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23080
Pennsylvania

Philadelphia at a Slower Pace: Known & Hidden Historical Gems

On this slower pace program, explore the history and heritage of this vibrant and historic “signature city.” Join experts for an insider’s look at Philadelphia’s diverse neighborhoods.
Rating (5)
Program No. 23080RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,649
Pennsylvania

Philadelphia at a Slower Pace: Known & Hidden Historical Gems

On this slower pace program, explore the history and heritage of this vibrant and historic “signature city.” Join experts for an insider’s look at Philadelphia’s diverse neighborhoods.
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,649
Program No. 23080 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
climate
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Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
May 15 - May 20, 2022
Starting at
1,649
Sep 22 - Sep 27, 2022
Starting at
1,649
Oct 9 - Oct 14, 2022
Starting at
1,649
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
May 15 - May 20, 2022
Starting at
2,249
Sep 22 - Sep 27, 2022
Starting at
2,249
Oct 9 - Oct 14, 2022
Starting at
2,249

At a Glance

This slower pace version of our “Signature City Philadelphia” program allows you to explore America’s most remarkable hometown at a slower pace. Take in centuries of history, heritage and culture as you experience the city’s diverse neighborhoods, from Society Hill and Independence National Park and elegant Rittenhouse Square. With local historians and experts, learn about the role of civic institutions and architecture of different eras, and savor the flavor of the city’s flourishing dining renaissance.
Activity Level
On Your Feet
This program is specifically for those who want to take more time to get from one destination to the next. We will have a private coach to transport us on most field trips. Walking a few blocks, standing at historic sites and museums, being on your feet for up to an hour and climbing stairs, boarding/disembarking coach each day.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 13 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • At a slower pace, retrace the footsteps of our Founding Fathers — and Mothers! — from William Penn to Ben Franklin and Betsy Ross as we walk through the Old City.
  • Marvel at distinctive architecture spanning three centuries of achievement on Society Hill, at City Hall and the Masonic Temple.
  • Experience the rich tradition of the arts and culture of Philadelphia during a night out on the town at a special event.

