The Cellar  

Go Back   The Cellar > Main > Cities and Travel

Cities and Travel Tell us about where you are; tell us about where you want to be

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-23-2013, 07:52 AM   #1
Chocolatl
Glutton for Gluttony
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,409
Philadelphia

Kitsune, Beans and I will be traveling to Pennsylvania for a wedding in July. Our friends are getting married about 45 minutes north of Philadelphia, so I'm thinking I'd like to take a day or two to see the city as it's the first and probably last time I'll ever be in the area.

Logistics are tough, as Beans'll be 11 months old, so there's no telling how good of a traveller she'll be. (We're already dreading the flights.) I'm trying to get some ideas ahead of time so when it's time to book the trip, I'll be well prepared.

Questions:

Philadelphians, what are the must sees in your city? So far I'm interested in checking out the Reading Terminal Market, and taking Beans to either the zoo or the Please Touch Museum.

Also -- how viable is it to have a car in the city? When we went to San Francisco last year we ended up returning our rental car because there was nowhere to park it anyway. Is Philly a "forget it, just walk" kind of city?

And on a scale of "hot" to "hell," how warm is it in July?
Chocolatl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 08:43 AM   #2
Spexxvet
Makes some feel uncomfortable
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,340
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chocolatl View Post
Philadelphians, what are the must sees in your city? So far I'm interested in checking out the Reading Terminal Market, and taking Beans to either the zoo or the Please Touch Museum.
All good choices. And the museum is now not far from the zoo (relocated a couple years ago from center city). You might want to include the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Betsy Ross' house. The Kimmel Center is beautiful architecture. The Art museum. The Pawn Shop . Franklin Institute is cool, too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chocolatl View Post
Also -- how viable is it to have a car in the city? When we went to San Francisco last year we ended up returning our rental car because there was nowhere to park it anyway. Is Philly a "forget it, just walk" kind of city?
Maybe Blue can fill you in, there. As a suburbanite, I typically drive in, park as close to where ever I'm going as I can, for too much money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chocolatl View Post
And on a scale of "hot" to "hell," how warm is it in July?
Can be hotter than hell, with 200% humidity. But not always.
__________________
"I'm certainly free, nay compelled, to spread the gospel of Spex. " - xoxoxoBruce
Spexxvet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 10:01 AM   #3
Clodfobble
UNDER CONDITIONAL MITIGATION
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 19,713
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chocolatl
Logistics are tough, as Beans'll be 11 months old, so there's no telling how good of a traveller she'll be. (We're already dreading the flights.)
Have you heard the advice to let her nurse/bottlefeed during ascent and descent? Tricks her into swallowing to pop her ears.
__________________
My book
My spirit animal
Clodfobble is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 10:04 AM   #4
Undertoad
Radical Centrist
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Cottage of Prussia
Posts: 31,053
As someone who lives 45 minutes north of Philadelphia, welcome!

It depends on how history-oriented you are... it is something, to see Independence Mall where the country was founded, that's something. The Liberty Bell is an easy one. Right next to it is the Constitution Center where they have regular shows about the C.

Food oriented? Go to this website and have a cheesesteak from any of the top 20 places that have more local % than tourist %.

You can get an authentic Pennsylvania-oriented breakfast or lunch from the Down Home Diner in the Reading Terminal. Although there are many places to get a meal there. If you want the most amazing meat sammich of your life, go to Hershels East Side Deli there. Pastrami, corned beef, turkey, and I think brisket? Hand carved before your eyes, and just excellent.

There are parking lots downtown, pretty expensive. Getting street parking is unlikely downtown, possible in other locations.

Across the river is the Aquarium which both young tykes and parents enjoy.
Undertoad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 10:18 AM   #5
Chocolatl
Glutton for Gluttony
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spexxvet View Post
The Pawn Shop .
Quote:
Originally Posted by Undertoad View Post
In February so far, 3 of the 7 homicides in Philadelphia happened within 10 blocks of the shop.
I think I'll skip that one!
Chocolatl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 10:44 AM   #6
jimhelm
a beautiful fool
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: 39.939705
Posts: 4,504
What town is the wedding in?
__________________
There's a Shadow just behind me. Shrouding every step I take. Making every promise empty, pointing every finger at me. _tool
jimhelm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 10:59 AM   #7
Chocolatl
Glutton for Gluttony
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,409
I think it's near Harleysville? I don't have too many details yet.
Chocolatl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2013, 01:20 PM   #8
xoxoxoBruce
The future is unwritten
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 69,468
http://thejunkfoodtour.com/video.html
__________________
Tony Montana, Tony Soprano, Walter White, Frank Underwood, and Donald Trump.
xoxoxoBruce is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2013, 03:05 PM   #9
richlevy
King Of Wishful Thinking
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Philadelphia Suburbs
Posts: 6,652
Consider going to the Barnes Foundation. Up until recently it was a private exhibit that the owner set up in his will to be housed in his mansion in the Philadelphia suburbs. A combination of pressure from Philadelphia and his neighbors not enjoying the public attention got them to partially break his will a few years ago and move the exhibit to Philadelphia.

The wiki article correctly deals with the controversy.

I have not been to the new digs, but from the one of the pictures on the website it appears that at least part of the will is in effect in that pictures are grouped on the walls and combined with objects and small pieces of furniture that the original owner set up.

