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Pictured: The Betsy Ross House

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Museums & Attractions

Ben Franklin

Benjamin Franklin Museum

Outside the Benjamin Franklin Museum in the Historic District. Credit: J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

Philadelphia plays home to an astounding collection of museums, artistic venues and historical attractions. There’s the Liberty Bell, of course — plus amazing art installations, jazz venues, architectural landmarks and much more.

Our Insider’s Guide plots a veritable “what’s what” of Philadelphia’s cultural world, with instant access to more than 350 fact-filled Web pages for more than 500 visitor-ready experiences.

The attractions are searchable by category, location and special interest, while introductory pages for each of the main categories provide even more insider insight — so you’ll be ready to hit the streets and take in the City of Brotherly Love.

Don’t miss these hotspots

Featured Listings

  • National Constitution Center

    The world’s only museum dedicated to the U.S. Constitution

    Exterior of the National Constitution Center

    The 160,000-square-foot National Constitution Center explores and explains this amazing document through high-tech exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays. In the star-shaped Kimmel Theater, powerful music, a live actor and 360 degrees multi-media images tell the story of We the People.

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  • Reading Terminal Market

    America’s oldest farmers’ market

    Delicious Pennyslvania Dutch pies and baked goods? Yes, please.

    Established in 1892 at 12th and Arch Streets, Reading Terminal is the nation’s oldest continuously operating farmers’ market. Today, this indoor foodie paradise is a one-stop shop for everything from local produce and meats to artisanal cheeses and incredibly delicious desserts and baked goods. It’s also home to the “best sandwich in America.”

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  • CityPASS Philadelphia

    Save on Philadelphia’s most popular attractions

    Philadelphia CityPASS

    Save 45% off the combined admission to five of Philadelphia’s must-see attractions with Philadelphia CityPASS.

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  • The Liberty Bell Center

    Dramatic new home of the internationally known symbol of freedom

    The Liberty Bell in Historic Philadelphia

    The Liberty Bell has a new home, and it is as powerful and dramatic as the Bell itself. Throughout the expansive, light-filled Center, larger-than-life historic documents and graphic images explore the facts and the myths surrounding the Bell.

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  • Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Third-largest art museum in the country and a must-see attraction

    The Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Like Philadelphia’s own Parthenon, the Philadelphia Museum of Art sits majestically on a rise at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The vast collections of this temple of art make it the third-largest art museum in the country, and an absolute must-see on the city’s cultural circuit.

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  • Independence Hall

    Birthplace of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution

    Independence Hall

    They risked everything — “their lives, their fortune and their sacred honor.” During the blistering summer of 1776, 56 courageous men gathered at the Pennsylvania State House and defied the King of England. Eleven years later, representatives from 12 states gathered to shape the U.S. Constitution, finally creating one unified nation.

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  • Independence Visitor Center

    Start at the Visitor Center

    Independence Visitor Center

    The Independence Visitor Center is the perfect place to begin your visit to the Philadelphia region.

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  • The Franklin Institute

    One of the oldest and most beloved science museums in the country

    Front of the Franklin Institute.

    An innovator in designing hands-on exhibits before “interactive” became a buzzword, The Franklin Institute is as clever as its namesake. Its eminently touchable attractions explore science in disciplines ranging from sports to space.

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  • The Barnes Foundation

    One of the world’s leading collections of French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings

    Gallery space at The Barnes Foundation, arranged as originally intended.

    The Barnes Foundation on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway inspires discovery with the world’s largest collections of Impressionist, Post-Impressionist and early Modern paintings and African sculpture.

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  • Please Touch Museum

    Where kids ages 1 – 7 are boss

    The carousel at the Please Touch Museum.

    The city’s award-winning children’s museum is fun-filled, totally hands-on and so delightful that adults are entertained, too. Each nook and cranny has a different theme — from the fantastic to the practical.

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  • Simeone Foundation Museum

    One of the world’s most remarkable collections of race cars

    Within the walls of the newly opened Simeone Foundation Museum, you’ll find 60 of the world’s rarest and most famous race cars.

    Within the walls of the Simeone Foundation Museum — the only museum of its kind in North America — you’ll find 60 of the world’s rarest and most famous race cars. And if luxury is your style, names like Alfa Romeo, Bentley, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar and Maserati are pretty tough to beat.

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  • Longwood Gardens

    One of the world’s premier horticultural display gardens

    Spring at Longwood Gardens.

    When you’re at Longwood Gardens, it’s easy to imagine that you’re at a giant, royal garden in Europe. Stroll along the many paths through acres of exquisitely maintained grounds featuring 11,000 different types of plants.

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  • The Philadelphia Zoo

    Animals and plants thrive at America’s first zoo

    As you approach PECO Primate Reserve, imagine for a minute that a group of primate conservationists have taken up residence in an abandoned timber mill to help save primates from around the world.

