If you are fascinated by ruins like I am, the stone ruins just off of Cresheim Valley Drive are a worthwhile stop while you are visiting Philly. This place is easily accessed via a short trail from a parking lot on Cresheim Valley Drive and is on public park land so you don’t have to worry about trespassing!
The ruins consist of the remnants of an old stone barn with a giant chimney, iron portal doors, and stone steps, much of it covered in graffiti. Trees grow up out its middle now, and during the summer vines overtake the walls.
The barn was once a part of a summer retreat for young women called Buttercup Cottage. During the hot summers, girls came here to relax and enjoy nature. In the mid-20th century the cottage itself was torn down, and then in 1982 the barn was destroyed in a fire except for its stone and iron parts, which is what you can explore today.
Park in the small lot on Cresheim Valley Drive between Germantown Avenue and Allens Lane. From the rear of the parking lot, follow the trail to the left for 5 minutes to the ruins. The trails here connect to the large network of trails through Wissahickon Valley Park if you want to wander some more.
You can easily see the ruins from the road if you miss the parking lot.