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Devils Pool swimming hole and Cresheim Creek in Wissahickon Creek Valley Park, Northwest Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Photo by: Jumping Rocks/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Where to Refuel After a Hike in the Wissahickon

Try these local haunts for cold beer and filling sandwiches after hitting the trails in Northwest Philly’s beloved park

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Wissahickon Valley Park is one of the most stunning sites to visit in all of Philadelphia. With its 50 miles of trails, beautiful streams and swimming holes, and winding paths for both humans and horses (the latter of which you’ll see more often than you’d think), the Wiss, as its known to locals, is a must-see destination for nature-loving visitors and residents of Philadelphia alike.

Spanning the length of Northwest Philly — from the tip of Chestnut Hill to the beginning of East Falls and Germantown — the Wissahickon is also lucky to be situated near dozens of great places to drink, eat, and get caffeinated before or after a day in the woods. Meeting friends for some birdwatching, hiking, or biking in the park? Here are 13 great places to try when you’re coming off the trail.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

The Cedars House

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Right on Forbidden Drive and down the hill from Andorra Meadow in the park itself, the Cedars House is a historic house converted into a cafe with fresh baked goods, breakfast sandwiches, and coffee. The ample outdoor seating is made only better by the beautiful garden that surrounds it — an idyllic setting to grab a bite after a hike.

McNally's Tavern

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Off the trail in Chestnut Hill, hungry hikers can take part in one of Philly’s great sandwich traditions in the very place where it was invented: the Schmitter. A cheesesteak served on a Kaiser roll with fried onions, tomatoes, salami, and a special dressing, it’s the kind of sandwich that will make you instantly forget about those granola bars you brought with you. It comes with a side of Herr’s ripples chips, too.

Bredenbeck's Bakery & Ice Cream Parlor

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There is frequently a line outside Bredenbeck’s on Germantown Avenue while kids (and let’s be honest, adults) wait for a scoop of Bassett’s ice cream, available on waffle cones or in any number of deluxe sundae concoctions. Don’t be surprised if you leave with a baked good or two, as well.

Avenues Café

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After wandering off the nearby Cresheim Trail, Avenues Cafe on the corner of Germantown and East Mt. Airy Avenue is a cozy coffee shop with a welcoming atmosphere for catching up with friends. Keep an eye on Avenues’ social media — they frequently hold events that highlight the work of creative folks in the surrounding neighborhoods.

Valley Green Inn

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A central meeting point for visitors to the park, the Valley Green Inn has been a beautiful historic landmark in the middle of the verdant Wissahickon for nearly two hundred years. Open all day, its a nice stopover for lunch or dinner before, after, or during a break in your nature walk. If you’re the type to plan ahead, the Inn takes reservations through OpenTable.

Young American Hard Cider

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Delicious flaky hand pies and cold hard cider reign supreme at Young American in Germantown — the friendly staff and fire pit-assisted outdoor patio are just added bonuses. Come by on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday during Young American’s open hours (from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Thursdays and until 10 p.m. on the weekends) and you’ll be refreshed after an afternoon of trekking.

New Ridge Brewing Co.

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Everyone knows a good beer and a trio of hot sausages is the only way to wind down after a strenuous mountain bike ride, and luckily New Ridge Brewing Co. is only a stone’s throw from the Wissahickon Creek Trailhead. Hot chicken sandwiches, pork schnitzel, oysters, and a robust selection of beers from New Ridge are just the ticket when you come out of the park into Roxborough and Manayunk.

Bistro on the Mall

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In Germantown, the recently renovated Maplewood Mall is home to local go-to’s like the Germantown Espresso Bar and Bistro on the Mall, the latter of which serves shrimp and grits, jerk chicken cheesesteaks, and tacos to the heart’s content. The filling crabcake sandwich is best enjoyed al fresco at one of the Bistro’s sidewalk tables.

Dalessandro's Steaks

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If you have cell service while you’re on the trail, call into Dalessandro’s to preorder a cheesesteak for when you’re done. (It’ll be ready pretty speedily, though, so avoid dawdling.) Even better: Pick up a few steaks beforehand and eat the gooey beloved sandwich of Philadelphia at one of the Wissahickon’s public picnic tables.

Paper Trail Bike Cafe

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With baked goods from local favorite High Point Cafe, and espresso drinks that encourage you to ride just a little farther, Paper Trail Bike Cafe is the combination cafe/bike shop you never knew you needed. The shop itself is also rich with history: Located in Historic Rittenhouse Town, Paper Trail occupies the barn building at the first ever paper mill in America.

Attic Brewing Company

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Whether you’re heading back downtown or north in the direction of the park, Attic Brewing Co. is a bar built for great hangs, with its delicious beers, rotating food trucks, and live music. The newly established beer garden next door is massive and full of friendly locals, with ping pong and large-format Connect Four for the competitive among us.

