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Things to do in Philadelphia

Cycle down Forbidden Drive

Live dangerously and take two wheels down Forbidden Drive. Okay, so it’s just a name but the bike trail, which starts and ends in Manayunk, runs in a loop and has plenty of refreshment stops en route. Fairmont Park is great for cycling; Wheel Fun Rentals (tel: +1 805 650 7770; www.wheelfunrentals.com) will help with hire.

Hit the fairways at one of USA's best golf courses

Greater Philadelphia's first public golf complex, Cobb's Creek Golf Club (tel: +1 215 877 8707; www.cobbscreek.golfphilly.org), opened in 1916 and is home to two 18-hole courses -The Olde Course and The Karakung Course. The Olde Course is the crown jewel amongst Philadelphia's courses, having been nationally ranked as the sixth best municipal course in the USA.

Skate on an Olympic-sized ice rink

Some say it’s always sunny in Philadelphia. Don’t be fooled: it’s not. If you arrive in the winter months, head to RiverR ink Winterfest, Penn Landing. Overlooking the Delaware River, Winterfest is a must with a lodge bar, food stalls, Olympic-sized ice-skating ring and fire pits to warm yourself by.

Tackle the topography with a spot of rock climbing

Outdoor enthusiasts are well catered for at Ralph Stover State Park. Not only does its careering river offer wild water rafting but there are also a number of rock faces up which to clamber. High Rocks is sheer and popular spot, but should only be attempted by experienced climbers.

Take a trot through Fairmont Park

Saddle up and explore Fairmont Park, one of the country’s largest urban green spaces, on horseback. Chamounix Equestrian Centre (tel: +1 215 877 4419; www.worktoride.net) offers a stable of 36 horses and an opportunity to go riding amongst 1,400 acres (566 hectares) of prime Philly countryside. There are even qualified instructors offering lessons for first timers.

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City Highlight: Philadelphia

Philadelphia is more than just a beacon of American liberty, it's vibrant art scene, diverse population and world-class museums all add to its appeal

Featured Hotels

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Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia at Comcast Center

Situated in the Philadelphia’s tallest tower, the Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia offers a unique experience and magnificent views of Philadelphia. Facilities include an infinity pool and fitness centre (on the 57th floor), several restaurants and a spa.

Opens in August 2019

Penn’s View Hotel

Just a short walk from the historic sights of the old city, and with views over the Delaware River, Penn’s View is one of Philly’s most underrated overnight gems. The rooms are designed in a traditional style, with exposed brick walls and warming fireplaces. Stump up a little extra for a whirlpool bath, ideal for winding down before hitting the excellent Il Bar downstairs or the Panorama Wine Bar upstairs.

Hyatt at the Bellevue

Crowning the top seven floors of the landmark 1904 Bellevue Building, the Hyatt ranks among the most elegant hotels in Philadelphia. Opulent retailers (like Tiffany & Co) are set among the marble and mosaic-filled ground floor. From there an elevator whisks you to the glitzy, domed lobby on the 19th floor. Rooms are decorated in classic old-world style with all the modern luxuries, including goose-down duvets, Wi-Fi access and handsome marble bathrooms.

Rittenhouse 1715

Set on a leafy street near the Rittenhouse Square, this charming, painstakingly renovated 1911 carriage house is a paragon of unrivalled elegance. With just 23 guest rooms, the Rittenhouse 1715 has a boutique feel and aims for European-style luxury in its beautiful interior design. The rooms feature cream-coloured Berber carpets, with a mix of antiques and reproduction Chippendale or Louis XIV furniture. The breakfast room looks like a Parisian cafe and a European breakfast is served on china.

The Gables Bed and Breakfast

Built in 1889, The Gables is the former home of a prominent doctor from the turn of the century. Today, this large Victorian mansion is set in a leafy, tree-lined suburb with a bus stop conveniently located outside the front door. Restoration of the home in 1993 by innkeepers Don Caskey and Warren Cederholm, turned this Victorian home into one of Philadelphia’s best bed & breakfasts. This 10-room inn may be vintage but the amenities are modern including Wi-Fi, private phones, cable TV, bathrobes and a bounteous breakfast.

Thomas Bond House

The charming Thomas Bond House is a cosy alternative to high-rise hotels. This bed and breakfast is set in a converted Georgian style home that dates back to 1769, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The 12 guest rooms are handsomely furnished with period antiques, and two of the rooms have fireplaces and Jacuzzis.