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Top Picks

Check out our Top Picks for a series of short articles full of fun suggestions for great things to do in and around Philadelphia.

We make things easy for you — we give you plenty of top recommendations and then you can pick and choose the places you like best.

Top Picks gives you the best of Philly: everything from bars under the stars to the city’s best ice cream cones.

  • Top 10 Reasons to See the 2014 Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade in Person

    Enjoy the oldest Thanksgiving Day Parade in the country

    10 Reasons to See the 2014 Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade in Person

    The Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade serves as the unofficial kickoff to the holiday season — and it’s one of Philadelphia’s most beloved traditions. Here’s why it’s more than worth it to bundle up, grab the kids or a group of friends and head out for an early holiday treat.

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  • Thanksgiving Dinner at Philadelphia Restaurants

    Let the city’s top restaurants do the cooking on Thanksgiving

    Thanksgiving Day will be here before you know it, so now is the time to begin prepping for the big, annual feast. Fortunately, dozens of Philadelphia’s great restaurants are making it easy for those aiming to avoid the cooking, baking, grocery store rush and post-meal clean up.

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  • Best Places for Holiday Shopping in Philadelphia

    Top seasonal pop-up shops, massive retail destinations, main streets and more

    Find something for everyone on your holiday shopping list, and treat yourself as well, at Philadelphia’s brand-new retail destinations, creative craft bazaars, holiday pop-up shops, independent boutiques, charming main streets and top-rated shopping malls.

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  • The 15 Must-See Holiday Attractions in Philadelphia in 2014

    What not to miss during the most wonderful time of the year

    Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

    The City of Brotherly Love wholeheartedly embraces the most wonderful time of the year, hosting a festive array of iconic holiday attractions. Here’s why the holidays are a great time to visit Philadelphia with our must-see holiday attractions.

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  • Guide to the Top Holiday Events in Philadelphia 2014

    Best seasonal celebrations throughout the region

    With pop-up shops, annual celebrations and more holidays lights than you can count, Philadelphia and the Towns of the Countryside are bursting with things to do this holiday season. Browse our guide to the top holiday events in the region for fun ways to celebrate the season.

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  • Top Places to View Holiday Lights In Philadelphia

    The holiday season shines bright in Philadelphia

    Philadelphia shines bright during the holiday season as attractions celebrate glowing traditions both new and old. To help you get into the spirit of the season, we’re shining a spotlight on a few of our favorite holiday light displays throughout the region.

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  • A Guide To Tree Lighting Celebrations in Philadelphia and the Countryside in 2014

    Rock around the tree with sparkling lights and holiday cheer

    A Guide To Tree Lighting Celebrations in Philadelphia and the Countryside in 2014

    It doesn’t truly feel like the holiday season until Christmas trees and holiday lights are set up and decked out all around the city. Here’s our guide to the major holiday lighting celebrations in Philadelphia and the countryside in 2014.

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  • Family-Friendly Holiday Events in Philadelphia in 2014

    Kids enjoy the holiday season with Philadelphia’s family-friendly events and performances

    A family ice skates at the Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest in Philadelphia.

    Don’t let the arrival of Old Man Winter keep you and your family cooped up indoors. The holiday season might just be the perfect time of year to get out and about with wee ones in tow. We’ve rounded up our top picks for the best things to do with the pint-sized set to make the most of the chilly season in Philadelphia.

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  • Top Holiday Events & Attractions in Philadelphia’s Countryside

    Celebrate the season with annual traditions, festive parades, bright lights and more

    The holiday season brings out the best in the Philadelphia region with long-standing traditions, annual celebrations and wildly impressive colorful light displays. Embrace the spirit of the season festive parades, visits from Santa and fantastic holiday shopping with our top holiday events in the Philadelphia Countryside.

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  • The Craft Distilleries & Spirits Trail Of Greater Philadelphia

    See why small-batch distilling is booming in the region

    The Craft Distilleries & Spirits Trail Of Greater Philadelphia

    In just over two years, craft distilling has boomed in the Philadelphia region, helping to restore Pennsylvania to its once-prominent place in the national distilling conversation. Here’s a look at the region’s distilling pioneers.

