The Schuykill River trail is a great run and one of the anchors for running in Philadelphia. As of 2023, there are 75 miles of completed trail in sections, including about 30 miles in the Philadelpia area, from downtown northwest to Mont Clare, where the Upper Schuykill River Trail continues. There are ongoing plans to close the gaps. This interactive map is a great resource.
We’ve mapped up to 25 miles between downtown Philadelphia and Valley Forge National Park. The heart of the Philadelphia section is the ~8 miles between downtown and Manayunk. There are good river views most of the way, and a festive scene, with rowers in season. Most of the route is on the eastern side, though there are a few sections where the path is on both sides. The downtown section runs from just south of South St., north to the Philadelphia Art Museum (~2 miles), and then into Fairmount Park. A highlight is the 2,000 foot long boardwalk, running parallel to the eastern shore of the river from Locust Street to the new stair tower on the south side of the South St. Bridge. This project provides an important link to the Schuylkill River Trail and Center City from University City and West Philadelphia.
Loop Option: A great 8.2 mile loop option is from the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Falls Rd., using the east side out and the west side for the return. Add with the extensive running options in Fairmount Park.
One-Way Option: A train line runs near the trail as far as Norristown, allowing for great one-way options!
For a less populated, off-the-beaten-track option, use the Manayunk Towpath which parallels the canal and the Schuylkill River. It can be accessed from the Schuylkill River Trail to the west, or Fairmount Park to the east, and features a combination of boardwalk, gravel, and dirt running.