Things to do in Philadelphia with kids

Master List: Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids

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Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids

Best Family Selection:

Looking for some things to do in Philadelphia with Kids? Well, you came to the right place as such, where else can you go with kids and visit the National Constitution Center, while also splashing in a Center City Fountain, or admiring the hundreds of animal species in the country’s oldest Zoo? 

We have gone beyond the main places to explore in Philadelphia with your family, as well as the most beautiful places to take your family pictures or the coziest accommodations in the city. Of course, this “map” can be upgraded daily, but here is the online guide for you.

Best Places to Explore in Philadelphia with kids!

There are lots of things to explore and see in the City of Brotherly Love, from visiting an amazing museum, to simply devouring some cheesecakes the size of your face. You will find all of them in our comprehensive list.

Whether your kids enjoy watching the animals in a zoo, or they are curious about jumping and playing while also learning in a sensorial museum, Philly has them all. Some of these places are very touristy, some offer much more intimacy, but you are all covered. Ready to explore? Let’s go!

Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids

Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids: Museums

Location: 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia, PA 19131

How awesome would be a museum where both kids and adults will be encouraged to play in a nicely organized fun-filled exhibit floor? Both fun and educational, the Place Touch Museum is very cool. Kids will be amazed by the indoor hedge maze, and they will have the unique chance to launch a rocket.

Yes, this is all true. At the same time, they will learn a lot about creatures of the forests and jungles. This museum incorporates a super cool exhibit, named “Cents and Sensibility”, which opened in 2019.

It explores the concept of money in a way kids can understand. For instance, kids can try the Dollar and Cents Scale. This is a simple educational game, where children can make combinations of coins so the final result will be a dollar. The little ones can also learn about saving, spending, and sharing.

Location:  19 S 22nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Are you curious about some of the world’s medical mysteries? Go to the Mutter Museum and be amazed by the 2,000 of the oddest objects that people ingested in their bodies, all presented to the Soap Lady.

Then run by The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, one of the two places in the world where some of Albert Einstein’s brain resides. Literally. You have the unique chance to examine them up close.

Location: 147 N. 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Does your kid love fire trucks? Give them a surprise and go to Fireman’s Hall Museum. Immediately outside the Old City, this restored firehouse is a pleasant close-up look at the antique fire trucks and many other artifacts which were rescued from some of the world’s famous fire-related events.

Upstairs the museum, kids can try also the firefighter gear, can read books related to the topic, as well as make 911 calls on a pretend phone. At the very end, kids can buy some little gifts, such as model fire trucks, stickers, or colorful patches.

Location: 211 S. Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia PA 19106

Children love the idea of the seaside, and this museum, along the Delaware River, will give them an easy to understand, yet comprehensive maritime history of the Delaware Valley.

Children will learn about the history of the Delaware River and also about the catastrophes that happened over the years. Families should check out the boat workshop as well, where kids can learn about building boats from scratch.

Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids

Things to do in Philadelphia with kids: Outdoor Activities

Kids Castle

Location: 425 Wells Rd, Doylestown, PA 18901

If you want to have great family time in Philly, without staying in a museum or an enclosed space, this castle-themed playground is a must.

Located in Doylestown, this unique playground is an eight-story wooden marvel, that will be pure joy for the kids, due to its huge size. We recommend the twisty slide, the swings, as well as the children’s amphitheater.

Location: 100 E Northwestern Ave, Philadelphia PA 19118

Escape from the urban crowd and the asphalt activities and take a trip to the classical English sculpture gardens, right at the northwest of the city, at the 92-acre Morris Arboretum.

One of the main attractions here is the ball at Out on a Limb and the Tree Adventure exhibit. Children can walk on bridges and then scramble the hammock-like nets.

Location: 1 Riverside Drive, Camden, NJ 08103

One of the main attractions for families with kids, the Adventure Aquarium has two million gallons of water and 8,500 aquatic animals that will impress the little ones. The Aquarium has also a Shark Bridge you can cross, penguins and hippos to meet, or stingrays to feed.

The most exciting part? Kids can also touch sharks and starfish. Imagine a huge exhibit, with a 760,000-gallon tank of stingrays, sea turtles, schooling fish, and sharks. Impressive, right?

