Pokémon Go Guided Tours Are Now a Thing in Philly
Mobile game Pokémon Go blew up when it was introduced last month, with an estimated 7.5 million downloads in the U.S. in just the first five days. A slew of articles about the dangers of walking around outside glued to your phone quickly followed — though that’s an old gripe — while businesses jumped to tie their locations to the game. Meet-ups for “trainees” and “trainers” formed and up popped online groups like PokémonGoPhilly, dedicated to discussing all things Pokémon, from tips to troubleshooting to bragging about rare catches. So it was inevitable that a Pokémon Go-themed tour of Philadelphia would be next, and where else would it be than the tour nucleus of Old City?
Philly Tour Hub and Philadelphia Urban Adventures, whose usual offerings include walking tours like “History in HD” and “Street Food for Thought,” just added Tour PokéDelphia to their lineup. The two-hour excursion, available on Thursday and Friday evenings this month only, starts at Third and Arch and goes through the historic district, combining Pokémon hunting with historical highlights.
Led by a guide playing the part of Professor Willow, PokéDelphia visits several PokéStops (and yes, a gym too) while taking in Elfreth’s Alley, Independence Hall, Washington Square and other must-see-while-in-Philly attractions. The company notes they can’t guarantee you’ll spot or catch specific Pokémon — fair enough — but at least you can play without worrying about pesky cars and other pedestrians, with the tour guide “there to keep a watchful eye on your surroundings.”
Tours are $20 and end at Independence Beer Garden, where you can refresh after all those battles.
Follow @RachelVigoda on twitter.