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  • Top Reasons To Visit The Awesome New Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk

    A breathtaking new over-the-water extension of the Schuylkill River Trail

    Three years in the making, the Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk is a beautiful over-the-water extension of the existing Schuylkill River Trail, extending the trail from Locust Street to the South Street Bridge and connecting the trail to University City and beyond.

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  • Top 10 Spots for Authentic Philly Cheesesteaks

    Our picks for the best places to go for an Authentic Philly Cheesesteak experience

    Authentic Philly Cheesesteaks

    Here in Philly, cheesesteaks are a civic icon, a tourist draw and a cultural obsession. Often imitated around the world, the cheesesteak is rarely duplicated successfully outside of Philadelphia. So what is an authentic cheesesteak and where did it come from? Here’s the lowdown on this region’s favorite sandwich.

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  • Top 12 Reasons To Be Psyched For The New Dilworth Park

    The awesome new park next to City Hall opened in September 2014

    Once it’s complete, the brand new Dilworth Park will transform the west side of City Hall into a multi-use public space, complete with four tree groves and shaded green sitting areas, an outdoor café, a performance space and activity areas for outdoor markets and an ice-skating rink in season.

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  • 11 Quirky Attractions For A David Lynch-Inspired Experience in Philadelphia

    Odd and intriguing locations suitable for the acclaimed film director

    In honor of the twisted mind behind Blue Velvet and Twin Peaks, we’ve curated a selection of attractions that embrace David Lynch’s vision of Philadelphia.

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  • Philadelphia’s Sandwich Hall Of Fame

    An ode to Philadelphia’s wealth of almost impossibly delicious sandwiches

    Philadelphia's best sandwiches

    Nothing speaks to Philadelphia’s love of great food more than our appreciation of an amazing sandwich. From the world-famous Philly cheesesteak to its less famous, but equally delicious brother, the hoagie, to the third juggernaut in Philly’s sandwich triumvirate, the roast pork sandwich, Philadelphia loves genuinely incredible sandwiches. We know them. We love them. We eat them. It’s what we do. And this Sandwich Hall of Fame is our ode to Philadelphia’s greatest sandwiches.

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  • Most Haunted Attractions In and Around Philadelphia

    The historic region is full of restless spirits and ghostly encounters

    As one of the oldest cities in the country, Philadelphia’s historic landmarks and iconic attractions are a favorite destination for ghost hunters from around the world. Discover spirited stories from around the region in our guide to the most haunted attractions.

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  • Top Spots to View Fall Foliage in Philadelphia

    Our picks for the best spots in the Philly region to see vivid fall colors

    Top Spots to View Fall Foliage in Philadelphia

    All across the Philadelphia region, the leaves are turning from summer green to a vibrant palate of fall reds, oranges and yellows. Grab the family and a picnic lunch and head out to make the most of the colors of the season. Explore our favorite parks, trails, off-the-beaten-path roads, wineries, museums and view the picturesque fall foliage the Philadelphia region.

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  • Harry Potter’s Guide to Philadelphia

    City attractions and locations that could be found in the world of wizards

    Chestnut Hill is bringing back its bewitchingly popular Harry Potter Festival for a weekend of Quidditch, costumes and wizarding on Germantown Avenue. In addition to the annual festival, Philadelphia has much more in common with the magical world created by J.K. Rowling.

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  • Top 10 Reasons Philly Loves Pop-Up Beer Gardens

    Turning underused spaces into brilliant summertime hangouts

    The Oval Beer Garden

    Pop-Up Beer Gardens have become some of Philadelphia’s most popular summer destinations. And for good reason – they’re awesome! Philly loves them. So much so that we felt compelled to put together a list of the Top 10 Reasons Philly Loves Pop-Up Beer Gardens. Check it out.

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  • Top 12 Family-Friendly Attractions

    Philadelphia attractions where kids can learn, play and explore

    Academy of Natural Sciences

    Explore a dozen of our favorite family-friendly museums, parks and attractions that will keep the entire family engaged and happy throughout your entire trip.

