Are you looking to move to Philadelphia? If you are, we are here to show you around some of the best neighborhoods of Philadelphia that are hard to miss when you are planning to be a part of this quaint city. This city has options ranging from high-end to student-friendly neighborhoods making it more accessible to a wide range of people. With its modern and lively as well as historical cobbled-stoned districts, Philly is definitely the place to be.
The Philadelphia Art Museum, Liberty Bell, and Franklin Institute are among the many cultural and historical attractions of Philadelphia, often known as The City of Brotherly Love. Even though it is the country’s sixth-biggest metropolitan area, it has a considerably smaller feel than other big cities since it is divided into distinct, close-knit neighborhoods. Furthermore, rent in this city is far lower than in other big cities. If you choose Philadelphia as your future home, you will be relocating to a gem of a city that is frequently overlooked in favor of the more popular New York and DC alternatives.
So here are the top ten areas to live in Philadelphia. Hope you find the area that suits you the best. All the best!
1. University City
Prepare to be surrounded by a vibrant, university atmosphere at University City. It’s no wonder that this area, which is home to Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania, is brimming with art galleries, performance theatres, and cultural organizations. University City, in reality, offers one of the city’s top arts and entertainment scenes. Restaurants and bars contribute to the varied environment by offering a variety of food options ranging from a Montreal-style bagel to a Greek gyro. Furthermore, there are several green spots located throughout the neighborhood. The oldest surviving Botanical Garden in North America, Bartram’s Garden, is a 45-acre National Landmark on the hood’s southern boundary, while Drexel Park is where students may rest on a nice day. This Philadelphia neighborhood is ideal for students.
2. Old City
It’s impossible to walk far in this area without becoming submerged in American history. It is technically part of the Center City neighborhood, although it is separated from it on the west by Independence Mall, which is where the Founding Fathers wrote the Declaration of Independence and is home to Betsy Ross’ house, which is where the first American flag was produced. Old City also has a thriving restaurant scene and sponsors the annual Old City Eats summer event, which includes half-price appetizers and beverages Thursday nights from 5-8 pm at local establishments. Imagine getting a drink and a bite to eat just next to Independence Mall! Friday art walks, fashion boutique shops, and modern art galleries are also available in the area. Take a stroll around Old City’s cobblestone streets to learn why it’s one of Philadelphia’s most popular districts for locals and visitors alike.
3. Washington Square West
On many levels, this is possibly the most varied neighborhood. Washington Square West is the kind of location where you can get almost whatever you want, and then some. It has a strong LGBTQ community (and was once called the “Gayborhood” of Philadelphia in the early 1990s), one of Philadelphia’s five original public parks, and includes people from all walks of life, races, genders, and origins. Washington Square Park, only a hop, skip, and a jump from Independence Mall, features shaded bench-lined pathways, a Philadelphia monument, and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier of the American Revolution. Visitors and residents are directed through the cobblestone streets and alleyways to comedy clubs, local taverns, artist clubs, and nightlife spots by street signs with rainbow flags. The streets of this charming area are also lined with date-night eateries. There isn’t much that this conveniently placed hood doesn’t have, which is why it’s so popular.
4. Rittenhouse Square
Rittenhouse Square is a historic and incredibly livable area that is walkable, public transit-friendly, and ideal for bikers. Parc, with its sidewalk cafés and restaurants, encapsulates the city’s vibrancy, and its assortment of pubs makes it a wonderful place to go out at any time of day or night. The Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival, for example, brings the neighborhood together to enjoy local cuisine, fashion, and the arts. Rittenhouse Square is another of William Penn’s five original public places, and it has ample greenery, strolling trails, and a reflecting pool. It also organizes farmers’ markets and events throughout the year, so there’s always something exciting to do here, which is one of the many reasons it topped our list of the best Philadelphia neighborhoods. The neighborhood is recognized for its high concentration of hotels, which is ideal for guests, but it also means that residents can make use of all the comforts and services that tourists desire.
5. Center City
Why is it regarded as one of Philadelphia’s most desirable neighborhoods? Center City is the place to be if you want to live in the middle of it all and stroll to work every day. In this sea of high-rises, nightlife and high-end living abound, but life at the top comes at a price. Center City has the city’s costliest rent, but if convenience is important to you, it’s worth it to be in the thick of everything. The average rent in Center City neighborhoods comes to about $2,100 per month.
6. Bella Vista
Bella Vista was the first neighborhood in Philadelphia to be inhabited by Italian immigrants, so you can thank them for that. The area has stayed true to its heritage, with plenty of Italian restaurants, stores, and the 9th Street Italian Market, the country’s oldest open-air, outdoor market. It’s known as “Little Italy” in Philadelphia, and that’s exactly the vibe you’ll get here. It’s home to a museum dedicated to famed opera singer Mario Lanza, a Philadelphia native, classic Italian restaurants such as Angelinas (pro tip: it’s also BYOB), and handmade pasta businesses such as Superior Pasta Company.
7. Northern Liberties
Step into the Northern Liberties district and you’ll find yourself in hipster paradise. This area north of the city center has changed dramatically in the previous decade. It was just named one of America’s Best Hipster Neighborhoods by Forbes. What was to be a manufacturing and warehouse neighborhood is now a haven for artists, young professionals, and everyone in between. Schmidt’s Commons is a mixed-use development that includes retail, eating, art galleries, and an open-air outdoor theater and stage area that organizes free movie screenings and festivals. And if you’re searching for some affordable food, this is the place to go.
8. East Falls
Do you want to live in the middle of the city, yet, also by a river? Most definitely. East Falls, located on the Schuylkill River, is ideal for those who want to get out and about in nature while still being in the city. It’s also an excellent spot to raise a family because of the abundance of parks and playgrounds (or just raise a dog and take it for lots of walks). Even though the region is often quieter and more family-oriented, there are still opportunities to party, with nightlife venues where you can spend your evening without leaving the region.
9. Point Breeze
Grab a rent-controlled apartment in Point Breeze now before they’re all gone! This up-and-coming neighborhood, which is slated to be the city’s next rebuilt and gentrified district, has the city’s lowest rentals while remaining close enough to downtown to be worthwhile. It has a large number of apartments and rental units, so you’ll have lots of neighbors, but you’ll be able to sleep without hearing the noises of boisterous revelers.
10. Graduate Hospital
Graduate Hospital, Philadelphia’s best-kept secret, is the ideal area for families. Graduate Hospital is almost perfect: less pricey than Center City, but just as walkable as Old Center, with all the family-friendliness of East Falls. On South Street, find some of Philly’s greatest shopping and dining, then stroll a few streets home to spend the night in your own home (if you’re lucky, it could even include a backyard).