Discover Philadelphia

Discover Philadelphia

While in D.C., you’ll not only have the possibility to explore the capital itself, but also other cities nearby. It’s easy and not so expensive to take the train to Baltimore, New York City, Philadelphia or Annapolis. Recently, my boyfriend came to visit me all the way from Belgium, and we discovered the beautiful Philadelphia. It was a combination of New York’s busy, crowded city life among endless skyscrapers and the more relaxed, cozy feeling of D.C. Keep reading for some tips in case you want to visit this amazing city yourself!


1. Get to know the city by just wandering around in it

We actually had no single plan to discover the city. In fact, we didn’t even know what Philly was famous for. It just sounded like a cool place, and so we booked our stay. However, it turned out to be a very beautiful city, an absolute must-do. Since we were too lazy to plan our trip, we just wandered around in the city, looking on Google Maps once in a while to find cool places. As Philly is not the biggest city, I think this is a great way to discover it since you will come across beautiful sites you wouldn’t have otherwise.


We, for example, didn’t know anything about the Magical Gardens there, but god, they were so beautiful. A garden, made by a couple of artists who have been building this for over the past 50 years, with little pieces of mirrors, bikes, bottles, plates and just any arbitrary thing. We just walked right into it while on our way to food (yes, of course, what else could we have been our way to). Also, we heard Philly was famous for the Liberty Bell and looked it up on Google Maps. However, we never found the actual bell, so maybe you can try to plan that part of your city trip.


Magical gardens


2. Go to the Observation Deck

This observation deck gives you the chance to watch all over the city. You do have to pay for it, but wow, it was worth it! What a view.



3. Check out the Rocky steps

Go to the Rocky Steps, famous because some scenes in the movie Rocky were shot there. And of course, you should definitely try to run up and down these stairs, along with a bunch of other idiots, like he did in the movie.



4. Eat a Philly Cheese Steak at Jim’s Steak House

As you probably already know, food is one of the most important things in my life. Give me some good food, and this girl becomes instantly happy. We already heard before that Philadelphia is known for its cheese steaks, and so I was determined to give it a try. And why go for anything lesser than the best steak house in town? We Googled it and ended up at Jim’s Steaks, located on South Street. When we got there, there was a line from inside the place reaching to outside, all the way across the corner.


But still, dedicated as we were, we got in line. We waited for about 40-50 minutes to be able to finally order one. I had also read that you have to order a cheese steak with as few words as possible, to make it easier for the cooks. If you say ‘one whiz with,' that means that you want a cheese steak sandwich with Cheez Whiz and fried onions, which is the classic choice. So I had been practicing this all day as I looked forward to this very much. And of course, I eventually stumbled and wasn’t able to say anything except for a very long sentence explaining what I wanted…



5. Don’t try to pet the squirrels

Washington, D.C. itself is already full of squirrels, but since I’m always busy walking to work, I never get the chance to stop and look at them. In Philly, however and also unfortunately, I did get that chance. I spotted one when we were strolling through a park and was like “OH IT’S SO FLUFFY!” (I better hope you know this quote and thus have seen Despicable Me). I went up to it and almost got attacked by the stupid thing. Seriously though, the thing looked like evil itself.



If you haven’t already during your time here at TWC, get off your lazy couch and go discover Philly! But stay away from squirrels. Seriously.


Your Enthusiastic (but anxious about squirrels) European,


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