The Delaware River Waterfront has been completely revitalized in recent years, and now it’s one of the hottest places to be in Philadelphia at any time of the year, with ice skating and hot cocoa at Winterfest (and roller skating + lemonade in the summer), local artists’ exhibits and rotating unique experiences at the brand new Cherry Street Pier, the best skyline and Ben Franklin Bridge views, free fitness and a top run route at Race Street Pier, and one of the coolest ways to see the city and try something new with friends, visiting family, or classmates – a cruise on the Spirit of Philadelphia (open year-round!).
It’s easy to get to, too! Just take the Market-Frankford line to 2nd and Market and walk down to Columbus Blvd., or rent an Indego bike – there’s quite a few stations along Columbus Blvd. We’ve rounded up our favorite things to do along the Delaware River Waterfront this winter, but the fun continues year-round. Be sure to follow Campus Philly on Instagram for our daily updates on events and happenings all around the city, and check out our calendar for even more of our recommendations!
- Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest (open until early March):there is SO much to do at Winterfest. Whether you’re into ice skating, or
watching people ice skate while cozying up in a lodge with a mug of hot cocoa,
there’s no shortage of things to do. Dig into crab fries from Chickie’s &
Pete’s or indulge in fried oreos and funnel cake in the lodge, escape from the
cold in the arcade, or rent ice skates and enjoy the crisp air along the river
(bonus: students get a discount on skate rental Monday-Thursday with their ID!)
- Cherry Street Pier and Race Street Pier: an abandoned pier up until 2018, Cherry Street Pier is now a mixed-use public space with multiple local artists showcasing their work on a rotating basis (so every time you visit is a different experience!), a market where you can buy locally made items, a beautiful garden that leads out to stellar views of the Ben Franklin Bridge, and of course, delicious eats… sold out of historic trolley cars! Race Street Pier is always bustling with activity, whether it’s running, free yoga during the spring and summertime, or just enjoying a picnic with some of the best views in the city.
- The Spirit of Philadelphia: after a $1 million renovation, the cruise ship (complete with an outer deck with an open-air bar, and a lounge with a beer garden) has a fresh new look and is even better than before. If you’re in charge of planning your school organization’s outings, this is the perfect venue to impress attendees for your sorority/fraternity formal, campus club party or sports team end-of-season event. Cruises leave from Penn’s landing, and lunch, dinner, and special event experiences are all available. More information about tickets can be found here – be sure to ask about student group rates!
At any time of the year, any day of the week, the Delaware River Waterfront is an awesome spot to be. Follow Campus Philly on Instagram for even more things to do on the waterfront and all over your extended college campus… the city!