Criminal holiday offerings in Philadelphia

5 September 2009

For those with a slightly suspect taste in entertainment, US specialist, Bon Voyage, has created short breaks to Philadelphia which include ‘Terror behind the Walls’.

The ‘Walls’ are those of the Eastern State Penitentiary - which once housed notorious criminals such as Al Capone and Willie Sutton – while the ‘Terror’ is a night tour of the now abandoned and eerily quiet cells and guardrooms.

Even when the building echoed to the sounds of prisoners and guards, rumours abounded that it was haunted, with reports of ghostly sightings and mysterious visions.

Since its closure in 1971 the spectral inmates appear to have become even more active and the terrified shrieks of tourists on ‘Terror Behind The Walls’ tours now replace the groans of its former inmates.

The tours were originally only available around Hallowe’en but such is their popularity that they can now be enjoyed/endured from September through to the end of November. They start at 7pm each evening with a visit to the delousing chamber for the new intake of ‘prisoners’ and end at midnight… for those brave enough to complete the entire five hour sentence.

A four-night break to Philadelphia inclusive of return flights from Heathrow, room-only accommodation at the four-star Sheraton Society Hill hotel and the ‘Terror Behind The Walls’ tour is from £554 per person (twin share) including all taxes, fees and charges.

For those intrigued by the history of the building but who prefer to leave with their nervous system unimpaired, factual daylight tours are also available.

For more information, visit

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