Philadelphia for the Weekend: Cultural Highlights

Set out on a cultural tour de force through Philadelphia, learning about Colonial history, exploring world-renowned museums and gaining deeper insight into the iconic Barnes Foundation.
Rating (5)
Program No. 9068RJ
4 days
Starts at

At a Glance

Spend a jam-packed long weekend discovering the renowned cultural treasures of Philadelphia, one of America’s top cities for the arts. Dive into fascinating expert-led and self-directed field trips to important historic locales like the National Constitution Center, Independence Hall and Liberty Bell and iconic arts institutions like the Rodin Museum, Philadelphia Museum of Art and Barnes Foundation. Deepen your understanding of the city and its institutions through scholarly lectures, and round out your cultural immersion with a ticketed performance one evening and seasonal narrated excursions of local interest.
Activity Level
On Your Feet
Walking up to a few blocks; some uneven brick sidewalks. Walking and standing in museums. Some use of public transportation, including getting on and off city buses.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Experience the extraordinary Barnes Foundation at its new Philadelphia campus, explore the galleries of the Philadelphia Museum of Art and see bronze casts of Rodin’s greatest works at the Rodin Museum.
  • Examine architecture from three centuries and visit acclaimed landmarks of American history at Independence National Historical Park.
  • Enjoy a performance of opera, theater, ballet or another cultural event from current offerings.
Featured Expert
All Experts
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Elizabeth Anderson
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.

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

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Elizabeth Anderson
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Mitchell Kramer
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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.
Building the City Beautiful: The Benjamin Franklin Parkway & the Philadelphia Museum of Art
by Brownlee, David B.
Philadelphia: A 300-Year History/Edition 1
by Russell F. Weigley
In this, the definitive comprehensive history of Philadelphia, the reader will discover a rich and colorful portrait of one of America's most vital, interesting, and illustrious cities.
by Franklin, Benjamin
Masterpieces of Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, The Annenberg Collection
by Susan Stein (Editor)
Covering some of the most striking and extraordinary art to come out of the nineteenth and early-twentieth century, this handsome book presents more than fifty masterpieces by such luminaries as Monet, Van Gogh and Picasso, each work accompanied by clarifying texts and comparative illustrations.
The House of Barnes: The Man, The Collection, The Controversy
by Neil L. Rudenstine
The House of Barnes: The Man, The Collection, The Controversy provides the first scholarly study on the historical, art history, and political context during which Dr. Barnes purchased masterpieces and attempted to redefine aesthetics with groundbreaking new terminology.
Philadelphia - Portrait of an American City
by Wolf, Edwin 2nd
The Barnes Foundation: Masterworks,
by Judith Dolkart and Martha Lucy,

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