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Best Neighborhoods in Philadelphia for Families

Moving to Philadelphia? With safe neighborhoods, quality schools, and plenty of things to do, the Birthplace of America is a great place to raise a family! Here are five of the best neighborhoods in Philly for families!

Bella Vista

  • Home Price: $268,021 median purchase price; $1,083 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 82% of Philadelphia neighborhoods

Bella Vista is a safe, affordable Philly neighborhood for families not far from Philadelphia’s downtown, Center City. Philadelphia’s own Little Italy, Bella Vista is home to “America’s oldest and continuously operating outdoor market,” 9th Street Italian Market, as well as other Italian shops, restaurants, and influences. In fact, the neighborhood’s name is Italian for “beautiful view!” And not for nothing—this peaceful, safe neighborhood offers families historical rowhouses and renovated, modern condos along tree-lined streets. Bella Vista also falls within the Philadelphia School District, offering a number of excellent education opportunities in Philly, including Christopher Columbus Charter School and George W. Nebinger School.

Things to Do in Bella Vista

Cool off in the summer with a swim at Ridgway Pool. Head to the Palumbo Recreation Center and enroll the kids in soccer, basketball, and other sports. Check out the sculptures and other street art at Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens. Take your little ones to family-friendly events in Philly like Parent’s Night In, The Great Big Hoptacular Egg Hunt, or Nest’s Encanto Soiree at NEST Center City. Shop from over 200 vendors and pick up freshly-made pasta, locally-grown produce, specialty Italian goods, and more at the 9th Street Italian Market. Start your day at Function Coffee Labs and try some Overnight Oats with an Americano. Stay warm by the fire as you savor Pierogies, Fried Chicken and Waffles, or a Bella Vista Salad from Hawthornes. Try Mexican seafood dishes like Calamari Tacos and Swordfish at Alma Del Mar. Or have Italian dinners like Manicotti, Shrimp Scampi, and Ralph’s Famous Parm at Ralph’s Italian Restaurant.

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Chestnut Hill

  • Home Price: $432,092 median purchase price; $1,406 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 96% of Philadelphia neighborhoods

With an incredible number of family-oriented shops, museums, galleries, and parks in Philly, there’s no shortage of after-school or weekend activities for the kids in Chestnut Hill! Known as the Garden District because of its beautiful green spaces, Chestnut Hill offers plenty of outdoor activities for kids, along with community events like the Home and Garden Festival. This family-friendly neighborhood in Philadelphia is close to a number of top-notch schools, including the public Central High School and private Springside Chestnut Hill Academy. And as one of the best places in Philadelphia to buy a home, families in Chestnut Hill can expect to find a range of housing options from estate-style homes to classic twin houses.

Things to Do in Chestnut Hill

See more than 2,600 types of plants, as well as various birds and wildlife at the Morris Arboretum. Hike, fish, or ride horseback at Wissahickon Valley Park. See the current art exhibitions or sign the kids up for art classes at the Woodmere Art Museum. Celebrate your furry friend at Petapalooza, a Chestnut Hill festival featuring raffle prizes, games, and treats for both you and your pet! Have Steak & Eggs, Fish & Grits, or a Blueberry Waffle for breakfast at the Breakfast Boutique. Enjoy lunch at Baker Street Bread Co. and order the Perfect Tuna Salad Sandwich, a Power Grain Bowl, or the Soup Du Jour! Stop for ice cream treats like a Cookielicious Sundae or Banana Ice Cream Sandwich at Bredenbeck’s Bakery. Spend date night at CinCin Restaurant for French-Asian fusion dishes like Barbecued Spare Ribs, Sake Wild-Peppered Chicken, and Peking Duck.

Fitler Square

Two story white brick townhome with navy blue shutters and red door. Photo via Instagram user @ssellsphilly

Photo via @ssellsphilly

  • Home Price:$446,456 median purchase price; $1,469 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 18% of Philadelphia neighborhoods

Sitting to the east of Schuylkill River is the family-friendly neighborhood of Fitler Square. This historic area is full of tree-lined streets, beautiful riverside views, and brick row houses. Known for its Victorian-era water fountain and bronze turtle sculptures in Fitler Square Park, this tight-knit neighborhood also hosts a weekly farmers market to bring farm-fresh produce to local tables. Not only are families of the Cradle of Liberty close to some of Philadelphia’s iconic attractions, but this neighborhood also has excellent schools nearby, like Albert M. Greenfield School, The Philadelphia School, and the University of Pennsylvania.

