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letsgoflyers75 08-09-2007 12:55 PM

The Visiting Fan's Guide to Philadelphia; suggested books, publications, DVDs
 
2017 edit: This thread began in 2007 but updated periodically; however, some info may remain dated. Feel free to ask questions in this thread.

Welcome!

So, you're in from out of town to see the Flyers, or just visiting the city? Well, we're the City of Brotherly Love, so welcome! Here's everything you need to know about visiting Philadelphia.

Getting Flyers tickets


Getting to Philadelphia
  • By AIR: Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) is the main centrally located airport.
  • By RAIL: Amtrak's Northeast Corridor runs through Philadelphia's 30th Street Station. Amtrak is ridiculously expensive, if you're not already aware of that, but it's very convenient. 30th Street Station is located in Center City Philadelphia.
  • By BUS: Greyhound Bus Lines serve Philadelphia through Market East Station in the heart of Center City. Market East is located at 12th and Filbert Streets. Greyhound is only 23 dollars round trip between Port Authority Bus Terminal in NYC and Philadelphia.
  • By CAR: No need to explain this, right?

Getting around in Philly
  • SEPTA runs the subway system in Philadelphia. They also run regional rail lines out of 30th Street Station. Regional Rail connects to each airport terminal and quickly takes you to Center City, so there's no need to rent a car if you're flying in. SEPTA Transit System Map
  • The Sports Complex is located at Broad Street and Pattison Avenue, which is the last Southbound stop on the Broad Street Line (orange).
  • The subway in Philadelphia is nothing to fear. Don't feel adventurous and stray off of it (especially the Broad Street Line) unless you're right in the middle of Center City or near the Sports Complex, but the subway itself is very safe.
  • Center City Philly is also very walkable.

Where to stay?

  • If you're just in town to see the game and nothing else, you might want to stay right in the Sports Complex. Mod edit: One suggestion is the Courtyard Philadelphia South at The Navy Yard ( http://www.marriott.com/hotels/trave...the-navy-yard/).
  • I wouldn't suggest staying at any of the airport hotels because you have to switch trains a few times after the game to get back that way. It's not difficult, but unnecessary.
  • If you want to experience the city a little more, stay in Center City. There's plenty of options here.
  • There are really tons of options on where to stay. For a full listing: http://www.visitphilly.com/hotels/
  • Mod edit 2015: Trip Advisor suggestions -- http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotels-g6...ia-Hotels.html

What to do?
  • HISTORY: Well, Philly is the birthplace of America, so there is much history here. Most of the historical sites are located in the Independence Mall/Old City area. Old City is absolutely beautiful. This neighborhood is home to Independence Hall, the National Constitution Center, the United States Mint, and a ton of other stuff.
  • PLACES TO VISIT: The Philadelphia Museum of Art (Rocky steps) is world famous. There's the Franklin Institute, the Academy of Natural Sciences, and Eastern State Penitentiary. Inside the Franklin Institute, there is an awesome IMAX theater and they just about always have something interesting playing. Mod edit 2017: Another suggestion is the Mutter Museum http://muttermuseum.org/
  • SHOPPING: There's Antique Row (on Pine St between 10th and 18th), Fabric Row (on South 4th Street between South and Catherine Streets), Jeweler's Row (on Sansom between 7th and 8th and on 8th between Chestnut and Walnut), Rittenhouse Row (from Broad Street to 21st between Spruce and Market Streets) , and South Street between Front and 8th. The King of Prussia Mall is freakin' huge, and about a half hour from Center City by car. The Italian Market is located on 9th Street between Wharton and Fitzwater Streets. Delaware is home to tax-free shopping and only 15 minutes south!
  • OUTDOOR ICE RINK: The Blue Cross River Rink is an outdoor ice rink located at Penn's Landing (located along Delaware Avenue/Columbus Blvd primarily between Market and South) during the winter months. During the summer months, various activities go on at Penn's Landing, including concerts.
  • PARKS: If you like the outdoors, you can also check out Fairmount Park.
  • CASINOS (mod edit 2017): Sugarhouse Casino ( https://www.sugarhousecasino.com/ ), Parx Casino ( http://www.parxcasino.com/[/url], Harrah's Philadelphia ( https://www.caesars.com/harrahs-philly ) or Valley Forge Casino ( https://www.vfcasino.com/ ).
  • CITY TOURS: Philadelphia Trolley Works, Ride the Ducks
  • THE JERSEY SHORE: If you're going to be around for more than a few days and want to leave the city, Atlantic City, NJ is only an hour and 15 minutes away by train. NJ Transit runs trains between the gambling mecca and 30th Street Station in Philly. Atlantic City offers gambling, the boardwalk, the beach (free!), and outlet shopping.