Location: 200 N 6th St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

One of the five original squares in the city, Franklin Square is a must-see location with your children. Luckily, this attraction is right in the city center and has many recreational activities, such as a colorful playground, a true carousel and some food trucks with burgers and hot dogs.

Location: 51 Chamounix Dr, Philadelphia, PA 19131

This location is actually more suited to older children. This is considered the first ever “Aerial Adventure Park”, where you can enjoy some obstacle course or climbing into the trees.

Here there are lots and lots of activities to do, and adults can participate too. There are also plenty of fun activities for children as young as 4 years old.

Location: 3400 W Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19104

This tourist attraction is a must when it comes to family trips in Philly. Attested as the oldest zoo in the country, this place is quite unique. Children can see, learn, and play around the most exotic animals.

The best news? There is a system of overhead tunnels that allow you to see orangutans or an Amur tiger walking right above you.

Location: Right on Christopher Columbus Blvd,Philadelphia PA, 19106

Write on your to-do list to visit the RiverLink Ferry. If your kids are young sailors, the Riverlink Ferry is sure to be a great attraction. It starts from Old City to Camden and it is a 20-minute ride, with an amazing view of the Philly skyline. Moreover, it is a pleasant and fun way to get all the Camden main attractions.

Location: 3 Riverside Dr, Camden, NJ 08103

If you are looking for some hands-on activities, all geared toward children, then consider the Camden Children Garden. Here you will be able to have lots of outdoor fun, by taking some rides, visit a dino garden, or attend some nice workshops where kids can learn about nature and gardening.

Location: 1020 South St, Philadelphia, PA 19147

This is a non-profit museum, which displays the mosaic murals and art of the unique artist, Isaiah Zagar, all over half a city block. Why is this a great location for kids? Because they have the chance to observe the small details and the colorful pieces of glass, as well as taking a journey through the museum and attend a happy, fun treasure hunt.

Liberty Bell & Inddependence Hall

Things to do in Philadelphia with kids: History

Kids can have a lot of fun while also learning about history’s most important events. Here are some locations to do that in Philadelphia:

Location: 239 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Does your kid love fire trucks? Give them a surprise and go to Fireman’s Hall Museum. Immediately outside the Old City, this restored firehouse is a pleasant close-up look at the antique fire trucks and many other artifacts which were rescued from some of the world’s famous fire-related events.

Upstairs the museum, kids can try also the firefighter gear, can read books related to the topic, as well as make 911 calls on a pretend phone. At the very end, kids can buy some little gifts, such as model fire trucks, stickers, or colorful patches.

One of the best historic locations you can go with your kids is the Betsy Ross House, which is a gem in Philly’s historic neighborhood. You have access to the house, so kids and adults can see the kitchen and watch even a cooking exhibit.

Using attractive images, kids will learn about colonial cooking. Please check the website of this location first, to see if visits are allowed in the period of time you go there.

Location:  Benches around Independence National Historic Park, Philly PA

A unique place to visit, the Storytelling benches are situated around the Old City, and you will enjoy a very Philly experience: listening to an attractive historical story, told by experts (sometimes in costume). Kids will be attracted by the beauty of Old City, and the costumes these storytellers are wearing.

2027 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130

This location is definitely suited for older kids, meaning pre-teen and up this age, but if your youngsters are passionate about history, this place will go straight to their curiosity. What you need to know is this location is a nearly 2-00-year-old prison, and many years since it was closed for the public.

Today it is open to tours, luckily. For kids, this is a great chance to learn about the country’s history.

Location: 525 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

This is a unique museum in the U.S. and the first one that is wholly dedicated to the country’s constitution. To make it more fun and interesting, here you will find multimedia performances and catching exhibits.

It’s true, this attraction is mostly suited to older elementary-school children, where they can attend family-friendly programs and lots of exhibitions.

Dilworth Park

Location: 1 S 15th St, Philadelphia, PA 19102

Located to the west side of Philadelphia’s City Hall, the Dilworth Park is a kid-friendly place, where you can enjoy the interactive fountain, the large seating areas with green space, along with a hefty event calendar.

