Perhaps one of the ‘classic’ American cities, Philadelphia is known both within the United States and worldwide for its important role in the nation’s history.
Known as the ‘City of Brotherly Love’, Philly was once an important meeting place for the Founding Fathers during the American Revolution as they began to consider American Independence and the constitutional framework that would underpin the United States to the current day.
With such a rich history, it is clear that many people visit Philadelphia to find out more about America’s past. Whilst attractions such as the Liberty Bell and the Independence National Historical Park - with its centrepiece, Independence Hall – are key to the city’s tourism, Philadelphia is a very modern city with much more to offer than simply history. Indeed, Philly is a city known for its distinctive cuisine, arts and culture.
Starting with the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts – the oldest such institution in the United States and home to one of the most exceptional collections of American art in the world - lovers of art and science are certain to love Philadelphia. Even the art galleries in Philly are iconic, as evidenced by the 72 stone steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art which played a starring role in the film Rocky.
The museum itself is one of the largest in America, containing over 227,000 items of interest. Visitors interested in sculpture are certain to be impressed by the Rodin Museum on Benjamin Franklin Parkway, recently refurbished and home to the largest collection of Auguste Rodin pieces outside of France. For a more hands-on experience, the Please Touch Museum offers highly interactive exhibits aimed at families.
Music and theatre lovers are also wonderfully catered for in Philadelphia. A trip to Centre City is an absolute must, as it’s there that you will find the Avenue of Arts – a dedicated area that plays host to many of the city’s cultural institutions including the theatre district. Attractions lining the Avenue include the Academy of Music, the Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts and the Kimmel Centre – home to the Philadelphia Orchestra.
If all the walking involved in soaking up Philly’s history and culture leaves you feeling peckish, you’re already in the right place! Philadelphian cuisine is known for three incredible dishes – cheesesteaks (sliced steak with melted cheese on a hotdog bun), hoagies (cold Italian sandwiches bursting with fillings) and scrapple (a breakfast patty made from pork). Of course, the cheesesteak is most iconic – and the locals could argue all day about who makes them best – but we’re sure you won’t be disappointed if you visit Pat’s King of Steaks on Passyunk Avenue or Geno’s on 9th.