This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that we will receive a commission if you click through and make a purchase. All opinions are those of the author.
The city of Philadelphia is iconic in the history of the United States. After all the Declaration of Independence, The Bill of Rights and Constitution were all written right in the heart of the city. Surrounded by history it can sometimes feel daunting to know that most museums close at 5:00 pm on week days.
So, what do you do when the business meetings end and you want to learn about the city you are staying in beyond the hotel bar? Here are 7 ideas for things to do while staying in Philadelphia after 5.
The comedy scene in Philadelphia is always alive and waiting to entertain you after a long day of corporate life. From standup, sketch comedy and improv you are likely to find something in one of the many locations throughout the city to appease your funny bone.
Helium Comedy Club, located on Samson Street, is known to host some of the top names in standup comedy as well as many of the locals right here from the city.
Across the street from Helium you can find the Adriene theater. Here you will find Philly Improv and Comedy Sportz. Two of the companies known throughout the city that host improv troupes and classes for the aspiring comedian.
If you find yourself closer to Chinatown head over to the Good Good Comedy Theater for some great standup routines. Or if you are in the Manayunk area look for the Grape Room where you can catch an open mic.
No matter where you are there is likely a comedy show just a few blocks away waiting to entertain you and help you forget the long day you just had.
The Franklin Institute
The Franklin Institute is an iconic landmark and museum here in Philadelphia. Known for its large monument of Ben Franklin and multiple levels of fun filled science exploration, it’s one of the major stops for families and field trips throughout the area. However, it’s not just for the younger generation, the museum offers Science After Hours once a month. It’s dedicated to bringing science into a more grown up context, from love to cocktails this is a great way to experience some learning, networking and fun all with a cash bar right on sight.
If you aren’t able to make the Science After Hours, but still want to experience some of the things the museum has to offer, you can enjoy their special exhibits which stay open late Thursday through Saturday 5:00pm – 8:00pm with the last entrance at 6:30pm.
History After Hours
Despite most of the museums and monuments closing around the same time you leave the office, it doesn’t mean you can’t get a little history in on your tour of the city. Historical Philadelphia offers Independence After Hours where you step back into 1776 to enjoy an 18th century inspired dinner at City Tavern and a visit with Thomas Jefferson then make your way through the historical district into Independence Hall where you can listen in on how the Declaration of Independence was discussed by John Adams, Ben Franklin and your new friend Thomas Jefferson.
This unique tour can only be found in Philadelphia April through October and reservations are needed.
Meet the Author at the Free Library
The Free Library of Philadelphia is the public library system throughout Philadelphia. The main library sits on Vine Street just at the end of the Ben Franklin Parkway across from Logan Square. Throughout the month the library is a host to many events, one of which is meeting the Author.
Majority of the events are free and start around 7:00 pm where you can sit in on a discussion with the Author about their most recent book and many other topics. This is a great way to learn and relax at the same time while maybe getting to meet one of your favorite authors like I have.
Penn’s Landing is the location in which William Penn landed in America in 1692 where he soon founded Pennsylvania. The waterfront offers visitors a great place to walk around, grab food, listen to music and enjoy festivities throughout the year. Penn’s Landing stretches for multiple blocks which includes the Blue Cross RiverRink where you can skate all year round and enjoy many of the festivities that go on with both their Winterfest and Summerfest.
Just a few blocks north of the RiverRink you can sit and enjoy some live music or maybe a free movie at the Festival Pier also known as Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing. Throughout the summer Festival Pier offers movie screenings every Thursday night in July and August where you can sit and enjoy food and beverages along with some great company or simply just relax and enjoy the movie.
One of the more unique things to do at the river front is have a meal on an old historic boat. Penn’s Landing is home to the Moshulu. Which is the only restaurant on a Tall Ship throughout the world as well as being the world’s oldest and largest square-rigged sailing vessel still afloat today (according to their website).
Reading Terminal Market
One place many people ask about when visiting Philadelphia is about the Reading Terminal Market. While the market is only open until 6:00 pm every day, you can still grab a bit to eat or take home some great souvenirs before heading back to your hotel room for the night.
The market not only gives you a taste of Philadelphia, but also some of Pennsylvania’s country side too. Many Amish and Mennonite farmers and bakers bright their produce and baked goods to the market throughout the week giving the market a great cultural vibe of Pennsylvania not just Philadelphia. So don’t forget to try some Shoofly pie!
The Philadelphia Museum of Art is iconic thanks to Rocky. Located just at the end of the Ben Franklin Parkway. Many tourists enjoy taking their picture at his statute, but you can also enjoy the museum until 8:45pm Wednesday and Friday nights to the main building of the museum. So, while after you made it to the top of the stairs why not walk around and enjoy some amazing pieces of work that are on display or catch a travel exhibit that might not be coming to your home town?
While majority of the museums might be closed, the city is still alive. These are just a few options of things to do while staying in the great city of Brotherly Love on your next business trip. From shopping, dining to experiencing some amazing pieces of iconic history there is always something to do here in the city.