Location: 1650 Market St, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Philadelphia is so outstanding from a higher point of view. Try to go to One Liberty Observation Deck, in the city center, and take a look from above. Right from here, you can take a 360-degree view from 57 floors up. Do not hesitate to take your camera with you, to capture this moment.

Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids

Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids: Art

Location: 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130

This type of museum of art is amazing for adults, as they can admire over 240,000 pieces of art. But kids can have lots of fun here too, while also learning about art. There are some family-tours you can attend, so a guide will take you to some more specific collections.

Location: 1401 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19102

Considered one of the most amazing city halls in the country, due to its design, the Philadelphia City Hall has a great, we can say marvel architecture and history. Make sure you take your children to the observation deck too, which is a 548-foot tower. This city hall is also accessible during guided tours and provides a panoramic view of the city.

Free Things to do in Philadelphia

Things to do in Philadelphia with Kids: Music

Location: 137 W Knowlton Rd, Media, PA 19063

This is an orchard outside of Media, which hosts great events throughout the year, but if you are looking for the best time of the year, we recommend you to go during the fall. These gardens are superb, and you can pick-your-own fruit.

Moreover, the latter offers live music, pony rides, caramel apples, face painting for your kids, as well as other entertainment activities.

Location: 101S. Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106

During the Winterfest, the Blue Cross RiverRink brings people the possibility to do ice skating and roller skating during the Summerfest. Here you can enjoy the special pop-up fire pits, cozy couches, hot drinks in the winter, or some indoor games.

During the summer, you have air conditioning, wrap-around porch, cool drinks, or carnival rides. The whole family will have lots of fun with the games in this park.

Free Things to do in Philadelphia

Best Instagram Spots in Philadelphia

Whether you are in town with your family or just with your friends, you should take advantage of some amazing spots where you can capture a breathtaking sunset. Enjoy the great weather and explore Philly, but never forget about taking your camera with you.

And what better way to remember the best times you spent in the city than with a camera in your hand and the most instagrammable place? Catch all the beautiful spots in and around Philly, while also exploring a fascinating city. Here is our list of the best Instagram Spots in Philadelphia to check:

Location: 4773 Cresson Street, Manayunk, Philadelphia, PA 19127

Somewhere in Umbria and Fountain Streets, you will find these gorgeous, mural-glass steps. They are actually almost hidden from the usual eye, so you may walk down the steps and see almost nothing.

But make a turnaround and you will be amazed by the huge mural, “Starry Night”, reminiscent art of Van Gogh. This mural was dedicated in 2015 and it is mandatory to take a photo with it. You can sit on the steps and enjoy a cup of coffee or simply walk down them. Enjoy this vibrant space by taking lots of pictures.

Location: 5400 Lindbergh Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19143

This garden is so green and beautiful that it will attract lots of likes on Instagram. One of our favorite places in this list, the garden has rolling grass fields and some green, vibrant trees that are hard not to catch in a photo.

You can lay on the grass, have a picnic with the kids, or simply enjoy the view over the river. All these places are prime spots where you can make a great photo.

Location: 33 and Oxford Street, East Fairmont Park, Philadelphia, PA 19121

Do you love graffiti photos? Of course, they are colorful, vibrant, and will make your Instagram feed look great. Since Graffiti Pier in Philly was shut down last spring, you will need a new spot for taking a colorful photo. First a 1700s home, this is a stone structure, burned down in the late 20th century.

During this time, The Cliffs have become some kind of a canvas for graffiti artists. Take your camera with you and make sure you capture this.

Location: 1300 S Percy Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147

This is a very interesting place to visit and to capture in your photos. It was created by the local artists in order to combat the ascendant slope of criminality, especially on this particular block. The place is colorful and shows some cool neon lights which will nicely accent any kind of photo.

Location: 10th and Arch Streets, Philadelphia,PA 19107

Have you thought you won’t find a Chinatown in Philly? Well, this place is hectic and crazy and deserves to be captured in some great shots. There are millions of shops that you should be visiting, and children will admire plenty of the symbols of Chinese culture.

This is a very colorful spot, so don’t forget to pass to the iconic arch. Here you can also enjoy various food, pastries, and boba tea.

