Staying home for the weekend? Humidity sucks, we get it. Your air conditioner broke? Brutal.
Need to get out of the house and find a spot to stay cool this summer in Philly? We’ve got you covered.
This is a list of things to do and places to go that won’t break the bank and, most importantly, will keep you pretty cool during the final days of this hot summer.
A lot of these things can be added to your summer bucket list or even used for a first date.
Either way, we think you’ll find a place to enjoy your summer vacation.
1. Buy This Cold Stuff
If you’d like an alternative to eating ice cubes when it’s hotter than Mercury out there, here are some options:
I’m just name droppin a few, but Big Gay Ice Cream, Weckerly’s, Little Baby’s, Kuriimii, and Alice Pizza are all hidden gems. There are also a few water ice and froyo places like Igloo and Five Sisters where you can can get cheap $1 deals. For some more cold treats, check out more of our favorite frozen snacks and ice cream.
We know you wanna buy these aesthetic bowls just to gram them, but hey they’re good for keeping you cool as well. Stripp’d Juice, Arctic Scoop, Little Spoon Cafe, the Enerjuicer, SoBol, and Animo Juice & Burrito Bar have just what ya need. We even did a full list of Philly acai bowls earlier this year.
Stop with the hot drip and get yourself a draft latte from La Colombe or a cold brew from Rival Bros Coffee Bar, Greenstreet Coffee Co., or Elixr Coffee. Coffee not your thing? Try bubble tea from TeaDo, fresh green and Thai teas from Cafe Ole (free refills), or iced teas from V Street.
2. Swim In Water, Not Sweat
We’re currently petitioning to have misters put up around the city, but until then here are some cool-down water activities for all you puddlers:
We’re not saying open the fire hydrants but … fuck it, open ’em and blame it on your neighbor. Learn how here.
If you want to be #onaboat, get tickets to this ferry ride across the riverfront. It’s open 7 days a week with extended hours for late night events.
Aqua Vida offers fitness classes and paddling workshops on the river, so you can get a workout while staying cool.
ｓｕｍｍｅｒ ｌｏｖｉｎ 💙 . Few chances to #makesomewaves on the water with us this weekend 🙌🏽 . 🌴 Friday ~ 6pm Seva Paddle + Cleanup with @unitedbyblue and @cleanoceanaction ~ paddle, pick up top floating trash from our river, then hang on our sailboat for snacks and drinks 🍹⛵️ beginners welcome! . 🌴 Saturday ~ 10am AquaFLOW SUP Yoga All Levels with Justine Bacon . 12pm AquaFLOW SUP Yoga All Levels with Jenna Brown . 🌴 Sunday ~ 8:15am and 9:05am AquaFLOW All Levels at @lifetime.life KOP with Jenny Lofaro . 🌴 Stand up paddle boarding lessons and tours available at our @sprucestreetharborpark and Farrington Lake NJ locations 🏄🏽♀️🏄🏽♂️
Um hello who didn’t swim in inflatable pools as kids? If you want to relive your childhood or just give your pets a good time, get a mini pool.
3. Bum some Free AC
Gtfo of the heat. It’s really not that hard, especially with all of the accessible institutions and activities around the city including:
You know them, you love them, so go to them. The PMA, Rodin, Franklin Institute, Institute of Contemporary Art (free), the Fabric Workshop, Mummers Museum, and The Barnes are just a few of your air conditioned options. We did a full roundup of Philly’s best museums back in March to help you out.
There are a ton of library branches around the city, and along with air conditioning they offer access to computers and wifi, educational programs, and special events for all ages. You can also borrow some pretty cool stuff from Philly libraries.
Today I did the opposite of St. Patrick's day: I went to two libraries & had falafel for lunch. 📚 I'm at my local library branch about once a week on average, but today was my first visit to the main branch in years. I practically grew up in the Children's wing, and even at that age I appreciated the magic: free! books! As many as you want! 📚 What a joy this place is! There were people of all ages and races and socioeconomic groups, reading and writing and browsing the internet and getting help with their taxes and participating in a big Scrabble competition. What a wonderful resource the library is. Take all my tax dollars. 📚 @freelibrary #makeamericaREADagain
Go and bounce the day away at HSF City or Sky Zone. You may get sweaty, but hey it’s still in air conditioning, and relatively cheap.
Escape rooms were featured in episodes of Brooklyn 99 and The Big Bang Theory, and lucky for us we have some right here in Philly. Escape Entertainment and Mission Escape are two places to actually trap yourself in nice, cold air conditioning for a few hours without them kicking you out.
Bowling and beer are an unbeatable combo, and Lucky Strike, North Bowl, and South Bowl are just a few bowling alleys to duck into to get out of the heat and enjoy your afternoon in.
This place is like YMCA but on steroids. From fitness classes and boot camps, to speed and agility training, to yoga and league sports, Phield House is a cool way to get out of the heat (no pun intended). And if you need a break, they have a wifi lounge to watch sports on two large TVs.
We know you’ve fantasized about being Ben Gates in National Treasure, so go already and tour the Independence and Liberty Bell Centers.
4. Nearby Ish
Rent a ZipCar, take the train, hitchhike, hell, even ask your parents to drive you. Do something to get a ride out of the city because there’s a ton of stuff to do, like…
There’s a magical place that allows you to go tubing and bar hopping down the Delaware, all the while eating hot dogs. Its kinda epic.
For those of you who don’t live under a rock, the Jersey Shore reunion is back. Bum a ride to the Jersey Shore and remember your tanning oil.
CoCo Keys, Sahara Sam’s Oasis, The Funplex, Dutch Springs, Dorney Park Wild Water Kingdom, and Six Flags all have water parks aka hours of entertainment and probably shriveled up skin. Worth it.
Hike a ‘lil, swim a l’il, sit a ‘lil, bike a ‘lil by the Wissahickon Creek. There is an accessible bike trail, so you can bike through the heat and then jump into the Devil’s Pool.