Walking tours offer excellent opportunities to learn about a city, see its architecture, and avoid clusters of shoe-sabotaging, sidewalk-ensconced gum by walking on your hands. See the city from a new perspective with today's Groupon: for $7, you get a two-hour architectural walking tour from the Philadelphia Center for Architecture (up to a $15 value). Tours depart every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday at 2 p.m, April through November and Saturdays at 2 p.m, December through March.
The Philadelphia Center for Architecture's Emergence of a Modern Metropolis walking tour guides curious excursionists and knowledge-hungry natives on a leisurely stroll through the city's storied architectural focal points from the 1870s to the present. Tours meet rain or sweaty shine at the Center's AIA Bookstore & Design Center, where erudite guides begin the two-hour jaunt to explore the sociopolitical forces that transformed Philadelphia from an engine of industry to a modern hub of business, culture, and cheesesteaks. Wide-eyed trotters will bask beneath the majestic Victorian interior of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Wanamaker's (the city's first department store), and the atrium of the new Comcast Center, Philadelphia's tallest skyscraper and second-tallest member of the 76ers. Each tour convoys 20 guests, and comfortable shoes are recommended, though plutonium-based rocket shoes are preferred.
Philadelphia Center for Architecture
Born out of the three core principles of public engagement, collaboration, and design excellence, the Philadelphia Center for Architecture stays true to its founding vision by connecting professionals and community leaders through activities ranging from exhibits and competitions to charitable functions and workshops. The center also reels in a wider audience with public walking tours scheduled in conjunction with the Preservation Alliance of Greater Philadelphia, revealing the secrets of some of the city’s most notable buildings with the help of trained guides. As a chapter of AIA Philadelphia, the center also hosts public forums between architects and community members, promoting dialogue about the importance of sustainable neighborhoods and the need for public spaces dedicated entirely to sack races.