I love summer! And I LOVE summer in Philly. While half of the cities residents head down the shore (that's Philly-speak for the beach), I love spending my summer nights in the city. There is never a shortage of things to do, places to see, and inevitably, a new pop-up beer garden to try every other week.
So, if you are sticking around the city this summer, or coming to visit for a weekend, make sure to take advantage of this amazing walkable city. Here are my Top Summer Activities in Philly.
All The Beers
Oh, the beer gardens! Philly has a mild obsession with pop-up beer gardens. It's almost a problem. On the one hand there are SO.MANY.OPTIONS. That being said, it's almost TOO many options! Check out this article from Billy Penn on when the bigger more permanent gardens are opening and running until.
Make sure to hit up the more established staples like PHS Pop Up Garden, Independence Beer Garden, Spruce Street Harbor and Frankford Hall. And of course, no summer is complete without the obligatory photo of the Ben Franklin Bridge from Morgan's Pier. If you didn't take a picture of the BFB while at Morgan's Pier, were you really even there?
If you're looking to put a little more effort into your drinking experience try Parks on Tap - the traveling beer garden. This constantly changing pop-up is in a new location every two weeks. Sign up for their newsletter to get info on where the next location is!
And lastly, in case you forgot - Center City Sips! Head into Center City (aka downtown) every Wednesday for exclusive Happy Hour specials at participating bars.
Outdoor Activities (for that summer beach bod)
After a cloudy and slightly depressing spring that was spent in the gym, summer is the time to get the F outside for your workouts! Get your stretch on with Yoga on the Pier. Held daily multiple times a day on Race Street Pier, join in on either a morning or evening session during the week or 9:30 AM sessions on the weekends. Oh, and this shit's free!
Looking for something a little more unique? Try AquaFlow Yoga at Spruce Street Harbor with Aqua Vida. Yoga on a stand up paddle board!? Um, yes please. Make sure to sign up for classes in advance.
(for those of us who DGAF about our beach bods)
One of my favorite things to do on a warm summer night as the air cools down a little. Head to Penns Landing for Screening Under the Stars or Schuylkill Banks Movie Nights by the Walnut Street Bridge and check out some classic flicks like The Big Lebowski or recent Oscar winners like La La Land. Make sure to get there early to grab a prime spot and pack some snacks and some (concealed) adult beverages.
All The Ice Cream
It's not summer without some delicious frozen treats. Franklin Fountain in Old City is a great standby, but if you're looking for something different try the new ice cream roll fad at Teassert Bar. Big Gay Ice Cream on South Street is still as delicious as ever, or, if a cone isn't your thing, try the milkshakes at Milkhouse Grilled Cheese and Ice Cream.
Festivals And More
Head to one of the Night Markets throughout the summer, or try one of the many neighboorhood specific restaurant weeks. If you're hoping to check out some smaller sized festival try Summerfest at Xfinity Live! for a sampling over over 50+ different beers or 2nd Street Festival for some fun live music and good eats.
But the biggest festival during the summer is without a doubt the massive Wawa Welcome America festival over 4th of July Weekend. With Mary J. Blige headlining this year, the festival goes all weekend leading up to the 4th of July with tons of activities from screenings of Rocky at the Art Museum, free access to museums and more!
Summer is nothing but a good time in the city of brotherly love!