10 Best Things to Do after Dark in Philadelphia

At the end of a long day of work or sightseeing, shopping or visiting friends, heading out to enjoy Philadelphia at night can oftentimes be the best part of your day. Whether your idea of a great time is settling into a seat at the Kimmel Center to take in some culture, catching a band at World Cafe Live for a few hours, or wandering through shops and boutiques as part of First Friday, there's sure to be plenty for you to do here.

Fortunately, 10Best helps you narrow down the many clubs, bars music venues and performance halls here to those places with the most appeal and the best reputations. We offer a carefully vetted selection to let you explore Philadelphia nightlife on your own, with the confidence of finding just the right venue and experience for your group. We distill the best businesses down to a special selection of ten. These places promise a stellar experience and a taste of the city that you won't want to miss. Explore music venues, art galleries, restaurants, bars, clubs, shopping, and even a casino. Find the option that will round out your city experience the best. If you've got enough time, perhaps you'll want to try several of the places on our list!

Union Transfer
Photo courtesy of mcvickerphotog

This newish Philadelphia music venue has already become a staple in the indie-rock scene, hosting touring bands and local musical groups alike. Located in a beautifully renovated historic building in the Eraserhood neighborhood, the place...  Read More

From Thursday to Saturday night, the city's best-dressed party-goers ride an elevator to the second-floor club, where six bars, a light-show, and two elevated VIP platforms await them. Private bottle-service areas overflow with sparkling wines...  Read More

SugarHouse Casino
Photo courtesy of SugarHouse Casino

Sugar House is the only casino in Philadelphia proper. It stays open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for gamblers and entertainment seekers, as well as those just interested in checking things out. Sure, slots and table games are the main...  Read More

Fairmount/Art Museum area
Water Works Restaurant & Lounge
Photo courtesy of Water Works

One of Philadelphia's only waterfront restaurants is one of its most romantic. This is thanks to the sweeping porch that provides for a drink or a meal full of breathtaking views of the Schuylkill River and of Boathouse Row. The restaurant was...  Read More

University City
World Cafe Live
Photo courtesy of World Cafe Live

This unassuming venue is a community-focused listening room that caters to serious music fans in and around Philadelphia. World Cafe books an impressive variety of talent from week to week, including national acts like Shawn Mullins, Suzanne...  Read More

Monk's Cafe
Photo courtesy of Monk's Cafe

An oldie but a goodie. While dozens of newer craft-beer bars have opened since this one, you can't argue with a destination that's still considered the beer mecca of Philadelphia. Called "One of the Top Ten Places to Drink a Beer Before You Die"...  Read More

As the longest, widest, busiest street in the region, Avenue of the Arts would likely be some sort of destination even it weren't home to more than 50 of the city's premier arts and culture institutions. But as the home to dozens of performing...  Read More

Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts
Photo courtesy of Jeffrey M. Vinocur

As home to the American Theater Arts for Youth, Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Peter Nero & the Philly Pops, Pennsylvania Ballet, PHILADANCO, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, and Philadelphia Orchestra,...  Read More

If you are in Philadelphia during the first Friday of the month, don't miss a chance to explore the city's incredible art scene. This fun, free open house takes enthusiasts and newbies alike through many of the galleries and boutiques in the Old...  Read More

Located in the geographical heart of the city, Rittenhouse Square serves as a hub for much of Philadelphia's more upscale shopping, dining and people-watching. Rittenhouse Square itself glows gorgeously all year round with its multi-colored...  Read More


Meet Sharon Rigney

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