I love Philadelphia, it is by far my favourite American city I have visited so far. It has so much to offer and is often overlooked by travellers and tourists. Philadelphia is perfectly located with just over an hours drive to the beach and Atlantic City, about 2 hours drive to New York City, and it is roughly a 7 hour flight from large cities in Europe such as London.
I have visited Philadelphia twice now once for 4 weeks and once for 3 weeks. From my experience the people are friendly, there are many areas throughout the city that has a lot to offer, like independently owned bars, restaurants, stores and boutiques. Philly also offers a selection of (BYOB) bring your own alcohol restaurants which can come in handy since alcohol in restaurants in the US can be quite expensive, especially if you don’t just want to drink beer.
Philly is also a great city to walk around and discover, Centre City is particularly great for walking around and it offers a great mix of old and new with historical buildings, churches, huge modern sky scrapers and much more.
Eastern State Penitentiary
A place that is definitely not to be missed when visiting Philly is the Eastern State Penitentiary . The prison opened in 1934 and held notorious criminals such as Al Capone and Willie Sutton. Visiting only costs $14 and includes audio throughout the tour narrated by actor Steve Buscemi, which just adds so much more intrigue.
Shofuso Japanese House & Garden
Shofuso Japanese House & Garden is a traditional 17th century Japanese house which is located in West Fairmount park. It was built in 1953 and was a gift from Japan to America as a sign of peace and friendship between the two countries, after the war. The building was constructed with traditional material from Japan. The house was first exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City but was moved to Philadelphia in 1958.
If you are a Rocky fan, or hell! if you ever watched Rocky, don’t miss the Rocky steps! Watch people run up the steps mimicking what Sylvester Stallone did in Rocky and join in the fun. If running up the steps is not your thing then a picture at the Rocky statue is also a favourite. Watch a funny little video of my friend Marie and I running the steps 😀
South street is a vibrant street that one can spend hours browsing the independently owned shops and boutiques. Everything from sneakers, gothic clothing, pet boutiques, and racy sex shops. This area is bound to keep you entertained for a full day of wandering and wondering. The street also has many bars, taverns, saloon, restaurants and live music venues to offer. Don’t miss South Street when visiting Philly!
All of the above is just a fraction of what Philly has to offer, so I hope that you will add Philly to your list of destinations, because you will not be disappointed. I will definitely go back, and I am sure once you go, you will go back to.
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