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Philadelphia

Museums & Exhibitions

Our most recommended Philadelphia Museums & Exhibitions

Philadelphia: Eastern State Penitentiary Admission

1. Philadelphia: Eastern State Penitentiary Admission

Discover the historic building of the Eastern State Penitentiary which stands today in ruin, a haunting world of crumbling cellblocks and empty guard towers. Learn about how when Eastern State opened more than 180 years ago, it changed the world of prisons and was copied throughout the world. Known for its grand architecture and strict discipline, this was the world's first true "penitentiary," a prison designed to inspire penitence, or true regret, in the hearts of prisoners. Discover how the building itself was an architectural wonder; it had running water and central heat before the White House. Marvel at the vaulted, sky-lit cells which once held many of America's most notorious criminals, including bank robber "Slick Willie" Sutton and Al Capone. As you explore the building, listen to 'The Voices of Eastern State' audio tour which is included in your admission price. Narrated by actor Steve Buscemi (known for Boardwalk Empire, Fargo, Armageddon, and Ghost World), this rich, stereo soundscape mixes dozens of voices. Hear the stories of 3 former wardens and 25 guards and inmates which create an atmospheric tour as you stroll through Eastern State's cellblocks and yards. When you arrive, receive an MP3 player and headset that will guide you through the penitentiary complex and explain the prison's history. This audio guide contains a main audio route, plus additional stops for subjects like escapes, riots, sports, sexuality, and more. You are free to tour at your own pace and to listen to (or skip) stops based on your interests. Also discover interactive experiences, history exhibits, and a critically acclaimed series of artist installations.

From New York City: Washington and Philadelphia 1-Day Tour

2. From New York City: Washington and Philadelphia 1-Day Tour

Your day will begin with an early morning departure from Times Square in Manhattan, where you’ll be greeted by your bilingual tour guide for the day. After 4-5 hours, your first destination will be the nation's current capital, Washington, DC. Once there, visit the Iwo Jima Memorial and the Lincoln Memorial. During the tour, stop for a classic outside view of the White House, home and office of the U.S. President, and the Capitol Building, home of the U.S. Congress. Your visit to Washington concludes with free time for lunch on your own. Your next destination, after a 3-hour journey, will be the first-ever U.S. capital, Philadelphia, PA. Visit its historic Old City neighborhood and the Independence National Historical Park where your guide will lead you on a brief walking tour. Then, ascend to the top of the Rocky Steps before returning to Times Square in Manhattan.

Philadelphia: Eastern State Penitentiary Night Tour

3. Philadelphia: Eastern State Penitentiary Night Tour

Discover the historic building of the Eastern State Penitentiary, a haunting world of crumbling cellblocks and empty guard towers. Learn about the penitentiary's fascinating history on an audio tour at night. After, head to the Fair Chance Beer Garden for a drink (at your own expense). Upon arrival, receive an MP3 player and headset that will guide you through the penitentiary complex and explain the prison's history. “The Voices of Eastern State” Audio Tour is narrated by actor Steve Buscemi and features the voices of former prisoners and correctional staff. On the tour, learn how the Eastern State Penitentiary changed the world when it opened more than 180 years ago, though it stands in ruin today. Hear how the prison's strict discipline made it the world's first true "penitentiary" — a prison designed to inspire penitence or real regret. Find out how the building itself was an architectural wonder: it had running water and central heating before the White House. Marvel at the vaulted, sky-lit cells that once held many of America's most notorious lawbreakers, including "Scarface" Al Capone and bank robber "Slick Willie" Sutton. See Al Capone’s cell, Death Row, and the award-winning exhibit Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration. Take the tour at your own pace and make stops based on your interests. Discover interactive experiences, history exhibits, and a critically acclaimed series of art installations. Enjoy the exclusive offerings of a night tour, such as the Fair Chance Beer Garden, which creates meaningful, living-wage jobs for people who may otherwise be excluded from the mainstream economy, including people who have experienced homelessness or incarceration. Presented by Eastern State Penitentiary and Triple Bottom Brewing Company, two organizations committed to fair chance hiring and social justice storytelling, the beer garden is located outdoors on the penitentiary’s baseball field and offers a selection of Triple Bottom beer for purchase. As well as grabbing a drink, take part in hands-on activities as you reflect on the Eastern State’s history and legacy of criminal justice reform. Activities focus on art, writing, and music, and prompt conversation on issues of justice today.