Wissahickon Brewing Company

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With food trucks, tons of outdoor tables, twinkle lights, and cold beers, Wissahickon Brewing Company (named for everyone’s favorite nearby park) is the destination for big groups to post up post-hike. Keep an eye on social media for updates to Wissahickon’s weekly food truck schedule.

In Riva

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Pizza with a view: what’s not to love? At the East Falls pizza place In Riva, hungry hikers will rejoice at wood-fired pies, house wines, and a terrace that overlooks a bustling Kelly Drive and pretty Schuylkill River right past it.

The Cedars House

Right on Forbidden Drive and down the hill from Andorra Meadow in the park itself, the Cedars House is a historic house converted into a cafe with fresh baked goods, breakfast sandwiches, and coffee. The ample outdoor seating is made only better by the beautiful garden that surrounds it — an idyllic setting to grab a bite after a hike.

McNally's Tavern

Off the trail in Chestnut Hill, hungry hikers can take part in one of Philly’s great sandwich traditions in the very place where it was invented: the Schmitter. A cheesesteak served on a Kaiser roll with fried onions, tomatoes, salami, and a special dressing, it’s the kind of sandwich that will make you instantly forget about those granola bars you brought with you. It comes with a side of Herr’s ripples chips, too.

Bredenbeck's Bakery & Ice Cream Parlor

There is frequently a line outside Bredenbeck’s on Germantown Avenue while kids (and let’s be honest, adults) wait for a scoop of Bassett’s ice cream, available on waffle cones or in any number of deluxe sundae concoctions. Don’t be surprised if you leave with a baked good or two, as well.

Avenues Café

After wandering off the nearby Cresheim Trail, Avenues Cafe on the corner of Germantown and East Mt. Airy Avenue is a cozy coffee shop with a welcoming atmosphere for catching up with friends. Keep an eye on Avenues’ social media — they frequently hold events that highlight the work of creative folks in the surrounding neighborhoods.

Valley Green Inn

A central meeting point for visitors to the park, the Valley Green Inn has been a beautiful historic landmark in the middle of the verdant Wissahickon for nearly two hundred years. Open all day, its a nice stopover for lunch or dinner before, after, or during a break in your nature walk. If you’re the type to plan ahead, the Inn takes reservations through OpenTable.

Young American Hard Cider

Delicious flaky hand pies and cold hard cider reign supreme at Young American in Germantown — the friendly staff and fire pit-assisted outdoor patio are just added bonuses. Come by on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday during Young American’s open hours (from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Thursdays and until 10 p.m. on the weekends) and you’ll be refreshed after an afternoon of trekking.

New Ridge Brewing Co.

Everyone knows a good beer and a trio of hot sausages is the only way to wind down after a strenuous mountain bike ride, and luckily New Ridge Brewing Co. is only a stone’s throw from the Wissahickon Creek Trailhead. Hot chicken sandwiches, pork schnitzel, oysters, and a robust selection of beers from New Ridge are just the ticket when you come out of the park into Roxborough and Manayunk.

Bistro on the Mall

In Germantown, the recently renovated Maplewood Mall is home to local go-to’s like the Germantown Espresso Bar and Bistro on the Mall, the latter of which serves shrimp and grits, jerk chicken cheesesteaks, and tacos to the heart’s content. The filling crabcake sandwich is best enjoyed al fresco at one of the Bistro’s sidewalk tables.

Dalessandro's Steaks

If you have cell service while you’re on the trail, call into Dalessandro’s to preorder a cheesesteak for when you’re done. (It’ll be ready pretty speedily, though, so avoid dawdling.) Even better: Pick up a few steaks beforehand and eat the gooey beloved sandwich of Philadelphia at one of the Wissahickon’s public picnic tables.

Paper Trail Bike Cafe

With baked goods from local favorite High Point Cafe, and espresso drinks that encourage you to ride just a little farther, Paper Trail Bike Cafe is the combination cafe/bike shop you never knew you needed. The shop itself is also rich with history: Located in Historic Rittenhouse Town, Paper Trail occupies the barn building at the first ever paper mill in America.

Attic Brewing Company

Whether you’re heading back downtown or north in the direction of the park, Attic Brewing Co. is a bar built for great hangs, with its delicious beers, rotating food trucks, and live music. The newly established beer garden next door is massive and full of friendly locals, with ping pong and large-format Connect Four for the competitive among us.

Wissahickon Brewing Company

With food trucks, tons of outdoor tables, twinkle lights, and cold beers, Wissahickon Brewing Company (named for everyone’s favorite nearby park) is the destination for big groups to post up post-hike. Keep an eye on social media for updates to Wissahickon’s weekly food truck schedule.

In Riva

Pizza with a view: what’s not to love? At the East Falls pizza place In Riva, hungry hikers will rejoice at wood-fired pies, house wines, and a terrace that overlooks a bustling Kelly Drive and pretty Schuylkill River right past it.

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