South Philly is a district of Philadelphia. Famous for its Italian heritage and for being featured in the 1970s movie Rocky, South Philly is home to FDR Park and most of Philadelphia's major professional sports teams.
You want a cheese steak? South Philly's where it's at! South Philly is home to many Asian and Mexican immigrants. It also includes Ninth St Market (aka Italian Market) and East Passyunk St (roughly 11th and Passyunk SE to Broad St and Snyder, also known as Passyunk Square) which is lined with shops, bars, and restaurants. Its upper boundary is South Street. Arguably the center of nightlife and urban activity in Philadelphia, South Street encompasses almost every kind of urban attitude you'd expect in a major city. Tattoo parlors, cheese steak joints, local designer clothing stores, restaurants, music venues, and local cafes line South Street from Penn's Landing up to about 10th street. Some of the most famous include Jim's cheese steaks, Philadelphia Eddie's Tattoo parlor, and the Famous 4th Street Deli. Every night it seems as if there is a street festival going on here.
Society Hill-Queen Village is one of Philadelphia's oldest neighborhoods, site of Gloria Dei (Old Swede's) Church. Walking around Queen Village will give you a taste of what Ben Franklin might have experienced in Philly when he was alive, as well as give you a peek at Philly's old European roots.
South Philly is home to the Philadelphia Flyers (ice hockey), Sixers (basketball), Eagles (football), Phillies (baseball), and Soul (arena football league). (The city's MLS team, Philadelphia Union, plays in the suburb of Chester.)
SEPTA has many bus routes and subway stops to connect you to where you need to go.
- 1 Society Hill. A posh residential area south of Old City. Other than the stately row-houses and gleaming condominiums, there are some quality drinking and dining establishments, two of the artsy Ritz movie theaters, and a seasonally open market.
- Bella Vista. A traditionally Italian neighborhood just south of Washington Square, is home to the famous Italian Market, and to an increasing number of restaurants of various ethnicities. Many people in their 20s and 30s have moved into this neighborhood, and it is a popular destination for shopping, food, and drink, all within easy walking distance of South Street.
- South West Center City. This new vibrant area of the city extends south of South St. and west of Broad St. to the Schuykill River. Much of the movie "The Sixth Sense" was filmed in this location.
- 2 Queen Village. Another vibrant area extending roughly from Lombard St. to Washington Ave. between Tenth Street and the Delaware river. It was named after Sweden's Queen Christina.
- 3 Franklin D. Roosevelt Park, 1500 Pattison Ave. Located at the bottom of South Philadelphia and rather off-the-beaten-track for visitors (for now), this large park somewhat resembles the Tidal Basin in Washington D.C. (although less monumental for sure). It is hoped that in the coming decade, the newly re-developing Naval Business Center will become a major new business, residential, and tourist hub, which will perhaps draw more visitors to this hidden treasure. Spend a lazy afternoon stroll and watch a nice sunset in the Jeffersonian-esque marble gazebo. Also features a good skate park. The American Swedish Historical Museum, founded in 1938, is also in the park. The park is known as "The Lakes" to the locals. It offers many activities such as fishing, bird watching, tennis, baseball and rugby. There is also a skate park underneath the bridge that runs throughout the park. Located within FDR is Bellaire Manor.
- 4 Walt Whitman Bridge. A long-span suspension bridge connecting South Philly to New Jersey across the Delaware River. Regardless if you are an architecture person or not, the span is something that you can't miss. There is no pedestrian access on the bridge as it carries an Interstate Highway, but views from the water and from the shore are still very beautiful.
- 5 Gloria Dei Church (Old Swedes'), 8 Christian St (at Columbus Blvd.), ☏ +1 215 389-1513.
- 1 Theater of the Living Arts, 334 South St (between 3rd and 4th Sts), ☏ +1 215 922-1011. The TLA is a small, more intimate concert venue that often features a good mix of national acts and local musicians.
