Trees and walkways at Fairmount Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

© Jon Bilous/Shutterstock

Fairmount Park

Logan Square & Fairmount

The snaking Schuylkill River bisects this 2050-acre green space, the largest city park in the US, splitting it into east and west sections. On either side of the river are cycling and jogging paths, playing fields, lawns, public art and several historic mansions.

In East Fairmount Park you can admire the Victorian-era rowing clubs at Boathouse Row; there's a fine view from the terraces of the Fairmount Waterworks, which is home to an excellent interpretive center on the city's water system and the park's natural environment.

West Fairmount Park was the site of the nation’s Centennial Exposition in 1876. Memorial Hall, built for the expo, now houses the Please Touch Museum. Nearby is beautiful Shofuso Japanese House & Garden, which is a particular treat to see in cherry-blossom season. This section of the park also includes the 42-acre Philadelphia Zoo, the first zoo in the US.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Logan Square & Fairmount attractions

1. Belmont Mansion

0.36 MILES

From the lawns surrounding the 18th-century Belmont Mansion there's a panoramic view of the city skyline. The mansion, administered by the American Women…

2. Pavilion in the Trees

0.44 MILES

Martin Puryear's functional artwork is made from three types of wood so it blends in harmoniously with the leafy surroundings. Walk along a 60ft walkway…

3. Shofuso Japanese House & Garden

0.49 MILES

This picturesque house, built in Nagoya in 1953 to a 17th-century design, has been set in 1.2 acres of traditional Japanese gardens in Fairmount Park…

4. Mount Pleasant

0.56 MILES

This 1764 mansion was described by John Adams in 1775 'as the most elegant seat in Pennsylvania.' The Georgian building is closed for general maintenance,…

5. Please Touch Museum

0.56 MILES

Parents will have a lot of fun at what's definitely a kiddo goldmine: splash around learning about bubbles, race toy cars, wander through a 'wonderland'…

6. Cedar Grove

0.64 MILES

One of two historic houses in Fairmount Park managed by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Cedar Grove was moved here from its original location in Frankford…

7. Smith Memorial Arch

0.74 MILES

Several bronze statues by 13 different artists stand on the stone plinths and columns that make up this striking 1912 memorial to Pennsylvania’s naval and…

8. Sweetbriar Mansion

0.86 MILES

Built in 1787, this neoclassical mansion was the home of Samuel Breck, a wealthy merchant who purchased 33 acres of land along the Schuylkill. The Marquis…