Philadelphia Attractions

From touring Independence Hall to seeing the iconic Liberty Bell, visitors will be awed by how much US history is packed into this grand city. Don't miss these 10 must-see Philadelphia attractions.

You Might Also Like

Disney Fantasy
Disney Fantasy

Disney Fantasy

The fourth ship in the Disney fleet, the Disney Fantasy has 14 decks and can accommodate 4,000 passengers. Visit one of the 3 different pools on deck 11, or splash around in the AquaLab, a 1,800 square foot water play area. When you’ve had enough fun in the sun, catch a Disney musical show or a first-run movie in 3D. 960 1280

Disney Cruise Line  

Carnival Magic

Carnival Magic

Test your climbing ability at Carnival Magic’s SportSquare, the world’s first ropes course at sea! If you’d rather keep your feet firmly planted on the deck, catch a movie or sports game on the ship’s huge outdoor screen at the Seaside Theatre. 960 1280

Carnival Cruise Lines  

MSC Divina

MSC Divina

Stare out to sea from MSC Divina’s infinity pool. For a more exclusive and luxurious experience, upgrade to the MSC Yacht Club and enjoy a private pool deck with a private restaurant featuring panoramic views. 960 1280

MSC  

Norwegian Epic

Norwegian Epic

The Norwegian Epic certainly lives up to its name. With performances by the Blue Man Group and the Second City, an Aqua Park complete with 3 waterslides, Nickelodeon characters and 20 different dining options, the ship has something for everyone. Have a drink in the Svedka ice bar and then head to Spice H20—an adults-only Ibiza-inspired beach club (pictured here). 960 1280

Norwegian Cruise Line  

MSC Fantasia

MSC Fantasia

The new flagship of MSC cruises, the Fantasia has staircases made of Swarovski crystals and a transparent ceiling for stargazing. If that’s not enough to make you sign up, the Fantasia also has an Aqua Park, a Formula 1 simulator and an interactive 4D theatre. 960 1280

MSC   

Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas

Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas

Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas has everything you could ever dream of…including a zipline that’s 9 decks in the air. Climb a rock wall, test your skills in a surf simulator, go ice skating on the rink, play a round of mini golf or see a performance of Hairspray. There’s even a Starbucks on board! 960 1280

Simon Brooke-Webb  

Carnival Breeze

Carnival Breeze

Think all cruise food is boring? Think again. Hop aboard the Carnival Breeze and sample signature burgers by celebrity Food Network chef Guy Fieri. Then, take in a “5D” movie—a 3D movie with special effects and moving seats. 960 1280

Carnival Cruise Lines  

Ruby Princess

Ruby Princess

Christened in 2008 by Trista and Ryan Sutter of The Bachelorette, the Ruby Princess is a perfect ship for couples. Relax in a cabana in the adults-only sundeck called The Sanctuary, or cozy up for a first-run movie in the outdoor theatre. 960 1280

Princess Cruises  

Celebrity Silhouette

Celebrity Silhouette

On the Celebrity Silhouette, order food and wine from an iPad menu in one restaurant and sample 50 international craft beers in another. Take a painting class, grill your own food in the “Lawn Club,” or rent one of the cabana-style “Alcoves” for a relaxing day at sea. 960 1280

Celebrity Cruises  

Disney Dream

Disney Dream

As the only cruise line to feature fireworks at sea, Disney's Dream lights up the sky to dazzle guests with the largest fireworks extravaganza presented aboard a cruise ship. The skies above the Disney Dream explode with brilliant colors during "Buccaneer Blast!" -- a pyrotechnic spectacular choreographed to a dramatic score featuring songs from the "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies, "Peter Pan" and the "Pirates of the Caribbean" attraction at the Disney theme parks. 960 1280

Matt Stroshane/Disney  

Mickey's Pool, a favorite feature of the Disney Cruise Line fleet, continues on the Disney Dream. This play area for children features a Mickey Mouse-shaped pool and an oversized version of Mickey's hand supporting a yellow winding slide that splashes down into the pool area. 960 1280

Jimmy DeFlippo/Disney  

Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas' AquaTheater located in the ships Boardwalk neighborhood, hosts spectacular shows during its voyage. 960 1280

Royal Caribbean  

Fireworks cast a colorful light on the Queen Mary 2. 960 1280

Cunard Line  

Passengers aboard the Queen Mary 2 can enjoy planetarium shows in Illuminations. 960 1280

Cunard Line  

Norwegian Pearl

Norwegian Pearl

The Norwegian Pearl's pool area can easily be mistaken for a full-blown water park. 960 1280

