Best Things to Do in Philly for First-Time Visitors
10 of the best things to do in Philadelphia for first-time visitors in 2019!
Some of the amazing and exceptional places you cannot afford to miss in Philadelphia include:
The rich history of Philadelphia
Capture a photo in front of the Love Statue
City Hall Observation deck and Tour
See a show at The Kimmel Center
Have dinner at R2L
Visit the Italian Market
Eat at Ralph’s
Eat at Parc
Eat brunch at High Street on Market
The greatness of Philadelphia
The rich history of PhiladelphiaSource IHG.com
Once the capital of America, Philadelphia has a rich history of culture, history, and symbolism. The city is very friendly to all other cultural background and welcoming to visitors, tourists, and immigrants. It also has amenities that only its heritage can offer. It’s home to the Liberty Bell and the Declaration of Independence, the two tributes to the revolution of the city. Prestigiously is known as Philly, although it’s formally known as the City of Philadelphia, it is now one of the largest cities in the state of Pennsylvania. It is also called the city of brotherly love.
According to the following statistics, it is the sixth most populated city in the United States, the fifth largest city in the country in terms of population, the fourth largest consumer media market in the United States and ranks at the 49th rank of the most populous cities in the world. Once upon a time, it was the largest city in the British Empire after London. It is a commercial center, educational, and enriched by culture, it was the communal and geographical center of the 13 original American colonies. Philadelphia contributed immensely to American history when Benjamin Franklin, in the 18th century, began the American Revolution and American independence.
Nowadays, the bustling city is modernized but fragments of history are still evident. If you want to visit, whether, for business or holidays, there is a wide variety of holiday homes to choose from and compare five-star hotels to economical motels. Indulge yourself with the range of exciting restaurants and visit the attractions to get a classic feel of the place. Pennsylvania is truly a notable states to begin a business. It is one of the most business-friendly states in the United States. It offers easy access to capital, a low tax rate and many colleges and universities, which makes it easy to access high-quality intellectual resources.
Philadelphia will surely satisfy a variety of holiday desires. Although there are no cruises here, if you could combine the most unique attractions and activities with some of the more common ones, you would have a new place to visit with a familiar atmosphere. That’s what Philadelphia has to offer, an abundance of things for people of all backgrounds.
There are unique places to visit, including East Penitentiary, Benjamin Franklin Bridge and the United States Mint. While you are here, make sure to check these things, you will not regret it. In addition to the unique, there will be activities and attractions that you know well, such as the zoo and the aquarium. Philadelphia has fun for the whole family. When visiting Philadelphia, you will never go hungry for quality food or shopping. Philadelphia offers many excellent restaurants that will satisfy all tastes. Restaurants serving Italian, French, American, and seafood specialties are all nearby. If shopping is what you are looking for, you are in luck. Philadelphia has it all, from your chain of department stores to local gift shops.
The shopping here is great for everyday items as well as for the special gift items you are looking for. Pennsylvania is also home to many entertainment venues, including many ski resorts, such as the famous Jack Frost Big Boulder Mountain Ski Resort and Whitetail Station. In addition, there are many hiking trails, cave exploration adventures, and fishing destinations. In Pennsylvania, if you are a nature lover, you will not be bored!
The best time to visit Philadelphia is between March and May when the city warms up from the cold of winter and moderate rates are available in the hotels. In addition, a visit in the spring will produce an explosion of photogenic cherry blossoms around the city. Autumn and winter are the coldest and least expensive seasons to visit the city of brotherly love. The high season is the summer season when crowds of tourists invade sites such as Independence Hall and the Philadelphia Zoo.
Philadelphia is known for having a relaxed atmosphere and a very diverse and tolerant atmosphere. This is not called the city of brotherly love for nothing. Philly is home to a large number of ethnic neighborhoods and one of the largest homosexual communities in the United States. In fact, one of the first protests for gay rights in the country took place outside Independence Hall; the tourism office has already organized a campaign entitled “Take your story flat and your gay nightlife”. The local “gay neighborhood”, the heart of the community, is located in the city center, in a block bordered by Chestnut, Pine, 11th and Broad Streets.
