Winter can get dark. And I’m not talking about the early sunsets—I’m talking about those days when you wear sweatpants all day because you have no plans to leave your house so … why change? That kind of dark.
Hibernation happens to the best of us. Let’s face it: 15-degree weather isn’t exactly enticing. But with hibernation comes cabin fever, and cabin fever makes people crazy. We don’t want that for you.
So, when your life of sweatpants and Netflix becomes less of a luxury and more a cabin fever-inducing frustration, escape from your couch to one of the beautiful nearby outposts below. From a garden-filled oasis to a dreamy light installation, each one is guaranteed coax you away from your couch, at least for a few hours.
1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square
Greenery withdrawal—that feeling of sadness that hits when all the fall leaves have been swept up and we’re left with nothing but sad, drooping brown branches until spring—is real. But a couple of hours spent traipsing through the sprawling botanical gardens at this Kennett Square institution is a guaranteed way to escape your couch and get your green fix.
The grounds are a free-for-all of heart-eye emoji-inducing sights that you can soak up on your own, but they also host group tours, like bird walks. Just note: From January 7th through March, the indoor conservatory is only open on weekends.
138 West Lancaster Avenue, Devon and 914 Baltimore Pike, Glen Mills
Terrain is a magical, magical place. Complete with a bright and festive greenhouse cafe and a super-charming shop filled with everything from Weck jars to organic sheet masks to the perfect napkins you didn’t know you needed, you’ll instantly feel transported to another, warmer, cozier land, at least for a few hours. Brunch here can easily become a full-day excursion, and I promise: You will not be complaining.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Fairmount
Sure, you’ve probably sprinted up the Rocky steps—but have you ever actually stepped foot inside the museum they lead up to? If not, put it on your winter bucket list. With rooms upon rooms of impressive collections, spanning from Marcel Duchamp’s conceptual takes to Rodin’s sculpture, you can get lost for hours. As a bonus: Admission is pay-what-you-wish at 5 p.m. on Wednesdays.
Chestnut Hill Skyspace
20 East Mermaid Lane, Chestnut Hill
We all saw the Hotline Bling music video, right? Well, the artist behind those mesmerizing lights, James Turrell, has a permanent installation at the Chestnut Hill Friends Meetinghouse that is equally captivating. It’s a Skyspace, which is room with an aperture in the ceiling, designed to make the sky feel much closer to us than it really is.
This particular Skyspace is designed by Turrell to enhance the changing colors we see naturally. One visitor described it like this: “Skyspace in Chestnut Hill is like taking an hour’s departure from all that is familiar, and stepping deliciously into another world of the mind and senses.” So if you want something a little more interesting to stare at than your living room ceiling, this will do the trick. Best times to go are when the light is changing, like dusk.
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