Quote:

Restaurants, Cuisine, Food, Bars


NIGHTLIFE (credit to vis):

Irish Pubs/Taverns: McGillin's and Fergie's are good places. Fergie's is a typical no frills, no TV pub. Good place if you just want to hang out for a beer without much of a "scene." McGillin's is the city's oldest bar (I think). As the night goes later, the crowd gets younger and there's often a line and cover charge depending on how late you go. If you're looking for "action," go to McGillin's. Finnigan's Wake on Spring Garden is going to be a college age crowd and will have a cover and a line. Might be a little on the young side for your crowd. But if you like to dance at your pub, go here. The Plough and the Stars is in Old City and is an Irish bar for the younger professional and is a bit more "adult" than those mentioned above. Not really a "pub" feel, but it's a pretty cool place with good food (not typical pub food, though). Other spots include Fado (chain Irish bar) and the always popular Irish Pub. They're most likely to be filled with college students and young professionals as well. Recommend: McGillin's and Plough.

For the best beer selection, IMO, go to Monk's Café (http://www.monkscafe.com/) in Center City for great beer selections if you're into Belgian Ales and Euro beers. Monk's is tiny so it might be tough with 8 guys.

Other Pub/Tavern spots:
  • Dark Horse - This is a great Irish food and a big place located on 2nd street just North of South Street. More adult and young professional crowd. Beer selection is good, too. The "scene" is OK, but it's a good place to "hang" with an older group.
  • The Public House - Located in Center City, this place is always packed. Some great "scenery" here. Big place, lots of TVs, probably going to be a line to get in. If you're in Center City and want a bar that's somewhat of a scene go here.
  • Tir Na Nog - Center City and close to the Public House. Irish pub, but the menu can be expensive. Good place to hang after work, but haven't come often for the bar scene later at night.
  • Nodding Head - Great homebrews and good food. Been here a few times after work.
  • New Wave - I had to sneak this in because it's my favorite "neighborhood" bar located in Queen Village. It's a good walk South of South Street. Good crowd, might be a little tight, but a good local set. Food is pretty good, too. If you're driving, parking can really suck. It's probably not suitable for what you want to accomplish since there's not much else around it unless you want to walk or cab it. Just thought I'd toss it in there...
  • Black Sheep - Get's some good press, but I'm not a huge fan. Can be really tight inside.
  • Oh, I forgot - Drinker's is a good place, especially for a group of dudes (two locations, Old City and Center City).

As far as clubs... Try Cuba Libre later at night in Old City http://cubalibrerestaurant.com/en/philadelphia/.

For a sort of upscale/martini type place: For a sort of upscale/martini type place: Rouge on Rittenhouse is probably your best bet, though it's a little small. I haven't been, but Loie gets good reviews as well. Brasserie Perrier is probably my favorite, by very chi-chi. 32 Degrees is a good place in Old City and so is the Bleu Martini. BP and 32 can get expensive. There's always Continental in Old City (and in Center City).