To be clear, the original purpose of the Barnes Foundation was as a school and teaching establishment and not a traditional art museum. It would have been much cooler if you could have seen it before the move to Philadelphia. I went there twice in my life, once in high school and maybe ten years ago with my family.


Check the park service for changes due to sequestration here at http://www.nps.gov/inde/planyourvisit/hours.htm

I would have recommended the free underground Franklin Court but it is closed for renovations. The Benjamin Franklin Post office and Postal Museum is still open and they will hand cancel envelopes so you can get a souvenir for the price of a stamp. The printing museum is next door. A few blocks aways is the National Constitution Center (NCC) and Benjamin Franklins grave is catty corner to it http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg...id=364&page=gr . The grave is next the to sidewalk behind a fence. People put pennies on his grave for some reason.

The Philadelphia Mint gives free tours http://www.usmint.gov/mint_tours/?action=philadelphia and is a short walk from the NCC. On the other side of the NCC, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve has a free exhibit about money http://www.philadelphiafed.org/educa...ney-in-motion/ .

Almost everything that I mentioned, except the Franklin Post office, is in or surrounding Independence National Park which is a 4x1 city block rectangle http://www.nps.gov/common/commonspot...e=Independence . Independence Hall is inside the rectangle at one end and the NCC is at the other and the Liberty Bell is near the middle. The Mint and the Fed Reserve are surrounding the NCC on the West and East, with restaurants and the Franklin Post office about a 2-3 block walk. If you park at one of the garages in the park and don't mind walking 5 or 6 miles, you can see all of it while parking your car once.

I highly recommend restaurant.com or groupon for restaurants. There are deals everywhere. Philadelphia has a pretty good Chinatown for food, which is about 1/2 mile northwest of the NCC.

The NCC costs some money, as well as the Barnes, but almost everything else I mentioned is free and maintained by the Postal Service, the Park Service, the US Mint, or the Federal Reserve.

Let us know when you get in. I would love to meet you for dinner. It's been about 2 years since I've been to Chinatown.

Heat in the summer is hit and miss. In colonial times, people would sleep on their roofs because of the heat.

BTW, Harleysville might be 45 minutes to Philadelphia at 3am, but during the day add a half hour.
__________________
Exercise your rights and remember your obligations - VOTE!
I have always believed that hope is that stubborn thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us so long as we have the courage to keep reaching, to keep working, to keep fighting. -- Barack Hussein Obama

Last edited by richlevy; 03-24-2013 at 03:13 PM.
richlevy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2013, 07:05 PM   #10
Chocolatl
Glutton for Gluttony
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,409
We'll be traveling in twelve short weeks! Temporal and financial logistics mean that "a few days to see Philly" has been reduced to a matter of hours.

We'll be staying in Center City for one night. I have my heart set on dinner at the Marathon Grill the night we get in. The next morning it'll be breakfast at the Reading Terminal Market, then taking Beans to Franklin Square. We might squeeze in a "Hi, Liberty Bell!" before we zip north for the wedding rehearsal. And that'll be that!
Chocolatl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2013, 10:51 PM   #11
bluecuracao
in a mood, not cupcake
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 3,034
It's been very mild, even a little chilly, around here so far. You guys might luck out with the weather this July--I'm crossing my fingers for low 80s.

My two cents on Reading Terminal Market: if you end up there on a Saturday, be prepared for big crowds! Although it might not be too bad for an early breakfast. Molly Malloy's is a cute bistro-type place that opened up where the famous old-man 'beer garden' used to be; they are separate from the fray and would be nice for breakfast. And then there's the Dutch Eating Place that everyone raves about--they say the pancakes there are amazing.

What hotel are you staying in? If it's not too far from RTM, maybe you can leave your car in the hotel garage. After breakfast, Franklin Square would only be about a 5-block walk through Chinatown.
bluecuracao is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2013, 11:39 PM   #12
Chocolatl
Glutton for Gluttony
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,409
I forgot to say: Thanks, everyone, for your suggestions and advice!

Though we're not booked just yet, it looks like we'll be staying at the Ritz-Carlton. (Somehow the most affordable thanks to my mom's Marriott employee discount.) From what I can tell of the map, that means RTM will be about a block away. We'll be there on a Friday morning, so hopefully that'll help reduce the crowds a bit.
Chocolatl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2013, 10:30 AM   #13
Chocolatl
Glutton for Gluttony
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,409
Leaving on a jet plane tomorrow.

Woohoo/AAAAAAAGGGHHHH.

First plane ride for the little one. Currently dealing with the logistics of how to schlep all our crap through the airport!
Chocolatl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2013, 10:42 AM   #14
glatt
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 27,378
Flying with little ones is a challenge. The dad ends up carrying a mountain of bags because the mom is busy carrying the little one and a few smaller bags.

(We brought a car seat with us for the flight on one plane and to use at the destination, and it almost didn't fit through the metal detector on the way back, so we almost had to leave it in Innsbruck. But I partially disassembled it so it would fit through.)

With baggage fees now, I wonder if it's worth it to bring half the stuff. Might be cheaper to buy new stuff on the other end.
glatt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2013, 10:45 AM   #15
Undertoad
Radical Centrist
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Cottage of Prussia
Posts: 31,053
The weather turned excellent for you - highs around 82, lows around 68.
Undertoad is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

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 Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:41 PM.


Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.8.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.