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  • Top 10 Free Philadelphia Attractions

    Popular places to visit — with no admission required

    The Liberty Bell and Independence Hall

    For families and budget-conscious travelers eager to explore the region, there are plenty of fantastic, FREE attractions to discover in Philadelphia.

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  • Where to Find the Best Doughnuts in Philadelphia

    Favorite spots for the fried, glazed, dipped and filled treats

    Philadelphia’s bakeries and restaurants offer a wide variety of the sweet treats dusted with with a sugary blend, stuffed with a variety of sweet surprises or glazed with any number of fantastic flavors. Browse a few of our favorites.

    View More

  • Top Five Sky-High Vantage Points in Philadelphia

    The best places to go in Philly when you’re looking for observation deck-like views

    philadelphia city hall tower observation deck

    Did you know that Philadelphia’s City Hall has an observation deck at the top of its 500-foot tower? It does. And it’s awesome. This is our guide to the top five places around the city that offer spectacular sky-high views of Philadelphia.

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  • Best Brunch Spots in Philadelphia

    Weekends are made for brunching in the city

    Weekends were made for brunching — chatting with friends, digging into a stack of syrupy pancakes, lingering over a latte or a Bloody Mary. Check out more than 100 of our favorite brunch spots in Philadelphia.

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  • Top Romantic Spots and Activities in Philadelphia

    There’s lots to adore, including hotel packages, spa treatments & restaurants

    Philadelphia, aptly dubbed the City of Brotherly Love, caters to lovers looking to re-energize their relationships at cultural sites, romantic eateries, outdoor attractions and other swoon-worthy spots.

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  • The Best Ramen In Philadelphia

    Our favorite spots to get a bowl of ramen around Philadelphia

    For many, Ramen conjures an image of instant noodles good for a cheap meal. In recent years, Philadelphia has seen a surge in restaurants serving real, hearty ramen that will make those days waiting at the microwave seem like a distant memory.

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  • Top Places to Watch the Sunset in Philadelphia

    Our favorite spots for the twilight hour

    One of our favorite ways to find inspiration is heading outside and relaxing with the beautiful colors of the setting sun. Check out our favorite spots to watch the sunset in Philadelphia.

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  • 30 Must-Try Dishes And Drinks In Philadelphia

    Sample some of the city’s lesser-known culinary treasures

    Already sampled Philly’s iconic cheesesteaks, hoagies and pretzels? Then go beyond these local delicacies to sample some of the city’s lesser-known culinary treasures.

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  • Best Alfresco Dining in Philadelphia

    Perfect places for open air eating

    Outdoor dining is one of the hallmarks of summer, a special ambience-adder that you only get to take advantage of when the weather is warm enough.

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  • Guide to the Best Burgers in Philadelphia

    Satisfy your carnivore craving with some of the best hamburgers in the city

    Alla Spina

    Philadelphia is quickly becoming Burger Town, U.S.A. as new burger joints are popping up all over town.

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  • Philadelphia Hoagies 101

    Discover the history of Philadelphia’s official cold sandwich

    Among Philly eats, it doesn’t get much more iconic than the hoagie. The hefty sandwich of Italian origin (but now adopted by many cultures) has been an affordable lunch mainstay for the region’s residents and visitors for at least a century. So what constitutes a traditional hoagie, and how did it rise to prominence? The following is a primer on all things hoagie.

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  • Rocky’s Philadelphia

    Explore Rocky’s hometown, following in his footsteps from the Art Museum to the Italian Market

    Experience Rocky’s Philadelphia with our interactive guide to where the champ trained, lived and loved.

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  • The 25 Best Pizzas in Philadelphia

    Best spots to grab a slice in the city

    Birra

    It’s no surprise that Philadelphia, a city with such a rich Italian heritage, is a haven for delicious gourmet pizza. And in recent years, the pizza offerings around town have only gotten better as a new class of Philadelphia restaurants have entered the fray, specializing in pies that have turned pizza into a meal worth dining out.

