With kids in two different schools, our school breaks occur on different weeks, making it especially difficult to plan family getaways. Ryder is in midst of a two week winter break, while the girls won’t see another day off until the end of April. Since we cannot pull the girls from school, I wanted to squeeze in some quick escapes so Ryder could enjoy his downtime. During his first week off, we decided to take a trip down to Philadelphia for a little exploring and history. I’ve been to Philly countless times during my showroom days, but my last trip to the city strictly as a tourist was all the way back in seventh grade!
Our car has been acting up lately, and the last thing I wanted to do was break down while on the road, so I looked into bus schedules from NYC to Philadelphia. I’ve heard plenty of great reviews about Megabus, and considering you rarely drive the city street without passing one of their coaches trucking along, I figured it was time to give a try.
megabus.com is a low cost bus service that takes passengers from city-center to city-center. With affordable rates, megabus.com offers an abundance of routes to destinations across the US, including Boston, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C., and many more, offering families great options for long-weekend escape.
We met our bus on West 34th Street between 11th and 12th Avenue. Twenty minutes prior to departure, the friendly Megabus staff checked our tickets and directed us to the proper line. Our bus arrived five minutes ahead of schedule, and we quickly found our seats on the upper deck.
Ryder got a kick out of the two levels! He and I chatted along the way, but as soon as he found out that the bus offered free WiFi and power outlets, he asked if he could play a couple of rounds on his handheld game system. While he played, I downloaded their free app, which allowed me to watch some movies and TV shows during our two hour drive.
Our first stop while in Philly was the Liberty Bell followed by Independence Hall. Wow, I remember walking up to the bell with my classmates, during our 7th grade trip, and since Ryder recently spoke about some significant items in American History, he asked a lot of the same questions we had when seeing the bell for the first time.
Philly is definitely a walking city, so with the weather on our side (for a change, as of late!), we enjoyed strolling around outside, before our next stop at Betsy Ross’ House, probably our favorite attraction of the day! To think that the very first flag of the United States was sewn in that very house. As part of the tour, we learned about the different yarns, saw how fabricators made and cut the stars perfectly. It was such a neat experience for the both of us!
For lunch, tons of readers recommended Parc, and I can not tell you how much we loved it. The traditional french bistro fare and made us feel as if we were right back in Paris! To walk off our big meal, we strolled through Love Park, and found this awesome status of Ben Franklin. And what modern day trip to Philadelphia would be complete without stopping by the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see the Rocky statue, and running up the steps!
Popular Museums: Barnes Foundation, Rodin Museum, The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Science History Institute, and Please Touch Museum
It’s no secret that Philadelphia is legendary for their cheesesteaks, so later in the afternoon if was off to south Philly, for a real “Philly Cheesesteak off” at competing restaurants Geno’s Steaks, and Pat’s King of Steaks, located directly across the street from one another. Considering Ryder had never had a Philly Cheesesteak, having back to back steak sandwiches was quite the hightlight for him. Ok, maybe he liked this better than the Betsy Ross house!
At the end of our day, we met our Megabus at the same place for drop off, so it was pretty easy to find. Ryder and I chatted the entire way home, recapping our day, and he couldn’t wait to tell his sisters all about it. Since we normally travel as a family, we’d typically drive to destinations only a few hours away. That said, I was blown away by how easy it was to get to Philly via Megabus. Forget the angst of directions, driving through traffic, paying for gas or parking, or clocking the miles on your leased car! Next trip, our car is staying home!
Be sure to visit our other trip to Philly HERE!
** This post was originally published March 26 2019!