Things to Do in Fitler Square

Walk along the river, play with your dog, or hang out on the playground at Schuykill River Park. Visit The Rosenbach to see rare books, manuscripts, and art. See interactive exhibits featuring dinosaurs, butterflies, animal dioramas, and more at the Academy of Natural Sciences. Become a member at The Fitler Club, a dynamic social space where you can network with working professionals, exercise at The Field House, or grab a bite to eat in The Dining Room. Enjoy baked goods, live music, raffle items, and more during the Spring Fair. Grab a Chai Latte or Fishtown Blend Drip Coffee from Rowhome Coffee. Try a Regina Margherita Red Pie or Genovese White Pie at Pizzata Pizzeria. Go for Mexican bites like Chicken Flautas, Chorizo Tacos, or a Carnitas Burrito Bowl at Rosy’s Taco Bar. Or work your way through the current tasting menu at scratch kitchen Friday Saturday Sunday.

Manayunk

Spacious brown townhome in Manayunk. Photo via Instagram user @advancephilly

Photo via @advancephilly

  • Home Price:$244,671 median purchase price; $977 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 86% of Philadelphia neighborhoods

Want to live in a more suburban neighborhood filled with boutiques and restaurants? Check out charming Manayunk! The hilly streets of this Philly neighborhood are lined with a variety of affordable housing options, from spacious and modern townhouses to historic Victorian homes. Though its claim to fame was “The Manayunk Wall,” a steep street that’s nearly impossible to pedal up during the community’s now-retired bike race, this trendy neighborhood in Philadelphia is perfect for active families. Residents living in Manayunk will appreciate that it’s a walkable neighborhood, making it easy to run errands, go for lunch, or enjoy the outdoors on foot. During nicer weather, kids can walk to their school in Manayunk, like James Dobson Elementary School and Roxborough High School.

Things to Do in Manayunk

Go on a morning jog or afternoon walk on the Schuylkill River Trail. Schedule a tee time or sign the kids up for the First Tee golf program at Walnut Layne Golf Club. Pick up a new outfit for your little one, a gift for a friend, or a treat for yourself at The Little Apple Gift Boutique. Let out your inner foodie at the Manayunk StrEAT Food Festival and try everything from food truck fare to gourmet dishes. Enjoy a Nova Lox Platter, Chicken & Waffle Bennie, or Brioche French Toast for brunch at Winnie’s. Make your way to The Couch Tomato Bistro for Pan Fried Artichoke Hearts, Cider-Braised Pulled Pork, and Ricotta Gnocchi. Munch on Bruschetta, Salmon B.A.L.T., or Lobster Ravioli at SOMO Manayunk. Or savor Mediterranean dishes like Mussels Krasata, Moussaka, or Yellow Fin Tuna at Zesty’s.

Northern Liberties

  • Home Price: $254,839 median purchase price; $866 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 46% of Philadelphia neighborhoods

Sitting right on the Delaware River is the neighborhood of Northern Liberties. Though urban, this Philly neighborhood is great for families because of its many green spaces. Residents of Northern Liberties will appreciate access to Downtown Philly thanks to its great walkability and public transportation. With vibrant art galleries, dining options, boutiques, and fun things to do with kids in Philadelphia, Northern Liberties is an up-and-coming neighborhood that has seen recent innovations, including old breweries converted into modern apartments and lofts. Families in Northern Liberties also have their choice of good schools nearby like Young Scholars Charter School and William W. Bodine High School.

Things to Do in Northern Liberties

Take your furry friend out for some exercise at Orianna Hill Dog Run. Explore interactive exhibits to learn about U.S. history and the Constitution of the United States at The National Constitution Center. Have a family night full of bowling and bar food at North Bowl. Take home various herbs, loose-leaf teas, and custom tea creations from The Random Tea Room. Have brunch at Bourbon & Branch and order Biscuits and Gravy or Huevos Rancheros. Blend Tex Mex and Jewish foods together with home-style plates like Dads Hobo Hash, Bagel and Lox Platter, or Challah French Toast at Honey’s Sit N Eat. Try Herbed Risotto, Sliced Bistro Steak, or Venison Bolognese from Heritage. Go out for dinner and pair tequila with Quesadilla de Pollo, Carne Asada Chimichanga, or Shrimp Fajitas at Cantina Dos Segundos.

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Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes

Pinterest graphic: Philadelphia, PA: 5 Best Neighborhoods for Families

Pinterest graphic: Philadelphia, PA: 5 Best Neighborhoods for Families
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