Top 10 Summer Activities To Do in Philadelphia

June 13, 2023

Summer is in full swing in Philadelphia. With pop-up beer gardens, music festivals, and farmers markets happening every week, there’s something for everyone to enjoy in the City of Brotherly Love. We’re sharing the top 10 summer activities you need to do in Philadelphia whether you’re visiting for the weekend or a local looking for something new to do.

Photo courtesy: Longwood Gardens

1. Immerse Yourself in a Garden Oasis

Get outside and explore America’s Garden Capital with a passport and guide to each park. Discover the lush, green side of Philadelphia with a visit to a garden or arboretum. Start your garden tour at The Longwood Gardens, one of the most beautiful and well-known gardens in the country (roughly an hour from Center City). Throughout the summer, you’ll find events and performances, classes and workshops, and exhibits and festivals happening every week. 

Bartram’s Garden, located roughly 4 miles from The Annex and The Touraine, is America’s oldest botanic garden with over 50 acres of beautiful blooms. America’s Garden Capital passport is free to download and has an extensive list of gardens and attractions you need to visit in the city. 

2. Take a Dip and Relax at a Nearby Pool

Nothing says summer more than a day at the pool, a cooler filled with beverages and sandwiches, and a group of friends and family to keep you company. Public pools in Philadelphia are set to open in mid-June with some offering free classes, events, and extended hours through the Swim Philly program. Grab your favorite shades, and some sunscreen, and get ready to catch some rays this summer. Click here to find a pool near you. 

3. Attend an Outdoor Music Festival

Every summer, Philadelphia parks turn into music venues where thousands of attendees flock to watch big-name artists take the stage. The annual Roots Picnic kicks off the unofficial start of festival season in June, with pop-up performances and concerts all summer long. Get ready for a jam-packed summer of blues, pop, hip-hop, and rock as artists like Drake, Bruce Springsteen, and Beyonce make an appearance. Plan your ultimate summer bucket list and view upcoming concerts and festivals here.

4. Learn About a New Species at the Philadelphia Zoo

Home to more than 1,900 rare and endangered animals, the Philadelphia Zoo makes an ideal location for family-friendly fun in the summer. Hand-feed a variety of colorful birds or take a ride on the Amazon Rainforest Carousel. However you choose to spend your day, the Philadelphia Zoo has a variety of attractions and exhibits for you to experience. As America’s first zoo, this has to be on your bucket list of things to do this summer in Philly. Plan your visit early and purchase your ticket today.

5. Sip on Local Brews at a Beer Garden

Photo courtesy: Philadelphia Beer Garden

Philly’s beer scene is no joke. With more than 100 craft breweries spread across the city, there’s no shortage of brews to choose from. Explore seasonal sour ales and juicy IPAs at a nearby beer garden. Philadelphia Independence Beer Garden is the best place to start for its tremendous lineup of brews (more than 40+ local and domestic beers on tap) and a 20,000 sq ft garden for food, fun, and entertainment. Learn more about Philadelphia’s seasonal parks and pop-up beer gardens here.

6. Eat & Sip Your Way Through Philadelphia

Discover new restaurants, bars, and culinary experiences at upcoming events like Center City SIPS and Old City Eats. Center City SIPS is a fan-favorite happy hour tradition in Philadelphia where more than 70 restaurants and bars participate in food and drink specials every Wednesday through August 30th. Old City Eats highlights the best restaurants, bars, and eateries in the Old City District. Every Thursday through August 31st, a block party takes over with live musical performances, food and drink specials, dancing, and much more.

7. Go on a Self-Guided Mural Tour 

Photo Courtesy: Mural Arts Philadelphia

If you love scavenger hunts and art, a self-guided mural tour is the best way to discover new parts of the city (while snagging photos along the way). Philadelphia has earned the title “Mural Capital of the World” for great reason—with more than 3,800 pieces of art painted on buildings in the city, thanks to the Mural Arts Program. This is a great activity to do by yourself or with a group of friends and family. No need to plan ahead! Simply click this link to start your self-guided tour today.

8. Spend the Day in Rittenhouse Square

There’s so much to do and explore in Rittenhouse Square, from shopping to dining, visiting nearby attractions, or going sightseeing. This beloved park and neighborhood are great for people of all ages to enjoy the outdoors. Plan your visit and learn more about the 5 best things to do in Rittenhouse Square. Looking to stay in Philly for good? The Annex and The Touraine are conveniently located just a short walk from Rittenhouse Square Park. If you’re looking to stay nearby for a few nights or a few weeks, we invite you to book your stay at one of The Touraine’s fully-furnished travel apartments

9. Shop at a Local Farmers Market

There’s no better feeling than supporting your local community by shopping from farmers and vendors. Every week you can find a farmers market popping up at a nearby park, parking lot, or street corner. The Rittenhouse Farmers Market is in full swing every Saturday from 9:00am–2:00pm and Tuesday from 10:00am–2:00pm. Every week you can stock up on locally baked goods, produce, dairy, and much more. Grab your reusable tote bag and get ready to go shopping. We’re highlighting all the farmers markets happening in Philly on our blog.

10. Learn About History and Art at a Museum

Photo courtesy: Philadelphia Museum of Art

As one of the oldest cities in the United States, Philadelphia has so much to offer when it comes to history, architecture, and art. Did you know that there are more than 100 museums around Philly? They range from history and art to interactive and playful exhibits and experiences. Whether you’re interested in science, marine life, aquatics, or contemporary masterpieces, there’s a museum for everyone to explore in the city. Not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered. Our team has put together a list of the 5 museums you must visit in Philadelphia

Spending the Summer in Philadelphia

However you choose to spend your summer, we invite you to stay with us at The Touraine. Choose from a variety of fully-furnished apartments ranging from studio to two bedrooms. Stay for as long as you’d like or a minimum of two nights. View availability and make your reservation today.