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.

Photos

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  

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  

Feel the pain of someone else's breakup at the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb, Croatia, with its odd collection of artifacts that recall lost love. This garden gnome, known as the divorce day garden dwarf, is just one piece in the permanent collection. 960 1280

Museum of Broken Relationships  

Learn a lesson from the animals on a zoo sex tour with an insider's look at the birds and the bees at zoos around the country, including Zoorotica at the Michigan Zoo, Woo at the Zoo at the San Francisco Zoo or Sex at the Zoo at the Baltimore Zoo. 960 1280

Ammit  

Commiserate with others at a storytelling session or open-mic night at a local club. East Coasters can share their tales of woe at the Ex-Files hosted by Philadelphia's Story Slams at the World Café Live. 960 1280

  

Plan the ultimate ladies' night out with your friends and catch up with your favorite girls. 960 1280

  

Recharge and relax with spa treatments at a local spa to inject some serious me-time into your Valentine's Day. 960 1280

Inga Ivanova  

Party with other singles, and maybe even make your very own love match, at an Anti-Valentine's Day event at a local bar or club. Meet Market hosts Valentine's Day singles events at clubs around the country, including Manhattan's Amnesia Nightclub. 960 1280

Faidh Baksh  

Lace up your running shoes and shoot for a personal best while dodging Cupid's arrows on the course at a specially themed Valentine's Day 5K. Search active.com for races around the holiday in your hometown, including Cupid's Chase in Coronado, CA, or Cupid's Undie Run in Washington, DC. 960 1280

Nick Free  

Whether you're feeling lucky in love or not, you can challenge Lady Luck herself at the poker table with a casual game with the guys or a night out at your favorite casino. 960 1280

Cat London  

Take advantage of the weather in your area, warm or cold, and head outside for an adventure like skiing, hiking or rock-climbing. 960 1280

  

Take out some aggression or simply enjoy the chase during a heated paintball competition. If it's not your ex with a target on his or her back, you might find the adrenaline a real aphrodisiac. 960 1280

  

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