14 Healthy (and Cheap!) Dates to Plan in Philly This Summer

These fun, good-for-you date ideas won't break the bank.

Our guide to summer date ideas in Philadelphia. / Photograph of Philly Mini Golf, courtesy of Jeff Fusco for Historic Philadelphia, Inc.

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 for the summer season.

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.

Find your flow, together

If you’re looking to move your muscles (while also finding some zen), opt for an outdoor yoga class. There’s KG Strong’s rooftop yoga on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month through September, 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 banks of the Schuylkill Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 10 a.m., thanks to Yoga on the Banks. Find more outdoor options — yoga and other modalities — here.

Perfect your putt

This classic is a summertime staple. Challenge your partner at Franklin Square’s 18-hole miniature golf course, and aim for a hole in one among obstacles designed after favorite Philly landmarks like the Liberty Bell, the LOVE Statue, the Chinatown Friendship Arch, and more; each round is only $13 per person. (Plan to go at night so you can catch the Chinese Lantern Festival!) Or if you want to beat the heat, Libertee Grounds has two 9-hole indoor courses. Play one for $10 or $18 for both.

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 7 p.m.; at Schuylkill Banks every Thursday between 8–8:30 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. Here’s a list of all of them.

Reach for new heights

Tick “flying trapeze” off your bucket list. While this date is a bit on the pricier side compared to other ideas in this list ($75 per person), a class at Wahoo Trapeze is a date you will never forget. Philly’s newest trapeze school aims to make the sport accessible to everyone with 2-hour beginner classes that are open to all experience levels. Lessons begin on the ground, but by the end, you’ll be flying on the trapeze.

Tour the Penitentiary at night

Eastern State Penitentiary is hosting Summer Nights, 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 Friday and Saturday evenings starting at 6 p.m. through July 27th, 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.

Start movin’ and groovin’

Dance the night away at one of Philly’s many outdoor concerts this summer. In addition to bites on the water and cozy hammocks, Spruce Street Harbor Park hosts free performances on select Saturdays at 7 p.m. through September. Or, opt to bust a move at the Oval, which, beginning on July 11th, will feature free outdoor performances through August right along the Parkway.

Become radiant

On Saturdays and Sundays, Spring Garden cafe and beauty haven Callowhill Greens hosts Skincare + Sip workshops where you and bae will focus on what owner Christie Dèsir calls “beauty from the inside out.” This is another more expensive date idea compared to the rest ($69 per person), but it includes up to two hours of creating customized facial moisturizers to bring home, sipping on good-for-your-skin-and-gut beauty elixirs from Dèsir’s CALLO line, and learning more about what makes for healthier, more radiant skin. Bonus: The event is BYO!

Go on an art-centric walk

If your date had paintbrush and palette emojis on their online profile, a self-guided mural tour is sure to win you some extra points. The outdoor “Mural Mile” walking tour created by Mural Arts Philadelphia has two routes, consisting of over a dozen diverse art pieces, and is over two miles long.

Get saucy in the kitchen

What’s better than sharing a home cooked meal? Sharing a homecooked meal made with freshly picked, and locally sourced produce. Philly has a rich farmers’ market scene, perfect for finding the plump tomatoes, fragrant herbs, and artisan products that will make for a healthy summer meal. Find a complete list here. Philly also has a strong community garden network for another way you and your partner can get involved while maintaining a green thumb.

Gaze at the stars

One way to get to know your partner is by stalking their star sign, but a better one is taking a moonlit hike along the Lemon Hill Rim Trail. Park After Dark is a moonwalk and stargazing excursion, complete with a telescope observation of the moon, planets, and stars — and is only $15 per person. Guided by Fairmount Park Conservancy and astronomer Buddy Muhler, this two-mile hike boasts views of the Schuylkill River amidst lessons about nocturnal wildlife and lunar cycles. And, let’s face it, nothing says romance quite like a stroll under the stars.

Hit the water

Beat that sweltering city heat at one of the many free public pools throughout the city. 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?

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 with FarmerJawn.

Take on a challenge

An obstacle course in the trees is both a physical and mental challenge. Escape from the bustling city and test your coordination at Treetop Quest. This aerial adventure park offers various courses for you and your partner to complete — some complete with zip lines! While tickets are roughly $60, that includes two and a half hours of tree hopping to enjoy.

Play the hottest paddle sport

The pickleball craze is certainly not behind us, and thankfully, there are plenty of places both indoors and outdoors to see the competitive side of your partner. Water Tower Recreation Center has six outdoor courts and also hosts lessons for beginners. Fishtown Recreation Center offers two indoors. And various parks across the city have courts open to the public, including 10 at FDR Park. Find a full list of pickleball locations here.

Additional reporting by Stephanie Haenn and Bailey King.