Hey Philly, Take a Hike!

By Clare F. Fri, November 15, 2019
The Appalachian Trail is one of the most popular hiking paths in the country.
The Appalachian Trail is one of the most popular hiking paths in the country.
Valley Forge and its gentle paths are just an hour from Philadelphia.
Valley Forge and its gentle paths are just an hour from Philadelphia.
Embedded in our city is beautiful Fairmount Park, accessible by public transit.
Embedded in our city is beautiful Fairmount Park, accessible by public transit.

No ... we don't mean it like that!

This Sunday, November 17, is national Take a Hike Day. It's time to pull on some comfortable shoes and explore a forest, a park, or your very own neighborhood. Yes, that's right: you don't have to head out of the city to participate. Enjoy some urban hiking just by stepping outside and opening yourself up to the experience of the architecture, landscape, and ecosystems you live in every day.

Whether you're staying close to home or venturing further afield, the Free Library is here to help you plan your day. Throughout our neighborhood libraries—and in particular at Parkway Central Library—you can find guidebooks of many kinds. A great and general place to start is Hikes Around Philadelphia. Some more specific ideas: walk around one of Pennsylvania’s ghost towns, or take a day trip on either side of the Delaware River—we have guides to beautiful hikes in both eastern Pennsylvania and Camden.

Our collections also include books specifically for Philadelphians who want to explore where they live! Take yourself on a self-guided architecture hike with this handy volume on our city’s built environment—and along the way, find local food specialties and hidden spots you never knew existed in Unique Eats and Eateries of Philadelphia, published just last year.

For those of us who would prefer to participate in spirit, the Free Library has excellent options for you, too! Check out our print or audiobook copy of Robert Moor's On Trails: An Exploration, a meandering and thought-provoking look at how trails help us understand the world. The more narratively inclined may wish to try Cheryl Strayed's Wild or Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods, both blockbuster accounts of long journeys down two of the United States's most famous hiking paths.

Enjoy your adventure, wherever it may take you!


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