10 Healthy (and Cheap!) Dates to Plan in Philly This Summer
Hit the refresh button on your dating life with these fun and affordable ideas.
Gone are the days when dinner and a movie was the benchmark for a decent night out. To help spruce up your repertoire of potential date ideas, we’ve compiled a list of local activities that are fun, health-conscious, and — most importantly — utterly romantic.
The best part is all the ideas listed below are budget-friendly and some are even free (with a little effort, of course). Grab your significant other and get ready for a summer of fun in Philly.
Hit an outdoor movie
Okay, okay, fine: This involves watching a movie — but outdoors! And, my friend, this date is completely free. (Miraculous, we know.) Enjoy a film under the stars at Cira Green’s rooftop bar, Sunset Social every Wednesday at 6 p.m., at Schuylkill Banks every Thursday around 8:30 p.m., or in one of Philly’s many public parks thanks to Fairmount Park Conservancy (multiple days). Some spots offer food and drink, while others are BYO. You can find a full list of local outdoor movie spots here.
Nama-slay together at yoga
If you’re looking to move your muscles (while also finding some zen), opt for an outdoor yoga class. Every Wednesday in July, we host our annual summer yoga flow down at Cherry Street Pier. The 60-minute practice, led by Three Queens Yoga, begins at 5:30 p.m. and is completely free. There’s also KG Strong’s rooftop yoga on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month through October, Lumos’s yoga classes at Corinthian Gardens on Tuesday nights and Sunday mornings, a slew of weekly offerings from Monarch Yoga in Kensington, and sessions on the footbridge in Manayunk every Tuesday and Friday night through September, thanks to Unity Yoga. Find more outdoor options — yoga and other modalities — here.
Create unique art together
Tap into your artsy side at Bella Mosaic in Mt. Airy. About once per month, the studio hosts designated date night workshops, where you and your plus one can learn how to make your own mosaic using ceramic tiles, glass scraps, and other materials. This date is a bit on the pricier side compared to other ideas in this list ($55 per person), but it includes the two-hour class, all materials, and your finished product to take home.
Make friends on a boat
Being healthy doesn’t just mean working out and eating well. It also involves creating and maintaining positive, meaningful connections with others. To help you engage in some social activity, Sea Philly runs the Riverside Social Club, a waterfront pop-up every Tuesday in July and August with entertainment and laid-back vibes ($40). You can hang in the designated lounge area, or on the boat itself! It’s a great way for you and your S.O. to spend a double date, or shake those date jitters by being around others.
Tour the Penitentiary at night
Eastern State Penitentiary is hosting Summer Twilight, which includes tours of the historic Fairmount cell blocks as the sun goes down. The series — which costs $19 to $30 depending on the day — runs Thursday through Sunday starting at 6 p.m. through September 4th, and includes an audio tour. Make an entire night of it by staying for snacks and drinks in the on-site beer garden, which features brews from Triple Bottom Brewing Company.
Explore wooded trails
A hike through the Wissahickon is more than just a walk in the park. There are dozens of trails to explore and most of them trek along the Wissahickon Creek, providing the perfect backdrop for a romantic outdoor date. If you’re interested in keeping the date going post-hike, grab lunch at Valley Green Inn, sip some all-natural tea blends at Craft Tea, or learn the ins and outs of building your own garden at FarmerJawn Greenery.
Fun on the Waterfront
Nothing breaks the ice quite like face planting in front of the potential love of your life. Roller skating at Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest is an outdoor experience that is sure to impress any date — that is, if you can manage to keep both feet on the ground. Admission is only $5 (plus $10 if you need skates), but if you want to skip the rink and potential embarrassment, try your hand at one of the many carnival games or hop on the Ferris wheel. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, hop next door to recently opened Liberty Point to enjoy some refreshments — like a fresh salad, hummus, and seafood dishes — while enjoying views of the Delaware River. Bonus: Every Tuesday night, the venue hosts a food and music series featuring rotating menus from some of Philly’s best chefs.
A walk on the artistic side with a vegan-friendly twist
First: Take a self-guided mural tour and walk Mural Mile (starting points and routes for both the North and South lines can be found here).
Then: Indulge in plant-based dishes at Charlie Was a Sinner.
If your date had paintbrush and palette emojis on their online profile, this is sure to win you some extra points. Take a stroll through Center City via the Mural Mile, an outdoor mural walking tour created by Mural Arts Philadelphia. The self-guided tour has two routes, consisting of over a dozen diverse art pieces, and is over two miles long. After you’ve taken in the sights from the city’s beautiful murals, visit Midtown Village mainstay, Charlie Was a Sinner. This vegan spot has a slew of tasty menu items including zucchini “crab cake” sliders and eggplant bao buns. They also have delicious and beautiful cocktails (alcoholic and zero-proof), so you can sip in style. For the best bang for your buck, go for happy hour, which happens 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Catch a morning workout, then grab breakfast
First: Take Tuck Barre & Yoga’s rooftop Barre Bounce class.
Then: Grab a bite at a local bakery.
If you’re both early risers and want to have a morning date (yes, they’re a thing!), check out Tuck Barre & Yoga’s rooftop Barre Bounce class ($27). The 45-minute class — which is held at 8:15 a.m. on the roof of the Smith School apartment building in Point Breeze — will have you bouncing on a rebounder (a.k.a. a mini trampoline) with killer skyline views. Once you’ve worked up a sweat, carry your high energy to a nearby bakery/cafe for delectable bites and good conversation. We recommend vegan eatery Batter and Crumbs and small-batch spot Mighty Bread Co — you won’t be disappointed at either (so maybe go to both?!).
Go for a swim, then have a picnic
First: Go for a swim in one of Philly’s public pools (various locations found here).
Then: Curate a park picnic for two.
Beat that sweltering city heat at one of the many free public pools throughout the region. Grab your partner, pack a tote bag to float, splash, and swim until you’re pruney and cold. Yes, you could get dressed and head to a fancy meal, but what’s more romantic than enjoying a quiet, DIY picnic in a nearby park?
Additional reporting by Stephanie Haenn and Bailey King.