Philadelphia: Museum of Illusions Timed Entrance Ticket

4. Philadelphia: Museum of Illusions Timed Entrance Ticket

Experience the impossible with an entry ticket to the Museum of Illusions Philadelphia. Immerse yourself in a world where your eyes will be in a constant battle with your brain. Located in the heart of Philadelphia, this brain-boggling museum is a one-of-a-kind destination for optical illusions.  Challenge yourself in more than 60 visual and educational exhibits featuring holograms, stereograms, optical illusions, and immersive rooms designed to tease the senses and trick the mind. Defy gravity, grow and shrink, walk on the ceiling, experience infinite space, and much more. Spend some time in the Smart Playroom with games that will stimulate and challenge your mind. Enjoy some friendly competition with friends and family while simultaneously improving your cognition, problem-solving skills, and memory.  Have fun while learning the mechanics behind each and every illusion you experience. And don't forget your camera or smartphone when you visit as there are eye-fooling photo-ops around every corner.

Philadelphia: Museum of the American Revolution Entry

5. Philadelphia: Museum of the American Revolution Entry

Discover the dramatic story of the American Revolution at one of Philadelphia’s lead attractions. Step into the Museum of the American Revolution, then watch an introductory movie before making your own way through the exhibitions. Marvel at the museum’s vast collection of Revolutionary-era weapons, personal items, documents, and works of art that bring history back to life. Learn about this fascinating period of time as you explore immersive galleries, engage in powerful theater experiences, and take part in interactive features. Located just steps from the famous Independence Hall, the museum serves as a portal to the region’s Revolutionary history, which sparks interest, provides context, and encourages exploration. Printed museum guides are available in English, Spanish, French, German, Mandarin and Japanese, to elevate your learning experience.

Philadelphia: Valley Forge National Historical Park Tour

6. Philadelphia: Valley Forge National Historical Park Tour

Join a half-day excursion into the countryside of Philadelphia to visit the exciting Valley Forge National Historical Park. Travel back in time to the American Revolution through the variety of objects displayed and visit important war memorial sites. Board your vehicle in Philadelphia and head towards one of the most significant sites of the American Revolutionary War. Your guide will tell you stories of the Continental Army preparing for war, then stop at the Muhlenberg Brigade Huts to give you an idea of the conditions in the encampment. Your visit to the park might include a stop at the Valley Forge Visitor Center, displaying historic objects and artifacts, and Washington’s Headquarters along the Schuylkill River. Walk through some interesting sites, like the National Memorial Arch and the gothic-style Washington Memorial Chapel.

Philadelphia: Go City All-Inclusive Pass w/ 30+ Attractions

7. Philadelphia: Go City All-Inclusive Pass w/ 30+ Attractions

Enjoy an all-inclusive city pass that gets you into 30 Philadelphia attractions and tours. Just select the number of days you want to sightsee for (1, 2, 3 or 5 days), then enjoy admission to as many included attractions as you want to. Simply show your Go City pass at included attractions or tour for admission and pay nothing at the gate. Activate the pass by visiting your first attraction, then, use it on consecutive calendar days. The attractions include: • Hop-on, Hop-off Big Bus Philadelphia Tour • Eastern State Penitentiary • Franklin Institute Science Museum • Philadelphia Museum of Art • National Constitution Center • Betsy Ross House • Adventure Aquarium • Philadelphia Zoo • LEGOLAND Discovery Center Philadelphia • Barnes Foundation • Academy of Natural Science • Battleship New Jersey Museum & Memorial • Ghost Tour of Philadelphia • Independence Seaport Museum • Christ Church Burial Ground Tour • City Hall Tower and Observation Deck • National Museum of American Jewish History • Dark Philly Adult Night Tour • National Liberty Museum/We the People • Longwood Gardens • African American Museum • Rodin Museum • Revolution and Founding Father's Tour • Penn Museum • RiverLink Ferry • Brandywine River Museum of Art • The Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum • Independence Walking Tour • Murder by Gaslight - A Walking Tour Mystery Attractions and tours are subject to change. Check your included digital guide for an up-to-date attraction line-up including opening times and instructions on how to access each attraction with your pass before you go.

