Morris Arboretum, Chestnut Hill

Morris Arboretum

 100 E. Northwestern Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19118 · 215-247-5777

open daily from 10-4

click here for seasonal hours

It is getting rough out there people when I break my 30 minute car limit. But as summer drags on and I am feeling a little been there done that…you gotta bend the rules. Today we hit up Morris Arboretum in Chestnut Hill.  Now I am not a garden kinda guy but I have to say as giant gardens go this place was pretty cool. The whole thing is kinda feels like a giant tree house adventure.

When you get there you drive up this long winding hill which seems to disconnect you from the rest of the world. We parked, fired up the stroller and grabbed a map at the visitor’s center and we were off. Within seconds  I am “Out on a Limb” which is the canopy walk  and into a giant suspended birds nest.

Next the Squirrel Scramble: Even though I have not loved rope climbs in the past (looking at you Sesame Place) the Squirrel Scramble seemed a lot less intimidating.

Soaring almost 50-feet above the forest floor, you can climb on the rope netting surrounding two towering trees. Intended to be a little thrilling, even a little scary, but engineered to be completely safe, giving you the experience of an arboreal habitat.

The birds nest was beyond cool.  You walk out to the nest on a suspension bridge and inside are three giant bright blue robin’s eggs to climb on.

 The bird’s nest  allows children and adults to see trees as habitats and enjoy a bird’s eye view on the world below. Accessed by the swaying suspension bridge, you’ll feel like you are traveling to an unknown place.

So no one told me that there was a mini train town here. Garden Railways is not a jazzy enough name to describe this exhibit to mini train fans but it will have to do. Chugging along until Labor Day this is something that all train fans should check out. You can easily spend 45 minutes here just trying to see everything. Tons of different trains winding in and out of tree logs, around mini towns and across suspension bridges right over your head.

From there we had time to check out a few more things so we made our way through the Rose Garden, Step Fountain and down to Swan Pond and the Log Cabin.

I had a great time. If you have any questions about my visit or planning your visit i love getting e-mails:


Hipster Henry



Henry was right that we normally don’t go anywhere that is more than 30 minutes away. From door to door it took us 45 minutes to get there from Northern Liberties. My main concern was how I was going to get both boys around since I would totally require a stroller. The place is really stroller friendly. There are a few places that it can’t go but you just park and walk a few steps down into the gardens.

I will say that the trip was a little taxing with a 2 year old and 7 month old but so is a trip to the grocery store. The place covers a lot of ground and I did get a bit fixated at times trying to figure out if I could cut across the ground or haul the stroller up a flight up lovely but long garden steps.  If you are able to backpack it that will help. I took our Bugaboo stroller which did great at the bit of off roading I performed but a Revolution Bob is totally the way to go. You also can get away with just doing the Out on a Limb and a few close gardens and have a great visit. Henry just wanted to cover as much ground as possible because he was working on his review.

I will say the Swan Pond is beautiful and there are ducks down there but the fence is really high so it is not worth the trek if you have little ones. You will have to hold them up the whole time to really see anything. The Log Cabin however is pretty simple but the kids seemed to love it.

It cost me $16.00 and kids under 3 are FREE. Click here for more information on Admission rates.



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