One Day in Philly: Hipster Hangouts (North of Center City)
This is my second One Day in Philly post and I'm so excited to bring you to a whole new section of the city. In the first post, I took you to the historic heart of Philly. Today we're travelling a little farther north from the center of Philly to explore the Philly of today.
If you know anything about Philadelphia and the changes its undergone in the last decade or so, you'll know that more and more young people are moving to the city. Philly is much more affordable than nearby cities like New York and DC so it makes it possible for a lot of artists, musicians, and creative entrepreneurs to call the city home. Some of these artsy people like craft beer, shopping in thrift stores, and trying every type of vegan restaurant known to man. These people are what you might call hipsters. And if you want to get a taste for this subculture that Urban Outfitters happily rips off, this guide for one day in Philly's hipster hangouts is for you.
Hipster-delphia may just be my favorite Philadelphia. A little grimy for sure, but full of arts and culture and really good food. A day spent going through Philly's hipster hangouts is going to be full of good food and even better drinks. When I go to the city I tend to find two very distinct areas where the hipster likes to hang. The northern area of hipster-delphia is definitely the neighborhoods of Fishtown, Kensington and Northern Liberties. While this area has attracted more families and young professionals, it's still a very artistic and culturally enriched area of the city. Some of my favorite street fairs like Trenton Avenue Arts Festival happen there and favorite breweries like Philadelphia Brewing Company and Yards are not too far away. Spending one day in the northern hipster hang outs of Philadelphia is guaranteed to be one of your favorite Philly days, I guarantee it.
time to explore but first coffee...
la colombe, 1335 Frankford Avenue
iconic coffee chain based out of philadelphia, great food and epic grounds. the draft latte is a must.
(if it's too "commercial" for you, take the windy streets of fishtown down to reanimator coffee, 310 master st.)
see philadelphia the way the cool kids do: by bike
indiego bikes, various locations around the city (find one with this map)
philadelphia's bike share program is huge, with locations all over the city. philadelphia is a fairly bike-friendly city, especially the neighborhoods of fishtown and kensington. grab a map and experience the city.
or if you want a more guided and artsy experience, take a tour of philly's murals
city of philadelphia mural arts program, guided tours every weekend (check the schedule here)
artistic expression is encouraged 100% in philly with the mural arts program run by the city. murals throughout the city showcase philly artists and transform the city into its very own free art museum.
stop for lunch that's quick and quirky
sketch burger, 413 e. girard street
gourmet burgers in an unpretentious little storefront
or if you're looking for a hipster version of the local taco stand, try the brand new heffe tacos, 1431 frankford ave.
for your afternoon, you can choose to go shopping
either 2nd Street in Northern Liberties or Frankford Avenue in Fishtown
you won't find any chain stores on these streets. the boutiques along here specialize in smaller brands, indie finds, vintage goods, and philadelphia-made products.
or you maybe playing games is more your style
barcade, 1114 Frankford Avenue
a bar and casual eatery with old school video games. relive your glory days as miss pac man or dunk like shaq but this time while enjoying a craft beer.
or you could always hunker down with a pint and few good friends. the north philly neighborhoods are great for breweries:
yards brewing company, 901 n. delaware avenue
philadelphia brewing company, 2440 frankford avenue
saint benjamin's brewing company, 1710 n. 5th street
check with each brewery to see when they're open for tours and tasting. otherwise visit any bar and find the local stuff.
before dinner, visit another local watering hole
fishtown tavern, 1301 frankford avenue
a signature neighborhood pub that is the perfect place to sit with friends and just hang (this is a guide to hipster hangouts of course). it's dark and cool and there's a sparkling rose if that's more your thing.
or if you want to hang out in the neighborhood spot that made the neighborhood cool before the hipsters even knew it was cool, try standard tap, 901 n. 2nd street
and because a hipster never wants to break the bank, be a cheap date
loco pez, 2401 e. norris street
you cannot go wrong with tacos starting at $2 and huge margaritas. plus it's got that seventies chic that feels hipster chic.
or if you want to try something a little more classy but still unique to the neighborhood, kensington quarters, 1310 frankford avenue, is a must. the butcher shop/restaurant offers fresh and local carnivore specialities
do not, under any circumstances, end the night early
silk city diner, 435 spring garden street
classic '50s diner by day, dance club by night with an outdoor "beer" garden too. silk city makes it so much easier to get that most night-out diner food when all you have to do is slide into a booth.
or if you like your night out to be a little more active, reserve a lane at north bowl, 909 n. 2nd street, to knock down some pins, pints, and dance to whatever the dj or speakers might be spinning.