Home > Travel Ideas > Philadelphia > Top 10 Attractions in Philadelphia
Top 10 Attractions in Philadelphia
By: Danielle Max | Feb 21 2017
Philadelphia is a history buff’s dream, but that doesn’t mean the attractions are stuck in the past. Explore your inner child, unleash your inner art critic or even your inner Sylvester Stallone as you explore the City of Brotherly Love.

This indoor foodie paradise is a one-stop shop for everything from local produce and meats to artisanal cheeses and desserts. The public space also provides open seating where customers can enjoy meals from more than 30 restaurants. While the market is open seven days a week, the Amish vendors, a huge draw for visitors and locals, sell their goods Tuesday through Saturday. | Photo by R. Kennedy for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

1. Independence National Historical Park
6th and Market Streets (Independence Visitor Center), Philadelphia, PA 19106
1. Independence National Historical Park
6th and Market Streets (Independence Visitor Center), Philadelphia, PA 19106
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


A centerpiece of Independence National Historical Park in Historic Philadelphia is Independence Hall. Built in 1753 to house the Colonial legislature, the building gained renown for being the site of the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the adoption of the U.S. Constitution. | Photo by J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Any visit to Philadelphia has to begin where it all began. Independence National Historical Park encompasses a number of sites, but topping most to-do lists are the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, the very site where the Founding Fathers came together to sign the Declaration of Independence.

The Liberty Bell Center is wheelchair accessible. Accessible restrooms are available in the nearby Independence Visitor Center.

The video presentation is open captioned and audio described. Assistive listening devices are also available.

Visitors are encouraged to touch the replica of the Liberty Bell's inscription in the exhibit area.

The East Wing orientation room and the first floor of Independence Hall are wheelchair-accessible. Guests can see a photo album of images of the upper floor, which is not accessible.

The “Birthplace of a Nation” pamphlet provides written information about the rooms on the tour. Free American Sign Language interpretation is available upon request. Call 215-597-7130 at least two weeks in advance.

Click here to find out more.

Top Tip: Free tickets for Independence Hall are available for same-day distribution from the Independence Visitor Center, however, tours can sell out before noon so either get in line early, or reserve your tickets in advance (handling fee applies).

Parking: Paid parking is available at the Independence Visitor Center underground garage.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #21 (seasonal). Market-Frankford Subway line to 5th and Market Street Station (1-minute walk). 

2. National Constitution Center
Independence Mall, 525 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19106
2. National Constitution Center
Independence Mall, 525 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19106
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


The world’s only museum dedicated to the U.S. Constitution, the National Constitution Center puts into historical context the most famous four pages ever written through high-tech exhibitions, artifacts and interactive displays. A live narrator narrates the multimedia Freedom Rising show, a moving presentation of the nation’s story. | Photo by G. Widman for Visit Philadelphia

It might sound a little on the studious side, but the National Constitution Center is working hard to increase awareness and understanding of the US Constitution and serves as an interactive museum, national town hall and civic education headquarters.

Entrance to the center includes “Freedom Rising,” a multimedia theatrical performance, a dynamic interactive exhibit “The Story of We the People” admission to the iconic Signers’ Hall, where you can sign the Constitution alongside 42 life-size, bronze statues of the Founding Fathers, and a whole lot more.

The National Constitution Center is wheelchair accessible. Wheelchairs are available free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis at the Information Desk.

Assistive listening systems are available for the National Constitution Center’s Town Hall programs on a first come, first served basis. Opened captioning or printed scripts are provided for most videos, audio soundtracks, and interactive displays.

The Center provides sign language interpretation free of charge for museum and Town Hall programs.

Large print scripts are available for “Freedom Rising” and “Living News” performances.

Large print versions of the Constitution and a braille copy of the Constitution are also available at the Box Office.

Print materials can also be provided in advance to interpreters accompanying individuals or groups. Arrangements must be made at least two weeks in advance. Call 215-409-6700.

Click here for to find out more.

Parking: Designated spaces are available in the National Constitution Center parking garage located on Race Street between 5th and 6th Streets. Fees apply.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #21. Market-Frankford Line Subway to 5th Street Station (5-minute walk) or bus #38, #44 or #48.

