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Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are just as important in today’s Philadelphia as they were 235 years ago, and travelers staying in downtown Philadelphia hotels are within easy walking distance of the birthplaces of American liberty.
Independence National Historical Park, a well-defined 20-block area, is home to Congress Hall, Old City Hall, Franklin Court and Carpenter’s Hall, as well as the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. For history buffs, the Philly experience starts here.
There’s more to Philly than the Founding Fathers, as hotel guests love Rittenhouse Square with its upscale shops, restaurants and Philly’s favorite science museum, Franklin Institute. And ESP, Eastern State Penitentiary, once home to Al Capone and Willy Sutton, offers spine-tingling tours amid Gothic architecture and solitary cells.
Don’t leave the running shoes in your Philly hotel if you intend to run up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art a la Rocky before visiting the 200 galleries inside. The 1,077-acre Longwood Gardens offer a serene setting with 20 indoor and 20 outdoor gardens, and the world-class Philadelphia Zoo is home to everything from aye-ayes to zebras.
The quintessential Philly cheesesteak fits the bill when history makes you hungry. Or head to Reading Terminal Market for Amish specialties and ethnic foods. And don’t forget, this city is famous for its many BYOB restaurants.