Sampling the City
One of the best ways to get to know Philly? Through its food and drink. City Food Tours ( 800.656.0713, www.phillysfoodtour.
com) offers several explorations of the city’s rich culinary scene, from gourmet to casual. The Flavors of Philly tour offers samples of classic local foods—think cheesesteaks and soft pretzels— with a sweet ending at Reading Terminal Market’s Famous 4th Street Cookie Company and Chocolate by Mueller. Follow up any tasty trip with The Tippler’s Tour ( www.historicphiladelphia.
org/tipplers-tour), which follows an 18th-century guide through Old City’s historic and modern-day watering holes. With cocktails, snacks and tales of yesteryear, this entertaining blast to the past quenches thirsts for knowledge and local quaffs.
As the name suggests, Franklin’s Footsteps is a 75-minute jaunt that tracks the founding father and his compatriots during the birth of the nation. Energetic, informative guides illuminate spots like Franklin Court, Independence Hall, Carpenters’ Hall, Christ Church and the Betsy Ross House, whetting appetites for further explorations. 215.389.1279, www.phillytour.com
The Mural Arts Program Tour takes art enthusiasts on a two-hour excursion through a tapestry of more than 3,000 murals throughout the city. Guides reveal the colorful tales behind these outdoor masterpieces and explain the history of the city’s much-loved Mural Arts Program. 215.925.3633, www. muralarts.org/public-tours
The Philadelphia Center for Architecture offers the Modern Metropolis tour, a two-hour amble that sheds light on Philly’s buildings. Even participants who don’t know their Victorian Eclecticism from their French Revivalism will love the insight into landmarks from City Hall to the Comcast Center (the city’s tallest building). 215.569.3186, www.philadelphiacfa. org/architecture-tours
The Philly Movie Sites bus tour shines a spotlight on 50 sites featured in popular flicks like “Rocky,” “In Her Shoes,” “National Treasure,” “Shooter” and, of course, “Philadelphia.” A fun added bonus? Guides screen the actual movie clip at each location. The private tour also includes plenty of anecdotes about stars, sets and local moviemaking history. 215.625.7980, www. moviesitestour.com
The budget- conscious Free and Friendly Tours offers just that. Congenial (and knowledgeable) locals take groups through the city they love and ask only for tips in return. Highlights on set outings include historic sites like Ben Franklin’s house, but familes can customize explorations, too. 877.558.9671, www.freeandfriendlytours.com
Start your search for gear at popular shops like Athleta ( 1722 Walnut St.), Lululemon Athletica ( 1720 Walnut St.) and Cameo Water Wear ( 1625 Chestnut St.), which outfit everything from a barre class to water aerobics.
RUNNERS AND WALKERS
Philadelphia Runner caters to all running levels with friendly and expert fittings for everything from sneakers to sports bras. Joggers also find collections from big brands like Nike’s Epic and The North Face’s Better Than Naked, plus specialty items like Feetures no-blister socks. The mini-chain is equally welcoming to walkers and carries a selection of looser fitting tops and longer shorts appropriate for brisk ambles around town. Multiple locations
I. Goldberg Army & Navy may not have fancy décor like its Center City counterparts, but they do have three important things everyone looks for: quality, service and great prices. “From nose to toes,” I. Goldberg outfits the whole family for active pursuits at the gym or on the trail without breaking the budget. 1300 Chestnut St.
Specializing in bikes from the 1970s through 1990s, VIA Bicycle offers vintage bikes, biking gear, racing team jerseys and cycling caps from past eras. These rare, high-quality pieces (the jerseys are often knit in merino wool) fly out of the store with collectors who seek out companion clothing for their retro rides. 622 S. Broad St.
For stylish workout clothes without the high prices, head to Century 21. In addition to carrying a large assortment of men’s and women’s name brands at up to 75 percent off retail, this iconic department store also carries highly sought after, but hard to find, boutique brands like Koral, Marc New York Performance and Nanette Lepore. 821 Market St.
One of many history-themed tours in Philadelphia
Caption 7 pt, Myriad Pro Semi-