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Pictured: Christmas Village in Philadelphia

Map all locations Things to Do

Things to Do

Independence Visitor Center

Independence Visitor Center

Independence Visitor Center Credit: G. Widman for GPTMC

Famous as the birthplace of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, Philadelphia offers much more than cobblestone streets and historical landmarks. Cultural, culinary, artistic and ethnic treasures abound in this city and its surrounding countryside.

What makes Philadelphia so memorable is its unique blend of experiences that you have to discover in person. By day, explore four centuries of history and architecture, beautiful neighborhoods, remarkable museum collections and endless shopping. After the sun sets, the city heats up with acclaimed performing arts, amazing dining and vibrant nightlife.

HOLIDAY EVENT GUIDES:

Don’t miss these hotspots

Featured Listings

  • Terror Behind the Walls

    Premier haunted house in Philadelphia’s historic prison

    Terror Behind the Walls

    Open through November 8
    The massive Eastern State Penitentiary — a gothic, castle-like structure in Philadelphia’s Fairmount neighborhood — is home to one of the nation’s largest and most ambitious haunted attractions, Terror Behind the Walls.

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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 Philadelphia’s five original public squares laid out by William Penn in his original plan for the city, boasts several family-friendly attractions, including a miniature golf course, classic carousel, burger joint, storytelling bench, picnic area and more.

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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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  • 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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  • CityPASS Philadelphia

    Save on Philadelphia’s most popular attractions

    Philadelphia CityPASS

    Save 46% on admission to Philadelphia’s must-see attractions with Philadelphia CityPASS.

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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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  • Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

    A masterful collection of American art housed in a historic Center City building

    Gallery in the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

    A jewel nestled in the heart of Center City, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) hosts vast collection of American art boasts treasures by local and national luminaries such as Charles Willson Peale (founder of the Academy), Thomas Eakins (who taught here), and Violet Oakley.

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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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  • Philadelphia Museum of Art

    The Art Museum covers 10 acres and houses more than 300,000 works spanning 2,000 years

    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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  • 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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  • Philly Pops Christmas Spectacular

    More than 300 musicians help celebrate the holiday season

    Verizon Hall in the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts will be filled with the gorgeous sounds of the Philly Pops Christmas Spectacular.

    December 6 – 20
    Performing both delightful seasonal classics and glorious gospel music, Holiday POPS! is a marvelous way for the whole family to enjoy the holidays together.

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  • Franklin Flea

    A Philadelphia-centric market offering vintage and antique wares

    Franklin Flea recently returned for its 2014 season.

    November 15 – December 20
    The Philadelphia-centric Franklin Flea market supplies Philadelphia shoppers with its curated selection of vintage and antique wares throughout the year.

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  • Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival

    Philly honors Asian American films and filmmakers

    The Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival screens films celebrating Asian-American filmmakers and actors at locations throughout the city, including International House.

    November 12 – 16 and 21 – 22
    The seventh annual Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival (PAAFF) will celebrate Asian American films and filmmakers via screenings of documentaries and feature films, panels, discussions, parties and much more.

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  • World Meeting of Families
    Philadelphia 2015

    Pope Francis coming to global celebration at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in 2015

    Philadelphia is the first city in the United States to host the World Meeting of Families.

    Dates: September 22-27, 2015
    Pope Francis to visit Philadelphia during his first trip the United States during World Meeting of Families, an inspirational week of family-centered events and activities at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

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  • SugarHouse Casino Philadelphia

    Fun and games on the Delaware River

    SugarHouse Casino, the first casino in the City of Philadelphia, is conveniently located on the picturesque Delaware River waterfront.

    SugarHouse Casino, the first casino in Philadelphia, is located on the picturesque Delaware River waterfront. This premier gaming and entertainment destination, open 24/7, offers a complimentary mix of table games, slots, restaurants and a VIP Lounge.

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  • Adventure Aquarium’s Christmas Celebration

    Feel the magic of the holiday season at Adventure Aquarium in Camden

    Enjoy the magic of the holiday season during Adventure Aquarium’s Christmas Celebration.

    November 28 – January 1
    Enjoy the magic of the holiday season during Adventure Aquarium’s Christmas Celebration. Get into the yuletide spirit with Scuba Santa and his elves, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer — and, of course, plenty of sharks, fish and sea turtles.

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  • Longwood Gardens Christmas

    Dazzling lights highlight this incredible holiday celebration

    No holiday is complete without a visit to Longwood Gardens, where more than 400,000 twinkling lights and spectacular fountain shows compose a brilliant wonderland your family is sure to love.

    November 27 – January 11
    No holiday is complete without a visit to Longwood Gardens, where more than 500,000 twinkling lights and spectacular fountain shows compose a brilliant wonderland your family is sure to love.

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  • 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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  • Main Street Manayunk

    Charming canal-edged shopping and dining minutes from Center City

    Those in need of retail therapy can rejoice in Manayunk, which also boasts more than 65 boutique shops and galleries.

    Just minutes from Center City, Manayunk features more than 65 shops and galleries and scores of restaurants. The heart of the community is Main Street, a thoroughfare bustling with dozens of restaurants, owner-operated boutiques, bars and galleries.

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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 Philadelphia’s five original public squares laid out by William Penn in his original plan for the city, boasts several family-friendly attractions, including a miniature golf course, classic carousel, burger joint, storytelling bench, picnic area and more.

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