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Guidebook for Philadelphia

Vivek

Guidebook for Philadelphia

Food Scene
Chef Michael Millon serves seasonal, handcrafted (a mano means “by hand”) Italian dishes at this charming bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) spot. Best part? A Mano now takes reservations. Cash only.
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A Mano
2244 Fairmount Ave
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Chef Michael Millon serves seasonal, handcrafted (a mano means “by hand”) Italian dishes at this charming bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) spot. Best part? A Mano now takes reservations. Cash only.
A member of chef Jose Garces’ family of restaurants, this Baja Peninsula-inspired, do-good eatery is known for mahi mahi tacos and tofu chorizo quesadillas — served on house-made tortillas. Pair your delicious eats with a K38 beer, made just for Buena Onda by Yards Brewing Company.
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Buena Onda
1901 Callowhill Street
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A member of chef Jose Garces’ family of restaurants, this Baja Peninsula-inspired, do-good eatery is known for mahi mahi tacos and tofu chorizo quesadillas — served on house-made tortillas. Pair your delicious eats with a K38 beer, made just for Buena Onda by Yards Brewing Company.
Award-winning chef Marc Vetri’s pizzeria serves traditional, Neapolitan-style pizzas with just the right amount of char and an array of premium toppings. Save room for dessert, as soft-serve ice cream — or, if you dare, Nutella pizza — awaits. Patrons can also choose from a variety of beverages on tap, including four rotating beers and red and white wine.
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Pizzeria Vetri
1939 Callowhill Street
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Award-winning chef Marc Vetri’s pizzeria serves traditional, Neapolitan-style pizzas with just the right amount of char and an array of premium toppings. Save room for dessert, as soft-serve ice cream — or, if you dare, Nutella pizza — awaits. Patrons can also choose from a variety of beverages on tap, including four rotating beers and red and white wine.
Patrons line up out the door for Sabrina’s famous stuffed challah French toast and other mega-portioned brunch-time eats. Sabrina’s Fairmount location is one of its few locations that also serves dinner, including diner-style eats like homemade meatloaf and roasted chicken with buttermilk biscuits.
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Sabrina's Cafe & Spencer's Too
1804 Callowhill Street
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Patrons line up out the door for Sabrina’s famous stuffed challah French toast and other mega-portioned brunch-time eats. Sabrina’s Fairmount location is one of its few locations that also serves dinner, including diner-style eats like homemade meatloaf and roasted chicken with buttermilk biscuits.
Cozy atmosphere makes this quaint bistro, located across the street from Eastern State Penitentiary, a neighborhood favorite. Look out on the historic behemoth while sipping a mimosa over strawberry mascarpone topped red velvet pancakes or pork belly Benedict. And don’t miss Hickory Lane’s signature burger, smoky gouda mac and cheese and other American comfort dishes designed to please.
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Hickory Lane American Bistro
2025 Fairmount Avenue
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Cozy atmosphere makes this quaint bistro, located across the street from Eastern State Penitentiary, a neighborhood favorite. Look out on the historic behemoth while sipping a mimosa over strawberry mascarpone topped red velvet pancakes or pork belly Benedict. And don’t miss Hickory Lane’s signature burger, smoky gouda mac and cheese and other American comfort dishes designed to please.
This Japanese BYOB serves some unusual combinations (shrimp tempura, eel, avocado, honey, macadamia bits and strawberry is one) in their specialty rolls — just one of the reasons neighbors can’t get enough of the small sushi spot. Diners rave about the Godzilla (shrimp tempura, eel, avocado, strawberry, honey and roasted macadamias) and Spartan (miso-marinated beef tenderloin, cucumber, mozzarella cheese, shrimp tempura and paprika aioli) rolls.
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Umai Umai
533 N 22nd St
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This Japanese BYOB serves some unusual combinations (shrimp tempura, eel, avocado, honey, macadamia bits and strawberry is one) in their specialty rolls — just one of the reasons neighbors can’t get enough of the small sushi spot. Diners rave about the Godzilla (shrimp tempura, eel, avocado, strawberry, honey and roasted macadamias) and Spartan (miso-marinated beef tenderloin, cucumber, mozzarella cheese, shrimp tempura and paprika aioli) rolls.
