Philadelphia is a historic and charming city to visit, with kids or without! If you find yourself there with your family, here are ten of my favorite places to go with kids. Fun for all, practically guaranteed…
1. Learn about the history of our country and see the Liberty Bell in person. The Liberty Bell Center is located on Market Street between 5th and 6th Streets. The building is open year round, though hours vary by season. Tickets are not required and this one is free, too!
2. Kids Castle is an eight story wooden playground located in Doylestown, PA. It’s 35 feet high with a huge twisty slide, a friendly dragon, a tree house, a barn yard, a rocket ship, a downtown promenade for toddlers, lots of slides and swings and a children’s amphitheater. The best part? It’s all FREE! There’s nothing else quite like it.
3. The National Museum of American Jewish History is dedicated to preserving and interpreting the American Jewish experience. All children under 13 must have an adult chaperone and tickets have to be purchased in advance. (They are flexible and will admit you if you are late for your scheduled time, though!)
4. Smith Memorial Playground & Playhouse offers a free, safe place to play for children 10 and younger. Located in East Fairmount Park it includes 6 1/2 acre Playground includes the Ann Newman Giant Wooden Slide and more than 50 pieces of unique, age-appropriate and accessible pieces of play equipment. The 24,000 square foot Playhouse, designed for children 5 and younger, gives them a chance to “drive” the train, “cook” in the kitchen, ride tricycles in Smithville and much, much more.
5. Located in the Wynnefield section of Philadelphia, the Please Touch Museum is the country’s first museum designed for children ages seven and younger. The museum contains nine interactive exhibits for children to enjoy and there is also the Playhouse Theater the whole family can take part in. Non-member tickets for anyone over the age of one are $16/person so you definitely want to get there early to get in a full day of fun..
6. The Philadelphia Zoo is America’s first zoo. It has 42 acres of Victorian gardens that are home to more than 1,300 animals including many rare and endangered. There are fun other extras, too, like the Carousel, the Zooballoon rides and the Express train. A must visit with kids!
7. Sesame Place is located just outside of Philadelphia in Langhorne, PA and is a great family theme park that brings Sesame Street to life for little ones. They have great summer and holiday specific events, so check the site before you plan a visit.
8. If you decide to wander the city, you must visit the Comcast Center located at the northwest corner of 17th and Arch streets (also accessible from Septa’s Suburban Station.) The Comcast Experience Video Wall is the largest four-millimeter LED screen in the world. It usually starts every hour and lasts about 15-20 minutes. The shows vary depending on the holiday or season, but are always worth a visit.
9. “Best of Philly” awarded Trolley Car the Best Kid-friendly dining in 2009. The Rock-and-Roll-inspired diner serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Trolley Car ice cream shop operates out of an iconic 1948 PCC trolley car and offers an exhaustive list of ice cream, water ice, sundaes and shakes. YUM!
10. Reading Terminal Market is an enclosed public market at 12th and Arch streets in downtown Philadelphia. There are hundreds of stores and eateries offering local produce, delicious homemade food and homemade goods, open daily. (The Pennsylvania Dutch shops are closed Sunday through Tuesday.) Make sure to keep an eye on your kids because it can sometimes get crowded and bathroom lines can get long. Tip: Sweet as Fudge Candy Shoppe makes the most delish homemade fudge and they have candy both kids and adults will love!
Got some Philadelphia tips of your own? Leave them in the comments!