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Pictured: Race Street Pier

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Nature, Parks and Gardens

The Philadelphia region is known as the “Cradle of Liberty” as well as the “Cradle of American Horticulture.” Both traditions began with the enlightened settlers who brought to the New World their curiosity about the natural world. William Penn was so inspired by the eastern hardwood forest that greeted him that he named his colony Penn’s Woods, or Pennsylvania.

His desire to establish a “greene countrie towne” was fundamental to his vision of the colony as a place of religious freedom. Today, the Philadelphia region is blooming with parks and gardens, many of which grace the city’s historic homes and art museums.

Featured Listings

  • Morris Arboretum

    A romantic Victorian landscape garden

    Morris Arboretum

    Stroll through the classical English landscape structures and sculpture gardens at Morris Arboretum, a 92-acre Victorian arboretum. Watch for birds as you enjoy the elegant beauty of the 19th-century grounds, complete with a formal rose garden, majestic old trees and unusual plants from North America, Asia, Africa and Europe. And the arboretum’s soaring permanent exhibit let’s you get a bird’s eye view of the forest on a 450-foot-long canopy walk more than 50 feet above ground level.

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  • Bartram’s Garden

    America’s birthplace of gardening

    Exploring Bartram’s Garden

    John Bartram purchased the 102-acre farm along the west bank of the lower Schuylkill River, three miles southwest of colonial Philadelphia, in 1728, and turned it into America’s first garden. Today, visitors can join a morning bird walk, catch a breeze along the River Trail, stroll through the upper kitchen garden and the fragrant flower gardens or visit the riverside meadow, brimming with grasses and wildflowers.

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  • Race Street Pier

    Relaxing waterfront respite in the heart of the city

    Located in the shadow of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge, the Pier features two levels for riverside recreation — and for watching the tide roll in.

    The Race Street Pier on the Delaware River Waterfront is a relaxing respite in the heart of the city.

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  • Autumn’s Colors and Chrysanthemum Festival at Longwood Gardens

    Celebrate fall with chrysanthemums and colors of all sorts

    Longwood Gardens celebrates the harvest season with Autumn’s Colors, a festive showcase of fall colors.

    October 7- November 19, 2017
    Longwood Gardens celebrates the harvest season with Autumn’s Colors, a festive showcase of fall colors, and the Chrysanthemum Festival, when more than 20,000 blooming chrysanthemums take over Longwood’s four-acre conservatory.

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  • PHS Pop Up Garden

    Two temporary outdoor escapes with food, beer and more

    The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s annual Pop Up Garden returns for its fourth year, transforming a forgotten outdoor area into a gorgeous, landscaped community space.

    Through October 2017
    The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s annual Pop Up Gardens are back, transforming two outdoor areas into a gorgeous, landscaped community spaces.

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  • Sesame Place

    Nation’s only theme park based entirely on the award-winning television show, Sesame Street®

    Meet your favorite furry friends at Sesame Place.

    Sesame Place is the nation’s only theme park based entirely on the award-winning show Sesame Street®.

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  • Spring Blooms at Longwood Gardens

    Longwood Gardens’ celebration of spring

    At Longwood Gardens, tulips, dogwoods, wisteria, native azaleas, columbines, snapdragons, bluebells and more herald spring’s arrival both indoors and out during the Spring Blooms display.

    April 1 – May 26, 2017
    At Longwood Gardens, tulips, dogwoods, wisteria, native azaleas, columbines, snapdragons, bluebells and more herald spring’s arrival both indoors and out during the Spring Blooms display. Breathe in the fresh air and relish the beauty of the gardens, where every day something new bursts into bloom.

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  • AMOR Sculpture in Sister Cities Park

    Mirrors Robert Indiana’s iconic LOVE sculpture

    This version of one of Philadelphia’s best-known landmarks lives in Sister Cities Park on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

    This version of one of Philadelphia’s best-known landmarks lives in Sister Cities Park on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

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  • LOVE Park

    Closed for renovations through late November 2017

    LOVE Park

    A favorite destination for tourists and locals alike, John F. Kennedy Plaza gets its famed nickname “LOVE Park” due to its famous sculpture. Note: The park will be closed for renovations through late November 2017, and the LOVE sculpture has been temporarily removed for renovation.

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  • The Oval+

    Pop-up park on the Parkway

    The Oval+ offers a summertime oasis on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

    Through August 20, 2017
    The Oval+ is a seasonal pop-up outdoor public space that transforms an island of asphalt and surrounding lawns at 24th Street and the Parkway into an eight-acre public space devoted to all-ages fun.

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  • Linvilla Orchards

    A 300-acre family farm dedicated to agriculture, entertainment and education

    Grab a bushel of fresh apples at Linvilla Orchards in Delaware County.

    A 300-acre family farm dedicated to agriculture, entertainment and education

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  • Race Street Pier

    Relaxing waterfront respite in the heart of the city

    Located in the shadow of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge, the Pier features two levels for riverside recreation — and for watching the tide roll in.

    The Race Street Pier on the Delaware River Waterfront is a relaxing respite in the heart of the city.

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  • Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience at Longwood Gardens

    An immersive garden-wide after-dark installation

    The chance to see stunning sights at Longwood Gardens will continue after dark with the immersive after-dark-only installation Nightscape.

    August 3 – October 29, 2016
    The chance to see stunning sights at Longwood Gardens will continue after dark in the summer and fall of 2016 with the return of the immersive after-dark-only installation Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience.

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  • Independence National Historical Park

    The birthplace of American democracy

    The Liberty Bell Philadelphia

    Known as the birthplace of American democracy, Historic Philadelphia’s Independence National Historical Park (INHP) is located on the site of many of the seminal events that carried the nation through its founding as a global leader of democratic ideals.

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  • Elmwood Park Zoo

    A community zoo dedicated to habitat conservation

    Hand feed lovable giraffes at Elmwood Park Zoo in Norristown.

    Featuring over 100 exotic and endangered species, Elmwood Park Zoo is the perfect destination for family fun.

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  • Franklin Square

    Carousel rides, mini-golf, burgers and more

    Franklin Square, one of Philadelphia’s five original public squares, boasts several family-friendly attractions, including a miniature golf course, classic carousel, burger joint, storytelling bench, picnic area and more.

    Franklin Square, one of five public squares laid out by William Penn in his plan for Philadelphia, boasts a miniature golf course, classic carousel, burger joint, storytelling bench and picnic area.

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  • Washington Square

    A leafy retreat with tree-shaded benches, located steps from Independence Hall

    Washington Square is one of William Penn’s original five squares set aside to establish parks for the public.

    Washington Square is one of William Penn’s original five squares set aside to establish parks for the public.

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  • The Circuit Trails

    Hundreds of miles of connected trails for hiking, biking, commuting and more

    The Greater Philadelphia region is home to one of the largest trail networks in the country, collectively known as The Circuit Trails.

    The Greater Philadelphia region is home to one of the largest trail networks in the country, collectively known as The Circuit Trails, providing endless opportunities for recreation and commuting.

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