In Philadelphia, it was understood that no building would rise higher than the statue of city founder William Penn that crowned City Hall. So when the builders of the Liberty Place skyscraper broke the gentlemen’s agreement in 1987, Philadelphia’s sports teams suffered the consequences—they didn't see a championship win for the next two decades. Architects finally lifted the curse in 2007 when they placed a 25-inch William Penn atop Philly’s new tallest building, the Comcast Center’s. The Phillies won the World Series the next year.
Though City Hall is no longer the tallest building, its majestic tower offers a clear 360-degree view of the city just below the historic statue. From there, you can see plenty of things to do in Philadelphia. Just below, Love Park hosts Robert Indiana's famous _Love_ sculpture and the refreshing spray of a single-spout fountain. About a mile up the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the Philadelphia Art Museum sits in grandeur atop the stairs that were so famously featured in five Rocky movies—a fact that sometimes outshines the museum's virtue as being one of the largest in the nation.
In its capacity as America's birthplace, Philadelphia’s Old City neighborhood is home to Independence Hall ¾origin of the Declaration of Independence—and other historical attractions including the Liberty Bell and the National Constitution Center, where a rare copy of the Emancipation Proclamation rests. History buffs also rub elbows with art lovers in the streets of Old City where galleries stay open late during First Fridays, a monthly event that invites all to view art, mingle, and enjoy free food.
For more views, stroll along the Schuylkill River on Kelly drive, which yields scenic views of the city and Boat House Row. A walk through Historic Antique Row on Pine Street brings browsers into locally owned shops selling everything from oriental rugs to vintage clothing. Two blocks south, the hodgepodge that is South Street draws people from all walks of life in a shopper’s paradise with such must-see stops as Jim’s Steaks, and Isaiah Zagar’s Magic Gardens, a labyrinthine sculpture gallery.
The more adventurous might prefer the Delaware Canal State Park, which has its own boat that takes guests on a tour of the canals.