From the same people responsible for lauded beer bar Monk’s Cafe, this spotmaintains a selection of more than 100 cool and interesting beers on tap and in bottles, as well as an extensive knowledge of mussels. During the warmer months, outdoor seating makes a prime people-watching spot.
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The Belgian Cafe
601 North 21st Street
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From the same people responsible for lauded beer bar Monk’s Cafe, this spotmaintains a selection of more than 100 cool and interesting beers on tap and in bottles, as well as an extensive knowledge of mussels. During the warmer months, outdoor seating makes a prime people-watching spot.
Loved for its authentic Greek food and atmosphere (maybe it’s the three generations of Greek owners speaking in their native tongue), this spot is one of the neighborhood’s well-kept secrets. Zorba’s keeps its menus classic and reasonably priced.
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Zorba's Tavern
2230 Fairmount Ave
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Loved for its authentic Greek food and atmosphere (maybe it’s the three generations of Greek owners speaking in their native tongue), this spot is one of the neighborhood’s well-kept secrets. Zorba’s keeps its menus classic and reasonably priced.
A neighborhood staple since 1991, London Grill is one part upscale pub with local microbrews on tap and a classic cocktail menu and one part white tablecloth restaurant. Next door sits Paris Wine Bar, focusing on local and sustainable wines.
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London Grill
2301 Fairmount Avenue
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A neighborhood staple since 1991, London Grill is one part upscale pub with local microbrews on tap and a classic cocktail menu and one part white tablecloth restaurant. Next door sits Paris Wine Bar, focusing on local and sustainable wines.
Set in a 19th-century firehouse — the fireman’s pole is still standing — Jack’s has been serving innovative American cuisine, along with impressive whiskey and scotch selections for more than 25 years. The restaurant boasts a prime view of the imposing Eastern State Penitentiary across the street.
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Jack's Firehouse
2130 Fairmount Avenue
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Set in a 19th-century firehouse — the fireman’s pole is still standing — Jack’s has been serving innovative American cuisine, along with impressive whiskey and scotch selections for more than 25 years. The restaurant boasts a prime view of the imposing Eastern State Penitentiary across the street.
This highly praised and brightly colored neighborhood spot dishes out modern Mexican cuisine and pours a few dozen tequilas in a colorful dining room. The carnitas tacos are a must-taste.
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La Calaca Feliz
2321 Fairmount Avenue
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This highly praised and brightly colored neighborhood spot dishes out modern Mexican cuisine and pours a few dozen tequilas in a colorful dining room. The carnitas tacos are a must-taste.
Opened by three friends, Trio is a BYOB Thai-inspired, Pan-Asian paradise. Diners in this converted row home indulge in the popular drunken noodles, much-beloved lemongrass meatballs and more.
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Trio BYOB
2601 Pennsylvania Avenue
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Opened by three friends, Trio is a BYOB Thai-inspired, Pan-Asian paradise. Diners in this converted row home indulge in the popular drunken noodles, much-beloved lemongrass meatballs and more.
Seekers of pasta with homemade sauce, sandwiches, pizzas with hand-stretched crust and neighborhood atmosphere head to this casual red-sauce Italian BYOB.
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Angelino's Restaurant
849 North 25th Street
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Seekers of pasta with homemade sauce, sandwiches, pizzas with hand-stretched crust and neighborhood atmosphere head to this casual red-sauce Italian BYOB.
While the go-to area in Philly for Banh Mi is South Philly, Fairmount holds a hidden gem for scoring an authentic and delicious take on the Vietnamese sandwich. Choose a base of grilled pork, Korean BBQ or crispy tofu to top the sandwich’s staple ingredients (pickled carrots, daikon radish and fresh cilantro), and then consider pairing your loaded baguette with a Vietnamese coffee for a real treat.
