monuments. Choose from a guided bus tour or a personalized guided car tour.

For additional ways to experience Civil War history, the Gettysburg Foundation hosts special events and programs throughout the year, from history tours and focused lectures to guided hikes and volunteer programs.

During your visit to the Museum & Visitor Center you will find convenient on-site opportunities to dine and shop. Enjoy convenient dining options offering meals, snacks, beverages and local favorites in the Refreshment Saloon and Battlegrounds Café & Grille. Consider hosting your next event with us to provide your guests with unique and extraordinary experiences. Take some time during your visit to shop the Museum Book Store offering books for all ages, souvenirs, gifts and apparel.

With your safety as our top priority, we have guidelines and a variety of safety initiatives to help you — along with our staff, volunteers and partners at the National Park Service — enjoy a safe, memorable and historic visit to Gettysburg.

Proceeds from your tickets and other purchases in the Museum & Visitor Center benefit Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site.

featued article cover

TOUR HISTORIC SITES & EXPERIENCES NEAR THE GETTYSBURG BATTLEFIELD

Continue your exploration of American history at the Eisenhower National Historic Site, the former weekend home, farm and diplomatic destination of 34th President and General Dwight D. “Ike” Eisenhower and First Lady Mamie. The grounds are currently open for self-guided tours, and the National Park Service will announce when guests can again tour the home.

Then, see where President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address in the Gettysburg National Cemetery located at 97 Taneytown Road. Walk the hallowed grounds and reflect on those who have given “the last full measure of devotion.” Access the cemetery through the Baltimore Street entrance or through the Taneytown Road entrance across the street from the cemetery parking lot. Or enjoy a hike to the cemetery on the path from the Museum & Visitor Center.

During summer weekends, your ticket purchase at the Museum & Visitor Center provides you exclusive access and shuttle to the historic George Spangler Farm & Field Hospital, where a family farm was urgently converted into a field hospital for 1,900 wounded Union and Confederate soldiers in July 1863. Walk the grounds, hear the stories and feel the emotions of life—and death—at the best surviving example of a corps-level field hospital from the Battle of Gettysburg. Meticulously renovated, the historic site features restored, original buildings from the 1863 battle to inspire and explore. Docents and living historians provide insight and accounts of historical experiences on the farm. Special programs and events are offered on select dates throughout the year.

In downtown Gettysburg, get a glimpse into civilian life during the Battle of Gettysburg through the eyes of some of the children, teens and young adults of Gettysburg in 1863. Located at 451 Baltimore Street and presented by the Gettysburg Foundation, the all-new Children of Gettysburg 1863 offers guests an adventurous journey back to 1863 in Gettysburg’s most family-friendly children’s history museum. The new interactive adventure for young historians is designed for families with children and youth in grades K-5. Your family will touch, lift, pull and learn your way through a fun and engaging adventure. Follow in the footsteps of six children who lived in and around the town at the time of the battle. Explore the Children of Gettysburg 1863 experience—from the children’s point of view before, during and after the battle. Special programs and events are offered on select dates throughout the year.

In spring 2022, the Gettysburg Foundation will open the NEW Ticket to the Past – Unforgettable Journeys, Gettysburg’s first virtual reality experience at the Gettysburg Lincoln Railroad StationTM. Located at 35 Carlisle Street, guests will step inside this historic treasure for a journey back to 1863. Invited to say “a few appropriate remarks” at the dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery,

President Abraham Lincoln arrived at the Gettysburg station the evening before delivering

the Gettysburg Address. Now, with a little help from virtual reality technology, you will travel back in time and find yourself at the center of the bustling station when it served as a hospital, supply lifeline and presidential arrival platform. Visitors might even catch a glimpse of President Lincoln himself.

During your experience at Ticket to the Past – Unforgettable Journeys, you will virtually meet some of the railroad station’s unlikely occupants. Hear their stories and discover the extraordinary impact the station made on their lives. Witness the journeys of real-life, historical figures. Discover their connections with the station in the aftermath of the Battle of Gettysburg. Feel the impact of President Lincoln’s iconic Gettysburg Address and consider how it influences us today. It is time to begin your virtual reality journey through history. All aboard!

Get even more ideas for planning your trip with these tips for visiting Gettysburg. Visit GettysburgFoundation.org or call our Guest Relations team at 877-874-2478 for tickets, hours of operation and more information. We look forward to welcoming you to Gettysburg.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use our website, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies (and milk!) from visitPA.com. Learn more about cookie data in our Privacy Policy