Now that spring has arrived, I’m always looking for more reasons to escape the city. After some light research, I learned that Philadelphia is only a little more than 2 hours away. May seemed like the perfect month to visit the city of brotherly love, so I booked a cheap $30 round trip ticket through Megabus, packed a few things in my backpack, and took off one Friday afternoon.
I’m really fortunate to have connections in some major cities. My good friend Sophia, who is a student at the University of Pennsylvania, let me stay the weekend with her in her cute studio near University City.
She lives relatively close to Drexel University and not to mention, many frat houses. The whole neighborhood was very lively, never lacking with people walking the streets, music being played, and youth wandering about.
It was my first time in the city and I got a good vibe from it. Just like Boston and DC, it wasn’t as visibly diverse as NYC but has its pockets of every ethnicity throughout the city.
I spread out my trip trying to visit and enjoy a few of the neighborhoods. I made it to Powelton Village, Logan Square, Rittenhouse Square, Chinatown, Washington Square West, Old City, Girard Estate and a few other neighborhoods in passing.
Each neighborhood was very distinct and the demographic switched in an instant by just hopping on a different bus line.
I had a number of touristy items on my agenda, trying a Philly cheese steak and running up the Rocky steps at the Philadelphia Museum of Art were the top two.
Philly’s a very walkable city. Everyday I would walk from Sophia’s place and either hop on the SEPTA to get to the main hubs or just walk it across the 76 freeway and end up on the famous Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
I love how close this city is to NYC, it’s like taking a trip to and from Coney Island. You can never just see it all but I’ll be back again, next time to check out the Magic Gardens, some art galleries, and some of the other neighborhoods I missed.
Before I leave, I must give credit to the Fresh Prince. I had to learn and memorize all of the state capitols in elementary school but it was Mr. Smith that made me put Philly on my bucketlist. Thanks Will for planting the seed!