Brown Street Coffee
2545 Brown St
While the go-to area in Philly for Banh Mi is South Philly, Fairmount holds a hidden gem for scoring an authentic and delicious take on the Vietnamese sandwich. Choose a base of grilled pork, Korean BBQ or crispy tofu to top the sandwich’s staple ingredients (pickled carrots, daikon radish and fresh cilantro), and then consider pairing your loaded baguette with a Vietnamese coffee for a real treat.
Go hands-on at Gyu-Kaku, which invites you to flame-grill your own meats over a charcoal stovetop situated right at your table. Helpful staff guide patrons through a la carte orders, which include vegetarian and vegan options (that can be paired with plenty of sake and shōchū). Regulars know to order Lady M’s Green Tea Mille Crepe for dessert.
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Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ
1901 Callowhill Street
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Go hands-on at Gyu-Kaku, which invites you to flame-grill your own meats over a charcoal stovetop situated right at your table. Helpful staff guide patrons through a la carte orders, which include vegetarian and vegan options (that can be paired with plenty of sake and shōchū). Regulars know to order Lady M’s Green Tea Mille Crepe for dessert.
This 35-seat Japanese BYOB with Korean influences serves lunch and dinner to in-the-know neighbors. Regulars swear the hot-stone bibimbap rivals anything found in Chinatown.
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Doma Japanese Restaurant
1822 Callowhill Street
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This 35-seat Japanese BYOB with Korean influences serves lunch and dinner to in-the-know neighbors. Regulars swear the hot-stone bibimbap rivals anything found in Chinatown.
Essentials
Fairmount’s Whole Foods isn’t your typical supermarket. The 62,000-square-foot flagship store houses four different bars (two for alcohol, one for coffee and one for juice), four eateries from notable Philly chefs and an extensive selection of hot and cold prepared foods. The in-store pub features 16 local beers on tap, wine by the glass and variety of specialty cocktails.
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Whole Foods Market
2101 Pennsylvania Avenue
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Fairmount’s Whole Foods isn’t your typical supermarket. The 62,000-square-foot flagship store houses four different bars (two for alcohol, one for coffee and one for juice), four eateries from notable Philly chefs and an extensive selection of hot and cold prepared foods. The in-store pub features 16 local beers on tap, wine by the glass and variety of specialty cocktails.
Shopping
Tela’s Market & Kitchen is the corner store that dreams are made of. This sunny shop stocks specialty grocery items including elegant cheeses, pantry staples, produce and prepared foods, including lots of locally made goodies. Even better? The cafe menu brings breakfast and lunch dishes that strike a balance between rich and healthy.
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Tela's Market & Kitchen
1833 Fairmount Avenue
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Tela’s Market & Kitchen is the corner store that dreams are made of. This sunny shop stocks specialty grocery items including elegant cheeses, pantry staples, produce and prepared foods, including lots of locally made goodies. Even better? The cafe menu brings breakfast and lunch dishes that strike a balance between rich and healthy.
Drinks & Nightlife
Named for Ben Franklin’s famous experiment with electricity, the Kite & Keyoffers a wide variety of craft and imported beers from around the world. The pub fare rivals the beer selection. Highlights include mussels and a veggie burger, which can be enjoyed in the beer garden.
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Kite & Key
1836 Callowhill Street
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Named for Ben Franklin’s famous experiment with electricity, the Kite & Keyoffers a wide variety of craft and imported beers from around the world. The pub fare rivals the beer selection. Highlights include mussels and a veggie burger, which can be enjoyed in the beer garden.
To score a house-made, hyper-local brew, look no further than Bar Hygge. The brewpub offers a selection of nine different drafts along with shareable boards of veggies, cheese and meat and bar-food classics like a hearty grass-fed beef burger with beer-braised onions.
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Bar Hygge
1720 Fairmount Ave
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To score a house-made, hyper-local brew, look no further than Bar Hygge. The brewpub offers a selection of nine different drafts along with shareable boards of veggies, cheese and meat and bar-food classics like a hearty grass-fed beef burger with beer-braised onions.