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  • Top Holiday Events & Attractions in Philadelphia’s Countryside

    Celebrate the season with annual traditions, festive parades, bright lights and more

    The holiday season brings out the best in the Philadelphia region with long-standing traditions, annual celebrations and wildly impressive colorful light displays. Embrace the spirit of the season festive parades, visits from Santa and fantastic holiday shopping with our top holiday events in the Philadelphia Countryside.

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  • Thanksgiving Week in Philadelphia 2014

    Celebrate the long weekend with parades, dinners, holiday attractions and more

    Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade

    Philadelphia goes big for the Thanksgiving holiday with a spectacular citywide celebration. Check out our guide to the holiday weekend with historic parades, festive dinners and holiday fun.

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  • Top Halloween Events and Activities in Philadelphia

    Hayrides, spooky soirees, historical frights and top haunted houses

    Thrill-seeking families, couples and friends can celebrate Halloween with hayrides, parties, festivals—and more haunted houses, of course—that transform one of the country’s most historic regions into a Halloween destination sure to scare, surprise and entertain.

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  • Top Reasons Why Terror Behind The Walls Is The #1 Haunted House in America

    Eastern State Penitentiary is home to the largest and scariest haunted attraction in the country

    The haunted history of Eastern State makes it the perfect setting for the largest haunted house in the country, Terror Behind the Walls. Check out why this year it is scarier than ever.

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  • Harry Potter’s Guide to Philadelphia

    City attractions and locations that could be found in the world of wizards

    Chestnut Hill is bringing back its bewitchingly popular Harry Potter Festival for a weekend of Quidditch, costumes and wizarding on Germantown Avenue. In addition to the annual festival, Philadelphia has much more in common with the magical world created by J.K. Rowling.

    View More

  • Top Reasons To Visit The Awesome New Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk

    A breathtaking new over-the-water extension of the Schuylkill River Trail

    Three years in the making, the Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk is a beautiful over-the-water extension of the existing Schuylkill River Trail, extending the trail from Locust Street to the South Street Bridge and connecting the trail to University City and beyond.

    View More

  • Top Oktoberfest Celebrations in Philadelphia

    Beer, brats and block parties in honor of the traditional German festival

    Get ready for beer steins and bratwursts as Philadelphia celebrates Oktoberfest. The city’s version of the traditional German festival is bigger than ever with massive street-fairs, plentiful beer specials and neighborhood activities.

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  • Top Late Summer and Early Fall Festivals

    Celebrate the final days of summer with food, arts, music and more

    School is back in session and those summer days may be winding down, but Philadelphia’s festival season is just getting warmed up. The final days of summer mean food festivals, performing arts celebrations, outdoor activities and more.

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  • Where to Find the Best Doughnuts in Philadelphia

    Favorite spots for the fried, glazed, dipped and filled treats

    Philadelphia’s bakeries and restaurants offer a wide variety of the sweet treats dusted with with a sugary blend, stuffed with a variety of sweet surprises or glazed with any number of fantastic flavors. Browse a few of our favorites.

    View More

  • Top 12 Family-Friendly Attractions

    Philadelphia attractions where kids can learn, play and explore

    Academy of Natural Sciences

    Explore a dozen of our favorite family-friendly museums, parks and attractions that will keep the entire family engaged and happy throughout your entire trip.

    View More

  • Top 10 Spots for Authentic Philly Cheesesteaks

    Our picks for the best places to go for an Authentic Philly Cheesesteak experience

    Authentic Philly Cheesesteaks

    Here in Philly, cheesesteaks are a civic icon, a tourist draw and a cultural obsession. Often imitated around the world, the cheesesteak is rarely duplicated successfully outside of Philadelphia. So what is an authentic cheesesteak and where did it come from? Here’s the lowdown on this region’s favorite sandwich.

    View More

  • July 4th in Philadelphia - Day by Day Guide

    Daily events, festivals, fireworks and happenings during the city-wide Independence Day celebration

    Plan your Independence Day celebration with our day-by-day guide to July 4th in Philadelphia.

