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“A classic, could use some help”

The Franklin Institute
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Philadelphia CityPASS
Ranked #16 of 438 things to do in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Founded in honor of America’s first scientist, Benjamin Franklin, The Franklin Institute is one of America’s oldest and premier centers of science education. The museum is known for blockbuster exhibits, a bevy of interactive ongoing exhibitions, and one-of-a-kind theatrical experiences. Today, the Institute continues its dedication to public education and creating a passion for science by offering new and exciting access to science and technology in ways that would dazzle and delight its namesake.
Useful Information: Activities for young children
Accra, Ghana
Level Contributor
166 reviews
57 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
“A classic, could use some help”
Reviewed 28 August 2014

Has been a classic for so long. My 5 and 6 year old boys loved it. Especially all the hands on exhibits. However quite a few were broken or not working well, perhaps about 20%? or so. The lady at the information desk was not nice at all, whereas staff in the circus area were very friendly. The planetarium and Imax shows were both 10-15 min late even though crowds were small. We purchased a groupon for 4 for $40 so it was definitely worth it, but I wish they would put some work into the place.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank spicycouple22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,290 reviews from our community

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Springfield, VA
Level Contributor
60 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“My 9-year-old says it's EPIC”
Reviewed 27 August 2014

We spent 6.5 hours here last week, and still did not find time to see the Circus exhibit! It is so awesome and our favorite part was the new 101 Inventions area. I would go back again and sit and relax and watch all of them over again. We purchased the book because my son was so fascinated that LEGO was #77.
The new Brain exhibit was very neat, but way too long. There was just too much information and we felt overwhelmed.
One sad part is that the train no longer moves back and forth, but you can still walk in to the cab.
Food in the café was good, and I was so happy to see fresh salads offered.

Visited August 2014
Thank gcmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Jersey
Level Contributor
81 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“A lot to see!”
Reviewed 27 August 2014

This was our first visit to the Franklin Institute. We weren't able to see everything because we only had three hours. (I also have a son who likes to read everything in each exhibit!) There are 3 floors of exhibits. The planetarium isn't an exhibit, it is a movie. We didn't see it because it was a 1/2 hr show and we didn't have the time. If you are short on time, we enjoyed The Heart, The Brain, and Sir Isaac's Loft the best. They currently have an exhibit called Circus Science which ends Sept. 1st. That is a fun exhibit. My son was able to try his hand at being a trapeze artist. They actually harness you up and let you walk across a rope. If you can't see it all, skip 101 Inventions and Ocean Soul (disappointments). They have their own parking garage ($15 for the day) and a food court, which we didn't try. The museum is definitely worth seeing and I would go back again. Allow 3 hrs minimum to see the exhibits.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank momnan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
31 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Kids loved this musuem”
Reviewed 26 August 2014

The exhibits here were the most interactive I have ever seen. Actually three dimensional activities to engage the kids and teach them scientific principles. There were also enough things to do that even though it was very crowded the wait to engage with the exhibits was not long.

Our favorites: walking through the heart, walking through the brain, using the pulley seats in sir issac's loft and everything and anything in the circus exhibit.

Visited August 2014
Thank AnnDC_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
40 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“this place needs some repairs”
Reviewed 26 August 2014

We were dissapointed by the number of displays that were broken or out of service. The new inventions display was dissapointing (we were expecting to see the inventions but instead there was a large audio visual display that seemed to be all over the place). My wife said that she wouldn't bring small kids to the display. In the end we were dissapointed and didn't think we received valu for our money.
The brain display was very interesting.

Visited August 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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