Suggestions for Philadelphia

Old Oct 25th, 2016, 01:27 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,430
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Suggestions for Philadelphia

Last fall we took a trip to Philadelphia and saw most everything I thought there was to see. However, while I was following the GTG thread last spring I found many things that we missed. This fall (next week) I will be returning solo. I tried the search box but I cannot find the GTG thread. The only thing that comes up is from 2008.

Last fall we covered the historical district fairly well, visited the Eastern State Penitentiary, the art museum and the Franklin Institute. So far my itinerary includes:

City Hall
Arch St United Methodist Church
Reading Terminal Market
A cultural tour of South Philly, includes the Magic Gardens Mosaic Gallery
Philadelphia History Museum

I have almost a whole day to fill. Suggestions? I have to say that I am probably one of only a few that really does not enjoy art museums. The Rodin and the Barnes is beautiful from the outside but that does it for me.

Any suggestions for casual, mid priced restaurants would be nice. It doesn't have to have a famous chef or be the latest trend. Entrees up to $25 for dinner. Asian is about the only cuisine that I do not care for.

Last fall we ate at:

McGillin's Old Ale House
Georgio's on Pine

Thank you. I am looking forward to seeing the city in a different light. I was with Mr. Negativity last time.
gardendiva is online now  
Old Oct 25th, 2016, 01:35 PM
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 5,234
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Have you been to the Mutter Museum? Medical abnormalities, historic surgery, etc.
marvelousmouse is offline  
Old Oct 25th, 2016, 01:48 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,430
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
No I have not. That was on my list until the website creeped me out.

I have Ralph's on my list of restaurants. Good choice or not?
gardendiva is online now  
Old Oct 25th, 2016, 02:30 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,315
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I maintain a list, for visitors to our city, of things I recommend seeing. Among the things I recommend, that you don't list as having visited:

Constitution Center (not sure if this was included in your visit to the history area)
Mummer Museum, in South Philly
University of Pennsylvania Museum of Anthropology
Rittenhouse Square
Edgar Allen Poe National Historic Site (ONLY if you're a fan of Poe's writings)
PaulRabe is offline  
Old Oct 25th, 2016, 03:10 PM
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 5,234
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You should definitely go to the Mutter. I think they post the most disturbing stuff to lure people in. I expected it to be on the sensational side.But it's impressively respectful and scholarly. You can pass over any of the exhibits that give you the heebiejeebies (specimen jars, or fetuses, for example, are not my thing). There was a fascinating exhibit on civil war medicine when I was there and they have historic anatomy texts and medical equipment on display. It's a fairly small museum that has so much stuff that you only end up seeing what you want anyway (I was there for much longer than I expected).

I think what is most interesting (especially if you've never gotten to handle real human bones or dissect a large animal) is seeing the sheer amount of detail in our anatomy that text book illustrations (or models) leave out. I'm not going to be a doctor, and it's very unlikely I'll ever take a cadaver class, but seeing that sort of thing at the Mutter gave me a really cool look into anatomists and surgeons over the centuries. Right, sorry to go on, but it was fascinating. Go!
marvelousmouse is offline  
Old Oct 25th, 2016, 03:18 PM
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 5,234
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
also went back to look at my trip report from this spring. I don't know if it's to your taste or in budget, but my favorite meal from Philadelphia was Talula's Garden. Just excellent all around!
marvelousmouse is offline  
Old Oct 25th, 2016, 03:31 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,822
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I really like the National Museum of American Jewish History, which is near Independence Hall. I love the Philadelphia History Museum at Atwater Kent; it's small and eclectic but I really enjoy it, so I think that's a good choice.

Walking in the area of the Waterworks and Boathouse Row is very nice, and if you didn't get to Elfreth's Alley and Christ Church before that's also good. There are a number of architectural walking tours, and just walking around the area of Rittenhouse Square and/or Washington Square and the like is nice. Duross and Langel is a soap and such purveyor at 117 S. 13th Street; they've got Philadelphia neighborhood candles, and there are other interesting and eclectic shops there.

The Dream Garden Mosaic in the Curtis building doesn't take long, but it's very beautiful.

Bartram's Garden is a bit out of the way, but most interesting.

I agree, too, with the University Museum as Paul suggested, if you are interested in early civilizations. It's a beautiful building.

You can catch a peek at some parts of the city I've mentioned in my blog (a tumblr, so I don't get anything from it, just as a disclaimer) called "Loving Philadelphia":
Amy is offline  
Old Oct 26th, 2016, 04:28 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 12,977
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Here is the link to the Philadelphia GTG thread from last spring.
schmerl is offline  
Old Oct 26th, 2016, 05:32 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 11,486
Received 7 Likes on 3 Posts
Where are you staying? It's much easier to recommend restaurants by neighborhood. Ralph's is a red gravy spot in South Philly. It's classic ( boring, depending on your perspective) Italian. If you're going that far, I would go to someplace on E. Passyunk instead such as Birra or Tre Scalini.

If you're interested in the performing arts, I believe the Kimmel has a tour. When you cross the river to go to the UPenn museum, you can walk further west and wander down Locust Walk through the UPenn campus. On your way back, stop in 30th St Station, a classic huge train station.

Chinatown is also fun. I always buy buns at the Mayflower Bakery on Race.

Enjoy! Every time I visit that city, I find something new.
Birdie is offline  
Old Oct 26th, 2016, 06:31 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,430
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you for all the suggestions.

marvelousmouse - you may have convinced me to go to the Mutter. It sounded interesting but the jars of stuff creeped me out.

I am staying at the Alexander Inn at 12th & Spruce but will be out most of the day. When I travel solo, I usually leave the hotel in the morning and return after dinner.

Looks like I have more research to do.
gardendiva is online now  
Old Oct 26th, 2016, 08:02 AM
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 19,737
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
For a restaurant, if you're staying at 12th and Spruce, walk over to 13th, then head a few blocks south to Amis. We like it a lot. Informal, moderate prices, innovative menu. It's owned by Marc Vetri, who runs some upscale, very expensive restaurants in town.

Farther south on 13th (you'll probably need a taxi) is the Victor Cafe, which is a fun night out. In truth, the food is OK, not great, but the waiters and waitresses sing opera, and it's a good time.
vincenzo32951 is offline  
Old Oct 26th, 2016, 07:34 PM
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 670
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts the official Philadelphia tourist site lists all of the various fall festivals. There may be something of interest on when you are visiting.
maxima is offline  
Old Oct 27th, 2016, 02:04 PM
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,829
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Reading Terminal Market has plenty of decent options (roast pork sandwich with greens at DiNic's being an especially good choice). Jim's on South St. is an excellent choice for cheesesteaks (despite their fame, Pat's and Geno's are not). Sang Kee Peking Duck House (Chinese) and Rangoon (Burmese) are two good choices in Chinatown. Good ice cream places include Franklin Fountain and Bassett's (the latter in Reading Terminal Market).
bachslunch is offline  
Old Oct 30th, 2016, 02:14 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 756
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
One of the sites I really liked on a trip last month were the Magic Gardens. They're a bit out of the way, but really interesting. I can also say to definitely not go on the Cupcake and Macaron tour by Best Tours!
MP07950 is offline  
Related Topics
Original Poster
Last Post
Dec 7th, 2014 03:50 AM
United States
Aug 14th, 2010 03:22 PM
United States
May 2nd, 2007 08:09 AM
United States
Dec 6th, 2004 04:04 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -