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Franklin Square, Philadelphia

4.2
#10 of 27 in Parks in Philadelphia
Park · Hidden Gem · Landmark
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Franklin Square is one of the five original open-space parks planned by William Penn when he laid out the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1682. It is located in the Center City area, between North 6th and 7th Streets, and between Race Street and the Vine Street Expressway (I-676).

Penn included this piece of green space in his original city plan as one of five squares, although the park was slow to develop because it was a marshy land. Originally, the park was a place for settlers to meditate and set a virtuous behavior to set a proper example. The park was supposed to be landscaped to have settlers understand the value of nature. In the 1920s, the park was abandoned and the surrounding area became known locally as the “tenderloin”, with an entertainment district featuring taverns and bordellos, and became a place for individuals experiencing homelessness to sleep on the park's benches, resulting in its reputation as Philadelphia's "skid row". In 2003, Historic Philadelphia, Inc. renovated the park by adding commercials and houses to attract tourists, which in turn helped the park back to its originality. Tourists are now able to enjoy the renovated park, family-friendly attractions, and the surrounding nature. Franklin Square is restored to its original plan as William Penn wanted the park to be used.
It is now managed by Historic Philadelphia, a non-profit organization.
Franklin Square was added to the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) in 1981.
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Franklin Square reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
260 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Festival is set up in the park for a few more weeks. Please take the time to go and explore all the fabulous lanterns. Best at night since all are lit up. Beautiful, colorful, some are inter... 
    Festival is set up in the park for a few more weeks. Please take the time to go and explore all the fabulous lanterns. Best at night since all are lit up. Beautiful, colorful, some are inter...  more »
  • Close to the National Park, Franklin Square is a collection of colorful art, a fabulous fountain, and a carousel. The fountain is a miniature version of Las Vegas' Bellagio fountains complete with... 
    Close to the National Park, Franklin Square is a collection of colorful art, a fabulous fountain, and a carousel. The fountain is a miniature version of Las Vegas' Bellagio fountains complete with...  more »
Google
  • The Chinese lantern festival is a wonderful event to enjoy and make memories with family and friends. Lots of huge light up displays and mazes to walk through. Lots amd lots of photo ops. Carousel for kids is perfect. Putting golf course is so much fun. Amazing place for teens and youth to hang out with friends. Food is good, there could be more vegetarian options. But make sure to get your food before it's too late since they run out. Security is good. Our family had a great time! The overall ambience is absolutely fantastic and worth the $ entry fee.
  • The Service: Staffs are friendly and helpful. The Hotel: The location is good. It is walking distance to the Bell & Drum Towers, the City Wall & many restaurants & shops. The hotel room is a little bit outdated but still comfortable to stay. The breakfast buffet has good varieties. The concierge is very helpful, don't forget to grab a city map when you go out.

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