When I flew back from Florida about a year ago, I got stuck for 24 hours in Philadelphia due to massive dumpings of snow. Thanks to US Airways/ American Airlines (who offered the rudest service ever and no accommodation or any form of food or drink) I was put on a flight the next day, so I thought I'd make the most of my additional holiday day. Here’s what I got up to.
Now it wasn’t my first time in the city of brotherly love. In fact I had been here many times before during my tour guiding days, taking passengers from NYC to DC and back, making a stop in Philly where I took them around the historic part of the city. I thought it would be fun to see if I could retrace the city tour I took them on.
First though, it was breakfast time. I was staying at Penn Square, right opposite the imposing City Hall Building, so plenty of food options there. Walking around, I couldn’t help but notice how New Yorkie this bit of Philly was. I didn’t remember this at all about Philadelphia, so it was a nice surprise. I saw lots of brownstones and plenty of trendy cafes and coffee shops. I happened on a place called Toast, where they made me the most amazing French toast.
Leaving the nostalgia behind, I headed to the house of Betsy Ross, the lady who supposedly created the first American flag. It now houses a lovely, little museum which showcases period furniture and tells you a little bit about the life of Betsy herself. You can even see Betsy at work and she actually showed me how to make a perfect star.
After my visit to the museum I headed to Elfreth’s Alley. It’s only a short and narrow street, but it’s apparently the oldest residential street in the USA. I love it for its colourful Georgian and Federal-style architecture and cobblestoned pavement.
My next stop was the place where Franklin’s house once stood. All that is left now is a metal frame mimicking the house, but right next to it is a superb museum showcasing everything you ever wanted to know about the man. I spent a good hour in there as there was so much to see and learn.
I headed towards Bohemian South Street, which is lined with restaurants, shops and cafes. I walked a few blocks, before popping back into the residential streets right behind it, warping me straight back into the times of George Washington and co.