Parks & Nature
Fairmount Park Horticulture Center
100 North Horticultural Drive
Outdoor oasis on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway This landscaped public space stars a Children’s Discovery Garden, a boat pond, the Logan Square Café, an eco-smart branch of the Independence Visitor Center, a pint-sized hill that evokes the Wissahickon Valley and a programmed fountain that pays tribute to Philadelphia’s 11 sister cities. Sister Cities Park is also home to the AMOR sculpture, the sister sculpture to the famous LOVE Statue.
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Sister Cities Park
210 North 18th Street
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Outdoor oasis on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway This landscaped public space stars a Children’s Discovery Garden, a boat pond, the Logan Square Café, an eco-smart branch of the Independence Visitor Center, a pint-sized hill that evokes the Wissahickon Valley and a programmed fountain that pays tribute to Philadelphia’s 11 sister cities. Sister Cities Park is also home to the AMOR sculpture, the sister sculpture to the famous LOVE Statue.
Home of Robert Indiana's famous LOVE sculpture LOVE Park recently added more green space, a modern visitor center, a new water feature, concession areas and a spruced-up LOVE sculpture. Although its official name is John F. Kennedy Plaza, locals and visitors know it as LOVE Park thanks to its centerpiece sculpture by Robert Indiana. It’s a popular spot for food trucks, photo-ops, entertainment or just relaxing by the fountain.
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Love Park
Arch Street
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Home of Robert Indiana's famous LOVE sculpture LOVE Park recently added more green space, a modern visitor center, a new water feature, concession areas and a spruced-up LOVE sculpture. Although its official name is John F. Kennedy Plaza, locals and visitors know it as LOVE Park thanks to its centerpiece sculpture by Robert Indiana. It’s a popular spot for food trucks, photo-ops, entertainment or just relaxing by the fountain.
One of the city’s most popular green public spaces At the foot of Philadelphia’s City Hall, the Dilworth Park plaza welcomes pedestrians, commuters and visitors with tree groves, benches, a cafe and areas for outdoor events and performances. A large programmable fountain offers children a place to romp and splash in warm weather. During the winter, an ice rink brings skaters to the park.
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Dilworth Park
1 South 15th Street
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One of the city’s most popular green public spaces At the foot of Philadelphia’s City Hall, the Dilworth Park plaza welcomes pedestrians, commuters and visitors with tree groves, benches, a cafe and areas for outdoor events and performances. A large programmable fountain offers children a place to romp and splash in warm weather. During the winter, an ice rink brings skaters to the park.
Arts & Culture
One of the largest art museums in the U.S., the Philadelphia Museum of Art rises majestically at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and houses vast collections, including Renaissance, American and impressionist art. A one-acre Sculpture Garden extends the galleries to the outdoors. Across the street, find the 1927 art deco-designed Perelman Building, which showcases selections from the museum’s costume and textile collection as well as modern and contemporary design and photographs.
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Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
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One of the largest art museums in the U.S., the Philadelphia Museum of Art rises majestically at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and houses vast collections, including Renaissance, American and impressionist art. A one-acre Sculpture Garden extends the galleries to the outdoors. Across the street, find the 1927 art deco-designed Perelman Building, which showcases selections from the museum’s costume and textile collection as well as modern and contemporary design and photographs.
Some of Philadelphia’s most iconic statues and sculptures line the Benjamin Franklin Parkway alongside unsung and gorgeous works of public art. From the bronze Aero Memorial glistening just outside of The Franklin Institute to the Civil War Soldiers and Sailors Memorial on Logan Square to Deinonychus, a reconstruction of a 100-million-year-old dinosaur, free art opportunities await for all to explore. For a self-guided tour, check out the Association of Public Art’s guide to the Parkway.
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Benjamin Franklin Parkway
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Some of Philadelphia’s most iconic statues and sculptures line the Benjamin Franklin Parkway alongside unsung and gorgeous works of public art. From the bronze Aero Memorial glistening just outside of The Franklin Institute to the Civil War Soldiers and Sailors Memorial on Logan Square to Deinonychus, a reconstruction of a 100-million-year-old dinosaur, free art opportunities await for all to explore. For a self-guided tour, check out the Association of Public Art’s guide to the Parkway.
