Weekend Getaway With a Toddler: Philadelphia

If you find yourself in the Mid-Atlantic region of the country anytime soon, you should plan for a stop in Pennsylvania’s center of history and fun, Philadelphia. Philly is an especially great place to plan for a weekend away with your toddler. The city is packed with plenty of sights that cater to small children and families. When you’re ready to start planning your trip, make sure you customize your plans so your child is engaged and active throughout the weekend. Here are some ways you can make your trip to Philadelphia great with a toddler in tow.

Philadelphia skyline and Schuylkill river, PA, USA.

Philadelphia skyline and Schuylkill river, PA, USA.

Plan an Amazing Philly Itinerary With Your Toddler in Mind

After taking the time to pick a great, family-friendly hotel or vacation rental, you and your toddler should spend your hours in the city at spots that get rave reviews from kids. Luckily, this historic city has plenty of options for you and your toddler to see throughout your weekend. Here are some top places to visit when you tour Philly with your toddler:

  • Franklin Institute – A trip to Philadelphia can begin with a valuable learning experience about science and the world at the Franklin Institute. This highly respected museum can help your toddler develop a better understanding of topics like weather, astronomy and mechanics. There are plenty of high-quality exhibits and programs that kids and grown-ups will be sure to enjoy.
  • Sesame Place – Philadelphia is also home to one of the most toddler-friendly amusement parks in the country, Sesame Place. This special place is designed for the youngest ones in the family and brings the fun characters and world of the beloved television show, Sesame Street, to life. You and your child can enjoy rides, water activities, playgrounds, shows and even character meals that are suited for young children from age one to six.
  • Independence National Park – History can come alive for you and your toddler with a visit to central Philadelphia’s historic area and Independence Hall. Inside, you’ll be able to get a glimpse of the world-famous Liberty Bell and learn about the history of this colonial city. Outside of Independence Hall is the national historic park with cobblestone streets and preserved buildings from the 18th century.
  • Please Touch Museum – Another spot that is a must-see for anyone with a toddler in tow is the Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia. This incredible destination encourages young children to interact with its exhibits and touch anything and everything. Toddlers will love the opportunities for hands-on activities that encourage learning about arts, language, history and science.
Sesame Place Splash. Photo: Kids Out and About

Sesame Place Splash. Photo: Kids Out and About

Snap Great Shots at These Philly Spots

While it’s expected that you’ll take plenty of memorable pictures of your family as you tour the sights and stops above, you also want to find the best settings that capture the heart of the city for memories down the road. Whether you’re planning to make a physical photo memory book or simply update your social media account with incredible shots from your adventure, you’ll need a variety of places for top photographic moments. Here are our favorite Philadelphia settings for gorgeous family photos:

  • Magic Gardens – After spending time at Philadelphia’s most majestic museums and centers for culture, you should consider heading to the Magic Gardens to give your toddler a sensory delight. This eccentric spot for art makes a great backdrop for a unique photo.
  • One Liberty Observation Deck – The Philadelphia skyline is not as famous as some other larger metro areas, but you can still take it in and get it in your background for an amazing picture of your toddler’s adventure. Use the elevator at the One Liberty building and get fast tracked to the observation deck to set the scene.
  • The Rocky Steps – Everyone’s favorite movie about boxing is another spot that could be on your photography list for your trip. Get yourself down to the Philadelphia Art Museum and act out Rocky’s jog up the steps for a great picture.
  • Race Street Pier – The scenic Delaware River can also play a part in your social media posting. Head over to the Race Street Pier for a great view of the river and an interesting bridge to be part of your picture.
A view of Philadelphia from the top of the Rocky steps

A view of Philadelphia from the top of the Rocky steps

Eat Your Way Around Town

After your tour of the city’s greatest sights is finished each day, you’ll need to find the best places that offer unique meals you and your toddler will love. You’ll also need to plan out some stops for breakfast, lunch and snacks to keep up with the fast pace of a city vacation in Philadelphia. Here are some of the most-loved dining spots around the city that are perfect for families with toddlers or kids:

Tasty beef steak sandwich with onions, mushroom and melted provolone cheese in a ciabatta

Tasty beef steak sandwich with onions, mushroom and melted provolone cheese in a ciabatta

  • Philly Cheesesteaks – No one should leave Philadelphia without trying either Geno’s or Pat’s Philly cheesesteaks. The jury is out about which one is better, but at least you don’t have to travel far to sample both.
  • Hoagies – Paesano’s is your spot to get an authentic Philadelphia hoagie for you and your toddler. You can enjoy this delicious sandwich and live like the locals.
  • Diner Atmosphere – For a fun lunch in an unusual setting, check out the Trolley Car Diner. This old trolley car now operates as a fully functional restaurant.

Watch Out for These Potential Problems in Philadelphia

No one wants to experience trouble with safety or other issues while on vacation. Here are some things to watch out for in Philadelphia:

  • Aggressive Beggars – Like many big cities, Philadelphia has its share of aggressive beggars. Simply say no if you are asked for money and walk away.
  • Traffic – It’s important to keep your toddler close to you when you’re out and about on the busy streets of the city. You may want to use a stroller to help keep your toddler from dashing into traffic.
  • Humidity – During the summer months, this part of the country may experience intense humidity. Hot temperatures can be even more uncomfortable. Make sure you take plenty of breaks to cool off.

Your Philadelphia adventure can go off without a hitch if you follow these helpful tips devoted to families with toddlers. Find out how others fared in the city by following KAMO on Twitter at @kamo_family, on Facebook or log into Instagram and search for the term kamofamily.

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