Usually Martin Luther King Jr. Drive is only car free on weekends from April through October, but during the pandemic the road has been closed to vehicle traffic 24/7. Philadelphia cyclists and walkers love it so much that there is push to make it permanently car free. Here’s hoping!
MLKJ Drive, formerly known as West River Drive, follows the Schuylkill River for 4 miles between the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Falls Bridge in the East Falls neighborhood.
The length of MLKJ Drive is lined with lots of shade trees and grassy areas for picnicking, making it a great place to walk or bike on hot days.
If you are a cyclist, I highly recommend biking the 8-mile loop from the Art Museum and back – start out biking north on Kelly Drive to East Falls. Stop at In Riva for pizza and a beer, then bike across the Falls Bridge and follow Martin Luther King Jr Drive back to the Art Museum.
Bonus! The best views of Boathouse Row are from MLKJ Drive at the Fairmount Fishladder, about a quarter-mile past the art museum. Sunset is the best time for views of this famous Philly landmark.