North America

Philadelphia, PA

Philadelphia has a cool running scene, immortalized of course by the famous “Rocky Run” from the 1976 movie. This run, through the city and up the stairs of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, is on any runner’s ‘bucket list’. We’ve included this route in our guide to running in Philadelphia.

Philadelphia was laid out with some grand city planning. There is wonderful architecture and some historic sites and institutions. Our guide to the iconic runs of Philadelphia includes a ‘Philadelphia History’ run, a ‘Museum’ run, a gorgeous route along the Schuylkill River, and the beautiful Fairmont Park. The Philadephia city core is fairly compact so it’s easy to access the iconic runs from nearly anywhere downtown. In the southern part of the city you are closer to some routes along the Schuylkill river, the University of Pennsylvania, and also over the Benjamin Franklin Bridge to New Jersey. There’s quite a bit of development along the waterfront improving things for runners, including a new boardwalk and refurbished bridges.

  • All Routes
  • Iconic Routes
  • Weather & Climate
  • Where To Stay
  • Stores & Group Runs
  • Events

Rocky Run

Philadelphia, PA

It’s impossible to replicate the actual “Rocky Run”, but here’s the route the organizers of the annual Rocky Run Road Race use to replicate the ‘iconic’ parts of this ‘iconic’ run.
Explore This Route

FDR Park/Navy Yard

Philadelphia, PA

Olmsted designed FDR Park has numerous trails, a golf course, and other recreational options. A lap of the park is about 3 miles. Includes a tour of Philadelphia Navy Yard, for views of the boats and some of the ‘grittier’ side of Philadelphia.
Explore This Route


Philadelphia summers that can be hot and humid. Spring and fall are gorgeous. Winters are cold but not frigid. Roads can get snowy and icy. About the same as New York City. Rain is fairly consistent throughout the year but in summer is more characterized by short, bursty thunderstorms.


One thing that’s great about Philadelphia is that there are wonderful hotel options within proximity of good running routes. Most hotels in the center city are in the “square” between Spruce to the south and Race St. to the north, and east-west between 10th an 19th St. This provides access within a mile or two to most of the ‘iconic’ runs in Philadelphia. There’s another cluster of hotels in the historic district near the waterfront and the Ben Franklin Bridge, and around the Univ. of Pennsylvania.

Running Stores

Each major running area of Philadelphia has one or two good dedicated running stores.

Center City
Philadelphia Runner, a local chain of stores. Group runs Thursdays 6pm. Other locations in University City and Manayunk (north).

University of Pennsylvania Area
Philadelphia RunnerGroup runs Wednesday 6pm

Fairmount Park area.
Fairmount Running Company. Group runs Wednesday 6:45pm from their store

Group Runs

Center City.
Group runs Thursdays 6pm from Philadelphia Runner store. Also Wednesdays 6pm from Univ. of Penn. store.

Tuesday 6:30pm from Art Museum steps, run by Philadelphia Runners

Saturday 9am from Art Museum steps, run by Philadelphia Runners

Fairmount Park. Thursday 6:45 pm from Fairmount Park store of Philadelphia Running Company.

RunPhilly has a great Web site with a master schedule of group runs.

Run Clubs

Philadelphia Runners

Rocky Balboa Run. A run in honor of the famous “Rocky” movie. Approximates parts of Rocky’s famous run.

Broad St. Run. 10 miles. First Sunday in May.

Philadelphia Marathon. November. One of the oldest and most historic Marathon races, covers a lot of the great sites of Philadelphia.

Rock ‘N Roll Half Marathon. Half Marathon. September.