From Franklin to Food
Visit those must-see Philadelphia sights and try the city’s best bites on this tour that goes beyond the guidebooks.
Philly History and Food Tour Highlights
- Get a whistle-stop private tour of all the major Philadelphia sights, as well as a couple of hidden gems, too!
- Absorb the rich historical significance of landmarks like the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Christ Church, Elfreth’s Alley, Betsy Ross House and more
- Stroll through iconic Reading Terminal Market, one of the oldest and largest indoor markets in the country
- Savor the one and only Philly cheesesteak from one of your guide’s favorite places
- Discover Philly’s food innovations along trendy Sansom Street in the heart of Center City
Inclusions: Admission to various historic buildings, a beer or beverage at the midway point, a variety of food samples that will equal a full meal
Exclusions: Additional food and drinks, souvenirs and personal shopping, tips/gratuities for your guide
- Duration: 5 hours
- Meeting point: behind the Religious Liberty Statue at the southeast corner of 5th and Market Streets (101 South Independence Mall East)
- Starting time: 11.30 AM
- Ending point: Center City
Visit those must-see Philadelphia sights and try the city’s best bites on this tour that goes beyond the guidebooks and gives you a taste of local food and American history from a local’s perspective. There’s always more than meets the eye – whether it’s 250-year-old history or world-famous food. Get ready to hear tales you didn’t learn in school and try dishes that’ll surprise you with their innovation and creativity on this day around Philly.
We’ll start with history – behind the Religious Liberty Statue just outside the National Museum of American Jewish History, where you’ll meet your guide and begin your Best. Day. Ever.
From here, we’ll take you back to the time of our nation’s founding, weaving your way through Independence National Park. Your guide will share knowledge of the most significant sites of the park, such as Independence Hall, Congress Hall, and Old City Hall, among other sites that were instrumental in establishing many of the country’s firsts in institutions and ideologies.
Continue to a spot where (on weekdays only) we can grab a view of Maxfield Parrish’s Dream Garden mosaic mural and a possible excursion into Washington Square for stories of Philadelphia founder William Penn.
We then pass the Liberty Bell, where you’ll hear about why this iconic symbol has become so famous all around the world. Just next door, you’ll enter the President’s House site, home to George Washington and John Adams during Philly’s tenure as our nation’s capital. You’ll stroll up through the grand stretch of Independence Mall, home to Independence Visitor Center, the National Constitution Center, the Bourse, and the U.S. Mint.
After passing by the gravesite of the city’s most renowned inventor, Ben Franklin, you’ll enter the charming back alleys of Old City with its unique art galleries, trendy cafés, and fascinating industrial architecture and where you’ll have the chance to grab a quick snack or a drink and relax with your guide — the perfect opportunity to ask any pressing questions you may have about things to do around town after your tour.
Venture past the Betsy Ross House and then down Elfreth’s Alley, the street famous for being the oldest continuously occupied residential street in the country. Next, you may be treated to a visit inside Christ Church, where you’ll hear stories of our founding fathers, sit where they sat, and learn about the birth of the Episcopal Church in America.
You’ll then head into Center City to begin the foodie half of your tour! Your guide will take you to the center of it all — Philadelphia’s iconic City Hall (via the subway). You may continue on with the same guide or you may meet up with a new guide. From here, you’ll experience the variety and history of Philadelphia’s epic foodie offerings, from must-eat classics to trendy favorites. You’re sure to get your fill of delicious bites and fascinating tidbits on the second half of your tour.
We’ll start off by heading to one of the most popular destinations for Philadelphia locals and visitors alike – Reading Terminal Market. You’ll eat your way through one of America’s oldest and largest daily indoor markets. Tap into the diverse cultural influence on Philly’s food scene by sampling a Pennsylvania German handmade soft pretzel, Southern-inspired mac-n-cheese, Jewish-style pastrami on rye, or an Italian cannoli. Whatever food your guide features, you’ll definitely get the local flavor.
Of course, no Philadelphia food tour is complete without the Big One — the Philly cheesesteak. A local favorite that has inspired countless imitators around the world, we promise you there is no substitute for the real thing. In the Market, on the street, or at a local shop, your guide will treat you to their own neighborhood favorite.
Once you’ve had your fill of Philadelphia classics, make your way through the heart of the city and discover the innovative side of the Philly food scene. A stop into a local coffee shop that prides itself on fair trade and environmental sustainability will show off Philly’s social consciousness. Please your palate at a neighborhood eatery known for applying old-World recipes to innovative lick-the-bowl-clean hummus and pita plates. If you’re looking to try something out-of-the-box, your guide may introduce you to an epic and shockingly delicious vegan shake. This stop on the tour just be the pick-me-up you need to continue your foodie journey.
Follow your guide a few more blocks towards some of the newer foodie hotspots of the city. Here, you’ll taste delicious food featuring locally-sourced ingredients. A stop at a Sansom Street pizza parlor will give you the opportunity to try a slice of home-grown mushroom pie straight from nearby Kennett Square, the “Mushroom Capital of the World”. Enjoy a cone of vanilla or chocolate ice cream from a Pennsylvania dairy farm right down the road. Or, if you are brave, you can conquer some scrapple, a staple of Amish cuisine that is best enjoyed without knowing what’s in it.
Your tour concludes in the heart of Center City and your guide will be happy to offer recommendations for where to grab a happy hour drink, do some nearby sightseeing, or go for dinner, if you can even think about food.