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One Day in Philadelphia

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Nashville, TN
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One Day in Philadelphia

We plan on spending one day in Philly passing through between Washington DC and New York City. We plan on seeing the Eastern State Penetentiary, Independance Hall and the Liberty Bell, and the Mutter Museum if time allows.

Of course, we want to have an authentic cheesesteak, and I have read up in the forums in the ongoing debate among the various choices. I don't think we would be interested in the Pat's/Geno's thing based on what I have read, and I don't want spend a great amount of time trying to park and stand in a long line.

Can anyone recommend a place close to the sites I mentioned above that would have adequate parking? Since we have our own car, we could even catch a place on the way out of town.

Thanks for any helpful advice!

Bucks County...
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for Philadelphia, Train Travel, Bucks County
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1. Re: One Day in Philadelphia

Eastern State Pen/Mutter Museum are at the opposite end of town from the other sites, so you will save the most time by moving your car (doubt you will have time for the Mutter, and parking there is mostly on street with meters. On street parking in Phuiladelphia is very tricky. You must read the signs very carefully and believe what they say. Be especially careful of rush hour. Many spots are tow-away zones in that area. Also, you can't feed the meters. If it's a one hour spot, you must move to another street before the hour is up. If you still want to risk it, bring quarters- lots of 'em. I think it's $2/hour in that part of town. For Eastern State Pen, you should be able to get spots on the street more easily- but watch the signs. No rush hour spots there, but they are timed, even if no meter. For the Independence Hall area, I suggest parking at the Philadelphia Parking Authgority garage on 2nd Street, between Chestnut and Walnut (entrance on the left). You park it yourself, so it's quick in and out, and the rates are more reasonable than other garages.

Then, before you move your car up to Eastern State Pen or Mutter, you can grab a cheesesteak at Campo's, 2nd & Market. There is another place right near there that one of the other experts, Lynn has recently reccommended (I forget the name, but she'll probably see this and post).

Nashville, TN
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762 posts
29 reviews
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2. Re: One Day in Philadelphia

Thanks for the advice. I mapquested (if that's a verb) the distance from Independence Hall to Campo's and it was 0.4 mi, so I think that would be a great option without having to move the car. I looked at their menu online and it had a good variety, esp since I think my kids (14&10) would rather have just a ham sandwich.

I see the Mutter Museum closes at 5pm, so you are right, we obviously won't have time on this trip.

I should have mentioned that we will be there on Columbus Day, so I'm not sure if that affects parking. I see that the U.S. Mint is closed that day, so that was somewhat disappointing.

Does anyone know if Campo's has a kids' menu? It was not on the website. Any ideas on a place to eat dinner on the way out of town?- American food, no white tablecloth or ethnic cuisine. We will be headed toward I-95 to New Jersey.

Bucks County...
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for Philadelphia, Train Travel, Bucks County
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3. Re: One Day in Philadelphia

Don't be confused regarding I-95 to NYC. The maps are misleading, and GPS and internet directions are wrong. You want the New Jersey Turnpike, which is labeled I-95, but that is true only for part of it, and the signs don't exist to point you to it. So, here's what you neeed to do:

Take I-95 North out of downtown Philadelphia. Exit at Route 413. At the end of the ramp, turn right. Take route 413 aboput a mile to Route 13 North. Turn left. Take Route 13 north about 2 miles (IIRC) to the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The entrance ramp is on the right, and there is no advance warning so look for the large green PA TPK sign on your right. Take the PA Turnpike east to NJ. This will connect you directly to the NJ Turnpike at exit 6. Head North to NYC.

Ignore any other directions you have (regarding Route 38, 70, 73, Exit 4, etc.) Ignore any signs you see on I-95 in Pennsylvania indicating I-95 Trenton, Princeton, etc. Please just trust me on these directions. They will save you at least 20-30 minutes over any other directions you may have.

Nashville, TN
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762 posts
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4. Re: One Day in Philadelphia

Thank you so much !!! I will print this out. This is why I love a local's opinion. I have not driven in that area in several years, and I recall that we could see Philly way in the distance to our left. We have a built-in GPS in our vehicle, but you just never know. Dumb question: Do you think there will be more traffic in the corridor on Columbus Day because it is long weekend for some or less because there will be fewer work commuters? I kind of expect it will be less closer to DC since it is federal holiday.

Bucks County...
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5. Re: One Day in Philadelphia

Columbus Day isn't much of a holiday around here any longer. Used to be. Now it's just the banks and maybe government. Everyone else works. No discernable impact on I-95 / Turnpike traffic, as a lot of it is trucks on weekdays.

6. Re: One Day in Philadelphia

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