This spring I fulfilled another life list goal and…went to Philadelphia! What a neat city. Part history and art, part tall buildings (with delicious diners tucked in between), part cozy little shop-lined streets.

I had never been (hence its priority on the life list) and since it’s just a 2-hour bus ride away from NYC, we decided to choose a random weekend and go down. The weather was beautiful for most of it and I think we walked plum across the city several times.

Day one was steeped in American history, with a visit to the Liberty Bell (!), the old Congress and the Constitution Center. Then we visited a great friend from high school who took us on a brief walking tour and brought us to some local watering holes. Dinner was homemade (er, restaurant-made) pasta…though we didn’t realize the place was byob…followed by an allergy-medicine-and-miles-of-walking-induced sleep.

Sunday was verrry windy, so we started the day with a hearty meal at a nearby diner that served us amazing, out-of-this-world pancakes, omelettes and homefries. The pancakes tasted like fried dough, thin, crispy and sweet. I was adventurous with my omelette (a huge deal for me) and it contained strawberries, leeks and goat cheese. Thumbs up. Crazy thing about this diner, though, was it was filled with hipsters! Who knew Brooklynites came and staffed Philly breakfast joints on weekends?

Then we spent a couple hours at the famed art museum – it had lifesized dioramas of period houses, Japanese tea houses and Chinese temples! – and capped the afternoon off with a stop at a market for some water and fruit before boarding the bus back to NYC.

This one gets a SUPER check on my life list because I loved it so much. I feel like I hit all the big points, but I would be up for going back. There’s probably a lot more watering holes to try out.