Philadelphia Tours Vary Widely in Scope, Depth, and Quality
Many Philadelphia tours - logically - begin at Independence Visitor Center, the new, state-of-the-art facility for visiting and enjoying the city - 6th and Market Streets, across the street from the Liberty Bell Center. To see it in an enlarged view, just click directly on the photo.
So which Philadelphia Tours are best for you? Come here to find the best one(s) for your visit to the city...
Eventually, we will have descriptions of self-guided tours that are designed for the length of your visit in mind. There will be tours designed for those who are in Philadelphia for a day, a weekend, a week, a month, a year, or a lifetime.
Philadelphia has a highly compact and walkable downtown, and so it is often best to see the city on foot. In addition,
laid out the city plan in the 1680s as a grid, with numbered streets running north and south and tree streets running east and west. (There are now some exceptions to the tree streets over the centuries, but the numbers still run north and south.)
Penn's main intention for this grid was to improve the navigation of the city, avoiding dead ends and making it a paragon of planning, compared to most European cities of his time.
Penn's intentions are still effective, over three centuries later, it makes the city very easy to navigate on foot, even if you have never been to Philadelphia before.
So please check back, as these customized self-guided city tours are created...
Added, Sunday, August 1, 2010...
Self-Guided Tours for Short Visits to Philadelphia
If you will only be in Philadelphia for a short time, you want to make the most of your visit. Here are customized, self-guided tours, designed for the short on time, first-time visitor to the city.
Philadelphia In Only One Day Tour
focuses on the major places to visit in
Old City Philadelphia
- this is designed for you to get to the must-see tourist attractions, if you've never been here before.
If you have the good fortune to have two days in Philadelphia, try our
Two Day Tour of Philadelphia
is the One Day Tour of Old City, with the second day consisting of the many museums and attractions on the
Benjamin Franklin Parkway
- located on the western side (i.e., the other side) of Broad Street.
Added Monday, July 26, 2010....
Should I Take a Guided Tour of Philadelphia? Some Recommendations
You may be wondering, "Should I take a guided tour of Philadelphia?" Here are some guidelines for making that decision...
Advantages of Guided Tours
Speed. If you will only be in Philadelphia for a few hours, or a day, and you'd like to see as much as possible, the guided tour will be very efficient. The city has much to offer and guided expertise will help.
The Philadelphia Experience. Some guided tours will be led by those in colonial attire and will help you appreciate the unique charms and offerings of America's most historic city.
There is so much to see and do in the city that even native Philadelphians never fully discover all of its treasures. You'll learn a lot from your tour guide.
Convenience. You don't need to carry around your guidebooks or figure out how to navigate the streets - it's all done for you.
Entertainment. The guided tours are fun.
Drawbacks of Guided Tours
Cost. Many of the tours are expensive.
Schedule. Not all of the tours run year-round, or at night; you're obligated to set your schedule around your tour time.
Ticketing. You may need reservations well in advance.
The Thrill of Discovery and Exploration. You may find some aspect of Philadelphia to be highly worthwhile and memorable, simply because you discovered it on your own.
Ultimately, it's your decision. So here's some info on the guided tours...
A new tour: Just follow the link to Free Tours by Foot Philadelphia. Free Tours by Foot offers free tours of Philadelphia. The guides work solely for tips, so you decide what your tour was worth. In addition to historic walking tours, they also offer free food, ghost and soon bus tours.
Added Monday, July 26, 2010...
Finding a Guided Tour of Philadelphia
Of course, perhaps you would prefer a guided tour. Fortunately, commercial guided tours are plentiful, fitting just about every schedule and budget.
Here are the major walking tours available:
The Constitutional Guided Walking Tour
This tour leaves from
Independence Visitor Center
- located at the northeast corner of 6th and Market Streets. It only runs from April to November - peak visitor season - but if you're here during these months, it may be of interest to you.
Adults - $17.50
Children (3-12) - $12.50
You can book online, on the phone, or buy tickets in person at Independence Visitor Center. The Constitutional also offers a Family Four pack for $55, but only if you book online or by phone.
For more information - you can visit their site -
The Constitutional Guided Walking Tour of Philadelphia
If you are in the mood for spooky Philadelphia - it is, after all, one of America's oldest and most haunted cities - you might want to consider the Spirits of '76 Ghost Tour, which offers a visit to more than 20 sites in downtown Philadelphia.
There is also a combination tour, offered by The Constitutional and the Spirits of '76 Ghost Tour. You can purchase a combined ticket for the Constitutional by day, and the Spirits of '76 Ghost Tour by night, for $31 (adults) and $22 (children). However, you can only book the combination online or by phone.
For more information - you can visit the official site of
Spirits of '76 Ghost Tour
Added Thursday, July 28, 2010...
You can also try the Philadelphia version of Urban Adventures - day tours with a twist, in more than 100 cities. It is best described as a short, urban adventure tour - the official site is at
The folks at City Food Tours offer no less than five tours of Philadelphia - Flavors of Philly, Northern Liberties, Decadent Gourmet, Evening of Indulgence, and Craft Beer and Artisanal Cheese. There is a wide range of prices and themes, and there's something for everyone. Take a look...
Their official site -
City Food Tours - Philadelphia
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