Visiting Philadelphia and looking for some outdoor activities with kids? (If you need a list of fun things to do indoors, click here.) While there are tons of things to do, here are my top 20 picks if you want to be outside:
- Fairmount Park–Philadelphia’s huge city park system of over 2,000 acres, with buildings like Memorial Hall, horse trails, skateboard park, historic houses and hidden gems
- Valley Forge National Historic Park–where Washington camped with his troops during the Revolutionary War with miles of trails, open space, historic reenactments and replicas of the fort buildings
- Morris Arboretum, Jenkins Arboretum and Tyler Arboretum–Philadelphia is lucky to have so many wonderful natural sites. Don’t miss the tree house or model railway at Morris.
- Bartram’s Gardens–America’s first and oldest botanical garden, located right along the Schuylkill River
- Longwood Gardens–Internationally famous, with special events year-round (don’t miss the fountains and lights at Christmas), the greenhouses alone would make the trip worthwhile.
- Chanticleer–lovely garden located in Wayne, a great destination outside of the city limits
- Smith Memorial Playground–unparalleled playground with a 3-storey building with “inside” play areas and an intersting history
- Philadelphia Zoo–as the country’s first zoo, a visit here is both fun and manageable in size.
- Linvilla Orchards–a long-time favorite of kids and families, this u-pick orchard has a huge variety of fruit to pick and is a top destination at harvest/Halloween time.
- Dilworth Park/Spruce Harbor Park–these city run parks offer ice skating in winter and fountains, hammocks and other warm weather fun in summer
- Franklin Square–a city kid top pick, complete with fountain, mini-golf and carousel
- Mural Arts Tour–the best place to see murals is in the city famous for them! Go on a walking tour and see some of the most iconic murals
- Magic Gardens/South St.–this mosaiced grotto (it’s hard to explain; see the link!) and the surrounding funky retail area are not to be missed!
- Rocky Steps, Boathouse Row–not connected, but within walking distance and right near the Philadelphia Museum of Art
Historically Significant Destinations
This list is by no means exhaustive! It’s just a starting point, but I think it has some great options.