Where will the road take YOU?

Destination Diaries

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By Angela Ash

Philadelphia is the largest city in Pennsaylvania, and it is packed with all sorts of things to make your getaway unforgettable!  Whether you want to visit historical sites, world class museums, dine in a wide array of tantalizing restaurants, or run up those Art Museum steps like Rocky, Philadelphia has a little bit of something for everyone. 

However, the most important thing when visiting a city is finding a convenient, comfortable hotel with plenty of amenities!


The Holiday Inn Express is just a fantastic hotel.  Located just minutes from the airport, and close to the exciting entertainment and delicious restaurants at Harrah's Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack, this property still manages to keep you close to the attractions of downtown Philadelphia. When someone says that location is everything, then the Holiday Inn Express has you covered!  Right on the Delaware River and next door to the marina, the scenery is gorgeous! 

For airline travelers, this hotel offers a courtesy shuttle to get you rested and ready for the complimentary breakfast in the morning, before you start your day sightseeing or attending business meetings.  With free parking, this can also really provide a huge savings! 

The rooms are all decorated with a modern twist, and they offer amenities like a super soft bed and free internet.  Many rooms also offer a beautiful water view. 

With on-site business and fitness centers, this property offers everything that you may need to make your stay convenient. 

Whenever you find yourself anywhere near Philadelphia, make booking your room at the Holiday Inn Express Philadelphia Airport your first call!

For additional information on the Holiday Inn Express Philadelphia Airport, you may visit them online, or you may call (610) 521-1200. 

Now, if you are looking for something really unique to do while you are visiting Philadelphia, one attraction truly demands a visit!



The Eastern State Penitentiary rises like a dark, gray castle from the sidewalks of Philadelphia.  One may instantly conjure up the images of knights and damsels in distress, but that in no way is an accurate description of the humans that were housed within these walls.  Prepare yourself for something quite different altogether.

Opening in 1829, the Eastern State Penitentiary was a revolutionary new type of prison.  Previously, prisons has been used only to keep the prisoner in captivity.  However, Eastern State was all about actually reforming the prisoner.  They believed that the best way to do this was to place the offender in complete isolation and silence, so as to best ponder over their actions and what changes they could make to "reform" into a life that would not end behind bars.   

Touring the massive property is a bit overwhelming.  However, with the mp3 tour that is included with general admission, actor Steve Buscemi of Boardwalk Empire fame will guide you throughout the prison cell corridors, its yards, and its common places, with an intriguing narrative that will literally make the walls around you seem to come to life. 

It is ironic that Buscemi's voice guides you down the hallway that leads to Al Capone's prison cell, also a popular character on HBO's Boardwalk Empire.  In Capone's cell, you will not find the harsh, stark prison decor of other abodes.  His room is filled with lavish luxuries that made his time at Eastern State go by quickly and as comfortably as possible.   

It is almost chilling to stand right in a prison cell, listening to its actual prisoners speak of life at Eastern State Penitentiary.  I can think of no better way to fully immerse oneself into the historic penal system of that day, helping visitors to fully understand just how far life in prison has come today. 

The prison closed in 1971, and remains open to visitors who want to step inside its gates.

Of course, one of the first things that automatically comes to mind is that ghost activity must be absolutely rampant at a facility of this nature, and your thought would be correct.  After Dark tours may be scheduled, and the building even hosts a haunted attraction during Halloween.

For more information on the Eastern State Penitentiary, visit them online, or you may call (215) 236-3300.

Whatever your reason for visiting Philadelphia, you will find a city full of excitement awaiting you!