General Notes

You may be interested in a more active version of this program,"Signature City Philadelphia: Treasures of History and Heritage" (#10238).
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Nancy Webster
Nancy Webster is a student and teacher of history. After receiving her B.A. magna cum laude from Radcliffe College of Harvard University, Nancy’s interest in early American history took her to William & Mary College where she received a double M.A. degree in American studies and museum curatorship. Today, she lectures and consults on planning, preservation and historical research. She is a member of the National Coalition of Independent Scholars, Fellows in American Studies, the Friend’s Historical Association, Women Historians of the Delaware Valley, and the Athenaeum of Philadelphia. Nancy is also curator and a board member of the Delaware Historical Society.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Nancy Webster
Nancy Webster View biography
Nancy Webster is a student and teacher of history. After receiving her B.A. magna cum laude from Radcliffe College of Harvard University, Nancy’s interest in early American history took her to William & Mary College where she received a double M.A. degree in American studies and museum curatorship. Today, she lectures and consults on planning, preservation and historical research. She is a member of the National Coalition of Independent Scholars, Fellows in American Studies, the Friend’s Historical Association, Women Historians of the Delaware Valley, and the Athenaeum of Philadelphia. Nancy is also curator and a board member of the Delaware Historical Society.
Profile Image of Elizabeth Anderson
Elizabeth Anderson View biography
Elizabeth earned a master’s in Art History at the University of Pennsylvania and was associated with the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where she served as curator, for 40 years. She presented lectures on art history and gallery talks at the museum and has taught at LaSalle, Drexel and Princeton Universities. Elizabeth is a former secretary of the Philadelphia chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians and the Museum Council of Philadelphia. She also serves as trustee of The Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks.
Profile Image of Tish Byrne
Tish Byrne View biography
An artist and historian, Tish Byrne is passionate about all aspects of her native city and its environment after having lived in and led explorations at the Physick House, which belongs to Philadelphia Landmarks. She is a graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts later becoming an administrative assistant to the Director of the school. Presently, she leads excursions for the mural arts program, is a docent at Historic Christ Church and leads explorations of Philadelphia landmarks.
Profile Image of Mitchell Kramer
Mitchell Kramer View biography
Mitchell Kramer has a B.A. in playwriting from Hampshire College and attended Circle in the Square acting conservatory. He has worked off-Broadway and in regional theater including the New York Theater Workshop and Dorset Theater Festival. He is a costumed Historic Interpreter portraying Benjamin Franklin in Old City Philadelphia. Mitchell has written and produced plays for children and adults and a series of historically accurate stories about 18th century Philadelphia for Historic Philadelphia, Inc. He is on the Board of Directors of Mount Sinai Cemetery.
Profile Image of Lauren Kain
Lauren Kain View biography
Lauren Biddle Kain is the site coordinator for Philadelphia Landmarks Road Scholar. She received her BS/BA from Randolph Macon College in Ashland, Virginia. After marriage and transfer to the San Diego area, she began working at EVENT NETWORK, a leading experiental retail operator, on behalf of cultural attractions such as zoos, botanical gardens, aquariums, museums, science centers and other cultural attractions. Lauren and her family now reside in the Philadelphia area. She started working with Road Scholar as a junior Group Leader for Grandparent Programs.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Autobiography
by Franklin, Benjamin
The Perennial Philadelphians
by Burt, Nathaniel
Philadelphia Then & Now
by Mauger, Edward Arthur
Philadelphia - Portrait of an American City
by Wolf, Edwin 2nd
William Penn's Holy Experiment
by Bronner, E.B.
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6 days
5 nights
11 meals
5 B 2 L 4 D
DAY
1
Check-In, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Philadelphia, PA
D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Philadelphia Center City

Activity note: Hotel check-in from 3:30 p.m.

Afternoon: Program Registration: 4:00 p.m. After you have your room assignment, come to the Road Scholar table in the lobby to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule that reflects any changes, other important information, and to confirm when and where the Orientation session will take place. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet when you check in. Orientation. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. Transportation will be via private motorcoach. Our expert Group Leader will provide commentary during some field trips in addition to local experts. Periods in the daily schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have a plated meal and order from a select menu; coffee, tea, water included, other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: "Ben Franklin" welcomes you to Philadelphia. With a local expert, we will learn about Benjamin Franklin, Benjamin Rush, David Rittenhouse, and other 18th Century savants through historical and scientific perspectives

DAY
2
Free Library Rare Books, Phila Mus of Art
Philadelphia, PA
B,L,D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Philadelphia Center City

Activity note: Getting on/off a bus. Walking approximately 1 mile and standing during field trip.

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet

Morning: We’ll travel with our Group Leader to the Free Library of Philadelphia, founded in 1891. Its Rare Book Department is available to the people of Philadelphia, students, scholars, and researchers. This literary treasury includes cuneiform tablets, European and Oriental manuscripts, first editions of collected Shakespeare works and works by Edgar Allan Poe, Early American children’s books, letters of Charles Dickens, letters of Presidents of the U.S., a theatre collection, and much more. A member of the library staff will lead our exploration. We have some time to explore independently then travel to the Philadelphia Museum of Art for lunch.

Lunch: Lunch this afternoon will be at Philadelphia Museum of Art. Lunch vouchers will be provided.

Afternoon: We will ride to the Philadelphia Museum of Art where our educator will introduce some of the highlights of its incomparable galleries. Among the greatest in the U.S., the Museum has a collection of more than 227,000 works of art spanning the creative achievements of the Western world since the first century CE and those of Asia since the third millennium BCE. Its European holdings date from the Medieval era to the present, and the American collections are among the finest in the country. Following our expert-led exploration, you will have time to explore the museum at your pace. Return to the hotel will be on your own.

