Philadelphia

The 14 Best Ice Cream Shops in Philadelphia

Sundaes, scoops, and soft serve.

Weckerly's Ice Cream
Weckerly’s Ice Cream
Weckerly’s Ice Cream

No matter how far we get into adulthood, summertime is always synonymous with three months of sunny school’s out vacation. Even if your reality is more like three months of business as usual, there are still plenty of ways to feel like a kid again this season.

Our first suggestion: Ice cream. There’s nothing like a few favorite scoops outside that caters to any edge. From over-the-top sundaes to decades-old family recipes, from homemade flavors to ultra rich gelato, Philly has them all. Take a look at our picks for the best places to make your ice cream dreams come true this summer.

Arctic Scoop
Arctic Scoop
Arctic Scoop

Arctic Scoop

East Passyunk
Taking inspiration from ice cream vendors of Thailand, Arctic Scoop mingles classic flavors with less common ingredients and serving techniques. Flavors include vanilla bean, taro, and pandan and can be served in coconut bowls and honeycomb egg waffle cones. The sky is pretty much the limit here.

Bassetts Ice Cream
Bassetts Ice Cream
Bassetts Ice Cream

Bassetts Ice Cream

Reading Terminal
Bassetts is an international force in the frozen desserts game-acting as a distributor around the world. But lucky for us, Philadelphians can get it right from the source. This Reading Terminal staple has a long Philly-based history that stretches back to 1861 and today, it remains a go-to destination for pints, scoops, sundaes, and more than 40 flavors.

Bredenbeck's Bakery
Bredenbeck’s Bakery
Bredenbeck’s Bakery

Bredenbeck’s

Chestnut Hill
This bakery and ice cream parlor has been a staple in Philly since 1889. The shop offers signature flavors that offer an ode to Philly like the Phillies Graham Slam and the WHYY, along with plenty of toppings, sauces, and chipwiches. Gourmet sundaes and pints available to take home round out the menu.

Custard & Cakes Creamery

Roxborough
C&C is a haven for line-inducing frozen treats. From hand-dipped, homemade ice cream in no less than 25 flavors to water ice and pineapple dole whip soft serve, C&C has it all. Take some time to consider the menu and concoct your most ideal creation because you can also order shakes, sundaes, splits, and glaciers made out of anything on the menu, so get planning!

D’Emilio’s Old World Ice Treats

East Passyunk
Everything at D’Emilio’s feels very classic, from the soft serve swirl ice cream in a cone to water ice built on an old family recipe. To take things up a notch, consider one of the shop’s behemoth sundaes, like the massive strawberry crunch cake or the pretzel sundae, an ode to another classic Philly creation.

El Pueblo Refresquería

Italian Market
El Pueblo Refresquería serves less common flavors without the bloated pricing. Be on the lookout for options like cheese, avocado, guava, and more, plus the popsicle shop featuring everything from tamarind to coconut. You should also try the shop’s Chamoyada, a sweet-yet-spicy shaved ice drink with mango and chamoy sauce.

Franklin Ice Cream
Franklin Ice Cream
Franklin Ice Cream

Franklin Ice Cream Bar

Old City
Artisanal scoops, ice cream bars, and toppings are the name of the game at the Franklin Ice Cream Bar. Flavors from classic coffee to caramelized banana and sea salt caramel, and there are also a few vegan options, custards, and sundaes to please everyone. Plus, many shops have cookies & cream, but why have Oreos when you can try ice cream with Hydrox, the original Oreo, instead.

Gran Caffe L’Aquila

Rittenhouse
Gran Caffe L’Aquila is one of Philly’s greatest destinations for gelato, with so much love that it can now be shipped nationally. Batches are produced daily by Stefano Biasini, a literal international gelato champion, for some stand-out flavors including pistachio, Italian dark chocolate, espresso, amaretto, and more.

The Igloo
The Igloo
The Igloo

The Igloo

Fishtown, Graduate Hospital 
For some ice cream alternatives, The Igloo serves high-quality fro-yo, custard, sorbet, espresso shakes, and gelato-some of which can be ordered in a churro cone. Just don’t forget to add a scoop of Nutella for the road (or fruit, if you’re into that).

La Guerrerense

Italian Market
La Guerrerense is modeled after a traditional Mexican ice cream shop, using recipes common in Guerrero, Mexico. You can expect more than 60 flavors, including piña colada, tamarind, and cheese, also available are aguas frescas and horchata.