Location: 121 N. Christopher Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia, PA 19106

This pier was reopened after renovations only last fall and it is a great spot to take some photos. Along with some great picture spots, you can also enjoy the food vendors, music during some nights, and also lots of art.

But most of all there are the stellar views, so the whole family can stay under an arch and snap an artistic picture in front of the Ben Franklin Bridge. You also have an open-air garden, so you have lots to look at and photograph.

Location: 4514 City Ave B, Philadelphia, PA 19131

People love IG feeds with colorful restaurants and cafeterias. We recommend the Rainbow Bagel, where you will find a particular fondness for the colorful guy you will find. Stuffed with an unforgettable cake cream cheese, this place deserves a snap pic.

Location: Wissahickon Valley Park, Philadelphia, PA 19128

Also referred to as Hermits Cave, named after Johannes Kelpius, this is thought to be a Transylvania-born mystic place and was once used as a doomsday Cult hideout. Luckily, the cave is still there, and it is a great spot to take a picture and post it on IG feed. If you want to go there, you can access it by traveling up the hill exactly from Hermit Lane and Barnes Street in Wissahickon Valley Park.

Geno's Cheesesteak's, Philadelphia

Where to Eat in Philadelphia? Kids-friendly restaurants

Once planning a trip to Philly with your family, you should make sure there are plenty of restaurants and cafeterias where both adults and children can have a nice meal. Here are our pick-ups, hope they will be helpful enough:

Location: 1642 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Do you miss the old children’s games? Thirsty Dice offers its customers somewhere around 800 board games. While enjoying a nice time playing Catan or activity, your kids can have pizza, donuts, or some delicious chocolate cakes. Kids will be in Sugar Heaven.

Honey's Sit 'n Eat

(multiple locations)

The Honey’s has two restaurants, and their locations are these: one in the Northern Liberties and one right in the Center City. These places are nice locations to have a family meal, and also offer high chairs for kids.

On the menu, the little ones have eggs, fruits, burgers, and pancakes. Make sure you make a reservation first because the place tends to be full all of the time.

Location: 1804 Callowhill St., Philadelphia, PA 19130 (multiple locations)

This restaurant is so versatile. While adults can have some nice fluffy omelets or some thick sandwiches, kiddos have their own menu. They can have some nice chicken cutlets, as well as some surgery, tasteful wheat pancakes with fruits or chocolate chips.

Do they love scrambled eggs with cheese? Well, Sabrina’s has them all.

Square Burger

Location: 200 N 6th St, Philadelphia, PA 19106 (multiple locations)

Located inside one of the city’s most family-friendly parks, Square Burger is the best place to have a nice, tasty meal with your kids. First, they can go and play with the carousel inside the park, then when they get hungry, they can have a kid-friendly burger, chicken fingers, fries, hot dogs, or the signature Cake Shake, which is made with Tastykake Butterscotch Krimpets.

Location: 700 Chestnut St Philadelphia, PA 19106

This nice local has such a great atmosphere, it is impossible not to remember. The atmosphere is quite luxurious, and the decor makes you feel like a very fancy dinner.

The food on the menu is comfortable for the whole family and includes mac and cheese, pot pie, fried chicken, as well as matzo ball soup.

Location: 1500 Walnut St., Philadelphia, PA 19102

Tell the kids they will go to a chocolate-themed restaurant and see their reaction. This place has one of the most diverse and playful menus in town. Moreover, children can even customize their own smiling pizza, with lots of toppings, play in a mini-spaceship, or share a Chocolate Mess Party.

Imagine their faces when they will see a huge chocolate mud cake swimming in a chocolate sauce. Ore the ice cream bowling balls, the candy bees, and chocolate rocks. Yummy!

Hilton Philadelphia at Penn's Landing
Hilton Philadelphia at Penn's Landing
The Logan Philadelphia
The Logan Philadelphia

Places to Stay in Philadelphia

When planning your first getaway to Philadelphia with kids or your numerous family, there are plenty of factors to consider. It’s true, the idea of traveling to a very new place can be sometimes overwhelming, but not if your pre-planning is very good.

If you need a fast and easy change of scenery, without worrying about where you will eat, or what you will visit, Philli is the answer, as it has them all. A staycation with kids is awesome, as soon as you have kid-friendly accommodation to stay.

