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Things to See and Do in Philadelphia

Philadelphia is a diverse city that attracts people of all backgrounds, cultures, and influences. Philadelphians contribute to, participate in, and enjoy a host of cultural and artistic mediums, venues, and experiences. Whether you're interested in high art, contemporary art, theater, dance, history, science, classical music, or touring bands, Philly's got it covered.

Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art (2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway)

One of the largest museums in the United States, you'll be amazed at the collections and changing exhibits.

Rodin Museum (Benjamin Franklin Parkway and 22nd Street)

The greatest collection of Auguste Rodin's work outside of Paris, complete with a garden and The Thinker.

Barnes Foundation (2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway)

Offering art, archives, libraries, special collections, and horticultural science, the Barnes is an educational institution and museum promoting lifelong learning in the areas of art, aesthetics, and horticulture.

Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) (118 S. 36th Street)

The ICA offers free admission to its exhibits featuring contemporary artists and public programs including documentary screenings, book signings, and lectures.

Mural Arts

The City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program has sponsored more than 3,000 murals all over the city — more than any other city in the world. You'll see them as you explore the city, and you can take a variety of guided tours.

First Friday (Between Front and Third Streets and Market and Vine Streets)

On the first Friday of every month, art galleries in Old City open for the public to see the new installations, eat snacks, and mingle. (Other neighborhoods such as Fishtown and East Passyunk Avenue also have First Friday or Second Saturday gallery events.)

Science

Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University (1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway)

Acquired by Drexel in 2011, the Academy is America's oldest natural history museum. It's home to Philadelphia's collection of dinosaurs, as well as a tropical butterfly garden, dioramas of taxidermied animals, a live animal center, and rotating special exhibits. Admission is free if you have a DragonCard (Drexel ID).

Franklin Institute (222 N. 20th Street)

Learn about science and technology with hands-on and interactive exhibits that cover everything from the earth to the stars — including a giant heart you can walk through. You can also see educational films or blockbuster movies in the IMAX theater.

Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) (315 Chestnut Street)

From alchemy to nanotechnology, CHF has preserved, interpreted, and promoted the history of scientific adventure. CHF aims to understand the many ways chemistry impacts society.

Mütter Museum (19 S. 22nd Street)

Part of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia and originally intended for medical research and education, the Mütter Museum now displays medical anomalies for the public.

Cultural History

National Museum of American Jewish History (101 S. Independence Mall East)

A layered experience where visitors can view 350 years of Jewish history in America.

The African American Museum in Philadelphia (701 Arch Street)

Preserving, interpreting, and exhibiting the heritage of African Americans.

Mummers Museum (1100 S. 2nd Street)

Sparkling, shining Mummer memorabilia and paraphernalia from costumes to string bands to a giant stuffed horse. You can even dance around with umbrellas to Mummer music.

Entertainment

Kimmel Center (260 S. Broad Street)

A world-class performance venue that hosts the Philadelphia Orchestra, PHILADANCO!, and the Philly Pops, the Kimmel Center is dedicated to making the performing arts available to the public. The building, featuring an enclosed rooftop garden oasis, is open to the public.

Academy of Music (Broad and Locust Streets)

A branch of the Kimmel Center, the Academy of Music hosts the Opera Company of Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Ballet, and Broadway shows. It is also the oldest grand opera house in the U.S. that is still being used for its original purpose.

Theatre Philadelphia

Philadelphia is a haven for theater. From new and original works to the classics, from traditional to interactive to site-specific performances, from political to gritty to comical, the many theaters in Philadelphia produce a terrific range of (mostly) on-stage entertainment.

FringeArts

For two weeks in the fall every year, FringeArts gathers and supports local, national, and international cultural experiences through theater, dance, and music.

R5 Productions

A DIY show promotions agency providing affordable, friendly shows by bands from everywhere.

Trocadero Theatre (1003 Arch Street)

Bands, movies, DJs, dance parties, burlesque, and comedy shows. Some events are 21+.

Theatre of Living Arts (334 South Street)

A South Street classic, the TLA once operated as a movie theater but is now host to musical performers both popular and emerging. Most shows are all ages.

Ritz Theatres

With three locations in Old City, Ritz Theatres (owned by Landmark Theatres) screens quality independent, foreign, and documentary films at a student discount.

PFS ROXY THEATER (2023 Sansom Street)

Home of the Philadelphia Film Society (PFS), this theater shows independent films and repertory cinema.

Cinemark University City Penn 6 (4012 Walnut Street)

Blockbusters in real stadium seating.

North Bowl (909 N. 2nd Street)

A retro-style bowling alley complete with pinball machines, video games, pool tables, and lots of space to just hang out and eat tater tots. North Bowl is one of Philly's favorite places for tots.

Lucky Strike (1336 Chestnut Street)

A bowling alley downtown. They have greasy snacks too, but no tater tots.