- 2 Philadelphia's Magic Gardens, 1020 South St, ☏ +1 215 733-0390. W-M 11AM-6PM. Mosaic art gallery located on South Street created by artist Isaiah Zagar. A truly unique experience in which he can view the statues, hand made tiles, and mirrors made by the artist. Tours are available. $15 adults, $12 students, military, and seniors, $8 children 6-12, free under 5.
- 3 The Legendary Dobbs, 304 South St, ☏ +1 215-501-7288. Historic rock bar that opened in 1974 under the name JC Dobbs and was host to many acts prior to hitting the big time. Such acts included Green Day, Pearl Jam, Nirvana, The Smashing Pumpkins, and more. After closing down, it was reopened as the Legendary Dobbs and features most nights on both its first and second floor. Concerts include local and small touring act. Range from free to about $15.
- 4 Citizens Bank Park, ☏ +1-215-463-1000. Home to the Philadelphia Phillies, the 2008 World Series Champions.
- 5 Lincoln Financial Field (The Linc), 1020 Pattison Ave, ☏ +1 215 463-5500. The home of the Philadelphia Eagles (NFL) and the Temple Owls football team (NCAA). Also the host to numerous concerts and other events throughout the year such as the Army-Navy football game.
- 6 Wells Fargo Center, 3601 S Broad St, ☏ +1 215 336-3600. Current home of the Philadelphia 76ers (NBA) and the Philadelphia Flyers (NHL). Also host to numerous concerts and other events throughout the year.
- 1 The Italian Market. Heading south from 9th and Christian, this market is always worth a visit. Like an old European market, the sidewalks are lined with stands selling cheap produce, hundred-year-old butcher shops, spice shops and Italian and Mexican delis. Combining the hustle and bustle of a market atmosphere with friendly merchants and high-quality products, the Italian Market is both a local and national attraction.
- 2 South Street. Between 9th and Front Streets, holds a plethora of bargain stores and unique boutiques with a distinct urban Philadelphia flair. Retro Vintage, Guacamole and Condom Kingdom are among the most popular stores amidst a large amount of restaurants and bars.
- 3 Fabric Row (along 4th Street from Bainbridge to Catharine). Popular with locals and visitors seeking unique fabrics.
- 4 Bicycle Therapy, 2211 South St. Considered the place to go for everything on two wheels.
- 5 Mia's Boutique, 1748 E Passyunk Ave. Voted countless time for the city's best selection of evening wear.
- 6 Claudio's Specialty Foods, 924-26 S 9th St (at Hall St), ☏ +1 215 627-1873. Daily 9AM-5:30PM. This is actually two storefronts. One is a specialty foods shop with Italian and some Spanish goods but the second, smaller storefront is a "mozzarella factory." They produce mozzarella daily and it's among the best mozzarellas in the US. For foodies, it's a must stop, especially if you're already at the Ninth Street Market.
South Philly dining is stereotypically synonymous with one thing: old-school Italian-American cuisine. And it's true that the area does it quite well, with numerous highly-recommended spots both for traditional red-gravy fare and more modern spins on the style, as well as a few absolutely top-notch Italian-style patisseries. However, in keeping with its melting-pot status, it has a wealth of other global cuisines, most especially Vietnamese, as well as classic American bars, diners, and quick-service sandwich joints.
In addition to being one of the main bar streets in Philadelphia, the stretch of South St. between Front St. and 6th St houses several good eateries which serve excellent fare; note, however, that many cater to the intoxicated (or the about-to-be-intoxicated) and so while delicious don't pay much attention to being healthy.
- 1 Old Original Nick's Roast Beef, 2149 S 20th St (at Jackson), ☏ +1 215 463-4114. 11AM-1AM daily. Opened in 1938, this South Philly staple offers delicious juicy tender roast beef sandwiches and their signature gravy fries to go along with the sandwich. Great place to hangout and watch games. $10.
- 2 Celebre Pizzeria, 1536 Packer Ave, ☏ +1 215 467-3255. Daily 11AM-11PM. Opened in the 1960, Celebre Pizzeria has been serving up some delicious pizzas for thousands of Philadelphians to enjoy. Its one block away from the stadiums, and is a must before heading to a sporting event. Cash only.