While in town, be sure to take a step back and admire some of the city’s unique public art collections, ranging from sculptures to fountains to murals. Murals of art are sometimes commissioned to make Philadelphia a “museum without walls”. This effort is an excellent example of the city’s well-known popular culture. Perhaps a remnant of Philly’s rich revolutionary history, the people of this country are known to be very involved in their communities and their local activities.
Although Philadelphia’s main tourist areas, such as the city center, are generally safe, frequent travelers claim that other parts of the city (such as south or west Philadelphia) can be very dangerous. Use common sense during your stay: Keep valuables near you (and preferably out of sight) at all times. If you do not know how to get to a particular destination, take a taxi or drive, especially at night.
One of the excellent ways to get around Philadelphia is by PHLASH bus or using your feet to get around. While some attractions like the Philadelphia Zoo require another mode of transportation, most of the sights are concentrated in the Old Town, Rittenhouse Place and Society Hill neighborhoods, all of which are very accessible to pedestrians. To get to Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) and the surrounding area of the city, you can use a tangle of trolleys, buses, and subways. A taxi ride from the airport to downtown costs a flat rate of $ 28.50. From March to December, you can also move with purple PHLASH buses. It is also possible to take a taxi, but the cost of trips can accumulate quickly or you can use a recovery service like Uber or Lyft. And if, like the majority of Philly travelers, you arrive in town by car, invest in a good card and get ready to face some frustrations. If you are traveling to Philadelphia from a nearby city, you may want to take Amtrak to 30th Street Station. For New York travelers, you’ll save money by taking a combination of New Jersey Transit and SEPTA trains.
What to add on your agenda for your first time to Philly
Visit where the country beganSource The Travel Channel Take a time machine back to colonial timesCall Them View Tickets TripAdvisor
During the dazzling summer of 1776, 56 brave men gathered at the Pennsylvania State House and challenged the King of England. Eleven years later, representatives of 12 states came together to shape the United States Constitution, eventually creating a unified nation. Rich in history, there is plenty to explore in this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Independence Hall is also part of the US National Parks Service and Independence National Historic Park. The guided tour of Independence Hall, led by National Park Rangers, begins in the courtroom where lawyers from all sides have shared tables and legal books.
Rich in history, there is plenty to explore in this UNESCO World Heritage Site. George Washington’s “rising sun” chair dominates the assembly hall, which is laid out as in the original constitutional convention. In the adjacent west wing, the inkwell used to sign the Declaration of Independence and an original draft Constitution is prominently displayed. Admission to Independence Hall is available by visit only. Admission is by visit only and you will need entrance tickets scheduled between the peak months of March and December. If you happen to go outside rush hour, you will not need a ticket in January-February or after 17 hours during the summer hours.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Free!Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open daily 9am-5pm
Capture a photo in front of the Love Statue
Share a Kodak moment with loved onesSource Philly Voice Remember your trip with this iconic statueCall Them
The most famous landmark in the city of Brotherly Love is LOVE himself – Robert Indiana‘s sculpture on John F. Kennedy Plaza, northwest of City Hall. Established in 1976, LOVE was briefly removed in 1978, but popular demand brought it back to its place. Along with the renovation of John F. Kennedy Plaza, better known as LOVE Park, the sculpture was recently restored, repainted and reinstalled at its original location.
Robert Indiana debuted with the design of his famous sculpture as a painting in 1964. After building the piece of aluminum, Indiana loaned it to the city of Philadelphia as part of the US bicentennial in 1976. LOVE stayed for two years at the John F. Kennedy Plaza, known since then as LOVE Park. The sculpture briefly moved to New York until a local businessman bought it and donated it to the City of Brotherly Love. The image is so famous it has been recreated on objects ranging from postage stamps to jewelry. The AMOR sculpture – the Spanish version of the LOVE sculpture – is on display in the sister city park, a few steps from the LOVE park.
