From Boston to Philly: America’s 5 Best Little Italy Neighborhoods

Wikimedia Commons//MusikAnimal//Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

When it comes to savoring the essence of Italy in the heart of American cities, several vibrant neighborhoods stand out, each with its unique charm and traditional gastronomic treasures.

From the oldest Italian enclave in Boston to the thriving communities in San Diego, Providence, and New York, these Little Italy neighborhoods buzz with flavors and traditions. Let’s get to it.

Boston, Massachusetts

Nestled in the oldest neighborhood, Boston’s unofficial Little Italy North End is a haven for pastry enthusiasts, with Mike’s Pastry and Modern Pastry enticing visitors with coveted cannoli and delectable pastries.

Wikimedia Commons//Ian Howard//Creative Commons Attribution 2.5

Other food-focused folk can extend their adventure at Antico Forno, offering Southern Italian-inspired dishes. For authentic Italian festa, plan your visit during the last Sunday in August for St. Anthony’s Feast. Deliciousness all round.

San Diego, California

San Diego’s Little Italy, born from the aspirations of Italian fishermen, has evolved into the most expansive Little Italy in the entire U.S! The renowned Little Italy Mercato, a sprawling farmers market, is a highlight, spanning a whopping six blocks, every Saturday.

Wikimedia Commons//Lance Cpl. Lisa M. Tourtelot//Public Domain

Delight in an authentic Italian coffee experience at Pappalecco and get a mouthful of artisanal gelato at Bobboi Natural Gelato. Isola Pizza Bar and Civico 1845 also beckon, with delectable bruschetta, pizza, and pasta.

Providence, Rhode Island

Providence’s historic Federal Hill boasts a Little Italy that has embraced Italian immigrants since the early 1900s. Atwells Avenue and Spruce Street host a vibrant community featuring specialty stores like Venda Ravioli and Tony’s Colonial Foods.

Scialo Brothers Bakery, offering traditional pastries, and Il Massimo, serving Italian favorites, are other excellent options.

New York

While the Feast of San Gennaro (see below) remains a cherished tradition on Mulberry Street, Arthur Avenue in the Bronx is hailed as the “real” Little Italy by many. Arthur Avenue is home to authentic establishments like Mike’s Deli, Egidio Pastry Shop, and Mario’s Restaurant. For a chic stay near Manhattan’s Little Italy, The Beekman offers historic architecture and modern flair

Wikimedia Commons//Jazz Guy//Creative Commons Attribution 2.0

Meanwhile, check out The Dominick Hotel. It has breathtaking views and is conveniently located within a mile of Mulberry Street.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

In the heart of South Philadelphia, the Ninth Street Italian Market stands as Philadelphia’s cherished Little Italy. For an authentic Italian-American marketplace experience, Di Bruno Bros. beckons with a splendid array of high-quality meats, cheeses, and imported specialty foods!

Angelo’s Pizzeria awaits with piping-hot, delicious pizzas, and a visit to the landmark Sarcone’s Bakery is a must for freshly baked bread. Wander along Ninth Street, lined with family-owned shops, to complete the immersive Italian Market experience. We’re full just reading this list!