Norwegian Cruise Line  

The Emerald Princess Piazza dazzles passengers with its opulence. 960 1280

Emerald Princess  

Photos

Fish

Fish

As you can expect -- with a name like Fish -- this is the place for a seafood lover. The restaurant's extensive raw bar includes oysters, king crab, salmon belly and caviar, and there are plenty of delicious fish dishes on the menu. Try the fried brandade and cod with serrano ham. Fish has more sophistication than your average seafood restaurant with swanky décor and creative cocktails. 960 1280

Amanda Jaffe  

Brick

Brick

Brick is a comfortable neighborhood restaurant in Rittenhouse Square that won’t break the bank. And comfort food is where it shines: fried shrimp, crab cakes and macaroni and cheese are all menu favorites. 960 1280

Amanda Jaffe  

Xochitl

Xochitl

Xochitl , a coxy Mexican restaurant in Society Hill, is known for its custom-order guacamole (mix-ins include black truffle and roasted garlic), ahi tuna ceviche, tequila flights and mushroom tamales. 960 1280

  

Matyson

Matyson

Matyson, a popular BYOB restaurant in Philly, focuses on hyper-seasonal new American cuisine, using local produce and livestock whenever possible. Monday-Thursday, Matyson offers a 5-course tasting menu with themes ranging from lobster to vanilla. 960 1280

Felicia Perretti  

Ulivo

Ulivo

Another neighborhood BYOB restaurant in Philly is Ulivo, a rustic Italian-Mediterranean restaurant featuring handmade pasta and an ever-changing seasonal menu. 960 1280

Andrew Kahl  

La Famiglia

La Famiglia

La Famiglia, a classic Italian spot in Old City, stands out with its formal dining, wine cave and rich dishes. Try the signature rack of lamb and decadent rum-rich mascarpone tart. 960 1280

Amanda Jaffe  

C19

C19

Rittenhouse House Square’s C19 serves local authentic Venetian fare in a casual but sophisticated setting. Small plates allow for long leisurely meals and opportunities to make your way through the extensive cocktail and wine list. 960 1280

Andrew Kahl  

Rex 1516

Rex 1516

Rex 1516 is full of Southern charm -- from its simple soul-food-inspired cuisine to the faded, Southern-mansion decor. Don't leave without trying the signature crawfish pot pie and wash it down with a mint julep or lime rickey. 960 1280

Amanda Jaffe  

Bistro Romano

Bistro Romano

History buffs will love dining at Bistro Romano, a property built in the early 1700s that served as an endpoint on the Underground Railroad. A private wine cellar that was formerly an underground tunnel can be reserved for a special evening. 960 1280

Alexei Kaleina  

The Prime Rib

The Prime Rib

Philly may be known as a laid-back town, but The Prime Rib brings an air of formality that stands out among even the finest restaurants in the city. This is the place for a special celebration -- with a pianist playing during the week and a full band on the weekends. And don’t even think about not ordering the signature dish: prime rib, of course. 960 1280

Alexei Kaleina  

Independence Hall

Independence Hall

Visit the Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, where George Washington was appointed command in chief of the Continental Army in 1775; the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4, 1776; the design of the American Flag was agreed upon in 1776; and the US Constitution was drafted in 1787. 960 1280

techfun, Flickr  

Liberty Bell

Liberty Bell

Take a tour to see the 2,080-pound Liberty Bell in Philadelphia. A group of abolitionists adopted the Bible verse inscription and the Bell as a symbol of their cause to abolish slavery -- the first to call it the “Liberty Bell.” Built in London, England, the Bell was retired -- 2 cracks later -- after the final fatal crack during George Washington’s birthday celebration in 1846. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site

Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site

American author Edgar Allan Poe lived in several houses while living in Philadelphia from 1837 to 1844, but this is the only one that remains standing. National Park Rangers provide a 30-45 minute guided tour or you can tour the residence on your own and see the author’s rare books and letters, and discover how Poe influence other authors, including Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King. 960 1280

Midnightdreary, Wikimedia Commons  

Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site

Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site

National Park Rangers provide a 30-45 minute guided tour of the Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site or you can tour the residence on your own. See the author’s rare books and letters, and discover how Poe influenced other authors, including Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King. 960 1280

RTLibrary, Flickr  

Hopewell Furnace

Hopewell Furnace

Passing through Elverson, PA? Then make a stop at the Hopewell Furnace National Historical Site, a 19th century rural iron plantation, which includes a blast furnace, ironmaster’s house, blacksmith’s shop, company store and several worker’s houses. Ironmaster Mark Bird founded Hopewell Furnace in 1771. A shift in iron-making techniques changed causing the site to halt its operations in 1883. 960 1280

