About Philadelphia

independence hall in philadelphia

Philadelphia, often referred to as the “City of Brotherly Love”, was, in the 18th century, the first capital of the United States. Known for its prominent arts and culture, Philadelphia is home to several art galleries, including the famous Philadelphia Museum of Art, which stairs were made famous in the film Rocky – tourists and residents often make the run up the museum steps.

The HI-Philadelphia – Bank Street hostel is located within the city’s historic district, close to two of the city’s most popular sites: Independence Hall , where the Declaration of Independence was signed, and the Liberty Bell. The Old City and South Street sections of Philadelphia are known for their exciting night life, while the Avenue of the Arts in Center City is lined with many restaurants and theaters, including the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, the home of the Philadelphia Orchestra. Philadelphia is also known for its cheesesteaks, with two of its most famous stands – Pat’s and Geno’s, located in the Italian Market in the south section of the city. The HI-Philadelphia Chamounix Mansion hostel is located in the city’s Fairmount Park, close to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the famous Boathouse Row along the Schuykill River, and the Philadelphia Zoo, the nation’s first zoo. Fairmount Park is known for its 215 miles of beautiful recreation trails, athletic fields, and picnic grounds.

Points of interest

Independence Park
Much of Philadelphia’s historic atmosphere dates back prior to the establishment of the United States. Independence Park is the area of historic downtown Philadelphia that is home to Independence Hall, the location where in 1776, representatives of the original colonies signed the Declaration of Independence, and leading to the split from England.

Philadelphia Museum of Art
Philadelphia Museum of Art features art spanning two thousand years and six continents.

Franklin Institute Science Museum
Dedicated to Benjamin Franklin’s spirit of invention, the Franklin Institute is more than just a museum, its a celebration of technology and invention that focuses on hands-on exhibits, so visitors can take part in the experience. The museum also features traveling exhibits and an IMAX movie theater.

Eastern State Penitentiary
Eastern State Penitentiary was built in 1821, and was operated for nearly 150 years. Today, visitors can tour the landmark prison to experience the isolation for themselves.

South Street
South Street is a great area to eat, shop, grab a beer, or just watch the show from any of the restaurants bars and clubs.

Rittenhouse Square
Rittenhouse Square is a fantastic place to grab a bite to eat at one of the many outdoor cafes, and take in the traditional early american architecture.



St Patrick’s Day Parade
Philadelphia’s St Patrick’s Day Parade features over 100 floats and 10,000 marchers.


Taste of Philadelphia
Enjoy tastings of dishes from some of Philadelphia’s top restaurants for a fraction of the usual price.

US Pro Cycling Championship
Come and see the country’s longest running and richest single-day race on the pro cycling tour.


Independence Day Celebration
Philadelphia hosts more than 50 free events to mark the nation’s birthday, featuring a fireworks spectacular on the river.


The Philadelphia Fringe Festival
The Philadelphia Fringe Festival features the work of more than 1300 artists in visual arts, poetry, music, performance art, and more.

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Hostels in Philadelphia

hosteller decorating the Philadelphia Hostel with handprints

HI Philadelphia Apple Hostel

Apple Hostels of Philadelphia was ranked as America’s 3rd best hostel in 2009, and the highest rated HI hostel in all of North America. NOTE: Men are not permited in the Mixed dorm room unless traveling with women. Women are always allowed in the Mixed dorm, regardless of whether they are traveling with someone or not. Private rooms may be available but are not listed on this...

back exterior of HI Philadelphia Hostel

HI Philadelphia Chamounix Mansion

A Philadelphia hostel in a quiet park setting

In the heart of Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park, the historic HI Philadelphia-Chamounix Mansion offers a quiet retreat within the city limits of this classic American destination. HI Philadelphia Chamounix Mansion is a peaceful country setting away from the bustle and noise of the city, welcoming guests from across the...