Pizza: If you want a late night slice of pizza, go to Lorenzo's on South Street. Hit it by cab on your way back from Old City or Center City and call in an order for a pie to go. Note: pizza-by-the-slice comes plain only. No toppings. If you order a pie, they will put toppings on it. The line will probably be out the door after the bars close, so I recommend ordering a pie and picking it up on the way back to the hotel. Pizza suggestions on VisitPhilly.com: http://www.visitphilly.com/articles/...-philadelphia/

Cheesesteaks: Nobody will ever agree on the best cheesesteak. The truth is, they're all good. The two big places are Pat's
and Geno's, located right across the street from each other at 9th and Passyunk Avenue. There's also Jim's at 4th and South, Tony Luke's at 39 East Oregon Avenue. Rick's and Tony Luke's are also at Citizens Bank Park if you're catching a Phillies game. Joe's Steaks + Soda Shop (formerly Chink's) http://joessteaks.com/ VisitPhilly.com ranks cheesesteaks: http://www.visitphilly.com/articles/...-cheesesteaks/
How to order a Philly Cheesesteak (from gophila.com):
When ordering a cheesesteak, the idea is to let the cashier know a.) that you would like a cheesesteak, b.) what type of cheese you want, and c.) whether or not you want fried onions. And you have to be as concise as possible while doing so.

Locals have become so adept at this practice that they basically have it down to three words: saying “one wiz with” to the person behind the counter means that you would like one cheesesteak [denoted by the “one”] with Cheeze Wiz as your choice of cheese [denoted by the “wiz”] and with fried onions [denoted by the “with”].

Similarly, saying “one provolone without” would secure you a single cheesesteak [one] made with provolone cheese [provolone] and without fried onions [without].

Other food: Reading Terminal Market is heaven if you love food. The definitive guide for food in Philadelphia is located at philadelphiacuisine.com.

More food, again, credit tovis:
If you want a good restaurant, go to any Steven Starr restaurant, and I especially recommend Buddakhan if you're in Old City. If you want burgers/frieds/pub grub, just about any of the aforementioned pubs will be sufficient. If you're in Old City and just want a burger, go to Rotten Ralph's at 2nd and Chestnut. Likewise, for typical Mexican in that area, go to Mexican Post just down the street. If you want steak, go to Barclay Prime (Steven Starr restaurant) or try one of the typical chains (Morton's, Ruth's Chris, Capital Grill, etc.). Also, Fogo de Chao is a Brazillian steakhouse that's gotten great reviews. All of the foregoing are in Center City/Rittenhouse area. If you want Italian food, there are too many places to name but my favorite neighborhood place is Scannichio's at Broad and Porter. It's small and you'll need a reservation, but it's a good no-frills place. Try the sausage and figs in balsamic as an appetizer. There's a bazillion other Italian places.

Official visitor's guide to restaurant options by cuisine: http://www.visitphilly.com/restaurants-dining/

Options for Sports Bars
Tickets to Philly area teams


Quote:

Philadelphia Flyers Books, DVDs


BOOKS:
Since we get many suggestions regarding Flyers' publications, here's a list of what known.
  1. "Full Spectrum: The Complete History of the Philadelphia Flyers Hockey Club" by Jay Greenberg.
  2. "Score!: My Twenty-Five Years with the Broad Street Bullies" by Gene Hart.
  3. "Bobby Clarke and the Ferocious Flyers" by Stan Fischler.
  4. "Orange, Black and Blue" by Chuck Gormley.
  5. "Walking Together Forever: The Broad Street Bullies, Then and Now" by Jim Jackson.
  6. "Pelle Lindbergh: Behind the White Mask" by Bill Meltzer & Thomas Tynander.
  7. "The Broad Street Bullies: The Incredible Story of the Philadelphia Flyers" by Jack Chevalier (though this is rare and expensive).
  8. "Philadelphia Flyers Encyclopedia" by David Sherman.
  9. "The Greatest Players and Moments of the Philadelphia Flyers" by Stan Fischler.
  10. "The Good, the Bad & the Ugly Philadelphia Flyers: Heart-pounding, Jaw-dropping, and Gut-wrenching Moments from Philadelphia Flyers History" by Adam Kimelman.
  11. "100 Things Flyers Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die" by Adam Kimelman.
  12. "Jonesy: Put Your Head Down & Skate" by Keith Jones.
  13. "Journey Through Risk and Fear" by (Bernie) Parent, Paiva & Smith. Link -- http://bernieparent.net/blog/2011/01...risk-and-fear/
  14. "Philadelphia Flyers: Superman of the Ice" by Stan Fischler.
  15. "Open Net" by George Plimpton. A must for any hockey fan. The book is mostly about the author's tryout with the Bruins but it includes the notorious Flyers-Bruins' late 1970s preseason game brawl at the Spectrum and that alone is worth the read.
  16. "Fred Shero: A Kaleidoscopic View of the Philadelphia Flyers' Coach" by Rhoda Rappeport.
  17. "Shero: The Man Behind the System" by Fred Shero and Vijay S. Kothare.
  18. "Hockey For The Coach, The Player, And The Fan" by Fred Shero and Andre Beaulieu
  19. New for 2016: "The Philadelphia Flyers at 50: The Story of the Iconic Hockey Club and its Top 50 Heroes, Wins & Events" by Jay Greenberg -- https://www.amazon.com/Philadelphia-...s=flyers+at+50
  20. "Keith the Thief" by Blake Allen -- http://cedartreebooks.com/catalog/1-...eith-the-thief