Sdwelch1031, Wikimedia Commons  

Valley Forge

Valley Forge

Travel to Valley Forge, PA. See the military camp of the American Continental Army from 1777 to 1778, during the American Revolutionary War. Explore the Park’s trails Washington Memorial Chapel, National Memorial Arch and Isaac Potts’ house, General George Washington’s Headquarters (pictured) in the winter of 1777. 960 1280

  

Valley Forge Railroad Station

Valley Forge Railroad Station

The Valley Forge Train Station is also part of the National Park Site. The Reading Railroad completed the station in 1911. It was the point of entry into the park for travelers who came by rail through the 1950s, from Philadelphia. The station overlooks the site of Washington’s Headquarters. 960 1280

Doris Rapp, Flickr  

Gloria Dei Episcopal Church

Gloria Dei Episcopal Church

Gloria Dei Episcopal Church in South Philadelphia is the oldest church in Pennsylvania, and among the oldest in the US. The church, built between 1698 and 1700 for Swedish settlers, was initially a Swedish Lutheran Church for almost 150 years before it became part of the Episcopal Church in 1845. 960 1280

B. Krist for GPTMC  

Gloria Dei Episcopal Church

Gloria Dei Episcopal Church

Nils Collin, a Swedish pastor who served Gloria Dei from 1784 to 1831, was a close friend of Benjamin Franklin. In fact, the remains of an early lightening rod -- visible on the church’s exterior -- are the result of their relationship. Collin remained neutral in the Revolutionary War. Rumor has it that his extensive writings about the King of Sweden are buried under the floor of the church. 960 1280

B. Krist for GPTMCS  

Thaddeus Kosciusko National Memorial

Thaddeus Kosciusko National Memorial

Explore the life of Thaddeus Kosciuszko at this National Park Site. The Polish freedom fighter was instrumental in engineering military structures and forts to hold off British troops during the American Revolution. History buffs can visit his preserved home on 301 Pine Street in Philly to see where he met infamous visitors, including Thomas Jefferson and Chief Little Turtle. 960 1280

Photo by R. Kennedy for GPTMC  

Deshler-Morris House

Deshler-Morris House

The Germantown White House aka the Deshler-Morris House is the oldest official presidential residence. The historic mansion, located in the Germantown neighborhood of Philadelphia, was shelter for US President George Washington when the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 struck the city. The following year, President Washington and his family returned to the house for a summer vacation. The house takes its name from the first owner, David Deshler, and the last owner, Elliston P. Morris. 960 1280

Historic Germantown, Flickr  

Atlanta

Atlanta

There may be no better place in the South to catch this year’s fireworks than Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic Park. The Fourth of July celebration will host the largest ensemble of the United States Air Force Band of the West, followed by fireworks that are set to kick off at 9 p.m. on the dot. 960 1280

Dgrano20/iStock/Getty Images  

Minneapolis

Minneapolis

Get ready to celebrate our nation’s independence, Midwest style, at Minneapolis’ annual Red, White and Boom festival. Located at the city’s downtown riverfront, the 2-day celebration July 3-4 features tons of live music and family fun, as well as one of the largest fireworks displays in the country. 960 1280

RCDigitalPhotography/iStock/Getty Images  

Addison, TX

Addison, TX

Kaboom Town in Addison, TX, is the largest fireworks display in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. With more than 1,500 pounds of fireworks, this Texas-sized party — complete with live entertainment, air shows, family-fun activities and more — has been recognized by the American Pyrotechnics Association as one of the top 10 fireworks displays in the country.  960 1280

Scott Slocum  

Atlantic City, NJ

Atlantic City, NJ

Visible for a 1-mile stretch of the boardwalk and beach, the fireworks in Atlantic City, NJ, are a show not to be missed. For more bright, colorful fun, check out the nightly 3-D light show on the Boardwalk Hall facade.  960 1280

Rusty Kennedy / Atlantic City Alliance  

Boston

Boston

The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular attracts more than 500,000 visitors to the Charles River Esplanade for the annual July Fourth celebration, which includes concerts and fireworks. Many locals argue that the best viewing spot for Boston's fireworks is across the river in Cambridge, MA. 960 1280

Jorge Antonio / iStock / Getty Image  

Chicago

Chicago

Navy Pier offers the perfect view of Fourth of July fireworks in the Windy City. Make the holiday even classier and take in the show from a dinner cruise on Lake Michigan, where fireworks are also shot off every Wednesday and Friday during the summer.  960 1280

City of Chicago  

Miami

Miami

What would Miami’s South Beach be without a little flair? Take in the dazzling fireworks display over the picturesque downtown landscape as the celebration on the Fourth is every bit as spectacular as the city’s world-famous nightlife. 960 1280

