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The 5 Coolest Urban Hiking Trails in the US

us-urban-hiking-trails
Shannon Durso
Written by Shannon Durso

It’s not your average walk around the park; urban hiking is more of an exciting exercise. Most trails will take you through parks, scenic routes, and stairwells and you may even come across a snack stand or two along the way. The phrase may sound like a clash of cultures, but believe it or not, it’s an enjoyable and fun activity. Urban hiking isn’t as intense as you might think, even though you might have to jog across a car-filled street or walk across a busy bridge.

Read on to learn where you can experience urban hiking adventure all across these awesome US cities!

The Highline, New York City

US Urban Hiking Trails

Elevated above the Meatpacking District in New York City is what once was a railroad that has been reconstructed to be The Highline – a hip and urban trail. Step beyond the sidewalk and stroll along the path above Gansevoort Street that’ll take you through Chelsea, and up to West 34 Street. There are a number of pop-up shops, brilliant artwork, and architecture to see along the way. Oh, and be sure to check their website for current activities as well as special tours.

Indianapolis Cultural Trail, Indianapolis

US Urban Hiking Trails

Image via Flickr CC BY – SA 2.0-Eric Fischer

Put on your walking shoes for this 8-mile cultural trail located in downtown Indy. Along the way, you’ll find 8 different walking paths and 10 public art projects through 6 cultural districts. Be sure to look at a map of the trail before you go. Hikers can start or end their journey anywhere along the path. And if your feet get tired of walking, you can rent a bike or even a paddle-boat to go in the canal!

Chicago Lakefront Trail, Chicago

US Urban Hiking Trails

Image via Flickr CC BY – SA 2.0-Bernt Rostad

It’s a whopping 18-mile stretch of trails that takes bikers, walkers, runners, and just about anyone along a breathtaking path. The Lakefront trail runs along the waters of Lake Michigan on one side and green parks on the other. If you’re one who enjoys great views, this is the place to be, the skyline, beaches, and gardens are all there to enjoy.

Schuylkill River Trail, Philadelphia

US Urban Hiking Trails

Image via Flickr CC BY- SA 2.0-Michael Stokes

We hope you’re ready for some exercise! This 130-mile trail is located in Southeastern Pennsylvania. The trails break up into different paths, so don’t worry you won’t actually hike for 130 miles! Schuylkill River has its scenic views of the Blue Mountains, 18th-century mills, and is on the waterfront. The views are so nice that we can assure you won’t be counting down the steps until you end your hike.

Telegraph Hill, San Francisco

US Urban Hiking Trail

If you’re in for some intense hiking, we’ve found the place for you in San Francisco! Although there are different ways to get up the hill to get to Coit Tower, taking the steep stairs is the toughest yet most enjoyable route. You can take the Greenwich Street steps or the Filbert Street steps, which takes hikers through a scenic route with views of the bay. On your way down the 400 steps of Telegraph Hill, you’ll see beautiful flowers, houses, gardens, and exotic parrots. And hey, you’ll certainly get a good workout in!

Have you been on any urban hikes in the US? Tell us where you went in the comments!

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About the author

Shannon Durso

Shannon Durso

If she’s not searching for the world's coolest destinations she has yet to explore, you can find her writing content at Fareportal or maybe even drooling over a foodies latest post. Shannon’s a Brooklyn native who enjoys good company, new adventures, and a great laugh!