Scoop DeVille Ice Cream
Scoop DeVille Ice Cream
Scoop DeVille Ice Cream

Scoop DeVille

Midtown Village, The Bourse
Whether you’re wanting a banana split, brownie sundae, or build-your-own chipwich, Scoop DeVille has any ice cream creation you can possibly imagine-even if you need it to be dairy-free. They also have a tasty selection of ice cream cakes you can order for pickup or delivery.

Somerset Splits
Somerset Splits
Somerset Splits

Somerset Splits

Port Richmond
Head to Somerset Splits for ice cream, shakes, floats, sundaes, mochi, and, of course, splits. The menu has some seriously out-there creations that make this spot a neighborhood favorite, and with nearly a dozen specialty sundaes on the menu, this scoop shop has plenty of ways to settle your sweet tooth.

Weckerly's Ice Cream
Weckerly’s Ice Cream
Weckerly’s Ice Cream

Weckerly’s Ice Cream

Fishtown, Spruce Hill
Weckerly’s Ice Cream is a true local spot, where all products are made with locally sourced organic milk and cream. Too-good ice cream sandwiches, creative scoops, pints, and pops make Weckerly’s a favorite around town. The ice cream sandwiches come in four flavors like black & white and strawberry shortcake, and scoops range from classic whole bean vanilla to rosemary chocolate chip and honeybunch with honey and crunchy almond clusters.

Zsa's Ice Cream
Zsa’s Ice Cream
Zsa’s Ice Cream

Zsa’s Ice Cream

Mt. Airy
Zsa’s Ice Cream offers ice cream scoops, sandwiches, and sundaes made from scratch, each using local dairy and mix-ins that are also almost exclusively made from scratch. The result is extra fresh and satisfying creations, whether you’re dreaming of a ruby chocolate waffle cone or a frozen hot chocolate shake.

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Marielle Mondon is a writer from Philadelphia. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @MarielleMondon.

Philadelphia

Museum Exhibits in Philly to Check Out Before They Disappear

Get in some culture (and selfies) at the best art exhibits in Philadelphia.

Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney

From the historical to the artistic, Philadelphia is jam packed with museums. Art aficionados of all ages can get lost inside the likes of tourist-friendly museums like the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Museum of the American Revolution or feast their eyes on unique exhibitions at institutions like the Fabric Workshop and Museum and the Museum for Art In Wood.

Between big-ticket exhibitions honouring the House of Mouse to collections showcasing the legacy of a prominent Black family in early America, there’s plenty of material to dig into. After you’ve planned a date night and rounded up friends to explore the city, here are the most exciting museum exhibits in Philly right now-before they’re gone for good.

Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney

The Franklin Institute

Exhibition: Disney 100: The Exhibition
Mickey Mouse, you look good for your age. Celebrating the 100th anniversary of Disney is a retrospective exhibition, which got its world premiere right here in Philly. Between rarely-seen artworks and artifacts, costumes and props, and interactive installations where you can listen to hit Disney songs, the exhibit is a Disney lover’s wish-upon-a-star-come-true.
Dates: Until August 27, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Monday through Sunday. Tickets are available online and at the door.

Photo by Ramon Torres, courtesy of ANS
Photo by Ramon Torres, courtesy of ANS
Photo by Ramon Torres, courtesy of ANS

Academy of Natural Sciences

Exhibition: Conversations With Birds
No, not an allusion to the Eagles, this exhibition is dedicated to actual birds, their migration patterns, and humans’ relationship with avian creatures. Expect avian photography and video by local birders and wildlife photographers along with an interactive exhibit showing five migratory birds that pass through the Philadelphia region on their seasonal passage between North and South America.
Dates: Until May 21, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets are available online or at the door.

The Barnes Foundation

Exhibition: Sue Williamson & Lebohang Kganye: Tell Me What You Remember
The work of two contemporary South African artists-Sue Williamson and Lebohang Kganye-are shown side by side, offering a cross-generational dialogue. Both artists utilize video installations, photographs, sculptural installations, and textiles “to consider how the stories our elders tell us shape family narratives and personal identities.”
Dates: Until May 21, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Thursday through Monday. Advanced tickets are recommended.

Photo by Jonathan Horowitz
Photo by Jonathan Horowitz
Photo by Jonathan Horowitz

Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History

Exhibition: The Future Will Follow the Past: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz
Exploring the rapid change of societal issues in America since 2020-antisemitism, racial violence, immigration, women’s rights, LGBTQIA+ rights-Jonathan Horowitz designed installations inspired by recent occurrences. His works explore specific events like the infamous far-right rally from white supremacists in Charlottesville as well as recent themes in American history, like attacks on those within the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities.
Dates: Until July 4, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Friday through Sunday. Admission is available online and at the door.