    One of the best laid-out and most animal-packed zoos in the country, the Philadelphia Zoo is set among a charming 42-acre Victorian garden with tree-lined walks, formal shrubbery, ornate iron cages and animal sculptures.

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  • Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education

    Explore the natural world

     Six miles of hiking trails traverse the 340 acres of woods, streams, ponds, and fields of the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, one of the first environmental education facilities established within the limits of a major metropolitan area in the country.

    Six miles of hiking trails traverse the 340 acres of woods, streams, ponds, and fields of the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, the one of the first environmental education facility established within the limits of a major metropolitan area in the country.

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  • The Betsy Ross House

    The birthplace of the American flag

    Betsy Ross inside her home

    Did she or didn’t she? Ask Betsy Ross about her role in making the first American flag yourself when you visit the iconic home of America’s most famous flag maker.

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  • National Museum of American Jewish History

    Preserving and interpreting the American Jewish experience

    The New National Museum of American Jewish History

    Rising five stories above Independence Mall, in the heart of historic Philadelphia, the National Museum of American Jewish History brings to life the 360-year history of Jews in America.

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  • Open Source:
    Engaging Audiences in Public Space

    Mural Arts Program presents groundbreaking outdoor exhibition in Philadelphia

    Still-life #11 © 2012, Heeseop Yoon. 24’x 60’. 1/4’‘ black masking tape on mylar.

    The City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program is celebrating it’s 30th anniversary by turning the city into a canvas during a blockbuster outdoor exhibition featuring more than a dozen incredible artists from around the globe.

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  • Penn Museum

    Unearthing the riches of the world’s cultural heritage

    A Sphinx at the University of Pennsylvania Archeology and Anthropology Museum

    If you called its 15-ton Egyptian sphinx “one in a million,” you’d be right: it is just one in a collection of nearly a million objects at the Penn Museum (also known as the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology)—one of the world’s finest archaeological and anthropological museums.

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  • Swann Memorial Fountain

    1924 by Alexander Stirling Calder

    The center of Logan Square belongs to a popular fountain sculpture by Alexander Stirling Calder, son of the City Hall artist.

    The center of Logan Square belongs to a popular fountain sculpture by Alexander Stirling Calder, son of the City Hall artist. Designed with architect Wilson Eyre, the work memorializes Dr. Wilson Cary Swann, founder of the Philadelphia Fountain Society.

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  • Adventure Aquarium

    The ocean’s secrets revealed at Camden’s riverfront aquarium

    The shark realm exhibit at Adventure Aquarium.

    The fifth largest aquarium in the country, Adventure Aquarium features nearly 200,000 square feet of marine and wild life, including hippos, a hammerhead shark and more.

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  • Bside Lounge

    DJs, belly dancing, hookahs and more

    A night at the Bside Lounge might consist of a lot of things: guest DJs spinning Medina-flavored fusion along with house and techno music, belly dancers accompanied by live percussionists, or hookah nights.

    A night at the Bside Lounge, shared with Barra Italian Restaurant in Old City, might consist of a lot of things: guest DJs spinning Medina-flavored fusion along with house and techno music, belly dancers accompanied by live percussionists, or a hookah shared with friends.

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  • National Constitution Center

    The world’s only museum dedicated to the U.S. Constitution

    Exterior of the National Constitution Center

    The 160,000-square-foot National Constitution Center explores and explains this amazing document through high-tech exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays. In the star-shaped Kimmel Theater, powerful music, a live actor and 360 degrees multi-media images tell the story of We the People.

    View More
  • Ruba Club Studios

    A unique social club and event space in Northern Liberties

    Ruba presents weekly entertainment and provides a nightly experience that has kept locals coming back for decades.

    One of the most unique spaces in the city, Ruba Club Studios is a 100-year-old social club and bi-level event space in the Northern Liberties housing a vintage Cabaret bar, dance floor and stage on the lower level and a theatrical stage upstairs.

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  • Historic Strawberry Mansion

    Fairmount Park’s largest historic home

    Historic Strawberry Mansion in Fairmount Park.

    Historic Strawberry Mansion is the largest of the seven historic Fairmount Park historic houses. Originally built as a summer home in 1789 by abolitionist Judge William Lewis, the mansion has been open as to the public since the 1930s.

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  • Seaport Parade of Lights

    A holiday lighting celebration unlike any other in town

    The Seaport Parade of Lights features both pleasure boats and working vessels decked out in fabulous decorations and lights.

    The Seaport Parade of Lights features both pleasure boats and working vessels decked out in fabulous decorations and lights. Before the parade, head to the Independence Seaport Museum, which is hosting the parade, for holiday activities and festivities.

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