At 2,054 acres, Fairmount Park is a massive public green space. Its famous landmarks include Boathouse Row along the Schuylkill River and many historic mansions.
The park was developed in the nineteenth century to protect a municipal water supply and create green spaces for recreation. It became one of the largest urban riparian parks in the country. A great post ahead.
The Strawberry Mansion Music Pavilion
The sprawling fairgrounds of Fairmount Park offer many enthralling attractions for visitors to explore. From gardens and sculptures to historic mansions and major cultural institutions, there is something for everyone. Some of these attractions are more obvious than others, but there is still a lot to discover.
Bands that aren’t quite headlining stadiums often play this huge concert hall a block south of the Broad Street Line’s Girard stop. Grab a seat or pay extra for standing room on the lawn and enjoy your favorite artists up close.
The neighborhood surrounding this city park is full of young adults – most are enrolled in college or graduate school. As such, the area is lively, with many bars and restaurants within walking distance. The neighborhood also hosts the Cancer Support Community of Greater Philadelphia, which is dedicated to ensuring that people impacted by cancer are empowered by knowledge, strengthened by action, and sustained by the community.
The Shofuso Japanese House and Garden
One might not think of Philadelphia as a city where you can find a traditional Japanese house and garden. But Shofuso (meaning Pine Breeze Villa) is a 17th-century-style house and 1.2-acre garden located in West Fairmount Park on the site of the 1876 Centennial Exposition.
Originally erected in 1953 in Nagoya, Japan, and exhibited at MoMA until its destruction in a 1955 fire, Shofuso was reassembled here in 1957-58. Its arrival ensured that a Japanese structure and garden would continue to exist on the grounds, which had a continuous Japanese presence since 1876.
This garden is a respite from the bustling sidewalks of the nearby shopping area along Horticultural Drive. The $12 admission includes a guided tour of the house and the garden. Visitors are required to remove their shoes in keeping with traditional Japanese custom. Here is another spot to visit.
The Please Touch Museum
Fairmount Park is a massive urban park that hugs the Schuylkill River. It is home to the country’s oldest zoo, historic mansions, and Boathouse Row. It also features the modern paved Boxers’ Trail, which was named after Philadelphia boxer Joe Frazier and creates unique views of both the park and the river.
The Please Touch Museum is a fun and interactive museum for kids. It is stroller friendly and there are several places for toddlers and very young children to play. My daughter could have spent an hour in this exhibit alone. They have multiple stations where kids can pretend to drive a bus or trolley, pump gas, operate an ice cream stand, and much more! It is a must for any family visiting Philadelphia!
The Philadelphia Zoo
Philadelphia’s city parks weren’t always the result of a noble conservation vision, but this large urban park along the Schuylkill River is an exception. The Philadelphia Zoo chartered in 1859 and opened on July 1, 1874, was America’s first zoological garden. Its Victorian gates, gatehouses, and fences designed by Frank Furness are the same as they were on opening day.
Today, the zoo has everything you expect from a modern zoo — including big cats and primates in enclosures with sweeping views of the surrounding cityscape. The park is also home to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, eight restored 18th and 19th-century mansions in Boathouse Row, the Mann Music Center outdoor amphitheater, and miles of trails for walking, running, biking, and horseback riding.
The Mann Center for the Performing Arts
Fairmount Park is home to numerous cultural institutions, including the Philadelphia Zoo, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Please Touch Museum, Horticulture Center, and Shofuso Japanese House and Garden. Other landmarks include Boathouse Row, a series of boathouses along the east bank of the Schuylkill River that symbolize Philadelphia’s fusion of sports and history; historic houses, such as Strawberry Mansion, Cedar Grove, Mount Pleasant, Laurel Hill, and Woodford; and public sculptures.
The park also contains a significant number of meadows, which serve as important natural ecosystems in urban settings, aiding in stormwater retention and groundwater recharge. Meadows also provide a habitat for wildlife and serve as a focal point for nature education and outdoor recreation. Continue reading the next article.
Driving directions from Clean For Me to Fairmount Park
Driving directions from Fairmount Park to Wilson Farm Park