Top Tip: Don’t miss “Freedom Rising,” a 17-minute, multi-media performance that runs every 30 minutes until an hour before the Center closes.  

3. Reading Terminal Market
51 N 12th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
3. Reading Terminal Market
51 N 12th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


Established in 1893, the Reading Terminal Market houses 80 vendors. Visitors enjoy virtually every type of cuisine, from soul food to Asian and Middle Eastern dishes to traditional Pennsylvania Dutch fare. | Photo by K. Rankin for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Philadelphia’s Reading Terminal Market has been feeding the city since 1892. The market’s founding fathers probably wouldn’t recognize the wide range of goods on offer today. Taste your way through more than 100 outlets including bakeries, seafood, specialty food and a number of Pennsylvania Dutch vendors selling authentic and perhaps some less authentic foods. The market also has a long list of restaurants to choose from, serving everything from Cajun to deli and grilled cheese to oysters.

Parking: Paid parking is available at 11th & Arch Streets (Expert Parking) and

12th & Filbert Streets (Parkway Garage).

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #4 & #20 (in season). Market/Frankford Line to 11th Street Station (2-minute walk) or Broad Street Line to City Hall (7-minute walk).

Top Tip: Come hungry! Don’t visit on a Sunday if you want to experience authentic Pennsylvania Dutch food as these stores will be closed. In addition, the market can be very crowded at the weekends – and at lunchtime during the week - making wheelchair maneuverability more difficult, but not impossible.  

4. Please Touch Museum
Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia, PA 19131
4. Please Touch Museum
Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia, PA 19131
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


Please Touch Museum, perfect for ages seven and younger, embraces the power of play in learning. Its two floors of exhibit space features interactive zones such as River Adventures, where children explore science, nature and weather as they race sailboats in water currents, play with bubbles and rainbows and discover animals nestled in the grass and lily ponds. | Photo by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia

There’s nothing more maddening for kids than being told they should look with their eyes, not with their hands, which is why the Please Touch Museum is a kid’s (and grown up kid’s) dream. The museum is focused on children younger than seven and is filled with items that little explorers can feel, play and interact with, including the Woodside Park carousel, which dates back to 1908.

The entire museum, including the café, restrooms, water fountains and carousel, is wheelchair accessible. Adult wheelchairs can be borrowed from the admissions desk.

The museum has a Play without Boundaries program that provides families of children with disabilities with innovative tools to make their museum visit more enjoyable. In addition, team members have undergone specialized accessibility and inclusion training.

Click here to find out more.

Parking: Accessible parking spaces are available in the visitor’s parking lot.

Public Transportation: Philly PHLASH stop #13. Bus #38 to Memorial Hall.

Top Tip: Sit back, relax and let your kids dictate the visit – watch as they follow their natural curiosity and lead you on their own tour. There is no “right” way to visit this museum, so see where their imagination takes you. 

5. Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130
5. Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


The Philadelphia Museum of Art rises majestically at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Constructed of Minnesota Dolomite and completed in 1928, the museum covers 10 acres and houses more than 300,000 works spanning 2,000 years. | Photo by G. Widman for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

You don’t have to be an art lover to enjoy the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Housing one of the world’s largest art collections, the museum’s inventory includes works by Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Jasper Johns. Don’t forget to have your picture taken at the top of the famous “Rocky Steps,” which feature in the “Rocky” movies. 

The museum is wheelchair accessible. Complimentary wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Adjustable height canes with rubber tips are also available. Accessible drinking fountains are located on the ground and first floors.

Large-print, braille and raised line maps are available at information desks. Other braille and large-print materials are available or may be ordered with at least three-weeks’ notice.

There are free audio tours and ASL interpreters are available free of charge. The museum offers FM assistive listening devices, including induction (neck) loops, for guided tours. Neck loops and print scripts are also available for audio tours. Closed captioning is available on all museum-produced videos.

The museum aims to make art accessible to all visitors and offers specially adapted tours. These themed tours can focus on any aspect of the collections and exhibitions and include sign language interpreted tours and touch tours, which allows visitors who are blind or visually impaired to experience select three-dimensional works of art in the museum through touch.

Click here to find out more.

