OWTK PHILLY LOCAL / Travel

My Passport To Visiting Philadelphia With Friends

Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia_xoxo Visiting Philadelphia

This travel story was made possible thanks to Wyndham Rewards.

When I was a teenager there was only one place I wanted to be: Philadelphia. The energy, foodie delights, art house movie theaters and, most of all, the live music scene of my hometown big city called out to me and pulled me down I-95 often. Eventually I moved out of my parent’s suburban home and into a downtown apartment, thus becoming a small spoke in Philadelphia’s magnificent wheel; working, eating out, and soaking up the city life as only a 22 year old can.

Over the past two decades, Philadelphia has only gotten more enticing and exciting to me. While I did move back out to the burbs to start a family, I still spend a lot of time in town, and when friends come to visit I eagerly serve as defacto tour guide showing off my family’s favorite spots to chill, eat and sightsee. Recently, I used Wyndham Rewards points while visiting Philadelphia with Jennifer Mitchell of Comeback Momma and her daughter, neither of whom had been to Philly before this summer. We spent a few days touring and tasting the best of what Philadelphia has to offer. Here’s what we did!

Visiting Philadelphia — The Passport To My City

Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia_hotel Visiting Philadelphia

We found the Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District at 4th and Arch St in Old City Philadelphia to be perfectly situated, allowing a family to experience the best of the city with easy access to the important historic sights, and some of the best modern restaurants, theater, art and culture Philly has to offer. Booking our rooms through the Wyndham app was quick and easy, giving me more time to plan our epic summertime Philly itinerary.

Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia mural arts tour

We started with a quick drive (thanks to in and out parking lot privileges at the Wyndham!) to South Broad Street for the Mural Arts Trolley Tour. Philly has over 3,600 pieces of outdoor art; big beautiful murals on the sides of buildings that inspire and inform visitors about the complex history and the bright future of this old American city. The girls loved gazing up at trees, inspiring quotes and, especially the musical ode to The Roots on South Street before we hopped over to East Passyunk Ave to wander the quaint shops of this up and coming neighborhood, buying a few handmade prints from a local artist at Nice Things, and to stop at Capogiro for a much needed gelato break on a hot summer day.

Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia

Later, we did the quintessential Philly foodie thing at Jim’s Steaks — our pick for best Philly cheesesteak — grabbed a slice of our favorite pizza in the whole world at Lorenzo’s on South Street (the move is to start with the pizza as an appetizer, eating it while in line for the cheesesteak) and then got spooky at Eastern State Penitentiary before heading back to the Wyndham for a swim in the rooftop pool overlooking the Ben Franklin Bridge and to figure out a plan for dinner. We eventually decided to hop in a cab to spare the tiny legs, to enjoy Japanese food in a stunning center city setting at 1225 Raw on Sansom Street — The seafood special fried rice was remarkable.

Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia hotel pool

The next day, we needed to take our guests to Independence Hall and the famous Liberty Bell because even though we like a more local and off the beaten path version of touring Philly, you have to pay homage to the legendary history of the city too. We arrived just as the doors opened at 9am and nearly had the bell to ourselves, which for a summer weekend is extremely rare. It’s always best to arrive as the most popular sights open, before the huge crowds and tour buses show up.

Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia liberty bell

We followed that up with one of the crown jewels of my city’s art & architecture: Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, which is more the wild curves and curious edges of Antoni Gaudi than the rigid structure of William Penn but at the same time this mosaic masterpiece which will forever be a work in progress is very much Philly through and through.

 Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia_magic gardens

Having already seen the artful side of the city on foot and from the seat of a trolley, we headed up to the top of City Hall to look out upon the tableau of Philadelphia from a place removed from the hustle and bustle of city life, with distance to observe and appreciate how beautiful, vibrant and diverse this great American city really is.

Passport to my city Philadelphia City Hall Observation Deck

When you visit Philly – and you absolutely should be visiting Philadelphia – use your Wyndham Rewards Points to book a room or two at the Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District. It’s a beautiful place in a beautiful part of town that will have you steps from live theater, art house cinema, tasty eats and stunning art. Like Philly itself, the Wyndham is a modern gem wrapped up in American history.

Wyndham Rewards is making it even easier for families to travel this summer — you can save up to 25% when you book direct plus stay twice and earn $100 in Wyndham Rewards gift cards. Learn more at www.wyndhamrewards.com/offer2016.

  Wyndham Passport to my city philadelphia hotel key

*I was provided with Wyndham Rewards points for our hotel stay and financial compensation while we were visiting Philadelphia with friends to facilitate this story. All opinions expressed above are honest and unbiased, as always.

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