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“Good place to start a visit to Philadelphia”

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
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Philadelphia Segway Tour
Ranked #27 of 438 things to do in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: A dazzling museum, as much for its interior design as for its collection.
Charlottesville VA
Level Contributor
121 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Good place to start a visit to Philadelphia”
Reviewed January 22, 2014

If you're looking for brochures, maps, etc. this is the place to start. Two movies are offered, exhibits both indoors and outside, the Liberty Bell is nearby. Food and rest rooms available plus tables to eat at or just relax.

Visited January 2014
Thank Lulu22902
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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311 reviews from our community

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English first
West Chester, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Museum must see in Philly!”
Reviewed January 21, 2014

This is a great Museum on Broad Street just a few blocks up from City Hall. The building itself is a work of art, designed by Frank Furness in the 1800's, the columns, stairs, ceilings, all amazing. Wonderful collection of American art. And "The Gross Clinic" by Thomas Eakins is here!! Such a great experience to see this painting in person. The building next door is also part of the Museum with other exhibits. Also, this museum is not "too big", so you can enjoy in under 2 hours, and not feel rushed. Don't miss this museum if you are touring museums in Philly.

Visited January 2014
Thank Robert S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
53 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“Oldest Art Museum in the Western Hemisphere!”
Reviewed January 20, 2014

This is one fine art museum. It should be high on the list of anyone visiting Philadelphia and definitely anyone living in the Delaware Valley.

The collection is top-notch ... one of the preeminent collections of American Art in the world. I wish they could exhibit more from their permanent holdings than they do because there are so many gems here. The special exhibitions are also usually well worth taking in.

The main building is iconic. It is the great architect Frank Furness's masterpiece. Outside and inside there are so many architectural and design features to enjoy. The café is also located on the ground floor of this structure. And the new Hamilton building across the plaza contains the special exhibition galleries, the sculpture galleries, and a great museum store. One entry ticket is good for both locations.

My only negative is that they do not allow photography. In this day and age - c'mon!

Def include the Pennsylvania Academy (PAFA) on any Philadelphia itinerary if you are a lover of art!

Visited January 2014
Thank JhDude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
24 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Amazing eye candy”
Reviewed January 16, 2014

This museum offers an opportunity to see iconic American art up close and personal. Some of the paintings you studied in art 101 are there right before your eyes Including Thomas Eakins' "Gross Clinic" the subject of some controversy in Philadelphia a few years back. It was nearly sold for 64 Million and PAFA and the Phila Museum of Art teamed up (along with many others) to raise the funds needed to keep this masterpiece in it's hometown. But masterworks by Peale, Stuart, Cassat, and West are also in residence, in the amazing Frank Furness building. Currently the museum if free on Sundays until April 2014. Do yourself a favor and go!

Visited January 2014
1 Thank Barbara M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
459 reviews
110 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 166 helpful votes
“Don't miss each of the two buildings”
Reviewed January 6, 2014

The building is part of the show here, constructed in 1876, and heavily decorated. Mary Cassatt and Thomas Eakins studied here among other greats. We wandered around almost alone for hours savoring the visual feast from contemporary to long ago. Upon exiting, we asked about a gift shop and learned it was next door, along with several other galleries, including sculpture. This is one of those great museums that you'll want to visit again and again.

Visited January 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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