DVDs:
  • Philadelphia Flyers 10 Greatest Games DVD Set
  • History of the Philadelphia Flyers

Link:

Jester 08-09-2007 01:02 PM

ah. sticky this. excellent work.... can also keep a counter of how many posts avoid this and ask these very questions.

flyersfan97 08-09-2007 01:05 PM

Ditto--must be stickied. I see the Ranger fans have something along these lines stickied on their board. And thanks for the cheesesteak info, I was actually about to ask--getting a true Philadelphia cheesesteak is one thing my friend and I plan on doing when we head down there next week. Thanks again, your info is excellent.

Jester 08-09-2007 01:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by flyersfan97 (Post 10144374)
Ditto--must be stickied. I see the Ranger fans have something along these lines stickied on their board. And thanks for the cheesesteak info, I was actually about to ask--getting a true Philadelphia cheesesteak is one thing my friend and I plan on doing when we head down there next week. Thanks again, your info is excellent.

I personally like Tony Luke's... they have the best bread, IMO. Pat's and Geno's are exceptional for showing up at around 1am and getting something to eat, as the people watching is immensely entertaining. However, I don't think there's anything exceptional about what they produce...

Jim's is the most intense ordering experience, I think... and the only place I've seen a Soup Nazi situation play out and two tourists were screamed at by the chef. Deer in headlights... was fantastic.

BringBackStevens 08-09-2007 01:25 PM

Here's a vote for Rick's steaks.


Good write up by the way.

IrishSniper87 08-09-2007 01:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jester (Post 10144407)
I personally like Tony Luke's... they have the best bread, IMO. Pat's and Geno's are exceptional for showing up at around 1am and getting something to eat, as the people watching is immensely entertaining. However, I don't think there's anything exceptional about what they produce...

Jim's is the most intense ordering experience, I think... and the only place I've seen a Soup Nazi situation play out and two tourists were screamed at by the chef. Deer in headlights... was fantastic.

I was at Geno's and this customer was in line after me. His wife came over with something from Pat's and went to grab some napkins out of the napkin dispenser. The guy behind the Geno's counter told her no, and that Geno's napkins are for Geno's customers only, not that other guys. The lady got real angry and said something like "its just a napkin". The Geno's guy just yelled at her. The husband got pissed and said something and the Geno's guy told both of them to get the **** out of line and go somewhere else. I almost died laughing it was so funny. I think the Geno's guy got a round of applause from the other customers.

Pat's is famous for turning people away and sending them to the back of the line if you mess up the order, but i have seen tourists say "I want a cheesesteak, with ummmm, American Cheese. Onions are ok I guess." Nothing happened. Pat's does have the sign telling you how to order. When in doubt, "Wiz Wit" always works and tastes good, but I'm dissapointed with the quality of the product nowadays.

