The 5 Loveliest Places in Philly to Go for a Bike Ride This Spring
This spring, give your walking shoes a break and start exploring some of Philly’s many trails via bike. You don’t even need to own one to get peddling. The city’s official bike share program Indego makes it easy to rent a set of wheels with more than 140 stations accessible for 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
All you need to do to get started is download the Indego app, follow the instructions and pick your route. These five scenic rides start and end near Indego stations, so grab a water bottle (and a helmet, if you have one) and start moving.
Completely closed off to car traffic for more than a year now, this riverfront road offers peaceful pedaling with plenty of room to spread out from walkers, joggers and fellow cyclists. Check out bikes from the Schuylkill Banks Pergola near the Art Museum. Then take in gorgeous views of Boathouse Row, Fairmount Park and more—like the surprisingly beautiful turn-of-the-century Belmont Pumping Station. It’s approximately 4 miles until the road’s end at the East Falls Bridge. Make it a loop by crossing the bridge and cycling back along the Schuylkill River Trail.
With three Indego stations and extensive paved bike lanes, the Navy Yard has tons of thoroughfares to explore by bicycle. Check out the many green spaces—including the Marine Parade Grounds and League Island Park—within the yard, or head just north to the adjacent 340-acre FDR Park for even more room to roam. Do a loop of each for a nice 5-mile ride.
The Centennial Route
Bring your teens on this family-friendly ride in West Philly. The marked, 5-kilometer trail begins behind the Please Touch Museum (an Indego station), continues on past the Shofuso Japanese House and then loops around the Centennial District, the site of the 1876 Centennial Exposition. The first World’s Fair held in the United States, the exposition attracted nearly 10 million visitors and the participation of 37 countries. Luckily you’ll find a lot fewer people around the park today.
Enjoy Philly’s easternmost waterfront from a bike, taking in views of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and historic tall ships like the USS Olympia. Start at the Delaware River Trail and Penn Street Indego Station in Northern Liberties. Then bike south along the trail and explore the piers until you hit Spruce Street Harbor Park. Dock your bike at the nearby Foglietta Plaza, and enjoy the park’s pop-ups.
Cycle past some of the most charming historic Fairmount homes via the scenic Reservoir Drive. The Ormiston Mansion features classic Georgian architecture complete with a widow’s walk atop the house, while the Laurel Hill Mansion boasts a unique two-story, octagonal wing. Indego stations are located along the easter edge of the park at 1626, 2039 and 2300 North 33rd Street.This is a paid partnership between Independence Blue Cross and Philadelphia Magazine's City/Studio