Philadelphia: Independence Seaport Museum and USS Olympia

8. Philadelphia: Independence Seaport Museum and USS Olympia

Dive into "River Alive!", a new exhibit that describes the wildlife, science, and wonder of the Delaware River, where 5% of Americans get their drinking water. Raise the sails and discover the history of the U.S. Navy aboard the National Historic Landmark Ship Cruiser USS Olympia. Discover Philadelphia’s connection to the founding of the United States Navy. The Patriots & Pirates exhibition features curated objects never, or rarely, seen by the public, highlighting the little-told story of America’s conflict with pirates. Uncover the past with one of the largest maritime art and artifact collections in North America. With so much to explore, Independence Seaport Museum is the premier, family-friendly destination on the Penn's Landing waterfront.

Philadelphia: Sightseeing Day Pass for 35+ Attractions

9. Philadelphia: Sightseeing Day Pass for 35+ Attractions

Use The Philadelphia Pass directly from your mobile phone to allow you cash-free entry to over 35 destinations, museums, and tours, including some of the most popular attractions in The City of Brotherly love. Delve into the history of the city as you explore landmark museums and monuments, or take a spooky after-hours walking tour to discover haunted Philly. Train like Rocky on the front steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, or eat like a local at either the historic Reading Terminal Market, or the 9th Street Italian Market. With your pass, you'll enjoy discounts at many local restaurants and bars. Attractions included: • Eastern State Penitentiary • Adventure Aquarium • Betsy Ross House • Franklin’s Grave at Christ Church Burial Grounds • City Hall Tower Tour • Fort Mifflin • QVC Studio Tour • Escape Game King of Prussia Museums included: • Philadelphia Museum of Art • National Constitution Center • Museum of the American Revolution • Academy of Natural Sciences • African American Museum • Battleship New Jersey Museum & Memorial • National Liberty Museum • Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts • Philadelphia History Museum • Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum • The Mutter Museum • The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology • Wharton Esherick Museum • Penn Museum Tours included: • Philadelphia Sightseeing Hop-on, Hop-off Bus Tour • 76 Carriage Company - Franklin Footsteps Walking Tour • Ghost Tour of Philadelphia Candlelight Walking Tour • Grim Philly Twilight Tours • Independence Tour - Walking Tour • Philly Tour Hub • Spirits of '76 Ghost Tour • Philadelphia Sightseeing Hop-on, Hop-off Bus Tour • 76 Carriage Company - Franklin Footsteps Walking Tour • Ghost Tour of Philadelphia Candlelight Walking Tour • Grim Philly Twilight Tours • Independence Tour - Walking Tour • Philly Tour Hub • The Constitutional Walking Tour • RiverLink Ferry (operates seasonally) • Big Red Pedal Pub Crawl Tours • Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest

Philadelphia: Pirate Games Challenge Experience with Rum

10. Philadelphia: Pirate Games Challenge Experience with Rum

Escape the city streets of Philadelphia to experience life as a pirate at the Independence Seaport Museum. Reminisce about your days at summer camp but twist it up with some rum as you take part in pirate-themed games against the infamous Calico Jack. Firmly on dry land, meet your pirate host and start off by walking the plank. Battle on the balance beam to see who will survive and who will sink to the murky depths below. Take aim at enemy vessels in the bean bag toss competition and see if your shots are ship shape. End the night by sipping a rum cocktail and singing about the pirate's life with your friends as you decided who should be made captain for the next adventure and hit the high seas.

Frequently asked questions about Philadelphia Museums & Exhibitions

What are other things to do than Museums & Exhibitions that are worth visiting in Philadelphia?

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Other Sightseeing Options in Philadelphia

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What people are saying about Philadelphia

Beautiful experience Visited and the most beautiful and famous things in the cities considering the limited time available A special thanks to Alice, a nice and professional guide who followed us despite the fact that Italian was not among the languages provided

Best deal out there. I stumbled on Go City and could not be happier. We saw so many attractions for what it would have cost to see two or three. It was super easy, I just showed the QR code on my phone at each attraction. Super easy, great value!

The driver Rafael (I think his name is), and the coordinator Alicia were great. Everything worked. I recommend the tour to everyone.

Very interesting, they took us to the sites that represent NY

Very nice evening visit! A penitentiary steeped in history…