The Rodin Museum houses one of the largest public collections of works by master sculptor Auguste Rodin outside of Paris and greets visitors with bronze casts of The Thinker and The Gates of Hell. The gallery collection includes a stunning marble copy of The Kiss, while the garden features the cast of The Burghers of Calais.
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Rodin Museum
2151 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
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The Rodin Museum houses one of the largest public collections of works by master sculptor Auguste Rodin outside of Paris and greets visitors with bronze casts of The Thinker and The Gates of Hell. The gallery collection includes a stunning marble copy of The Kiss, while the garden features the cast of The Burghers of Calais.
One of the world’s foremost collections of French impressionist and post-impressionist paintings The Barnes Foundation is home to one of the world’s most impressive and important collections of African sculpture, impressionist, post-impressionist and early modern paintings (including 181 Renoirs, 69 Cézannes, 59 Matisses, 46 Picassos and seven Van Goghs), all displayed as the late collector intended. The gallery space is part of a 93,000-square-foot building, which also includes a changing exhibition gallery, conservation lab, auditorium, library, cafe and gift shop.
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Barnes Foundation
2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
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One of the world’s foremost collections of French impressionist and post-impressionist paintings The Barnes Foundation is home to one of the world’s most impressive and important collections of African sculpture, impressionist, post-impressionist and early modern paintings (including 181 Renoirs, 69 Cézannes, 59 Matisses, 46 Picassos and seven Van Goghs), all displayed as the late collector intended. The gallery space is part of a 93,000-square-foot building, which also includes a changing exhibition gallery, conservation lab, auditorium, library, cafe and gift shop.
One of the oldest and most beloved science museums in the country The Franklin Institute is dedicated to creating a passion for science by offering access to hands-on learning through blockbuster exhibitions, engaging theatrical experiences, compelling permanent exhibits and widely respected community outreach. In the entrance lobby, a massive memorial dedicated to Philly’s favorite Founding Father (Benjamin Franklin) welcomes curious visitors.
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The Franklin Institute
222 North 20th Street
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One of the oldest and most beloved science museums in the country The Franklin Institute is dedicated to creating a passion for science by offering access to hands-on learning through blockbuster exhibitions, engaging theatrical experiences, compelling permanent exhibits and widely respected community outreach. In the entrance lobby, a massive memorial dedicated to Philly’s favorite Founding Father (Benjamin Franklin) welcomes curious visitors.
A gorgeous Beaux-Arts building serves as the heart of the Free Library of Philadelphia system, which includes more than 50 libraries throughout the area. The Parkway Central Library invites book lovers to check out its massive collection, explore its notable rare book department, sit in on author readings and lectures, enjoy special exhibitions and events and celebrate the glory that is free literature.
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Free Library of Philadelphia
1901 Vine Street
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A gorgeous Beaux-Arts building serves as the heart of the Free Library of Philadelphia system, which includes more than 50 libraries throughout the area. The Parkway Central Library invites book lovers to check out its massive collection, explore its notable rare book department, sit in on author readings and lectures, enjoy special exhibitions and events and celebrate the glory that is free literature.
One of the world’s foremost natural history museums As the oldest natural history museum in the Americas, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University invites people of all ages to experience natural science in a fun and engaging way. Visitors can stroll through a tropical butterfly garden, touch live animals, get face-to-face with a towering T. rex, dig for fossils, explore dioramas and even meet scientists.
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The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
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One of the world’s foremost natural history museums As the oldest natural history museum in the Americas, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University invites people of all ages to experience natural science in a fun and engaging way. Visitors can stroll through a tropical butterfly garden, touch live animals, get face-to-face with a towering T. rex, dig for fossils, explore dioramas and even meet scientists.
