Society Hill Tours
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Famed for its atmospheric cobblestone streets, historic buildings, and tree-lined green spaces, Society Hill is one of Philadelphia’s most upscale residential neighborhoods—first settled in the 1680s, it’s also one of the oldest. Non-residents are also drawn here for its eclectic mix of restaurants, stores, and historic attractions.
Society Hill is home to several sites that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Society Hill Synagogue, built in 1829 by one of the architects who designed the US Capitol, and the Merchant’s Exchange Building, a Greek Revival masterpiece designed in the early 1830s. Washington Square and Head House Square are two of the original five squares laid out by city founder William Penn, while Bouvier’s Row (on 3rd and Spruce Streets) is notable as the site of three Victorian brownstones owned by the family of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.
Several Philadelphia city tours—by foot, Segway, and horse-drawn carriage—visit Society Hill, particularly those focused on the city’s history, offering a good way to check off multiple attractions in one tour.
Things to Know Before You Go
- With its collection of historic buildings, Society Hill is a must-visit for architecture buffs.
- The best way to experience Society Hill is by simply wandering around the streets.
- It’s easy to include a stroll around Society Hill as part of a day of sightseeing, since it’s located just a couple blocks south of Independence Mall.
- As a residential neighborhood, Society Hill itself offers a few lodging options.
How to Get There
Part of the area known as Historic Philadelphia, Society Hill lies between the Delaware River to the east, 8th Street to the west, Walnut Street on the north and Lombard Street to the south. The closest SEPTA station is 5th Street Independence Hall, which is around a 15-minute walk away.
When to Get There
Visit during the day to check out the shops and art galleries, or in the evening to try out some of the restaurants and bars. Headhouse Farmers Market, the oldest farmers’ market in Philadelphia, is held every Sunday, weather permitting.
Spruce Street Harbor Park
On the Delaware River waterfront, Spruce Street Harbor Park is often said to be one of the United States’ best urban parks. Free and open to the public from spring through fall, the park is known for its hammocks where visitors can chill out—plus its floating barges serving Philly-inspired eats, beer garden, and selection of games including bocce and shuffleboard.
Address: Walnut and 8th Streets, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106, USA
4 Tours and Activities to Experience Society Hill
Journey back in time on a guided, 1-hour carriage ride through the tree-lined streets of historic Philadelphia. Visit Philly’s Independence National Historical Park, Society Hill and Old City. This leisurely ride features famous locations like the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross House, Elfreth Alley, and much more.
Taking safety measures
Face masks required for guides in public areas
Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
Social distancing enforced throughout experience
Experience Philadelphia like never before on this educational and entertaining guided small-group Segway tour. Learn about Philadelphia’s important history and visit popular locations like Penn’s Landing, the Historic District, the Italian Market, Benjamin Franklin Parkway and Society Hill on a 5- or 10-mile loop around Center City. Guided Segway training and photos from the tour are included. Dress in weather-appropriate clothes with flat, closed-toed shoes.
Experience the Philadelphia cheesesteak like never before on this guided, 2-hour, small-group Segway tour. Learn how this iconic sandwich got its start and taste the best of Philly’s famous cheesesteaks — from Chinatown to Society Hill and South Philadelphia — on a 5-mile loop to five of the city’s authentic cheesesteak shops. Guided Segway training, all the necessary equipment and photos from the tour are included. Bring an appetite and dress in weather-appropriate clothes with flat, closed-toed shoes.
This private and customizable tour (length/price, interests) for all ages is a great introduction and overview to Philadelphia’s history and culture. • We highlight iconic and historical sites such as Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell as well as picturesque streets and alleys in residential neighborhoods • We discuss a huge array of buildings from the Colonial to the Victorian eras, plus American skyscrapers and modernist buildings. • You will some of the city’s 4000 murals (street art) – the most of any city in the world, the largest municipal building in the world and the colorful Reading Terminal Market, home to several Amish businesses. It is the perfect place for a meal or a snack (not included). A hotel pick up and drop-off, if your hotel is located in the city center, can also be scheduled.
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What's the best way to experience Society Hill?
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