Follow the Star to Savings in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

Posted December 2, 2009 by Kate Hamman

PA-Bethlehem-MoravianBookshop-DEF Oh, little town of Bethlehem, how perfectly you capture the spirit of the season. Located in eastern Pennsylvania, only about an hour outside of Philadelphia, this small town attracts visitors from near and far when the Christmas countdown begins. Discover why it lives up to its namesake, by visiting a local bookshop where you can find your own Christmas star, or listen as a choir of angelic voices rejoice in the holiday. And once you're ready for a good night's rest, you can sleep in a hotel located on the exact spot where the town all began on a Christmas Eve long ago.

Moravian Book Shop: With hundreds of Moravian stars lighting the way, it's hard to miss the Moravian Book Shop named after the German Protestant settlers who founded the town in the 18th century. And although the store sells a wide range of stars as well as books, you can spend hours wandering through the housewares, specialty coffees and teas, and holiday decorations. And if you get hungry, you can take a break at the deli serving gourmet sandwiches with holiday names such as "Boxes of Ornaments" or "String of Lights". If you can't afford to take home your own star, you can always find more affordable items like the ultra-thin and equally famous Moravian cookies.

Lehigh University Choral Arts Christmas Vespers: Let your holiday spirit shine with a holiday concert unlike any other. Set inside the gothic Packard Chapel, Vespers invites you to listen as traditional Christmas carols fill the bellows. The night is centered around Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales, and little candles will light the darkened chapel. The December 6 concert is free, but get there early to ensure a seat. Throughout the rest of the year, the Zoellner Arts Center produces many other fine musical events.

Hotel Bethlehem: Though you may find a manger nearby, the Hotel Bethlehem is the place to sleep this Christmas. Listed as a proud member of the Historic Hotels of America, the hotel sits on the exact site where early Moravian settlers met on Christmas Eve in 1741 and named the town Bethlehem. Rooms start at $129 per night.

To search for flights and compare prices to Allentown, which is home to Bethlehem’s nearest airport, please use our price-comparison tool.

(Photo: Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce)

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