Cycle Philadelphia, Sightseeing & Road Ride, Ride to the Zoo
This bike ride is short and sweet. The zoo loop begins at Schuylkill Banks Park, but, instead of picking up MLK Drive or continuing along the loop, you’ll cross Ben Franklin Parkway and take the zigzag ramp up to Spring Garden behind the Art Museum. Cross Spring Garden at the light and take the bridge’s bicycle lanes over the river and into West Philly.
Once over the river, you’ll take the bike path on 31st Street towards the zoo. Part of the East Coast Greenway, this path is far less traveled than some others in the city. It will become Mantua Avenue, and then curve around to meet 34th Street. You’ll encounter traffic on 34th Street, especially as you get closer to the zoo and Girard Avenue. There’s also a steep downhill here, so take it slow. The zoo will be on your left. To return home, you’ll pedal up to Girard Avenue and take the bridge over the river back into East Fairmount Park (the sidewalk on the Girard Avenue bridge is very wide).
You’ll make a right to pick up a series of bicycle lanes, then make a couple of turns around Sedgely and Lemon Hill to head back down to Boathouse Row. Wait for the light to cross Kelly Drive, and make a left at Lloyd Hall to hop back on the SRT. After passing the Art Museum and the waterworks, you’ll soon be riding back along the Schuylkill Banks Park towards 25th and Locust.
This is a mix of path and bicycle lanes, with the exception of the area around Girard Avenue. There are some hilly portions close to the zoo and in East Fairmount Park.
There is steady traffic around the zoo entrance, and a hairy intersection between 34th and Girard, but otherwise you’ll be on a bike path or in cozy bike lanes.
The log begins at the bottom of Schuylkill Banks Park Ride, on the corner of 25th and Locust. Septa buses 7, 12, and 40 will drop you nearby.
Food and Drink
A new lunch spot just opened up along Boathouse Row called Cosmic Foods. This welcomed addition sits at the top of the row in Lloyd Hall.
The zoo! If you haven’t been in years, then you should take this ride and spend the afternoon there. It’s the first zoo in America, and there are over 1300 animals.
Coming home –
7.368 km / 4.578 mi
138 m / 452 ft
138 m / 452 ft
30 m / 100 ft