By Brian Jewell
Abundant history, a thriving metropolitan scene and riverfront geography make Philadelphia a favorite destination for youth groups traveling on the East Coast.
The City of Brotherly Love makes a fascinating trip for young travelers. In addition to learning about the birth of America and seeing Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, groups can take advantage of the city’s wealth of museums and cultural institutions. And Philadelphia’s waterfront location allows for nautical experiences as well.
Historic Philadelphia programs such as Lights of Liberty and Once Upon a Nation make the events of America’s founding come alive for visitors. The Franklin Institute, the Mural Arts Program and the Philadelphia Zoo provide educational experiences wrapped in fun. And cruises aboard the Spirit of Philadelphia give young groups an exciting look at the city’s night skyline.
[ Mural Arts Program ]
A spirit of art runs through Philadelphia, and there’s no better way to see it than to look at the murals painted on the sides of buildings around the city. The Mural Arts Program takes visitors to see some of Philadelphia’s best wall art.
Mural Arts Program tours feature the dozens of larger-than-life murals painted on Philadelphia buildings. Groups can take customized tours with step-on guides on their motorcoaches or hop on a Philadelphia trolley for special tours of several area neighborhoods. The murals give visitors a look through art at the diverse history and culture to be found throughout the city.
Young groups with a penchant for artistic activity can also participate in the Mural Arts Program’s hands-on experiences. Options range from sketchbook classes to opportunities to help paint new murals going up around the city.
[ Spirit of Philadelphia ]
Students visiting Philadelphia can follow in the Founding Fathers’ footsteps — albeit in more stylish surroundings — by cruising the Delaware River aboard the Spirit of Philadelphia. This sightseeing and entertainment yacht offers great food, music and views of the Philadelphia skyline.
Groups can choose lunch or dinner cruises on the Spirit of Philadelphia. Both cruises feature buffet meals that begin shortly after the boat leaves the dock. After the meal, visitors are free to venture outside, where they’ll see landmarks such as the Battleship New Jersey, the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and Penn’s Landing as they cruise along the river.
Back inside the boat, youth groups will love the dance party atmosphere that begins once the meals are over. Live DJs take requests from guests and spin both classic and contemporary dance music to keep the party going until the boat returns to the dock.