As such, here are some of the handiest places to stay in Philly with your kids. Click on the links to read more, right from the owners.  

Best for a short, fancy stay: The Rittenhouse Hotel

Location: 210 West Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, PA 19103

If you want your vacay to be uber special, then this place is the right answer to your prayers. The kids will be happy to pick their souvenirs from The Rittenhouse Treasure Chest, and the hotel also ensures a copy of Good Night Philadelphia to help the little ones introduce to some of the most important Philly landmarks.

Moreover, once you stay here, you will have lots of discounts for the Philadelphia Zoo, Adventure Aquarium, and Please Touch Museum. Once the day of exploring is off, the hotel will offer you the best comfort for an enjoyable rest.

Moreover, as here they come to lots of families with kids, the hotel will offer an infant bathtub, a crib, or a bottle drying crack for the babies all free of charge. You have an indoor atrium pool, so kids will fall in love. The room service is 24 hours, and the personal very kind to help.

Location: 433 Chestnust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106

This accommodation is located right in the heart of the Old City, and it is a great pit stop for those who want to visit Philly’s historical attractions we have mentioned before. More than visiting the main historical attractions in the city, your family, both adults, and kids will feel like home while staying in this colorful boutique hotel.

It provides everything you need, from child safety kits to cribs. You only need to request them. The best part? You can even rent gear, such as bouncy seats or strollers. Right from the very first check-in, kids will be able to pick a giant toy, such as a pirate chest.

Cool, right? The hotel is quite extravagant and will send to you even a goldfish in the room, and this is no joke.

Location: 1 Logan Square, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Are you a numerous family? Then the Logan Philadelphia hotel is perfect for a cozy stay. Located in the heart of the Parkway Museum District, this accommodation is just a walking distance from the Academy of Natural Sciences and the Franklin Institute.

Now, the most interesting part is that this hotel looks like an art museum, with a nice curated collection of paintings, that illustrate the most important personalities in the city’s history. For an easier understanding, you can download a self-guided tour.

The hotel has a coloring book, called Logan’s “Family Fun Package”, as well as a design-your-own-cookie activity, where kids will have lots of fun. If you are looking for advice, try to reserve one of the Bristol Suites, which is perfect if you stay with your kids there.

This suit comes with a second bedroom, with bunk beds, games, toys, and books.

Location: 1800 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Maybe there are some families that are looking for a smaller, yet cheaper hotel for their stay in Philly. Well, the Sonesta Hotel is very close to Center City and the most important spots in the city. This is actually an art-inspired hotel, with such attractive rooms, that are decorated modern, and with complimentary amenities, which are perfect for families.

The best part is that you have all the best utilities, from high-speed internet connection to a special place outside the hotel which will keep the kids occupied. The hotel’s outdoor and rooftop pools are such a nice surprise when you reach this location.

Located in the lovely nearby Rittenhouse Square, this place is perfect if you adore walking, have nice meals, shop, or get entertained.

Best family pool: Hilton Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing

Location: 201 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia, PA 19106

When choosing this hotel, you will know you got the unique chance to have the best location. Situated right on the Delaware River Waterfront, this accommodation has a really gorgeous view right from the hotel’s window.

If you go during the Summerfest or the Penn’s Landing’s Winterfest, you will have a lot of fun and enjoy a warmer season too. If you want to have an elegant, special dinner, you can book one right at the hotel’s restaurant, which has a unique overlooking water view.

Kids can have their very own friendly menu. Breakfast starts from 6 am, so don’t worry in case your kids are very early-morning children. The youngest visitors will love the indoor pool as well, and the adults will have their own relaxation time.

Last Thoughts

Don’t let the year pass without having a memorable vacation with your kids. Whether you plan to stay a whole week or just a weekend, Philadelphia is such a pleasant destination for both adults and children.

The city helps families have the time of their life, and offers such great events and activities to enjoy together.

Enrich kid’s curiosity and playtime and relax next to them, now that you have this friendly guide for your next step in Philly. From parks to museums, zoos, annual festivals, or recreational activities, Philadelphia is such a great place to explore.

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things to do in Philadelphia with kids

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Things to do, Places to go, Fun in Philadelphia

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