BringBackStevens 08-09-2007 01:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tiger73549 (Post 10144616)
I was at Geno's and this customer was in line after me. His wife came over with something from Pat's and went to grab some napkins out of the napkin dispenser. The guy behind the Geno's counter told her no, and that Geno's napkins are for Geno's customers only, not that other guys. The lady got real angry and said something like "its just a napkin". The Geno's guy just yelled at her. The husband got pissed and said something and the Geno's guy told both of them to get the **** out of line and go somewhere else. I almost died laughing it was so funny. I think the Geno's guy got a round of applause from the other customers.

Pat's is famous for turning people away and sending them to the back of the line if you mess up the order, but i have seen tourists say "I want a cheesesteak, with ummmm, American Cheese. Onions are ok I guess." Nothing happened. Pat's does have the sign telling you how to order. When in doubt, "Wiz Wit" always works and tastes good, but I'm dissapointed with the quality of the product nowadays.

The ownership/employees at Geno's are disgusting. Talk about a bunch of ethnocentric/borderline racist *******s. That 'speak english' sign they have up really angers me, especially at a place where tourists have an interest in visiting.

LORD COMCAST 08-09-2007 01:41 PM

Thanks for doing this letsgoflyers! Sticky this thang, will ya?

pelts35.com 08-09-2007 01:42 PM

Tiger,

I 2nd your comment about ordering at Pat's. I've never seen anyone get turned away at Jim's. Sure the guy working the grill will look annoyed at you if you don't order right, but he won't ignore you or tell you to leave the line.

Pass on Geno's every time. I didn't think the steaks were very good and the whole "order in English" thing was tasteful in anyway.

Personally I'll pass on Tony Luke's. The meat is very good, but I don't care for the rolls.

guzmania 08-09-2007 02:43 PM

Stayed at the General Laffyette B&B/Brewery a couple of summers ago and it was very enjoyable. Great room in an old house with a garden in which we were the only guests. The brewery was the second best of my eastern trip, (Portsmith's Smuttynose Brewing gets the nod). Wife was happy, I was happy. Nice.

Danko 08-09-2007 03:47 PM

BY THE WAY: if you want cheap shopping with no taxes, Delaware is only like 25 minutes away on I95!

BringBackStevens 08-09-2007 05:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guzmania (Post 10145216)
Stayed at the General Laffyette B&B/Brewery a couple of summers ago and it was very enjoyable. Great room in an old house with a garden in which we were the only guests. The brewery was the second best of my eastern trip, (Portsmith's Smuttynose Brewing gets the nod). Wife was happy, I was happy. Nice.

Haha, that's really funny. I worked there as a 15 year old as a bus boy for my first job. It's a nice place

Dig Out Your Soul 08-09-2007 05:54 PM

Thanks a bunch, this is going to come in handy.

MiamiScreamingEagles 08-09-2007 06:45 PM

Impressive! Just one correction: Southwest doesn't fly in or out of Boston (NH and RI, yes). US Airways and Air Tran have many Boston to Philly flights.

Nikkowar 08-09-2007 06:59 PM

brilliant

flyersfan97 08-09-2007 09:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jester (Post 10144407)
I personally like Tony Luke's... they have the best bread, IMO. Pat's and Geno's are exceptional for showing up at around 1am and getting something to eat, as the people watching is immensely entertaining. However, I don't think there's anything exceptional about what they produce...

Jim's is the most intense ordering experience, I think... and the only place I've seen a Soup Nazi situation play out and two tourists were screamed at by the chef. Deer in headlights... was fantastic.


Is Tony Luke's in the area of all the historic stuff?? I'm soooo confused. But after reading these, I am now totally scared to even order!!! Maybe I'll just go somewhere and get a slice of pizza. ;)

As for the "soup nazi" a couple of friends and I went to the actual place a few years ago. They were stoked, but as someone who doesn't watch Seinfeld, it was just soup to me.

Amateur Hour 08-09-2007 09:32 PM

I stray from tradition when it comes where to go to get cheesesteaks... Lee's Hoagie House is my favorite, by far. In addition, Lee's makes the best tuna hoagie you'll ever find.

http://016f080.netsolhost.com/index.shtml

Stop by for lunch or dinner. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.