As a matter of fact, your visit to the city of Philadelphia is totally incomplete without taking pictures at the love statue. There is this sense of love in the atmosphere that you get a deep sense of fulfillment and satisfaction and you just feel love all around. No wonder Philly is said to be the city of brotherly love. Experience love in this spot.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Free!Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open daily 7 AM-10 PM
City Hall Observation deck and Tour
A pillar of American HistorySource The Constitutional Walking Tour of Philadelphia Indulge in the rich history, and viewCall Them View Tickets TripAdvisor
In his original design of the 1682 city, William Penn reserved Center Square for public buildings, but it took 200 years for the square to be used for this purpose. The first town hall was located on 2nd and Market Streets, then 5th and Chestnut Streets when the Independence Hall complex was built. The current town hall on Place du Center was inaugurated in 1871 and took 30 years to complete. John McArthur Jr. was the architect and supervised the construction with the help of Thomas U. Walter. The first floor is constructed of massive granite – sometimes 22 feet thick – supporting a brick structure covered with marble. The 548-foot tower is the world’s tallest unframed steel masonry structure.
The City Hall is the largest municipal building in the United States, with an area of more than 14.5 acres. It is an architectural treasure inside and out. The public rooms are among the most sumptuous in the city. The City Council Room, the Mayor’s Reception Room, the Conversation Room, and the Supreme Court Room are the most ornate. The City Hall is the largest municipal building in the United States, with an area of more than 14.5 acres. The exterior is covered with sculptures representing the seasons and the continents, as well as allegorical figures, heads, and masks. All sculptures were designed by Alexander Milne Calder, including the 27-ton William Penn statue at the top of the tower.
Its viewing platform, accessible during guided tours, offers a panoramic view of the city. The observation platform offers a panoramic view of the city. Located at the foot of City Hall, Dilworth Park has undergone a major – and impressive – transformation. On September 4, 2014, the park reopened as a modern and welcoming outdoor space, transforming the underutilized concrete site into a green, pedestrian-friendly public space with new plantings, lawns, a programmable fountain, a café with terrace and two iconic glass entrances in the underground hall.
Every winter, the Rothman Rink opens at Dilworth Park, offering residents and visitors the opportunity to skate in the shadow of City Hall. The Town Hall Observation Deck, located under the William Penn Statute, offers a breathtaking view of Philadelphia from the center of the city. Take a look behind the scenes of the clock tower while going up to the observatory. Clearly, you will not be bored when making this a destination to be visited during your time in Philly.
Tickets are required to visit the City Hall Tower as tours depart every 15 minutes. Tours are available every 15 minutes, weather and capacity permitting, Monday to Friday from 9:30 am to 4:15 pm. and select Saturday from 11:00 to 16:00. Inside City Hall Tour with Observation Deck Access gives you a more complete overview of City Hall. Visitors can take part in a two-hour public tour highlighting the history of art, architecture, towers, and buildings. The inner city tour also includes a tour of the tower.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Tickets start at $8Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open Daily, 8:30 AM - 6 PM, June - August, 8:30 AM - 7 PM
See a show at The Kimmel Center
One of the best venues in all of the city!Source The Kimmel Center Watch one of the many great acts that Philly hosts!Call Them View Tickets TripAdvisor
Philadelphia has a penchant for the performing arts and visual arts. Renowned for their live music scene, Philadelphia’s vibrant rock, rap, jazz and pop venues, located in neighborhoods throughout the city, feature some of the most prominent musicians in the world. Not to mention the renowned classics of the city, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, one of the largest classical music organizations in the world and one of the most prolific recordings in history.
The Avenue of the Arts, also known as Broad Street, is home to many of the city’s best theaters and dance halls, while small intimate spaces dedicated to experimental projects are specialized in all areas, from avant-garde to musicals, from original, classic theater plays to children’s theater. With dozens of professional dance companies and a number of excellent venues, Philadelphia boasts an internationally renowned modern dance company, a fabulous ballet troupe, and African, hip-hop, tap, salsa, flamenco, and postmodern ensembles.
