Enjoy Seasonal Sights at Morris Arboretum

The first frost usually means the end of outdoor adventures but, at one local nature center, the cold weather is the perfect time to get in touch with nature.

Morris Arboretum, about 20 minutes from your The Isle apartment in nearby Chestnut Hill, is a haven for outdoor happenings this holiday season. Morris has been operated by University of Pennsylvania since the late 1800s and has become one of the region’s most celebrated centers of botanical education and exploration. The official arboretum of the state of Pennsylvania, Morris welcomes visitors of all ages and interests to its sprawling property, where they can learn about and see firsthand 12,000 plants from around the world, many of which thrive when the weather turns cooler.

A stroll through the arboretum this time of year will introduce visitors to many varieties of hollies, winterberries, magnolias and much more. On Dec. 8 and 22, guests can hop on a Holly Highlights and Winter Greenery Tour to explore Morris’ collection of hollies and evergreens led by a nature expert. The arboretum’s most popular event series this season is the Holiday Garden Railway Nights, held on Friday and Saturday nights in December. Visitors can get up close and personal with the elaborate train display, which features a quarter-mile of track, seven tunnels, nine bridges and more than a dozen different rail lines. Set amid a backdrop of the arboretum’s winter garden, the display is brilliantly decorated for the holidays, with thousands of twinkling lights and decorations that take advantage of the property’s natural resources.

Train lovers will be dazzled by the intricacy of the exhibit, while locals looking for a new holiday tradition where they can take in the sights and sounds of the city can find just that at Morris Arboretum.

The rail display is open through New Year’s Eve.



Morris Arboretum

100 E. Northwestern Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19118