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  • Top Summer Festivals & Events in Philadelphia

    Get outside and celebrate with festivals, fireworks, concerts and more

    All summer long, outdoor festivals abound in Philadelphia. To help you navigate through them all and find the ones you definitely do not want to miss, we’ve compiled our Summer Festivals roundup with all the festivals we could find taking place within the next few months.

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  • Top Summer Outdoor Movie Screenings in Philadelphia

    Get outside and watch a movie

    Grab some popcorn and a blanket for a few of our favorite movie screenings under the stars this summer.

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  • July 4th in Philadelphia - Fireworks, Concerts and More - Wawa Welcome America! Events

    Fireworks, concerts, parades and parties during Independence Day in America’s Birthplace

    Philadelphia, the birthplace of independence, is celebrating the Fourth of July in a big way. From the start of the annual Wawa Welcome America! festival on June 28, events celebrating America’s birthday will light up the streets, the skies and the stages from the waterfront at Penn’s Landing to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway on the other side of town.

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  • Top Spring Festivals in Philadelphia

    Celebrate the season with arts, science, beer, music and more

    The longer days and warmer temperatures mean many things, including the arrival of outdoor events and fantastic festivals all around the city. Mark your calendar for our top spring festivals in 2014.

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  • Best Brunch Spots in Philadelphia

    Weekends are made for brunching in the city

    Weekends were made for brunching — chatting with friends, digging into a stack of syrupy pancakes, lingering over a latte or a Bloody Mary. Check out more than 100 of our favorite brunch spots in Philadelphia.

    View More

  • Rocky’s Philadelphia

    Explore Rocky’s hometown, following in his footsteps from the Art Museum to the Italian Market

    Experience Rocky’s Philadelphia with our interactive guide to where the champ trained, lived and loved.

    View More

  • Top Iced Coffee in Philadelphia

    See what places are buzzing with great cups of cold coffee

    Whether you’re looking for a major morning jolt with a bottle of cold brew to-go or a carefully poured icy latte to savor, Philadelphia’s coffee shops have your answer.

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  • Top Five Sky-High Vantage Points in Philadelphia

    The best places to go in Philly when you’re looking for observation deck-like views

    philadelphia city hall tower observation deck

    Did you know that Philadelphia’s City Hall has an observation deck at the top of its 500-foot tower? It does. And it’s awesome. This is our guide to the top five places around the city that offer spectacular sky-high views of Philadelphia.

    View More

  • The Best Ramen In Philadelphia

    Our favorite spots to get a bowl of ramen around Philadelphia

    For many, Ramen conjures an image of instant noodles good for a cheap meal. In recent years, Philadelphia has seen a surge in restaurants serving real, hearty ramen that will make those days waiting at the microwave seem like a distant memory.

    View More

  • Philadelphia’s Sandwich Hall Of Fame

    An ode to Philadelphia’s wealth of almost impossibly delicious sandwiches

    Philadelphia's best sandwiches

    Nothing speaks to Philadelphia’s love of great food more than our appreciation of an amazing sandwich. From the world-famous Philly cheesesteak to its less famous, but equally delicious brother, the hoagie, to the third juggernaut in Philly’s sandwich triumvirate, the roast pork sandwich, Philadelphia loves genuinely incredible sandwiches. We know them. We love them. We eat them. It’s what we do. And this Sandwich Hall of Fame is our ode to Philadelphia’s greatest sandwiches.

    View More

  • Top Romantic Spots and Activities in Philadelphia

    There’s lots to adore, including hotel packages, spa treatments & restaurants

    Philadelphia, aptly dubbed the City of Brotherly Love, caters to lovers looking to re-energize their relationships at cultural sites, romantic eateries, outdoor attractions and other swoon-worthy spots.

    View More

  • Top Coffee Spots in Philadelphia

    Region buzzing with great cafes

    Philadelphia is no stranger to a strong cup of coffee and enthusiasm for the caffeinated beverage is here to stay. Browse a few of our favorite spots to grab a cup (or two).

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  • Philadelphia’s Newest Skyscraper: The Comcast Innovation and Technology Center

    59-story structure in Center Ctiy to be one of the tallest buildings in the country

    The Philadelphia skyline is growing again. Projected to open in 2017, the 1,121-foot-tall, state-of-the-art Comcast Innovation and Technology Center will be one of the largest buildings in the country and an impressive fixture in Center City.

