Cool Down Your Mind and Body with These Breezy Outdoor Meditation Spots
At this point in the summer, we’re all looking for ways to cool down. And even though the city in the summer can feel congested and overheated, there are plenty of peaceful, breezy pockets around town that you can take advantage of to relax, de-stress, and practice the health-boosting ritual of mediation. To help you find your own little zen oasis, we’ve gathered the tucked away breezy and green spots in Philly where you can achieve your ultimate inner calm.
What better environment to meditate in than a work of landscape art? Matthias Baldwin Park was commissioned as an “environmental sculpture” from renowned artist Athena Tacha, completed in 1991.
It’s terraced in organic shapes and landscaped with perennials, shrubs and large rock formations—pick a patch on its two acres and you have your very own zen garden in the middle of Philly. It should help calm you down—being around art can reduce your stress level.
Just being near the water can help you de-stress. Schuylkill Banks Park opens up the riverbanks to everyone, with neatly manicured green space where anyone can bring a blanket and relax.
If you’re looking for breezy, there’s no better option than an elevated park. The Rail Park has converted an unused stretch of rail line into a ¼ mile stretch of trails and greenery. Take advantage of the hanging park benches for a quiet rest and a brilliant view of the city as you reflect and calm your mind.
Spring Garden Park
Spring Garden Park has plenty of shady retreats perfect for mindfulness, from its plentiful trees to its bamboo grove in its large community space. It also offers the opportunity for you to jump in and offer a hand in its community garden mission, where volunteer gardeners help grow fresh food to nourish the neighborhood. It’s a good option to introduce into your de-stressing routine: not all meditation requires you to sit still with your legs crossed, and active, meditative activities like gardening have been proven to reduce stress indicators like cortisol.
There’s nothing like meditation in nature. Fortunately for Philadelphians, they have a massive nature park in Philadelphia County, a short trip away from Center City. Wissahickon Park is centered around the picturesque Wissahickon Creek, a tributary of the Schuylkill River. Its waters foster an abundance of plant and wildlife on miles and miles of preserved land. Getting out into nature can lower your stress hormones, so you’ll feel at your most peaceful when meditating by a flock of blue herons or beneath the shade of a giant oak.
Your mental health plays an important role in your overall well-being. Find out more about how your mind works, and how to help yourself and your loved ones through emotionally challenging times at ibx.com/knowyourmind.This is a paid partnership between Independence Blue Cross and Philadelphia Magazine's City/Studio