Franklin Square is one of the five original open-space parks planned by William Penn when he laid out the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1682. It is located in the Center City area, between North 6th and 7th Streets, and between Race Street and the Vine Street Expressway (I-676).
Penn included this piece of green space in his original city plan as one of five squares, although the park was slow to develop because it was a marshy land. Originally, the park was a place for settlers to meditate and set a virtuous behavior to set a proper example. The park was supposed to be landscaped to have settlers understand the value of nature. In the 1920s, the park was abandoned and the surrounding area became known locally as the “tenderloin”, with an entertainment district featuring taverns and bordellos, and became a place for individuals experiencing homelessness to sleep on the park's benches, resulting in its reputation as Philadelphia's "skid row". In 2003, Historic Philadelphia, Inc. renovated the park by adding commercials and houses to attract tourists, which in turn helped the park back to its originality. Tourists are now able to enjoy the renovated park, family-friendly attractions, and the surrounding nature. Franklin Square is restored to its original plan as William Penn wanted the park to be used.
|Monday||10:00 AM – 9:00 PM|
|Tuesday||10:00 AM – 9:00 PM|
|Wednesday||10:00 AM – 9:00 PM|
|Thursday||10:00 AM – 9:00 PM|
|Friday||10:00 AM – 10:00 PM|
|Saturday||10:00 AM – 10:00 PM|
|Sunday||10:00 AM – 9:00 PM|
Eileen Carter | Jan 16, 2018
Franklin square was beautifully decorated for the Chinese lanterns festival. The mini golf was lots of fun for the family. Reasonably priced for a family to play. The carousel was beautiful with many animals to choose from. The concession stands were a little pricey but that didn't deter us from buying a soft pretzel while in Philly.
Larry Meyers | Nov 27, 2017
Usually visit once monthly when wife gets hair dressing done at a local shop. Interesting venue as Festival displays change during the year. Child friendly atmosphere with many attractions for the little ones. Carousel open much of the time, many benches to relax, converse, etc. Multiple tree lined walks provide pleasant scenic interest. Right around the corner from Independence Mall. Restrooms available Apr - Nov. Free admission of course. Many flowers adorn the Square.
BR izm | Jan 28, 2018
Great little gem in the heart of center city. Features a carousel and mini golf. Always host a wide array of special events. The ice cream is to die for. Our last visit was to play spooky golf at Halloween.
KW Tam | Dec 16, 2017
Winter holiday celebrations at Franklin Square have included an open-air pop up beer garden, and of course the fountain music-and-light show, with synchronised lights and music. Very quiet on weekends, but if you are in Chinatown, near the Convention Center, in Old City, or in the Independence Mall area, Franklin Square is within a walkable distance, so definitely check it out! The Philadelphia-themed mini-golf course and the carousel are always picturesque and worth a visit.
Destiny Etienne | Nov 21, 2017
Franklin Square was beautiful. We went during the Holiday Light show Festival. It was nice. There is something to do for the whole family. Even if your friends want to meet up there is a beer garden.
Stephanie Calhoun | Apr 12, 2018
Such a beautiful place to visit at Christmas time! We watched the light show and ate Smores. So festive! There are different asctivities there throughout the year, including a Chinese lantern show. It's very easy to get to, and street parking is available at off times. Playground is super fun too!
Jessica Samudio | Apr 26, 2018
We always enjoy coming here seems like it's always something going on here once the weather starts getting nice. Right now they are setting up for the lantern festival starting in May 2018 and might get a glimpse at how they put them together too which is pretty neat because you can see them stitching the huge displays together piece by piece. Pretty impressive stuff right there 🤗🤗
vidya sagar reddy Kuppireddy | May 3, 2018
Visited the Chinese Lantern festival. Awesome variety of shows on stage which is worth watching. Large lanterns that are shaped like pandas, flowers, Dragon, fish, etc are excellent to watch. There is a gift shop with all the Chinese symbols. The umberellas are great. A Chinese hat caught my attention, almost bought it but it is difficult to pack else always has to wear it.
Ankita Goyal | Apr 24, 2018
Time well spent. One shud visit the square. And the mini golf at the park, gives you a quick tour of the places to visit in Philly.
Deborah Bradley | Jun 16, 2018
We attended the Chinese Lantern festival, and had a great time. Attractions were well organized. I expected more Asian presence as in authentic cuisine and crafts to sell, but that was my own assumption. Still a nice time!
Salah Bouguerida | Jun 13, 2018
The first park I visited in Philadelphia. It's super convenient, it like close by old city and Penns landing is within few minutes of walk. You have the liberty bill building near by and the Jewish museum A lot of various stores and restaurants, bars Also the park itself they organize a great different activities for children and adults
Kiriiin | May 24, 2018
Nature, nature, nature. It's everywhere. Birds comes and goes. Its a very nice to place to just sit down and relax. It has a playground, merry go round and even mini golf. It even has festivals and events that goes on year round. Definitely should check it out
Elisabeth Day | May 20, 2018
First time visiting Franklin Square for the Chinese Lantern Festival. Loved the event, and what a cute park! It almost felt like we had left the city, and there were tons of chairs out for my group to relax in and eat and drink together. We stayed at the festival for over 2 hours enjoying the weather and the park. We did not try out the carousel or the mini golf options that the park has, though both were affordable and had long lines of families. This is definitely a family friendly park in the city that seems to be the perfect meeting spot even when the Lantern Festival finishes it's run.
Abby Potts | Jun 16, 2018
It is a lovely park with plenty of places to sit and fun things to do. Right now is the lantern festival and it is a beautiful site. The mini golf is fun for all ages.
Hector Reyes | Jul 20, 2018
came down here to enjoy the Chinese Lantern Festival. It brought me back memories of when me and my buddies used to roller skate from North Philly all the way down here and cool off in the fountain before it was gated. this park has always been well maintained period a true gem as you enter Center City
Joshua Cohen | Jul 10, 2018
Great park with nice garden and water fountain. There are also lots of events that take place on the premises, well taken care of and pleasant to visit. Nice to walk around, sit down and relax outside on a nice day. This place hosts some really cool events and is a nice addition to Philly. Very close to other major locations in the immediate area (a couple blocks or so), fantastic place to unwind and relax for a moment
Jagadesh K | Jul 9, 2018
Nice.. Franklin Square is always nice.. Green landscape with a beautiful fountain. Today visited the Chinese Lantern festival.. Today is the last day of the festival and good I did not miss it.. It was good.. But missed Veg Burger - from Square Burger counter.. It hot over today .. 😑.. Good Chinese Lantern Festival organization team.. 👌👍👏👏
Melinda Mazzenga | Jun 28, 2018
We went to the Chinese Lantern Festival and had a wonderful time! The lanterns were magical, it wasn't too crowded and the entertainment/stalls were a treat. We really enjoyed the sugar painter, who made us a dragon which we all enjoyed. It was small, so if you're looking for something large with a lot of variety in the stalls, you should probably just walk around China Town a bit before going in. For us, it was a perfect fit and a wonderful evening!
Grace Stewart | Jun 24, 2018
Went for the Chinese Lantern Festival at Franklin Square, it was a nice time spent with a few of my family members and a close friend. Food was a little overpriced but it was an event so that's expected. The lanterns were beautifully lit, there was a performance of Chinese artists - face changing, plate spinning, feet juggling, water-spinning, contortionist, and chinese jar- juggling. Just wish there had been a big screen showing the artists performing cause at only 5' 1 it was very hard to see anything. But overall we had a great time!
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