Today we spent the day on a whistle-stop tour of Philadelphia’s best downtown sites. The weather was amazing all day – about 30 degrees consistently so that really added to the experience.
We started by taking a walking tour called ‘Franklin’s Footsteps’ which lasted about 90 minutes and took us around lots of the sites for a brief overview. The guide was really good and we gained a lot of knowledge in the short time. Sites included – Benjamin Franklin’s grave (throw a penny on for good luck. Heads up means a new bride will have a good marriage), the oldest street in the USA, Betsy Ross’ house (where the first American flag was sewn), the first fire department in the USA, largest bank in USA, , Liberty bell, Franklin’s house.
Next was a tour of Independence Hall which we learnt used to be the State House of Pennsylvania until the war of independence started in the mid 1770s. In the building was the room where the declaration of independence was signed and where the constitution was debated between the 13 founding states.
We then went for lunch at a traditional Philly cheese steak diner which was right next to ‘Mac’s Tavern’ – owned by Mac from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, one of our favourite TV shows. I had a pizza chicken steak roll while Lauren had a cheese beef steak roll. Both tasted great.
The afternoon started with a tour of two colonial houses, restored to their state in the 1700s. One was from a middle class family and one from an upper class family. It was interesting to see the contrast. After that we went to constitution hall where we saw a presentation on the US constitution and some exhibits showing the flags from all 50 states and additional territories. Here I got to sign the constitution since apparently tourists are welcome to as well!
Exhausted from hours of walking, we returned back to the Sockel’s house for a break before dinner at a really nice Italian called Berlucci’s (I think), which is a chain here on the East Coast. Great food, and now to bed before the trip to DC tomorrow morning!
A special thanks to the Sockel’s for hosting us here in Philadelphia and arranging all the tours which were really interesting!
Photo(s) of the day: Lauren outside of Independence Hall and James signing the constitution!