When you’re ready to escape the chaos of the city, there are many parks located in and around Philadelphia that offer a relaxing break. Whether your pleasure is a picnic with your loved one, a fishing excursion or simply a breath of fresh air, the parks around Philadelphia offer it all. In fact, the city has thousands of acres of green space that are easy to get to from most parts of Philly. Hop on the subway, take a bus or hail a cab – your oasis awaits!
Delaware River Waterfront
101 Columbus Blvd.
Philadelphia, PA 19106
For anyone who enjoys being near the water, the Delaware River Waterfront should be on your short list of places to visit in Philadelphia. The park is located near the historic district and offers a number of activities year-round for the entire family. Special events occur each season, like movies and concerts in the summer and ice skating in the winter. The waterfront also offers one of the most spectacular New Year’s Eve fireworks displays, but there is plenty to do at the Waterfront year round, like exploring the big ships, checking out the Seaport Museum or just strolling along the pier while taking in the sites.
1 Boathouse Row
Philadelphia, PA 19130
A Philadelphia gem, Fairmount Park is one of the largest municipal park systems in the world, covering over 9,000 acres. There are miles of trails for running, biking, hiking and horseback riding. Located along the waterfront, visitors can enjoy an afternoon of fishing or kayaking. There are plenty of picnic areas scattered throughout the park, or you can enjoy lunch at one of the restaurants nearby. You might also enjoy a trolley tour that takes visitors to the many colonial homes around the park. When the weather is nice, sit back and relax at one of the free concerts sometimes offered here.
John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum
8601 Lindbergh Blvd.
Philadelphia, PA 19153
Established in 1972, the goal of the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum is to preserve, restore and develop Tinicum Marsh. This park promotes education and provides visitors with an opportunity to study wildlife in its natural habitat. With over 300 species of birds, numerous mammals, reptiles and amphibians, visitors can spend the day fishing, exploring or just observing the many different types of creatures that make the refuge their home.
Washington Square Park
143 S. 3rd St.
Philadelphia, PA 19106
One of five public parks established in the city by William Penn, history buffs will love Washington Square Park. Aside from offering a beautiful setting amidst the chaos of the city, the park is home to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier as well as Philadelphia’s only Moon Tree – a tree that was grown from a seed that traveled around the moon. Since thousands are buried within the grounds of the Park, it has become a popular stop on the many ghost tours offered in Philadelphia.
Wissahickon Valley Park
8708 Germantown Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19118
Located in northwest Philadelphia, Wissahickon Valley Park offers over 1,800 acres of park to explore when you need a bit of fresh air. The Wissahickon Creek winds through the park and is stocked with trout each spring to the delight of anglers. The trails are quite challenging if you are looking for a great hike or run, and the park also offers guided hikes and educational events throughout the year.
Maddie Wagner is a freelance writer covering all things Philadelphia. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.