Explore Philadelphia

6 Philly Sites for When You Need a Dose of Spring

These places will chase away those lingering winter blues.

Winter’s deep freeze is (hopefully!) on its way out, which makes March the perfect time to appreciate the natural beauty that thrives in and around Philadelphia. From environment-themed exhibits to seasonal outdoor attractions to the nation’s largest flower show, there’s plenty of green on the scene in March 2019.

Morris Arboretum 

One of the city’s most tranquil spots is a wondrous oasis filled with towering trees, exquisite gardens, engaging exhibits, and local wildlife. This month, visitors observe artist Patrick Dougherty as he creates a new installation examining the intersection between art and nature. On weekdays March 12-28, Dougherty weaves together hundreds of sticks and saplings, building 
a site-specific sculpture to be displayed for two years. The official unveiling of the finished piece is set for March 30. 100 E. Northwestern Ave., 215.247.5777

Morris Arboretum
Morris Arboretum (Courtesy Morris Arboretum)

The Philadelphia Flower Show

March 2-10, 
The Philadelphia Flower Show takes over the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The annual event by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society is the longest-running of its kind in the United States and has a whopping 10 acres of elaborate artistic displays, product demonstrations, student exhibitions, and retail. This year’s theme, “Flower Power,” celebrates the importance of flora in our lives with a nod to the 1960s and the Woodstock era. Special programs include a make-and-take floral crown station, an opening night dance party and a live butterfly experience. As an added treat, the prestigious international FTD World Cup competition goes on at this year’s show, the first time it’s taken place in the U.S. since 1985. 1101 Arch St., 215.988.8800

Philadelphia Flower Show
Philadelphia Flower Show (©M. Fischetti/Visit Philadelphia)

Longwood Gardens 

There’s no better place to appreciate the delicate beauty of orchids than at Longwood, where “Orchid Extravaganza” 
is on view through March 21. This artful display takes guests through the Conservatory decorated with thousands of colorful flowers. A helpful interactive map available online is packed with information on where to go and what to see within the gardens. Highlights include a picture-perfect orchid arch, floral orbs hanging from the ceiling of the Orangery and an orchid “waterfall” in the Cascade Garden. Timed tickets are required for entry. 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square, Pa., 610.388.1000

Longwood Gardens
Longwood Gardens (©Eileen Tercha)

Philadelphia Museum of Art

This world-class art museum is filled with captivating works from masters like Monet, Van Gogh, and Degas, but the institution’s newest installation brings visitors outside of the museum walls. Set on the famous “Rocky Steps” on the East Terrace, “Antony Gormley: STAND” consists of a series of 10 towering metal sculptures meant to depict humans as urban animals. Visitors first view these pieces from the bottom of the staircase. As they climb the 72 steps, their perspective on the work changes, until they get to the top where they can appreciate the structures up close. 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, 215.763.8100

Philadelphia Museum of Art
"STAND," 2018, by Antony Gormley. Installation view, Philadelphia Museum of Art. ©Antony Gormley. Courtesy the artist and Sean Kelly Gallery. Photo by Joseph Hu, 2019

Franklin Square 

One of Philly’s most popular outdoor spaces reopens for the season on March 1. Kids delight in climbing and sliding on the playground and riding the zebras, lions, horses and other colorful animals on the famous Parx Liberty Carousel. And of course, everyone loves putting their way through scaled-down replicas of famous landmarks like the Liberty Bell, Boathouse Row and the Benjamin Franklin Bridge at Philly Mini Golf. 200 N. 6th St., 215.629.4026

Franklin Square
Franklin Square (R. Kennedy/Visit Philadelphia®)

Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University 

Do you ever wonder how legends of sea monsters, griffins and other fantastic beasts and magical events came to be? The academy’s enchanting exhibit, “Mythic Creatures: Dragons, Unicorns & Mermaids” offers life-sized models, video interviews, realistic cast fossils, and an interactive display to explore the natural and cultural roots of some of history’s most enduring myths. 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, 215.299.1000

Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University
Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University (Courtesy Drexel University)