- 3 Oregon Diner, 302 W Oregon Ave (at 3rd St), ☏ +1 215 462-5566. 24 hours daily. The Oregon Diner has been family owned and operated since 1992. The chef prepares daily soups & specials along with monthly specials to accompany an already vast menu. The pastry chef also has an enormous bakery display including cookies, pastries, pies and cakes that are baked daily on premises.
- 4 Brunic's, 2000 S 17th St (at McKean St), ☏ +1 215 755-7645. M-F 5:30AM-2:30PM, Sa 5:30AM-2PM, Su 8AM-noon. Brunic's is a gem. A great little place for breakfast or lunch. The service is attentive, the food arrives hot. A real family feel. Homemade comfort food, great soups during the week! A staple in the South Philly area. $5-10.
- 5 Famous 4th Street Delicatessen, 700 S 4th St, ☏ +1 215 922-3274. 8AM-9PM daily. Since 1923, this corner delicatessen has been a Philadelphia tradition. Over the course of the decades, numerous celebrities and international personalities have dined at Famous. A number of films have even included the Famous Deli in their movies most notably, Philadelphia (1993) and In Her Shoes (2005). $11-30.
Two globally-famous Philly cheesesteak shops are located across the street from each other in South Philly. Nearly all of these have been mentioned in travel guides and on national television, so large crowds of tourists are a common sight, and you should expect to wait in long lines, particularly on weekends. As these are all take-out windows, there are no indoor seating available, but some have outdoor seating.
- 6 Pat's King of Steaks, where 9th Street crosses Wharton and Passyunk Ave, ☏ +1-215-468-1546. Daily 24 hours. Located at the south end of the Italian Market, Pat's was credited with the invention of the original Philly cheesesteak in the 1930s. No indoor seating, but there are tables outside and a park across the street, where people will hang out to eat their steaks. $7-10.
- 7 Geno's Steaks, 1219 S. 9th St (at Passyunk Ave, across from Pat's), ☏ +1-215-389-0659. Daily 24 hours. Opened in 1966, Geno's is kitty-corner from rival cheesesteak shop Pat's and has even larger, more garish signs to advertise its location. Founder Joey Vento also used the store to air his personal views, such as his support for police; there is a small dedication to Officer Daniel Faulkner (murdered by Mumia Abu-Jamal in 1981) and display cases of police badges from all over the United States. Notably, there was a window sign stating "This is America - When ordering, speak English" which has sparked controversy for being discriminatory to immigrants and tourists. Like Pat's, there are some outdoor tables available. $8-$10.
- 8 Jim's Steaks, 400 South St, ☏ +1 215 928-1911. Temporarily closed due to fire damage Jul 2022-? Ordinary hours: M-Th 10AM-1AM, F Sa 10AM-3AM, Su 11AM-10PM. After Pat's and Geno's earned national recognition and fame by being featured on television shows, locals have sworn that it doesn't matter if they were overrun by tourists because Jim's had better cheesesteaks anyway. Of course, now everyone has heard this, and Jim's will have long lines around the corner--though that might be more because a cheesesteak after a night drinking on South Street is exactly what you need. Temporary note: Jim's suffered a severe fire in late July 2022 and has been forced to close. The owners have declared intent to rebuild but as of now the timeline for that is unclear. $7-10.
- 9 Tony Luke's Old Philly Style Sandwiches, 39 E Oregon Ave, ☏ +1 215 551-5725. M-Th 6AM-midnight, F Sa 6AM-2AM, Su closed. Located under the shadow of I-95, Tony Luke's is popular with locals, and more difficult to get to for tourists without cars. Unlike Pat's, Geno's or Jim's, Tony Luke's offers a much wider variety of cheesesteak types, as well as burgers. Outdoor seating only. $7-10.
