United States

Philadelphia, PA

The Best Places to Run in Philadelphia

Philadelphia, noted for its rich history, is one of the more pedestrian-friendly cities in the United States. Laid out with some grand city planning, Philadelphia boasts varied architecture, numerous cultural institutions, and several universities. There’s an excellent variety of running in Philadelphia, with some great options downtown, significant parks, and extensive river trails. And of course, Rocky’s run up the stairs of the Philadelphia Museum of Art is on any runner’s ‘bucket list’. The central part of Philadelphia is easy to get around, with good public transport. Several of our downtown area routes can be combined.

Our guide to the best places to run in Philadelphia includes a Philadelphia Highlights tour, and a great ‘runseeing’ tour of the  historic section. For off-road running, check out beautiful Fairmont Park and paths along the Schuylkill River. The University of Pennsylvania has a great campus for running. Adjacent to Old City, there are paths along the Delaware River, with options to  cross he Benjamin Franklin Bridge to New Jersey. Other favorites include Olmsted-designed FDR Park in South Philly, the nine-mile trail in Pennypack Park, and the Cobbs Creek Trail.

For more routes just outside the city, see our guide to the Philadelphia suburbs, which includes coverage of Montgomery, Delaware, Chester, and Bucks Counties.

Philadelphia Suburbs Running Routes

Editor's Picks

Some of our favorite runs in Philadelphia, PA

Fairmount Park

Many opportunities for running in one of the largest urban green spaces in the country. See the... more...

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

Philadelphia Highlights Tour

Philadelphia, PA

A 10k 'runseeing' tour of Philadelphia's scenic, cultural, and historic highlights in the heart of downtown, west of Broad St: Avenue of the Arts, Schuylkill River, Fairmount Park, and more, starting from City Hall. Good add-on options.
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Fairmount Park

Philadelphia, PA

Many opportunities for running in one of the largest urban green spaces in the country. See the map for various loop and bridge options, along the water or interior trails.
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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.
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South Philly: 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.
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Philadelphia Highlights Tour

Philadelphia, PA

A 10k 'runseeing' tour of Philadelphia's scenic, cultural, and historic highlights in the heart of downtown, west of Broad St: Avenue of the Arts, Schuylkill River, Fairmount Park, and more, starting from City Hall. Good add-on options.
Explore

Fairmount Park

Philadelphia, PA

Many opportunities for running in one of the largest urban green spaces in the country. See the map for various loop and bridge options, along the water or interior trails.
Explore

philadelphia-weather

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.

phil-hotels-screenshot

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.