Top things to do near Philadelphia Airport
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Blessed with many amazing museums, Philadelphia's Museum of Art still stands out with its grand architecture, extensive gallery space and collection of almost a quarter of a million artworks from Europe, America and Asia.
Key collections include Asian paintings, sculpture, ceramics and architecture, early Renaissance European masterworks of French Impressionism with a focus on Rodin, along with exceptional collections of American art, particularly from the Pennsylvania region. There’s also a host of modern and contemporary work by Duchamp, Dali, Picasso, Metzinger and Jasper Johns.
You can enjoy a little pop culture, too, by following in Rocky Balboa’s footsteps on the east entrance stairs. Located close to the city center, the Museum of Art is a 10-mile (16-kilometer) drive from PHL.
Eastern State Penitentiary
Centrally located in the city just a 10-mile (16-kilometer) drive from PHL is an imposing castle-like structure that, when built, was the largest and most expensive public building ever constructed. Today, the Eastern State Penitentiary is a National Historic Landmark and fascinating museum; it has huge architectural significance for its innovative design, but is probably best known as the prison that once held Al Capone.
With guided tours and audio tours available at different times of year, the whole place has a unique atmosphere. There are some striking exhibits on the history of the prison, plus a few surprises in the range of art exhibits spread throughout the building.
Reading Terminal Market
The enclosed Reading Terminal Market in downtown Philadelphia hosts over a hundred traders every day of the week. Offering all kinds of fresh produce, specialty and ethnic foods, clothing, crafts and books, you'll find something amazing to smell or see every few footsteps.
The food is what the market is all about at heart, so it's advisable to visit hungry as there is an endless selection of fresh foods with influences from all over the world. The market offers a very different way to enjoy a meal of many portions and is just over 10 miles (16 kilometers) away from Philadelphia Airport.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
Built in the mid-1800s to become head church in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul is the largest Catholic church in Pennsylvania. With the honor of having hosted two papal masses by Popes John Paul II and Francis, the cathedral is also on the National Register of Historic Places and situated about 10 miles (16 kilometers) from Philadelphia International.
A stand-out piece of architecture in Philadelphia, the strong, fuss-free brownstone exterior opens into a stunning, intricately decorated interior of murals and portraits that create a potent spiritual atmosphere, whatever your beliefs.
One of the most important historical sites in the USA is found just 12 miles (19 kilometers) from Philadelphia Airport; namely, Independence Hall, where the US Declaration of Independence and US Constitution were both debated and adopted. It is also often seen as the birthplace of the United Nations, which evolved from a 1915 convention forming the League to Enforce Peace, a precursor to the UN.
A relatively modest building considering the history it has witnessed, there are free guided tours that talk you through exhibits like the iconic Liberty Bell and describe the remarkable events that took place around you as a nation was brought to life.
Please Touch Museum
A great concept in interactive learning for children, the Please Touch Museum lives up to its name combining conventional displays with endless themed play areas, theater performances, art experiences and story times.
About 11 miles (18 kilometers) from Philadelphia International Airport, this is the perfect place to take young children to explore and enjoy. Arranged over two floors, this is more like a vast playhouse than a museum; children love it. There's parking on-site and the nearby museum café serves up tasty, simple, kid-friendly food.
Citizens Bank Park
Just six miles (10 kilometers) from Philadelphia Airport, just over the Girard Point Bridge, is Citizens Bank Park, the home of Major League Baseball (MLB) team, the Phillies. Set within a sports complex that also includes Lincoln Financial Field and Wells Fargo Center, homes to NHL and NBA teams, “The Bank” is an all-round great few hours out with second-to-none sight lines, eye-opening views of the city and a welcoming family atmosphere. The one thing everyone remembers, though, is the food; restaurants and carts offer up Philadelphia classics like cheesesteaks, as well as more traditional baseball snacks like hot-dogs and sodas.
Geno's or Pat's Cheesesteaks
The cheesesteak is probably Philadelphia's best-known contribution to food and it's available all over the city, but two places have become famed as the must-sample cheesesteak kings. Pat's King of Steaks dates to the 1930s and is the original inventor of the sandwich, but immediately across the road, you’ll find Geno's Steaks, which was established in the 1960s. Geno’s claims to have perfected the recipe.
There's a different look and atmosphere to each store and they both offer a twist on the cheesesteak, which is a great excuse to try both and decide for yourself which is the best. You can find the two facing each other about 10 miles (16 milometers) from Philadelphia Airport, in the South Philadelphia area of the city.