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Eastern State Penitentiary

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2124 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130-2603
+1 215-236-3300
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Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site was once the most famous and expensive prison in the world, but stands today in ruin, a haunting world of crumbling cellblocks and empty guard towers. Known for its grand architecture and strict discipline, this was the world’s first true “penitentiary,” a prison designed to inspire penitence, or true regret, in the hearts of convicts. Tours today include the cellblocks, solitary punishment cells, Al Capone’s Cell, and Death Row.
  • Excellent68%
  • Very good26%
  • Average4%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“al capone” (364 reviews)
“audio tour” (967 reviews)
“haunted house” (173 reviews)
Open Now
All hours
Hours Today: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
2124 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130-2603
+1 215-236-3300
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Reviews (4,899)
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1,161 - 1,170 of 4,494 reviews

Reviewed August 12, 2016

When one thinks of American penitentiaries one only thinks of Alcatraz...The Eastern State Penitentiary is one of those hidden gems that will surprise you. It used to be the biggest penitentiary in the country by its completion in 1829 and its wagon wheel design was...More

Thank sabrinamacchi
Reviewed August 11, 2016

Enjoyed by the adults and children alike. It was not scary, like some people think. It was thought provoking.

Thank Patricia W
Reviewed August 11, 2016 via mobile

Cool old prison self guided tour with audio so go at your own pace with plenty of extra topics if you want to learn more nice because you are not stuck in large group

Thank mke1lap
Reviewed August 11, 2016 via mobile

We didn't know about this place before going to Philly, but once in, I was amazed. You can listen to an audio tour with headset and see with your own eyes how the inmates lived there. What I liked most was the chance to have...More

Thank mikymichela19
Reviewed August 10, 2016 via mobile

I was really scared to do this as I saw the episode from ghost adventures, but was really glad that I went! I went around 2 when there always some people, but wasn't overly packed. The self guided tour was nice so you can go...More

Thank BreClark22
Reviewed August 10, 2016

This was the highlight of our visit to Philadelphia for me. Prior to going I had read some reviews which slated the prison because it was derelict in some places. Whilst this is the case it is done for a reason and really gives the...More

Thank Tim O
Reviewed August 10, 2016

I will admit that I was a reluctant visitor to Eastern State Penitentiary. Visiting sounded like, well, a prison sentence to me. However, I came out (thank goodness!) with a more nuanced view of it. I was very impressed with the recorded tour that has...More

Thank Vanessa W
Reviewed August 9, 2016

Once my cousin and I realized how close we were we HAD to visit. We weren't sure how long to park the car for because we were worried we'd be bored so we chose the 2 hour option and it worked out well. We were...More

Thank TravelKerri
Reviewed August 8, 2016

Cool couple of hours we spent here. Individual tour comes with headphones. Press number and hear about site you are at within Penitentiary. Lots of pictures taken. If in Philly, take the time to see this site. Won't be disappointed.

Thank eplatt445
Reviewed August 8, 2016 via mobile

Great tour. Spend as much time as you would like. Excellent audio tour with many extra exhibits to see. All ages in our family thoroughly enjoyed this stop. Parking was a rip off but the rest was well worth it.

Thank Travlin_famly
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Questions & Answers
Denise P
October 9, 2017|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from LondonMagellan | Reviewed this property |
I purchased the day before from the Visitor's Centre at Independence Hall, which was cheaper than buying direct. During my visit there were plenty of visitors buying on the day, it wasn't overcrowded
Cathy F
September 29, 2017|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from 268dwightd | Reviewed this property |
Ther is stairs but only for one small area where you overlook the cell block. You don't have to go up to enjoy the tour.
Analyn S
September 27, 2017|
AnswerShow all 10 answers
Response from virennarula n | Reviewed this property |
Hi! I don't think its a place for kids under 12 in my opinion....but do not know if there is an age limit!