Philadephia is a walkable city with an excellent public bus system and lots of fun to offer families. We learned about our nation’s history, saw awesome folk art, went to the most unique museum we’ve ever seen, and more. Plan for stops at these fun places:

Learn About Our Nation’s History

Visit the Liberty Bell, Betsy Ross House, Benjamin Franklin Museum, Constitution Center, and Independence Hall –all in downtown Philadelphia. Plan ahead for a visit to Independence Hall, as you will need to reserve tickets at least a week in advance. The Liberty Bell Museum is free, well-designed and educational. Get your picture taken with the famous bell or just enjoy the old bell and its iconic historic significance.  The Betsy Ross House is cheap ($5 for adults, $4 for kids) and has a fun audio tour  where you’ll learn about the history of the United States flag and the life of Betsy Ross.

Eat a Philly Cheese Steak

We had a Philly Cheesesteak at Jim’s Steaks on South Street (there are two other locations in Philadelphia). It was worth the wait. Our three-year-old had his first genuine Philly cheesesteak sandwich and loved it!

Visit Magic Gardens

Local mural artist, Isaiah Zagar, plastered stuff for decades to exterior walls of his house and basement. This drove his landlord nuts, but now makes for a fun experience walking around the house grounds. The Magic Gardens are a great place to relax and get away from the bustle of Philadelphia, and well worth the admission fee ($10 adults, $5, kids 6-12, kids 5 and under Free).

Visit Mütter Museum (for older kids and teens)

We began our day in Philadelphia with a trip to the Mütter Museum. It’s full of some of the weirdest things we’ve ever seen –and it’s educational with a free with admission audio tour and an iPhone app to accompany the exhibits. It began as a museum exclusively for physicians, but has been open to the public for several years. You’ll see a plaster casting of conjoined twins, Einstein’s brain, every eye and skin condition you could imagine, and skulls galore.

– Laura Powell

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