The first and only women’s college of art and design in the nation Founded in 1848, Moore College of Art and Design is the first and only women’s visual arts college for undergraduates in the country, and it offers programs for both men and women through its graduate studies, continuing education and workshops. Art appreciators can browse The Galleries at Moore, where admission is free, to see works by established and emerging artists and designers, and then visit The Art Shop to take home original artwork by Moore students and alumni.
Moore College of Art & Design
1916 Race St
The first and only women’s college of art and design in the nation Founded in 1848, Moore College of Art and Design is the first and only women’s visual arts college for undergraduates in the country, and it offers programs for both men and women through its graduate studies, continuing education and workshops. Art appreciators can browse The Galleries at Moore, where admission is free, to see works by established and emerging artists and designers, and then visit The Art Shop to take home original artwork by Moore students and alumni.
Sightseeing
Seventy-two steps lead art aficionados, exercise enthusiasts and millions of film buffs up to the East Entrance of the esteemed Philadelphia Museum of Art by way of what’s been coined the Rocky Steps. Meanwhile, just down below, the Rocky Statue, originally commissioned for Rocky III, draws lines of visitors seeking photographs alongside the larger-than-life interpretation of the triumphant fictional boxer for which it’s named.
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Rocky Steps
2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
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Seventy-two steps lead art aficionados, exercise enthusiasts and millions of film buffs up to the East Entrance of the esteemed Philadelphia Museum of Art by way of what’s been coined the Rocky Steps. Meanwhile, just down below, the Rocky Statue, originally commissioned for Rocky III, draws lines of visitors seeking photographs alongside the larger-than-life interpretation of the triumphant fictional boxer for which it’s named.
This National Historic Landmark was constructed in the early 1800s and provided safe, clean drinking water to a growing city. Now, Fairmount Water Works is dedicated to fostering stewardship of shared water resources by encouraging informed decisions about the use of land and water. Guests discover the past, present and future of water through interactive exhibitions, hands-on programs and guided tours.
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Fairmount Water Works
640 Waterworks Drive
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This National Historic Landmark was constructed in the early 1800s and provided safe, clean drinking water to a growing city. Now, Fairmount Water Works is dedicated to fostering stewardship of shared water resources by encouraging informed decisions about the use of land and water. Guests discover the past, present and future of water through interactive exhibitions, hands-on programs and guided tours.
One of William Penn's original five public squares This park gives the neighborhood its name, and for good reason. One of city founder William Penn’s original five squares, the park contains one of the most striking features of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway — the Swann Memorial Fountain, where large Native American figures symbolize the area’s major local waterways: the Delaware River (a man), the Schuylkill River (a woman) and Wissahickon Creek (a girl). On sunny afternoons, find groups of visitors admiring the sculptures and the fountain’s 50-foot geyser from the benches scattered around it.
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Logan Square
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One of William Penn's original five public squares This park gives the neighborhood its name, and for good reason. One of city founder William Penn’s original five squares, the park contains one of the most striking features of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway — the Swann Memorial Fountain, where large Native American figures symbolize the area’s major local waterways: the Delaware River (a man), the Schuylkill River (a woman) and Wissahickon Creek (a girl). On sunny afternoons, find groups of visitors admiring the sculptures and the fountain’s 50-foot geyser from the benches scattered around it.
The largest Catholic church in Pennsylvania The largest brownstone Catholic church in Pennsylvania, the Cathedral Basilicawas modeled after the Lombard Church of Saint Charles (San Carlo al Corso) in Rome and built in the Roman-Corinthian architectural style. Inside, visitors stand in awe of various shrines, altars, statues and paintings by Constantino Brumidi, famed painter of the U.S. Capitol in Washington DC.
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Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
1723 Race St
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The largest Catholic church in Pennsylvania The largest brownstone Catholic church in Pennsylvania, the Cathedral Basilicawas modeled after the Lombard Church of Saint Charles (San Carlo al Corso) in Rome and built in the Roman-Corinthian architectural style. Inside, visitors stand in awe of various shrines, altars, statues and paintings by Constantino Brumidi, famed painter of the U.S. Capitol in Washington DC.