First time in Philadelphia


Apr 17th, 1999, 08:10 PM
C. Hinkle
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First time in Philadelphia

My wife and I are traveling to Philly soon for the first time. We're staying in the Brooklawn, NJ area. Is this area safe and easy to travel in? Also, since we are renting a car, where would be a good place to park to see the Liberty Bell, etc. since we can walk most everywhere in that area? Also, is the art museum in walking distance from Liberty Park? Is driving through town on to Valley Forge difficult?

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Apr 21st, 1999, 07:51 AM
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Are you staying at a hotel in Brooklawn? or with family... Anyway, if you are coming to this area just to visit Philadelphia, you should really try and stay in the city, you won't need a rent-a-car because you can walk anywhere.
I can't vouch for Brooklawn's safety, don't know much about it. I live in the Old City section of Philadelphia (near Betsy Ross' House) and I think Philly is pretty safe, but like anywhere, use common sense. The heart of the city (Center City) lies between the rivers (Front to 34th) and Vine Street to the North and South Street (to the south). Coming from NJ, you should take the Ben Franklin Bridge ($2 one way) and follow the signs for the historic district (6th St South). It's hard to find street parking, so a good centrally located parking garage is located in the Omni Hotel at 4th and Chestnut (6th St. south, left on market to rt. on 4th, 1/2 block on rt). The Parking authority also has underground parking on 6th street between Arch and Market (there's construction going on, so I'm not positive on the availability). It's not going to be cheap anywhere ($12+) for a full day.
If you have really comfortable shoes and a lot of stamina, you can do the Rocky thing and walk to the art museum (it's about 2.5 miles from Old City). If not, look for the Philly Flash (purple) bus service that does a circle around the city and will take you to the Art Museum Area (check out the Rodin museum while you're up there) as well as boat house row behind the museum.

I guess you guys like the history stuff (we tend to take it for granted)... from the historic area to Valley forge, go a few blocks north and pick up the Vine Street Expressway (676W) that merges with 76 (the dreaded Schulykill Expressway) which will take you out to Valley Forge... from the art museum area, you can hop on the expressway just over the spring garden street bridge.

I really love living in Philadelphia, so let me know if you have any questions about the sites, eats, etc. I'm not sure about your interests (or ages) so I'm hesitant to make any more suggestions.

Check out,, for local interests.
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Apr 28th, 1999, 12:11 PM
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There is parking around Independence Square to see the liberty bell, but will be your best bet since it's the easier than trying to park on the street if you don't know where to drive. If you park there for the day, you can go see a ton of things including, Independence Hall, South Street, Headhouse Square, Penn's Landing and eat lunch at one of the great restaurants around 2,3 and 4th streets at Market, Walnut and Chestnut (This is Society Hill area of Philly). You will have to drive to the Art Museum, but it is worth the trip. It's on the Ben Franklin Parkway where there are several other nice museums. If you like funky, eclectic shopping you will really like Main Street in Manayunk, or even Chestnut Hill. Great restaurants as well. To get to Valley Forge, it's very simple. A good map will point you in the right direction. Enjoy, I love Philly!!
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Apr 28th, 1999, 12:47 PM
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I've lived in Philly all of my life and it is a great, fun city. If you MUST stay in NJ, and you are only planning day trips into Philly, NJ Transit has a great 24 hour train that comes into the city. You can leave you car at the station in NJ and travel around the city at your liesure w/o worrying about parking. Email me if you need more info. Enjoy!
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