Dinner: Dinner will be at a local restaurant this evening. You will be able to order off the menu.

Evening: Enjoy an evening walk home from dinner.

DAY
3
Independence Hall & Liberty Bell, City Bus tour
Philadelphia, PA
B,D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Philadelphia Center City

Activity note: Getting on/off a bus. Walking and standing during field trips.

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet

Morning: We will board a bus and ride 10 blocks to the Colonial City, America's most historic square mile, for a field trip with our Group Leader to Independence National Historical Park with the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, both of which are national treasures and icons of American democracy. The Liberty Bell is engraved with these words: “Proclaim Liberty Throughout All the Land Unto All the Inhabitants thereof.” Independence Hall is where both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were debated and signed. In recognition of our founding principles of freedom and democracy that have influenced so many others around the world, Independence Hall has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Lunch: Lunch will be on your own at the Bourse.

Afternoon: After lunch we will board our bus for a City Tour lead by your educator.

Dinner: Dinner will be included this evening. We’ll have a plated meal and order from a select menu; coffee, tea, water included, other beverages available for purchase.

DAY
4
OldCit District,Christ Church,Betsy Ross
Philadelphia, PA
B
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Philadelphia Center City

Activity note: Getting on/off bus. Walking approximately 1 mile, standing, etc.

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet.

Morning: We’ll go for a field trip to visit some of the historic landmarks in Philadelphia’s Old City District — known as America’s most historic square mile — such as the Betsy Ross House, Christ Church, and Elfreth's Alley. While there is no documented evidence that Betsy Ross actually did sew the first American flag, the story that George Washington himself asked her to make it lives on. Christ Church, founded in 1695, has long been called “the Nation's church” due to its associations with notable Revolutionary era leaders. Seven signers of the Declaration of Independence and five signers of the Constitution are buried here. Elfreth’s Alley represents three centuries of American everyday life. As a National Historic Landmark, it preserves 32 structures built from 1728-1836, one of our last remaining early American streetscapes.

Lunch: On your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Afternoon: Free time. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Dinner: Dinner will be on your own this evening.

DAY
5
Am. Rev. Museum, Nat'l Constitution Center, Broadway Phl
Philadelphia, PA
B,L,D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Philadelphia Center City

Activity note: Getting on/off a bus. Walking and standing during field trips.

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet.

Morning: We will ride via bus to the National Constitution Center. The Center's permanent exhibition, The Story of We the People, tells the story of the Constitution, its history, and its contemporary relevance through more than 100 multimedia exhibits, film, photographs, text, sculpture, and artifacts. It also features a powerful, award-winning theatrical performance, "Freedom Rising", and Signers' Hall. We will learn more about the three branches of government as we explore giant models of the Capitol, White House and Supreme Court. Public Program demonstrators will lead us through an entertaining look at the buildings, the people who work in them, and our government’s system of checks and balances.

Lunch: At the museum, lunch voucher provided

Afternoon: Our next field trip is to the Museum of the American Revolution, opened in 2017 two blocks from Independence Hall. It is the first museum of its kind to trace the steps that led to our break with the “Mother Country” of England and eventually to revolutionary war. With an educator, we will take a virtual journey through the American Revolution, encountering the events, people, and ideals of the founding of the United States through state-of-the-art design and technology. The collection of thousands of objects includes works of art, manuscripts, and printed pieces from the period. One particularly historic item is the original tent that George Washington used as his command center.

Dinner: Dinner will be included this evening. We’ll have a plated meal and order from a select menu; coffee, tea, water included, other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: This evening we will attend an evening performance. More details to come.

DAY
6
Founding Fathers Lecture, Program Concludes
Philadelphia, PA
B

Activity note: Hotel check-out 11:00. Bags may be left with the concierge

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet.

Morning: We’ll be joined by a local history for a presentation on 18th Century Philadelphia history and the story of our Founding Fathers. This concludes our program. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.