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Taking a weekend getaway out of Philadelphia, PA is easy and convenient due to the city’s great central location. With close proximity to Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland and other Pennsylvania locales, a fun-filled weekend is just a short drive away. You’ll find many exciting attractions not too far away from The City of Brotherly Love. We’ve put together a list of great areas near Philly that are absolutely perfect for a weekend getaway. Follow our recommendations for a weekend you’ll always remember.

Brandywine Valley

Distance from Philadelphia: 40 Minutes

A getaway to the Brandywine Valley just means a quick jaunt down I-95. The Brandywine Valley, home to world-class museums, opulent castles and colorful gardens, is located in Southern Chester County, Pennsylvania, and Northern Delaware. Six different wineries are found on the Brandywine Valley Wine Trail. Brandywine River Museum of Art is dedicated to the works of Andrew Wyeth, as well as art made by his family members. The Museum also operates tours of the Wyeth family home, Andrew’s studio, and the Kuerner Farm, which was the inspiration for over 1,000 of Wyeth’s works.

Favorite Activity: If you’re looking to explore some world class landscaping, the valley is home to some incredible gardens. World-renowned Longwood Gardens is in Chester County. Winterthur Museum and Gardens along with Nemours Mansion and Gardens are just across the river in New Castle County, Delaware.

Lancaster

Distance from Philadelphia: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

Weekend getaways all over Pennsylvania can be lots of fun, especially so when you head to Lancaster. You’ll be treated to a picturesque landscape of Pennsylvania Amish Country. Rolling hills are dotted with farms that show off planted fields. Once named Hickory Town, it was later renamed after the English town of Lancaster. For a single day in 1777, Lancaster became the Capital city of the United States, though it didn’t last long as the revolutionary government fled further west to York, PA.

Many of Lancaster’s attractions aim to introduce you to the “Plain People,” such as Quakers and Mennonites, who shun modern conveniences. As you travel through Lancaster County, you’ll share the road with their horses and buggies. Some other great attractions include Rock Ford Plantation, Dutch Wonderland and The Demuth Museum.

Favorite Activity: Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum is dedicated to conserving and exhibiting Pennsylvania German culture and history. The 100 acre living history museum is located on an old crossroads village, and has operated since 1925.

Inner Harbor

Distance from Philadelphia: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

There’s plenty to see and do in Inner Harbor, a neighborhood in Baltimore, Maryland. Described as “the model for post-industrial waterfront redevelopment around the world”, this historic seaport is a tourist attraction that is well worth a visit. Visit the Maryland Science Center and its planetarium and observatory for a day of learning and exploration. Next, head over to The National Aquarium to visit the 17,000 sea specimens that live in the 2,200,000 gallon aquarium.

Get a bird’s eye view of the city from the Top of the World Observation Level, a 27 floor observation tower at the top of Baltimore’s World Trade Center building. After scoping out the city, grab some take out from one of the food carts nearby, to eat in Federal Hill Park. We recommend the Taste of Greece Baltimore truck, which is right on the way to the park.

Favorite Activity: American Visionary Art Museum is incredibly unique, as it focuses on exhibiting “outsider art”, or art created by self taught or naive artists, most of whom are only discovered after their death. The museum sits on the cleaned up site of an old copper paint factory and whiskey warehouse that once were a blight on the neighborhood.

Wildwood

Distance from Philadelphia: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

Wildwood is a New Jersey beach town that offers a wide variety of fun activities and attractions. The resort city boasts five miles of white sand beaches and a 38-block boardwalk. The Sightseer tram makes it easy to get to all the eateries, shops, arcades, water parks and rides on the boardwalk. Grab some burgers and shakes from the Doo Wop Diner, a classic joint that embodies the essence of 1950’s America.

Three amusement piers on the boardwalk contain over 100 rides and attractions. Morey’s Piers Parks have operated since1969, and are a staple of Wildwood. Doo Wop Experience Museum, featuring 1950s and ’60s artifacts, is found at Fox Park. Nighttime hot spots include dance clubs, sports bars and Irish pubs.

Favorite Activity: Cape May National Wildlife Refuge is a protected area just south of Wildwood. The 11,000 acre refuge is home to 317 species of birds, 42 species of mammals, and 55 reptile and amphibian species. You can walk or ride down the Wildwood Bikepath to the Two Mile Beach unit of the refuge.

Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

Distance from Philadelphia: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area runs over 200 miles along the Delaware River on the New Jersey and Pennsylvania border. The park comprises grassy beaches, forested mountains and the Delaware Water Gap, which runs through the Kittatinny Ridge. The park hosts significant Native American archeological sites as well as historic buildings from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. This incredible recreation area has over 70,000 acres to explore. You can hike the Appalachian National Scenic Trail and Dingmans Creek Trail, which leads to Dingmans Falls.

Favorite Activity: Silverthread Falls is an incredibly beautiful waterfall that is quite easy to access. Silverthread is only a 200 ft walk from the Dingmans Falls Visitor center, and has a level trail that is handicapped accessible. The thin stream of water falls from 80 ft above to the pool below.

Take Your Perfect Weekend Getaway Out of Philly

Philadelphia has so much to offer within the city proper. If you’re looking for some exciting things to do without leaving town, we have an awesome guide for exploring Philadelphia. After you’ve seen what The Birthplace of America has to offer, it really is nice to get outside of the city for the perfect weekend getaway.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing weekend on the beach, or an exciting trip exploring museums and attractions, there are so many options just a short drive away. This list should have you covered for your next five getaways at least, so take some time to start planning your next weekend trip right away.