Steve Allen/Stockbyte/Getty Images  

Houston

Houston

Houston proves that everything is bigger in Texas with the country's largest land-based fireworks show. The annual Freedom Over Texas Fourth of July celebration features 6 hours of family activities and entertainment, followed by a fireworks show perfectly choreographed to music. 960 1280

Fuse / Getty Images  

Lake Tahoe, CA

Lake Tahoe, CA

Dig your feet into the sand at Lake Tahoe, CA, and take in the display that the Today show has recognized as one of the country's top fireworks shows. The Lights on the Lake spectacle, which takes place twice a year, on July Fourth and Labor Day, can be seen from all over town, but it doesn't get much better than watching fireworks from the 2 best spots on the beach — Edgewood and Lakeside Beach.  960 1280

North Lake Tahoe  

Nashville

Nashville

You’ll find fun for the whole family at the annual Music City July 4th: Let Freedom Sing celebration in Nashville, which attracts the largest Fourth of July crowd in the South. The event features daylong activities, musical performances by A-list country artists and the region's largest fireworks show — a 27-minute spectacle choreographed to a live performance by the Grammy-winning Nashville Symphony.  960 1280

Nashville Convention & Visitors Corporation  

New Orleans

New Orleans

Barges battle on the Mississippi River at Go 4th on the River. The fireworks display, set to music provided by the Navy Band, can be seen from many places in New Orleans if you want to avoid the downtown scramble. 960 1280

New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau  

New York City

New York City

The annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks celebration in New York City is the country's largest pyrotechnic show, with fireworks shot from multiple barges along the East River near the Brooklyn Bridge. In addition to fireworks, the event features performances by A-list artists such as Lionel Richie, Ariana Grande and Miranda Lambert. 960 1280

Jeremy Edwards / E+ / Getty Images  

Pasadena, CA

Pasadena, CA

AmericaFest, a Rose Bowl Stadium tradition for more than 85 years, is the largest fireworks show in Southern California. The family event begins at 2 p.m. and includes live entertainment, motorcycle stunts, exhibits, vendors and a Pyro Spectaculars by Souza fireworks show at 9 p.m.  960 1280

WireImage / Getty Images  

Philadelphia

Philadelphia

For the best fireworks viewing in Philadelphia, lay out a blanket along Boathouse Row or in Schuylkill River Park. 960 1280

Xiaoping Liang / E+ / Getty Images  

San Francisco

San Francisco

Launching from Municipal Pier and barges in San Francisco Bay, the fireworks can be seen all along the waterfront. But before the show begins, don't miss performances by the US Air Force Band and local 1980s cover band Tainted Love at San Francisco's Fourth of July celebration at Fisherman’s Wharf. 960 1280

PIER 39  

St. Louis

St. Louis

Celebrate July 4th at "America's biggest birthday party" under the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. The day kicks off with 4-mile and 1-mile runs, followed by a parade, air shows, concerts and, of course, fireworks. 960 1280

St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission  

Washington, DC

Washington, DC

Fireworks launched from the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool illuminate the sky behind the Capitol and Washington Monument during the annual Capitol Fourth celebration. If you’re looking to avoid crowds on the National Mall, book a boat cruise on the Potomac River for another great view of the fireworks.  960 1280

Stockbyte / Getty Images  

Los Angeles

Los Angeles

No matter where you are in Los Angeles, the fireworks displays are as big as the movie stars who roam the streets. From the famed Hollywood Bowl to the quaint waterfront in Long Beach, Los Angeles County is quickly becoming one of the best cities in the US to celebrate America’s independence. 960 1280

Matt Gush/iStock/Getty Images  

Las Vegas

Las Vegas

It’s hard to imagine even more bright lights illuminating the skies of Nevada’s most electric city, Las Vegas. However, they don’t call it the entertainment capital of the world for nothing! To get the best views in town, head to one of Sin City’s many rooftop bars overlooking the Strip. 960 1280

Franckreporter/E+/Getty Images   

Denver

Denver

Believe it or not, the biggest Fourth of July celebration in the Mile High City actually takes place July 3 at the annual Independence Eve Celebration in Civic Center Park. Overlooking the Denver City and County Building, this elaborate light and fireworks show attracts people from all over Colorado. 960 1280

Teri A. Virbickis/Moment/Getty Images  

The Hot List

Enter Daily to Win a Trip to Music City!

Will Blake or Janel be the next Travel Channel Star?

Join the conversation on Social Media!
Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss Travel Channel in your favorite social media feeds.