5 unique things to do in Philadelphia

Last year in September we went to America on our honeymoon and it wasn’t the typical relaxing holidays. We rented out an RV and drove from Miami to Salem and stopped at some amazing places! You can read about our adventure on the page already but I thought it’d be cool to share some amazing and unique places with you as well as some top tips and food recommendations. Hopefully you’ll find it helpful and please do leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

Eastern State Penitentiary:

I don’t know about you but visiting a prison while on holiday was definitely not on my bucket list but this one was way too interesting for us to miss out. ESP is a former American prison and it was operational from1829 until 1971. The famous Al Capone and bank robber Willie Sutton were held inside this prison which a lot of people think is haunted. You can learn about the escapes and the prisons history as a self-guided tour which is pretty amazing because you get to walk through the whole place on your own and learn about everything that you see. We’ve spent 1-2 hours there which was enough for us but if you’re really interested in the history and would like to learn tons then you can spend up to 3-4 hours there as there is loads to see!

Entry fee: you need to purchase your ticket online (this is a new thing, because of what’s happening in the world right now), and plan your visit. I’d recommend visiting the website beforehand just to make sure everything is going smoothly.

The normal adult ticket is $15.00

Night tours is $26.00 to $32.00

Rocky Steps and Statue:

Do you remember the famous scene from the Rocky? If the answer is yes, well I have some good news for you: you can actually visit the steps and run up them just like in the film. The 72 stone steps leading up to the entrance of the Philadelphia Museum of Art but it is not the easiest, especially when it is a hot day but it’s definitely worth a try as the view is amazing! A bronze Rocky statue was briefly situated at the top of the steps for the filming of Rocky III. This statue, now located at the bottom right of the steps, and it is a very popular photo opportunity for visitors, normally there are a few people who try to take your photo in order for some money but it completely free to visit both of these places and even if you’re not a Rocky fan, it is a very good experience.

Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens:

This is probably the most unique place that we’ve visited in America as everything is made of recycled material. It is a non-profit organization and it is the largest work created by Isaiah Zagar. It is definitely not for everyone but if you’re interested in these kind of things you’ll be amazed: the mosaics are made up of everything from kitchen tiles to bike wheels and it has an indoor and outdoor space as well. It is definitely a hidden gem in Philadelphia and I’m so happy that we’ve found it.

Entry fee: again, you need to purchase your tickets in advance and I’d urge you to check their website before visiting to know the rules like wearing a face covering.

The normal adult ticket is $15.00

Elfreth’s Alley:

It is a very historic street in Philadelphia and perfect for your Instagram pictures. There are 32 houses on the street, which were built between 1703 and 1836. They do some guided tours around the area but I don’t think it’s very often so you should check their website for more information. It is completely free to visit the street and you won’t be disappointed.

Shofuso Japanese House and Garden:

It is a traditional 17th century styled Japanese house and garden, it’s history and cutulre is very fascinating but it can be very busy sometimes so I’d recommend going there quite early. Shofuso is a nonprofit historic site with over 30,000 visitors each year and is open to the public. It was built in 1953 as a gift from Japan to American citizens, to symbolize post-war peace and friendship between the two countries. It is a small place but definitely worth a visit, and if you’re there, don’t forget to feed the fish as well, it can be very entertaining.

Entry fee: the adult ticket is $12.00 but again, please visit the website for more information.