Parking: The West Entrance on Anne d’Harnoncourt Drive is barrier free. Limited accessible parking is located adjacent to this entrance. Accessible parking spaces are also available in the parking garage, which is across the street from the West Entrance.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #11. Bus #38 to Anne d’Harnoncourt Drive stops in front of the West Entrance.

Top Tip: Don’t try to do too much in one day. A museum ticket entitles you to visit the museum on two consecutive days, so take your time admiring the more than 227,000 objects on show. 

6. The Philadelphia Zoo
3400 W Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19104
6. The Philadelphia Zoo
3400 W Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19104
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


The new Big Cat Crossing at the Philadelphia Zoo enables visitors to view lions, tigers, jaguars and other animals as they roam overhead throughout sections of the nation’s first zoo. The trail is part of a three-tiered animal trail and exploration system that is the first campus-wide animal travel system of its kind in the world. | Photo by J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Even a trip to the zoo is a visit through history in Philadelphia. The attraction opened in 1874 and has grown to house more than 1,300 animals set in 42 acres. If the animals aren’t enough to keep you occupied, there’s a range of other activities to pass the time, including the wheelchair-accessible 6abc ZooBalloon that takes guests 400 feet in the air to get a bird’s-eye view of the zoo, an accessible train and draft horse rides.

All indoor animal exhibits are wheelchair accessible. Wheelchairs and electric scooters are available to rent on a first-come first-served basis.

ASL-certified zoo staff are available upon request. To arrange a customized education program, email the Zoo’s Education Department.

Service animals are allowed in the zoo. However, due to free-ranging animals, a Zoo escort is required in the McNeil Avian Center and the Barnyard Area of KidZOOU.

Click here to find out more.

Parking: Accessible parking is available in Tiger Lot and the Parking Garage.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #12 and #14. Bus #38 to Mantua Av & 34th Street (11-minute walk).

Top Tip: There’s a lot to see, so use the zoo’s interactive planner to get the most out of your visit. 

7. The Franklin Institute
222 N 20th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103
7. The Franklin Institute
222 N 20th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


In June 2014, The Franklin Institute opened the doors to its 53,000-square-foot Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion. The centerpiece of the dazzling three-story addition is the 8,500-square-foot exhibit Your Brain, featuring an unprecedented collection of interactive, high-tech exhibitions. | Photo by J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Named for the scientist and statesman Benjamin Franklin, the Franklin Institute is one of the oldest centers of science education and development in the United States,

Explore three floors of interactive exhibits including “The Giant Heart,” “Changing Earth,” “Sports Challenge,” and “Your Brain.”

Wheelchairs are available upon request at the Atrium Information desk or at the 20th Street Business desk. Wheelchair-accessible stalls are available in restrooms throughout the museum.

Sign Language Interpreters are available for museum workshops and theaters that are not captioned. Requests for an interpreter must be requested at least three weeks in advance, call 215-448-1226 voice/TTY.

Rear-Window Closed Captioning System is available for some shows in the Fels Planetarium. Assistive Listening Devices are available free of charge from the Atrium Information desk (photo ID needed).

Accessible entrances to The Franklin Institute are located at the 20th Street business entrance or via the parking garage elevators into the Bartol Atrium.

Click here to find out more.

Parking: Designated parking is available in The Franklin Institute garage for vehicles bearing parking placards or license plates are on a first-come, first-served basis. Van accessible parking for vehicles over 6 feet with valid parking placards or license plates can be arranged by calling the garage office at 215-448-1391 voice or 215-448-1226 Voice/TTY.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #16. Subway to Suburban Station (9-minute walk).

 

Top Tip: Avoid queuing at the box office and get the show times you want by buying tickets for special exhibits in advance and printing them at home. 

8. National Museum of American Jewish History
101 S Independence Mall E, Philadelphia, PA 19106
8. National Museum of American Jewish History
101 S Independence Mall E, Philadelphia, PA 19106
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


Visitors to Historic Philadelphia can’t help but notice the striking National Museum of American Jewish History, located right on Independence Mall just steps from the Liberty Bell. | Photo by G. Widman for Visit Philadelphia

Located right on Independence Mall, the National Museum of American Jewish History explores and celebrates the history of Jews in America. The core exhibit highlights the diverse backgrounds, expectations, and experiences of Jews who came to and made their homes in the United States and examines the ways in which they shaped and were shaped by America.

