A Day in Philly for Less Than $100

When you’re traveling you are what you are right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road.

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I’ve now been to Philadelphia, PA twice and I’ve loved every trip I’ve taken there. We’re even planning several more trips, so stay tuned for more adventures now that we live just 1.5 hours away. I’m combining my past two trips into one post to give you an awesome, travel blogger approved itinerary for a day in Philly. This trip won’t break the bank and you can see some of the coolest and most popular places this city has to offer.

Without further ado, here’s what you can do in Philadelphia on a budget of $100!

Parking

The most expensive part of your day is going to be parking. You’ll spend a max of $30, but can find parking for less. This site shows all of your options and the daily rates. I used a parking garage since I knew we’d be there a few hours and didn’t want to worry about my meter running out or having to move my car.

The parking garage associated with Reading Terminal Market has a great deal. All day parking is $14 if you spend $10 inside the market. Let’s face it, we will ALL spend $10 in the market because the food is that amazing and going anywhere else for lunch is crazy, especially when it’s your first visit.

Historical Sites

As the location where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed, Philadelphia has a massive amount of historical sites to visit. You could spend an entire weekend touring them all, but here are some highlights to help you narrow it down to the best of the best.

Liberty Bell

The bell has become a symbol of American independence and you can visit it for free! Learn about its history from its early days where it rang to call people to meetings and learn how it came to rest in its own mini museum today. The line for the bell can get quite long, and it’s been known to have a 2-hour wait time. The line moved quickly on the day I was there and it was great to get a picture with it! Come early if you don’t want to wait in line for a while.

Independence Hall

While you do need a ticket to enter and can only enter during your allotted time with a tour guide, it’s another must-see attraction. Tickets are $1 and this includes the tour with your very own guide. The visit lasts about 15 minutes and it was neat to learn about the space and see where the constitution was signed.

National Constitution Center

As the name implies, this museum is dedicated to anything and everything related to the constitution. See the statues of the founding fathers (a crowd favorite), live performances, rare artifacts, and the freedom rising exhibit. Adult tickets are $14.50 and there are various discounts for veterans and discounted prices for children.

Betsy Ross House

The woman who sewed the American Flag lived right in Philadelphia and you can visit her home. We just walked past, but you can visit for $7 and explore the home and interact with a reenactor to get a fuller picture of daily life during the colonial period in addition to learning about her extraordinary life.

Reading Terminal Market

If there’s food involved count me in. Reading Terminal Market will always have a special place in my heart because it gave me way too many options that I wanted to try and not enough room in my stomach to try them all. Reading Terminal Market is an indoor market operating since 1892. It offers a variety of made-fresh food stalls, fresh veggies, coffee, chocolates, ice cream, and gifts.

Will and I shared empanadas from Loco Lucho’s which were small but packed with delicious filling and flavor. I got a turkey sandwich with peppers and onions from The Original Turkey. I didn’t want to finish it because it was that good. Will got the Honduran baleada which had pork, avocado, beans, and hot sauce. There were tons of variations and it was so, so good. I don’t normally like beans or avocado, but I was sold after having a bite of his lunch.

We wanted something sweet, but nothing massive, so we opted for chocolate truffles from Sweet as Fudge. I got a chocolate orange filled dark chocolate truffle and Will got a tiramisu. Yes freaking please. I need more. Will wanted a coffee stop, so we made a pit stop at Old City Coffee to get him an iced caffeine boost. I’ve never seen him love coffee more even though his face says otherwise.

Museums

There’s no shortage of museums in Philadelphia. In fact, there are over 25. My favorites are the Magic Gardens, Mütter Museum, Eastern State Penitentiary (audio tours narrated by Steve Buscemi), and The Franklin Institute. Each museum ranges in its price but expect to pay somewhere around $19 for each one. From the macabre and downright weird to exploring space to taking a leap back in time to before the dinosaurs, there’s a museum for everyone in Philly.

Riverfront Trails

I had no idea how amazing the river trails were in Philly until we drove in a different way than we have in the past. There are MILES of paths for walking and biking along the water that lead right into the city center, giving everyone an amazing view of the city and a nice stretch of green space. There’s also an ADA compliant boardwalk that joins up with this trail, making it truly for everyone.

Don’t have a bike and want to explore for miles? You can either park at several spots along the trail or you can rent a bike for the day to ride as much as you’d like!

Walking Tours and Shopping Local

Whether you like histories or movie trivia, there is most likely a walking tour designed for you in Philadelphia. Most tours focus on the historical aspects of the city because there’s just so much of it packed into the city. However, that’s not all there is. Rocky movie fans can take self-guided tours to famous places in the Rocky/Creed franchise including the infamous steps.

There are also different apps to download that will give you different walking tour options and some are even audio guided by celebrities. You can choose an anti-slavery tour or a mural/art tour. No matter what you choose, it’s going to be awesome.

All in all, the most expensive thing we bought was parking. We got to tour museums, see historical sites, and walk around the city for less than $100. Minus parking, you don’t even need to pay a penny to have an amazing day in Philadelphia. Although, some places have free parking, so you could spend an entire day there for free! But don’t. Treat yourself to food and fun, just keep it in your budget!

There’s also a great mural right down the street so I had to pose with my new book. Get excited for next week’s post about unique things to do in this very same city. I purposefully left some great finds and hidden gems out so you can look forward to another fun post next week!

Published by Emma Browning

Hey everyone, my name is Emma Browning. Thanks for stopping by. I like to think of myself as a modern day renaissance woman since I basically do a little bit of everything. Here's a few of my jobs/hobbies in case you're curious: Group Fitness Instructor (Zumba, BodyStep and BodyPump), small business owner (string art& travel photography), archaeologist/anthropologist, actress, SCUBA dive master, reading addict, dog mom, cellist, and of course travel enthusiast. I've traveled to over 21 countries and speak French fluently and am learning Spanish. Traveling is one of my all time favorite things to do whether it be a day trip with my dog or a massive international adventure. I created this blog to help others see the world vicariously through my wanderings and also to give useful tips and essential information that will hopefully inspire more people to travel. Hopefully you have as much fun reading these posts and get a lot of useful information from them!

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