BURY 08-09-2007 09:35 PM

Hey guys, I'm most likely driving down to Philly next weekend for the This is Hardcore fest. It's at the Starlight Ballroom or something like that. Just wondering what area we should avoid as much as possible cause we're probably gonna sleep in the car or in a tent somewhere. Thanks !

Nikkowar 08-09-2007 09:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BURY (Post 10148172)
Hey guys, I'm most likely driving down to Philly next weekend for the This is Hardcore fest. It's at the Starlight Ballroom or something like that. Just wondering what area we should avoid as much as possible cause we're probably gonna sleep in the car or in a tent somewhere. Thanks !

Stay away from Spring Garden street, which is actually close to the Starlight.

BURY 08-09-2007 09:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pizzapie (Post 10148241)
Stay away from Spring Garden street, which is actually close to the Starlight.

Haha it's actually VERY close ;)

McNasty 08-09-2007 10:05 PM

I've only ever been to Pat's and Geno's and Pat's is the clear favorite. Honestly it's kind of a waste though, its like 8$ hardly has any meat on it and the bread sucks, other then that it's delicious.

BringBackStevens 08-09-2007 11:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BURY (Post 10148172)
Hey guys, I'm most likely driving down to Philly next weekend for the This is Hardcore fest. It's at the Starlight Ballroom or something like that. Just wondering what area we should avoid as much as possible cause we're probably gonna sleep in the car or in a tent somewhere. Thanks !

That's cool man, this is hardcore has a really stellar lineup. I wish i could go...

but...

This area really isn't that bad (starlight ballroom). I wouldn't sleep in your car in the immediate area around there though. Northern Liberties is to the north east which is a decent area, i wouldn't venture too far north-west or dead north. South of the ballroom is center city which is fine.

Sleeping in your car might prove to be a tricky ordeal... If you really have no other options i would recommend looking at parking your car somewhere in the old city/eastern center city area which is basically from 5th street over to the delaware river. Another option might be to find somehwere in university city which is west of the Schuylkill and south of market street (Drexel / Penn Campus) When i walk to my next class i'll see if i notice any suitable areas to do something like this at... but this IS a city and sleeping in your car probably isn't a great idea.

One more option, is to look on pahardcore.com or centerfuse and try to find a place to stay with someone else in the area. As far as i know there are usually people doing this sort of thing for these fests.

Tenting is going to be near impossible without driving at least 30 minutes out of the city. If you do the tent thing you should search for a campground outside of the city. I would recommend this option. Whenever i want to make a short vacation i choose camping over a hotel, it usually runs 30 bucks for a site and split that amongst your party is an economical route to take.

If you have any more questions i'd be pleased to answer

Jester 08-10-2007 12:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by flyersfan97 (Post 10147986)
Is Tony Luke's in the area of all the historic stuff?? I'm soooo confused. But after reading these, I am now totally scared to even order!!! Maybe I'll just go somewhere and get a slice of pizza. ;)

As for the "soup nazi" a couple of friends and I went to the actual place a few years ago. They were stoked, but as someone who doesn't watch Seinfeld, it was just soup to me.

ordering isn't bad at all... unless you don't know english.

none of the 'famous' cheesesteak joints are near the historic stuff in olde city. Tony Luke's, Pat's, and Geno's are south. and Jim's is on South Street, which is actually not all that far from the historic stuff... short walk.

good slice of pizza at Lorenzo's on South if you go that route.

Jules801 08-10-2007 12:59 AM

Well, I like Geno's for a various reasons. I didn't get all worked up at the whole "English" thing, because he wasn't turning people away, he just wanted them to attempt to order in English.

ANYWAY, if you go to Tony Luke's and for some reason DON'T want a cheesesteak, get a Chicken Cutlet Supreme. They're the best!!

Oh by the way, Nice Job making this topic! WTG LetsGo1975

BringBackStevens 08-10-2007 01:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jester (Post 10149170)
good slice of pizza at Lorenzo's on South if you go that route.

I'll second that. No toppings, no ********, just a huge ass delicious slice of pizza


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