One of the most heavily industrialized creeks in America, the Wissahickon Creek and its impressive valley were home to dozens of mills and factories throughout the 18th and 19th centuries and now is a national Natural Landmark and one of the most unique places in the City of Philadelphia. It was also a favorite subject of artists and writers like Edgar Allen Poe and John Greenleaf Whittier, who visited the rocky hillsides frequently for relaxation and inspiration.
Wissahickon Valley Park is a rustic, natural park that offers numerous hiking, biking, horseback riding, and other recreational opportunities. Forbidden Drive is a well traveled biking, walking, and bridle trail that follows the Wissahickon from Manayunk through the Valley. There are also miles of side trails that wind through the wooded hillside. The Valley Green Inn offers exceptional dining in a 19th century roadside inn along Forbidden Drive. The Wissahickon Environmental Center at the Andorra Natural Area is a great educational venue for school groups and offers a variety of programs, incluidng a summer day camp. The Wissahickon Valley is one of fewer than 600 National Natural Landmarks in America.
There are numerous entrances and parking areas to the park. The Valley Green Parking Area on Wises Mill Road is an especially popular, centrally located parking area.