- 10 John's Roast Pork, 14 East Snyder Avenue, ☏ +1 215 463-1951. M-F 7AM-7PM, Sa 9AM-7PM, Su closed. Not far from Tony Luke's is John's, with a similar menu. The name refers to the Philadelphia roast pork sandwich, derived from the Italian porchetta, served with sharp provolone and broccoli rabe (rapini); however, John's is also well noted for its cheesesteaks. Outdoor seating only. $7-10.
- Ishkabibble's. Since 1979, Ishkabibble's has been serving cheesesteaks, chicken cheesesteaks, hoagies, fries & more plus a lemonade/grape juice fusion drink called "The Gremlin." Now with two locations.
- 11 Ishkabibble's I, 337 South St (between 3rd and 4th Sts), ☏ +1 215-423-4337. Su-Th 9AM–11PM, F Sa 9AM–3AM. The original location, with window service only.
- 12 Ishkabibble's II, 517 South St (at Randolph, between 5th and 6th Sts), ☏ +1 215-922-0494. Su-Th 9AM–11PM, F Sa 9AM–3AM. Dining room service available
Delis and fast foodEdit
- 13 Penrose Diner (20th & Penrose Ave).
- 14 Johnny Chang's Asian Restaurant, 2601 S. Broad St.. Asian Cuisine.
- 15 L'Angolo Ristorante, 1415 W. Porter St.. Italian Cuisine.
- 16 Marra's, 1734 E Passyunk Ave, ☏ +1 215 463-9249. A cozy, family-owned Italian restaurant featuring pizza in the heart of South Philly's Italian district.
- 17 Popi's Italian Restaurant, 3120 S. 20th St. Italian cuisine.
- 18 Italiano's Water Ice (12th & Shunk Sts.).
- 19 Termini Brothers Pasties (8th & Dickinson Sts.).
- 20 Pop's Water Ice (Oregon and Juniper St.).
- 21 John's Water Ice (7th and Christian St).
- 22 Isgro Pastries, 1009 Christian St, ☏ +1 215-923-3092. Around in at least some form for over a century, this is a classic Italian-American patisserie that still manages to be fresh.
- 23 Rim Cafe (9th and Federal St).
- Mifflin Tavern, 1843 S 2nd St, ☏ +1 267 273-0811. Intimate.
- 1 Bob & Barbara's, 1509 South St, ☏ +1 215 545-4511. Classic dive bar atmosphere with PBR paraphernalia plastered on every imaginable surface—take a guess at what their drink of choice is. Known for its weekly drag show on Thursday nights (a must-see) but has added other events like a live band on weekends, ping-pong night, and Quizzo.
- 2 Chickie's and Pete's Cafe, 1526 E Packer Ave. A great place for every event. Huge TVs are always showing games around the country, but you can also get the privacy of a booth. If you feel like picking on the food there you can't go wrong with their world famous crab fries.
- 3 Rally Coffee, 701 S. 7th St., ☏ +1 215 9253657, email@example.com. Sa Su 8AM - 5PM, M-F 7AM - 6PM. A partner with Pennsylvania based brands to serve local coffee and snacks. Also a community-based rental venue and coworking space.
- 4 Grace Tavern, 2229 Grays Ferry Ave (at South St), ☏ +1 215 893-9580. Daily 11:30AM-2AM. A local favorite watering hole, with a great selection of different draft beers that get rotated regularly and at affordable prices. They also make some of the best burgers for the price in Philly, which come with a helping of fries and a delicious bourbon mayonnaise sauce imported from Monk's, another local pub from the same owner. $5-15.
- 1 Radisson Hotel Philadelphia, PA, 2033 Penrose Ave (at 20th St), ☏ +1 267 857-7756. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: 11:30AM. Within walking distance of the sports complex. approx. $90 per night.
- 2 , 1001 Intrepid Avenue, ☏ +1-215-644-9200. Short walk to Sports Complex
- 3 Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia, 900 Packer Ave, toll-free: +1-833-472-5483, CasinoHostPhilly@livech.com.
|Routes through South Philadelphia|
|Northwest Philadelphia ← Center City West/Center City East ←||N S||→ END|