Photo by Hoda Tawakol
Photo by Hoda Tawakol
Photo by Hoda Tawakol

The Museum for Art In Wood

Exhibition: The Mashrabiya Project
The newly renamed Museum for Art in Wood (formerly The Center for Art In Wood) celebrates the rebrand with a brand new project. Focusing on mashrabiya, the traditional Islamic architectural design, The Mashrabiya Project is a first of its kind effort in the U.S. to examine this aesthetic. As a part of the larger mission, a new exhibition Seeing Through Space features newly-commissioned, never-before-seen works by six female-identifying artists.
Dates: Until July 23, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets are not required.

Photo by Carlos Avenda├▒o
Photo by Carlos Avenda├▒o
Photo by Carlos Avenda├▒o

Fabric Workshop and Museum

Exhibition: Henry Taylor: Nothing Change, Nothing Strange
Combining painting and sculpture, Henry Taylor utilized recycled objects in this exhibition, the product of an 18-month residency. The entire second floor of the museum houses the large scale assemblages, tapestries, and textiles. Think: 30-foot billowing canvases and towering totems created from compressed blocks of paint buckets, vinyl home siding, and black plastic planters.
Dates: Until July 23, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Walk up admission is available but advanced registration is encouraged.

Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art
Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art
Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Exhibition: Judith Joy Ross
More than 200 photographs from renowned portrait photographer Judith Joy Ross will be on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, chronicling her career from the 1980s to today. Her black-and-white portraits are intimate reflections of everyday Americans, and this show features work from all her major projects, plus, never-before-seen images.
Dates: April 24 to August 6, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Thursday through Monday. Advanced tickets are recommended.

American Swedish Historical Museum

Exhibition: Radically Marimekko
Famous for their bright and bold fabrics, Finnish textiles, clothing, and home furnishings, the company Marimekko is showcased at this special exhibit. Drawing attention to Finnish design, the collection traces the brand’s path from industrial art house to fashion icon.
Dates: March 30 to September 24, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday. Walk up admission is available.

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and African American Museum in Philadelphia

Exhibition: Rising Sun: Artists in an Uncertain America
A collaboration between the African American Museum in Philadelphia and PAFA, Rising Sun showcases new work from 20 artists examining the question of Is the sun rising or setting on the experiment of American democracy? With pieces shown in both museums, visitors can reflect on, challenge, and expand their view of democracy through art.
Dates: March 23 to October 8, 2023
How to visit: The African American Museum in Philadelphia is open Thursday through Sunday; admission is available online and at the door. PAFA is open Thursday through Sunday; admission can be purchased in advance or at the door.

Museum of the American Revolution
Museum of the American Revolution
Museum of the American Revolution

Museum of the American Revolution

Exhibition: Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia
James Forten may not be a familiar name within early American history, but this new exhibit at the Museum of the American Revolution is looking to change that. Telling the story of Forten and his family through 100 historical artifacts, Black Founders explores the Forten family’s roles in the Revolutionary War, business in Philadelphia, and the abolitionist movement.
Dates: Until November 26, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open daily. Admission is available online and at the door.

National Constitution Center
National Constitution Center
National Constitution Center

National Constitution Center

Exhibition: The 19th Amendment: How Women Won The Vote
That lofty document known as the Constitution and its values, interpretations, and amendments are explored in great detail at the National Constitution Center, naturally. This semi-permanent exhibit examines the 19th Amendment-the one which granted women the right to vote-and the road to its ratification. Out of the near 100 artifacts, expect to see a rare printing of the Declaration of Sentiments from the first women’s convention at Seneca Falls, a ballot box used to collect women’s votes in the late 1800s, Pennsylvania’s ratification copy of the 19th Amendment, and various “Votes for Women” ephemera.
Dates: Semi-permanent, no end date announced
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Advanced tickets are recommended.

M├╝tter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
M├╝tter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
M├╝tter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia

M├╝tter Museum

Exhibition: Spit Spreads Death
Eerily topical, the M├╝tter’s latest special exhibit, Spit Spreads Death, an exhibit about the 1918 flu pandemic, opened in the fall of 2019, less than six months before the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The exhibit traces the disease’s spread throughout Philadelphia neighbourhoods a century ago and how the pandemic impacted the city with artifacts like photos, newspaper clippings, and more.
Dates: Now through 2024
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Monday. Advanced tickets are required.

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Allie Volpe┬áis a writer based in Philadelphia. She hasn’t slept in days. Follow her on Twitter:┬á@allieevolpe.

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