The main entrance on Market Street and all public areas within the museum are wheelchair accessible. A limited number of free wheelchairs are available at the Admissions Desk on a first-come, first-served basis.

All films and video clips in the exhibition galleries are captioned. Assistive listening devices can be requested for special programs.

All way-finding signage includes braille.

While most real artifacts are not touchable, there are several tactile elements within the exhibition such as costumes and props. There are also many narrated exhibit components that are triggered by proximity or touch.

Contact the museum a few weeks in advance to arrange interpreters or escorts.

Parking: There is no on-site parking.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #21. Market-Frankford Subway to 5th and Market Street Station (1-minute walk).

Top Tip: The museum offers free guided “Highlights” tours at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. The tours last for 60 minutes (availability is subject to change). Request tour badges from Admissions to reserve a spot. 

9. Valley Forge National Park
1400 N Outer Line Dr, King of Prussia, PA 19406
9. Valley Forge National Park
1400 N Outer Line Dr, King of Prussia, PA 19406
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


The National Memorial Arch at Valley Forge was constructed in 1914 to honor George Washington and his troops, who endured bitter winter months here during the American Revolution. | Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

Take a trip out of town and back in time to Valley Forge National Park, site of the 1777-78 winter encampment of the Continental Army, and learn all about the Revolutionary War generation. Take a free cell-phone tour of the park or opt for a 90-minute guided tour aboard an accessible trolley that follows the 10-mile Encampment Tour Route. 

The Visitor Center has a free wheelchair available on a first come, first served basis. The museum, gallery, exhibits, restrooms and store are all wheelchair accessible. Not all of the stops on the tour are wheelchair accessible. A picture book of the interior is available for guests who remain on the trolley at Washington's Headquarters.

All field restrooms throughout the park are wheelchair accessible. Accessible picnic tables are available at the Betzwood Picnic Area and at the Visitor Center.

The six-mile Joseph Plumb Martin Trail is paved, although there are several steep hills on this loop trail. The slopes and lack of handrails means that most, but not all, portions of the trail are accessible. The portion of the Schuylkill River Trail that runs through the park is paved and contains no steep areas. The River Trail (Betzwood Picnic Area to Pawlings Road) is surfaced with packed fine gravel and contains no steep areas.

Parking: On-site parking.

Public Transport: Bus #125 stops at the Valley Forge Visitor Center

Click here for more details.

Top Tip: Don't miss out on a visit to Washington Memorial Chapel, which sits in the heart of the park. Open daily from 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., the memorial was described by President Woodrow Wilson as "The Shrine of the American People." 

10. Eastern State Penitentiary
2027 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130
10. Eastern State Penitentiary
2027 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite

Be the first to review!

Your rating:

Add to favorite


Located in the Fairmount section of Philadelphia, Eastern State Penitentiary was one of the most famous prisons in the world, with a list of former inmates that includes bank robber “Slick Willie” Sutton and gangster Al Capone. | Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

They say if you do the crime, you gotta do the time, but a visit to the Eastern State Penitentiary (ESP) would be enough to put anyone off a life of crime for good! Former prisoners include Al Capone and bank robber Willie Sutton. Visitors receive an mp3 player and headset that guides them through the complex and explains the history of the prison. Just make sure to be on your best behavior…

Most of the building is wheelchair accessible (barring a small exhibit and the gift shop, which is only accessible by a set of three steps). The rest of the route through the 200-year-old building is via ramps.

The digital equipment used for “The Voices of Eastern State” audio tour includes special features for those with sight, hearing and mobility needs. Large print scripts of the audio tour are available free of charge in the Penitentiary Gift Shop.

Click here to find out more.

Parking: Paid parking available in the lot adjacent to the ESP.

Public Transport: Philly PHLASH stop #9. Bus #7 or #48 to 22nd and Fairmount Avenue (1-minute walk) #33 to 20th and Fairmount (3-minute walk).

Top Tip: The ESP is not recommended for children under seven. 

Get Your FREE

Accessible Travel Kit!

/comments/top_10_attractions_in_philadelphia
Loading...

u Collapse all

L

Accessible Trip Resources
I'm travelling to:
and I'd like to find:
Accessible Trip Resources
I'm travelling to:
and I'd like to find: