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Philadelphia ATTRACTIONS See all

Independence National Historical Park

Spanning 55 acres and bridging two neighborhoods -- Old City and Society Hill – this national park is often called “America’s most historic square mile” for encompassing many of Philadelphia’s most famous historical landmarks. These include Independence Hall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; the Liberty Bell Center; Franklin Court; the First and Second Banks of the United States; and the National Constitution Center, among many others. Visitors should plan to spend one to two days in the park in order to visit several of these sites and explore the extensive grounds. 

By the time City Hall was completed in 1901, Old City – a couple of miles to the east -- began to lose its importance as a cultural center. Between 1915 and the late 1940s, a park was proposed as a means of salvaging and promoting what leaders of both the city and the state saw as vital to Philadelphia’s place in American history. The park’s construction, begun in 1950, required the demolition of about 200 historic buildings; many were, by the middle of the 20th century, in various states of disrepair. The park’s layout and structures were completed by the 1970s, but the National Park Service didn’t actually purchase the land until the 1990s.

The nerve center of the park is now the Independence Visitor Center (at the corner of 6th & Market Streets), where tourists can pick up a map of the area; get free, timed tickets to Independence Hall (required from March-December); find bathrooms and snacks; and have access to Wi-Fi.  The Visitor Center has its own underground parking lot, but is also adjacent to subway and bus stops.

Practical Info

From mid-June to early September, free Twilight Tours of the park and its historical landmarks are given by members of a non-profit group called Friends of Independence; these tours meet at the Visitor Center and run from 6-7:15 p.m.  The park is bordered by Chestnut, Walnut, 5th & 6th Streets and is open daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; it’s closed Christmas Day.

Tours & Tickets

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Philadelphia Segway Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

See top Philadelphia sights including the Historic District, Penn's Landing, the Italian Market, the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and Society Hill on a ...  Read more

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Duration: 1 hour

From USD $50.00

Constitutional Walking Tour of Philadelphia

4.5 star rating: Recommended 41 Reviews

The Constitutional Walking Tour of Philadelphia takes you on a walking journey through America's Most Historic Area - the birthplace of America's nation. Step ...  Read more

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Duration: 75 minutes (approx.)

From USD $17.49

Founding Fathers Tour of Philadelphia

4.5 star rating: Recommended 30 Reviews

Experience the best of US history with a modern twist on this tour of Philadelphia. See where the Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, take ...  Read more

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Duration: 2 hours (approx.)

From USD $20.00

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