The brightest light on Arts Avenue is the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, a dazzling regional performing arts center with a discreet brick exterior rising to a daring 150-foot vaulted glass roof. a striking view of the city. The spacious and acoustically vaunted installations are rarely dark and present, every weekend, a jazz quartet, a French circus, the Philadelphia Orchestra, popular or family events. Eight resident companies and various soloists and tour ensembles perform here. The main scenes of the center of the 21st century are the elegant Verizon Hall, with its 2,500-seat red mahogany interior in the form of a cello and adjustable acoustic panels, and the 650-seat Perelman Theater with an unusual rotating scene and equipment for chamber music, dance, and theater. Eight resident companies and various soloists and tour ensembles perform here.
The need for a modern concert hall of the Philadelphia Orchestra, combined with the need for a venue to serve the community and guest artists, was the catalyst for the Kimmel Center, completed in December 2001 by architect Rafael Vinoly and the Artec acoustic team. The center is named after the sportswear manufacturer and Philadelphia Sidney Kimmel, the largest private donor. Sponsoring a variety of series, Kimmel also runs the Merck Art Education Center, which offers art classes to young people and adults in the region. Nationally recognized and respected locally, chef Jose Garces‘ catering division offers concessions to Kimmel Center, the Academy of Music and Merriam Theater.
Enjoy cocktails and snacks prepared by the Garces team at the PECO bar and the PECO annex bar. Commonwealth Plaza, located around theaters, encourages visitors to relax and browse the unique arts and gifts of the Intermission Shop. Commonwealth Plaza also hosts free shows throughout the year.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Tickets start at $30Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Box office is open daily, 10 AM-6 PM
Have dinner at R2L
One of the most unique eats in all ofPhiladelphiaSource R2L Serving delicious American fareCall Them Book on OpenTable TripAdvisor
Your arrival at the R2L restaurant and lounge begins with an exclusive elevator ride to the 37th floor of Two Liberty Place. Head past the open kitchen and head to the R2L Lounge Bar where hand-made cocktails and wraparound seats make it a perfect place to enjoy a drink with friends and watch the sunset. Enjoy a memorable meal in the dining room offering professional and thoughtful service and spectacular panoramic views of Philadelphia.
Stylish and sophisticated restaurant and private event space, the R2L is located 50 meters above the city, on the 37th floor of Two Liberty Place. It offers breathtaking and unobstructed panoramic views over more than 40 miles. With its bird’s eye view of Philadelphia and Chef Daniel Stern’s creative American cuisine, R2L sets the stage for some of the city’s most spectacular dining experiences. R2L Restaurant and Lounge private event coordinators will work closely with you and take care of every detail to create an event that meets your specific needs and exceeds your expectations.
Whether it’s for a board meeting at an intimate cocktail overlooking William Penn at the top of City Hall or for a great sit-down dinner, R2L’s private dining options are as limitless as the view. Each room is equipped with a plasma TV for presentations and all audiovisual features.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Dining options start at $20Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open Monday-Thursday, 4 PM-1 AM, Friday & Saturday, 4 PM-2 AM, Sunday, 4 PM-11 PM
Visit the Italian Market
The best Italian cuisine in PhillySource Taste 4 Travel Take a stroll through Italy...in PhiladelphiaCall Them TripAdvisor
The Philadelphia Italian market, which runs about ten blocks from Ninth Street south of Philadelphia, is one of the oldest and largest open-air markets in the United States. Dozens of vendors line the street, selling vegetables, fish, meats, spices and the freshest products from their stalls, while gourmet shops and restaurants occupy storefronts. These butcher shops, bakeries, and other specialty stores are a step back, well before the advent of supermarkets. Shoppers marvel at the amazing array of products on display – and for the entire experience.
In addition to the vendors and shops, there are many mouth-watering restaurants along the market or just around the corner. In addition, the Italian market is home to the two largest suppliers of cheesesteaks in the world: Pat’s and Geno’s. And while the Italian market has an incredibly strong Italian legacy – which can still be seen in shops, restaurants and the wider neighborhood – a surge of international flavors has revived the region over the past decade.
