When Aaron and I set off on our 17 day European Adventure a few summers ago, our first stop was actually the great U.S. city of Philadelphia. Thanks to a six-hour layover en route to Dublin, we had the entire day to explore Philadelphia. Here are some tips on what to see, where to eat, and how to get around Philadelphia during a short visit.
What to See
|Image via Unsplash by Khurt Williams|
Just a few blocks from Philadelphia's historical landmarks, you'll find Old City. This area is right along the Delaware River, and it's an excellent place to stay during your visit. You'll find plenty of affordable IHG hotels near Penn's Landing and Old City, all within walking distance of numerous old churches and historic buildings.
The Liberty Bell
Located in the Independence National Historic Park, the iconic Liberty Bell is a stop that you simply can't miss. After going through the security checkpoint, you can walk through the exhibit for free and snap a photo with one of the most famous bells you've ever seen.
After seeing the Liberty Bell, you've got to head over to visit Independence Hall. This is the site where both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S Constitution were signed. You can visit only on a tour, and timed entry tickets are required March through December. Plan ahead by getting your tickets online in advance.
Reading Terminal Market
If you're a fan of farmers markets or just local products in general, then be sure to stop by the Reading Terminal Market. Located on North 12th Street, this market is just to the west of Old City. Reading Terminal Market has been going strong since 1893. It also houses a variety of restaurants that you can try.
What to Eat
You can't visit Philadelphia without eating a famous cheesesteak! Although tourists will swear by either Pat's or Geno's, many locals recommend Campo's Deli instead. The cheesesteak here doesn't disappoint. As an added bonus, the deli is located in the Old City on the easy-to-find Market Street.
Vacation is a great time to indulge your sweet tooth. A few of our recommendations include stopping by Beiler's Bakery in Reading Terminal Market and grabbing ice cream from Bassett's.
How to Get Around
When you fly into the Philadelphia International Airport, you'll be within walking distance of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, or SEPTA. Trains run into the city center every 30 minutes, and a day pass only costs you $12 for an individual or $29 for a family. We bought one-day passes and headed into the city in no time!
All in all, Philadelphia is a fun city with plenty to explore. It's a great stop on any East Coast trip. Although you could spend more than one day there if you wanted, you'll definitely be able to hit all of the highlights in a day if you plan your time wisely. Happy travels!