Top 3 Hiking Places near Philly
The temperature has to reach its scorching peak, providing gentle sunshine, soothing breezes and a perfect reason to get outside and exercise. So pack a lunch and explore these three hiking destinations just far enough away from the hustle and bustle of the city to feel like an adventure - still close enough to not feel like you're wasting half your day getting there!
1. The Wissahickon
The Wissahickon is probably the closest you'll come to mountainous hiking in Philadelphia. With 57 miles of lush trails incorporating the namesake creek that runs through it all, you'll forget you're near a busy city. You'll see many people out with their kids and dogs. There are three public stables in the Wissahickon where you can ride and take lessons. In order to ride on the trail, you'll need to obtain a permit. When you're done hiking, you can stop by the Valley Green Inn for a hearty meal like grilled cheese with brie, caramelized onions and hickory bacon.
2. Valley Forge National Historic Park
Valley Forge contains 19.5 miles of marked hiking trails like the 6.6-mile Joseph Plumb Martin Trail that covers key historic sites and the Mount Joy and Mount Misery trails known for their hills. In addition to its hiking trails, Valley Forge also has 21 miles of authorized biking trails, with connections to both Montgomery County and Philadelphia. Valley Forge also houses more than 315 species of animals - 225 of which are birds - and 730 plant species!
3. John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum
It has the most diverse topography on this list as it includes five habitats: tidal marsh, impounded water, woods, meadow and field. John Heinz NWR has more than 10 miles of trails, the most popular being the "Impoundment Trail" around the body of water and two boardwalks that cross the impoundment. To being a great hiking and canoeing spot, John Heinz NWR is one of 44 Important Mammal Areas designated by the Pennsylvania Wildlife Federation. There's a good chance you'll see a red fox or otter while hiking (and how awesome of an Instagram would that be?!