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  • Black History Month in Philadelphia

    Our top picks for the city-wide cultural celebration

    African America Museum

    Philadelphia celebrates Black History Month with special events, exhibitions, film screenings and other activities throughout the month of February.

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  • Top Dining Picks From Philadelphia Chefs

    Top city chefs dish their favorite restaurants, best markets, secret finds and more

    Five local food luminaries share where they like to go on their off-hours, what they snack on late at night, their favorite low-cost meals and why they love to cook and dine in Philly.

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  • Top Reasons to Visit Philadelphia in 2014

    New public spaces, expanded attractions and amazing exhibitions coming this year

    For visitors wondering what’s new in Philadelphia in 2014, the short answer is: a lot.

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  • The Best Old-School Diners In Philadelphia

    Top classic eateries in and around the city

    Our roundup of some of the most well known and well-frequented classic diners in Philadelphia.

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  • 30 Must-Try Dishes And Drinks In Philadelphia

    Sample some of the city’s lesser-known culinary treasures

    Already sampled Philly’s iconic cheesesteaks, hoagies and pretzels? Then go beyond these local delicacies to sample some of the city’s lesser-known culinary treasures.

    View More

  • Local Breweries and Craft Beers

    Regional breweries putting out award-winning beers

    Philadelphia has a long, storied love affair with beer dating back over 100 years. While most of the city’s breweries were lost during Prohibition the 1920s, today the tradition of fine craft beer is alive and thriving.

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  • Top Food Trucks in Philadelphia

    Proving you can get good food on the road

    A look at some of Philly’s must-try trucks—serving soft pretzels, pork roll sandwiches, elegant pastries, espresso drinks, global fare and just about everything in between.

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  • Guide to the Best Burgers in Philadelphia

    Satisfy your carnivore craving with some of the best hamburgers in the city

    Alla Spina

    Philadelphia is quickly becoming Burger Town, U.S.A. as new burger joints are popping up all over town.

    View More

  • The 25 Best Pizzas in Philadelphia

    Best spots to grab a slice in the city

    Birra

    It’s no surprise that Philadelphia, a city with such a rich Italian heritage, is a haven for delicious gourmet pizza. And in recent years, the pizza offerings around town have only gotten better as a new class of Philadelphia restaurants have entered the fray, specializing in pies that have turned pizza into a meal worth dining out.

    View More

  • Guide To The Best Barbecue in Philadelphia

    Get saucy with some of the tastiest barbecue in the city

    Make no bones about it: Philadelphia has the sauciest, smokiest ribs and some of the best brisket east of Texas. Here are a few of our favorite down-home eats that are sure to appease any and all comfort-food cravings.

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  • Guide to the Top Meatballs in Philadelphia

    They come in all types and sizes, but just one shape

    On top of spaghetti, covered with cheese, tucked into a roll, grilled on a skewer—meatballs in all forms abound in Philadelphia, and not just in South Philly, the city’s largely Italian enclave.

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  • Top Places to Watch the Sunset in Philadelphia

    Our favorite spots for the twilight hour

    One of our favorite ways to find inspiration is heading outside and relaxing with the beautiful colors of the setting sun. Check out our favorite spots to watch the sunset in Philadelphia.

    View More

  • Top Hotel Spas

    Relax and refresh at a fabulous hotel spa

    Guests of the inns and hotels of Philadelphia and The Countryside® can now expect more than superlative service and historic trimmings. Increasingly, they can also avail themselves of in-room massages, customized facials, herbal body treatments and day-long day-spa escapes—without ever leaving the property.

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  • Top Permanent Light Displays in Philadelphia

    Displays lighting up the region

    Discover spectacular displays that light up the night sky.

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  • Hands-On Family Fun In Philadelphia

    Interactive summer fun for all ages

    Families have more reasons to visit Philadelphia this summer with new outdoor adventures, hands-on exhibits and traditional favorites.

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