On one of those days when you can’t decide between culture or the great outdoors, the Schuylkill Environmental Center has you covered for both.
Philly has plenty of great places for outdoor adventures and culture, but this place combines both. In addition to several miles of hiking trails through woods and along a creek (if you want to go farther, their trails hook up with the Schuylkill River trail north of Manayunk, but note that bikes are not allowed on the center’s trails), they also have an active environmental art program.
Indoor galleries and outdoor spaces provide opportunities for artist to display environmental and nature-inspired art. The exhibits rotate (4-5/year), but they are always interesting. The visitor center also has exhibits geared at younger kids (they have a really cool preschool/kindergarten program). Wildlife lovers should take note of their toad detour program – every spring the center and volunteers set up barricades and help toads cross the road as they migrate to and from their breeding grounds, thus saving hundreds of toads from being squashed by cars.
The park is picnic friendly and FREE to visit.
Location: about 20 minutes north of Center City, near Manayunk