Now, as many people visit the market for Mexican food (there are several delicious taquerias as well as some bodegas), Vietnamese dishes (pho [soup] and banh mi [hoagie] are very accepted) recipes and cuisines from Asian countries like Thailand, China, Laos, and Korean barbecue and widely present. This market is surely a fantastic way to satisfy any tastebuds.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Many options to choose from starting at just $3Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open daily, 7 AM-7 PM, Sunday 8 AM-3 PM
Eat at Ralph’s
A cornerstone of Italian cuisine in AmericaSource Trip Advisor The go to for celebritiesCall Them Book on OpenTable TripAdvisor
As the oldest Italian restaurant in the United States, Ralph’s is a two-story tribute to classic Italian-American cuisine that still makes the crowd shine more than a century after its opening in 1900. Loyal customers of this fourth-generation family-owned restaurant love basic products – sausages and peppers, mussels with red or white sauce – and usually come home with dog bags. Celebrities such as Frank Sinatra and Taylor Swift were seen at Ralph’s, so it is sure to impress. This spot also offers traditional dishes such as spaghetti and meatballs in red sauce, Parmigiana chicken and shrimp prawns.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Dining options start at $14Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open daily 11:45 AM-9:45 PM, Friday & Saturday, 11:45 AM-10:45 PM
Eat at Parc
A delicious French themed BistroSource Time Out Where great wine, meets even greater dishesCall Them Book on OpenTable TripAdvisor
If you like Paris in the spring, Parc is a true grand cru. With Parc, the famous restaurateur Stephen Starr brings some je ne sais quoi to Rittenhouse Square. The Parc’s menu encourages a joyful meal experience, where croissants, champagne, and conversations are also appreciated. With more than 75 seats on the sidewalk and windows, Parc has instantly become one of Philadelphia’s best places to eat and drink al fresco. The covered canopy seats wrap both sides of the restaurant and overlook Rittenhouse Square, one of Philadelphia’s most popular public spaces.
The aroma of freshly baked bread permeates the air as you enter Parc’s casual room, dressed in Parisian tiles spread by hand in shades of ecru and green. The more formal dining room offers a slightly more sophisticated experience while maintaining the energy and excitement of a bustling brewery. To put it simply, Parc is nothing less than an authentic Parisian dining experience – here in the heart of Rittenhouse Square.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Dining options start at $15Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open Monday-Thursday, 7:30 AM-11 PM, Friday, 10 AM-12 AM, Saturday, 10 AM-12 AM, Sunday, 10 AM-10 PM
Eat brunch at High Street on Market
Enjoy a delicious treasureSource Visit Philly Something to satisfy your hungerCall Them Book on OpenTable TripAdvisor
Since opening in the fall of 2013, Fork’s High Street on Market has praised high quality service and innovative bakery products. Formerly known as Fork Etc., owners Ellen Yin and Roberto Sella and chef Eli Kulp created High Street to present the freshest ingredients and unexpected flavors. Craig LaBan, a food critic at Inquirer, gave High Street three loud bells. In 2014, it was named the second best new restaurant by Bon Appétit magazine, thanks largely to its artisan bread baked daily by baker chef Alex Bois.
Located in the Old City, High Street offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Make sure you arrive early at High Street on Market if you want to bring a home-made bread, including roast potatoes, buckwheat cherries or Anadama Miche, made from whole-wheat flour from the west of Castle Valley Mill, in Doylestown. During the day, the menu includes breakfast sandwiches on baked Kaiser, fresh bagels, homemade yogurt with seasonal fruits and artisanal sandwiches, salads, and pasta made from nothing. For dinner, head to one of the High Street’s rustic tables and experience a common dining experience with handmade pasta, small plates, craft beers, and progressive cocktails.Get Directions :Get Tickets :Dining options begin at $14Visit Website :Hours of Operation :Open Monday, 7 AM-3:30 PM, Tuesday-Friday, 7 AM-10:30 PM, Saturday, 8 AM-10:30 PM, Sunday, 8 AM-9:30 PM
- 1. The rich history of Philadelphia
- 2. Independence Hall
- 3. Capture a photo in front of the Love Statue
- 4. City Hall Observation deck and Tour
- 5. See a show at The Kimmel Center
- 6. Have dinner at R2L
- 7. Visit the Italian Market
- 8. Eat at Ralph’s
- 9. Eat at Parc
- 10. Eat brunch at High Street on Market