Free (or Almost Free) Admission at 7 Philadelphia Museums
Philadelphia is packed with museums that let visitors engage in a variety of exhibits ranging from world-renowned art to interactive science experiences. However, when the price of admission for a family of four nears the hundred-dollar mark, cost can be a deterrent. So that means visitors need to find a way to get in for free.
On designated days or hours each week or month, various Philadelphia museums offer free or pay-what-you-wish admission or a ticket for just a couple dollars. These times allow visitors to get a taste of what each museum has to offer without the expense of a full-priced ticket. They are perfect for the budget traveler or a visitor with a tight itinerary hoping to see it all.
The Barnes features one of the most impressive (private) collections of French impressionist and post-impressionist works-think Renoir, Matisse, Picasso and so many others. On Sundays, the museum offers free admission, first come-first served, starting at 10 a.m. Special programming such as tours and discussions begins at 1 p.m. Note: Tickets are limited and include only two adults and two children per purchase.
2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA 19130 | Free every Sunday, first come-first served
Philadelphia Academy of Fine Arts Museum
This gallery, located within an active art school, features world-renowned works of American art from the 19th and 20th centuries. Normally admission is $15, but during their special The Art of Norman Lewis exhibit (going on now until April 3, 2016), admission is free on Sundays.
118-128 North Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102 | Free admission on Sundays now until April 3, 2016
Philadelphia Museum of Art
This iconic museum is packed with huge collection of European, American, and Asian art. On the first Sunday of each month and every Wednesday night (5-8:45 p.m.), entrance to the main gallery is pay-what-you-wish, meaning any amount you would like to donate. Wednesday nights also feature special programming such as drop-in art making and yoga.
2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA 19130 | pay-what-you-wish first Sunday of the month 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. and Every Wednesday 5:00–8:45 p.m.
Near the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Rodin Museum, which includes a garden, displays the largest collection of Auguste Rodin's work-bronzes, portraits, marbles, and more- outside of Paris. This museum is pay-what-you-wish every day, but the suggested donation is $10.
2151 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA 19130 | pay-what-you-wish daily, suggested admission (adults): $10
The National Museum of American Jewish History
The National Museum of American Jewish History, located on the northeast corner of independence Mall, features four floors of exhibits dedicated to the lives, experiences and achievements of American Jews. On Wednesdays the museum is open until 8 p.m., and admission is pay-what-you-wish from 5 p.m. until closing.
101 South Independence Mall East, Philadelphia, PA 19106 | Wednesdays from 5-8 p.m., pay-what-you-wish
Please Touch Museum
For families traveling with young children, the Please Touch Museum provides a fun, engaging experience completely dedicated to interactive play in settings such as Roadside Attractions, Wonderland and Space Station. On the first Wednesday of each month, the Please Touch Museum offers $2 admission from 4-7 p.m.
Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia, PA 19131 | $2 admission on the first Wednesday of each month
The Franklin Institute is home to twelve permanent exhibits offering interactive learning opportunities in all areas of science, including fun exhibits like The Giant Heart and The Franklin Airshow. In addition, this museum frequently hosts special exhibits (extra charge). On the third Wednesday of each month from 5- 8 p.m., the Franklin institute offers free admission for the main exhibit and special programming for kids during their Community Nights.
222 North 20th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 | Free admission third Wednesday of each month | $6 first come-first served parking at 271 North 21st Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Lisa Stadler, freelance writer, ambitious cook and curious traveler, calls Philadelphia home. She is a firm believer in choosing your own adventure in every regard. Find her on Twitter @lisaathome215 .
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