For a city of 60,000, Greenville certainly knows how to integrate green spaces and family friendly parks amid an otherwise metropolitan scene. Situated at the base of the Blue Ridge mountains, Greenville is a popular home base among some of the region’s top athletes like world-renown paddler Adriene Levknecht, who is just an hour away from the put-in to the Green River Narrows, and George Hincapie, Lance Armstrong’s former domestique.
There’s no denying Adam and I are, how do you say, “small town folk,” but there’s something about Greenville that speaks to that community-style living while still seamlessly integrating its culture. Here’s how we chose to #gooutsideandplay in #yeahthatgreenville.
The Greenville Health System Swamp Rabbit Trail is a 21-mile multiuse trail that spans from downtown Greenville to the nearby town of Travelers Rest. Paved, flat, and well-marked, this trail is used by a wide range of people, from tourists, to local families, to cyclists training on Hincapie’s team. If you have an afternoon to spend, we recommend parking in Travelers Rest for an out-and-back day on the Swamp Rabbit Trail. Your turnaround point is Falls Park on the Reedy River. An in-city oasis, you can easily spend hours walking around the gardens and along the riverfront here.
Have another day to play? Head an hour northwest to Lake Jocassee, a pristine 7,500-acre reservoir bordered on all sides by mostly undeveloped land. Take a SUP, kayak, or canoe and paddle along its shores for glimpses of mountain-fed waterfalls. In the summertime, this is the place to be if you’re looking to cool down.
Campers will instantly fall in love with Lake Jocassee, which offers lakefront camping in Devils Fork State Park. For those looking to stay closer to town, the Swamp Rabbit Inn is a swanky “hotel alternative” right in the heart of the city. Arranged hostel-style, visitors here can have the luxury of their own rooms in addition to a community-style kitchen, which comes complete with a self-serve continental breakfast. Need a bike to explore the Swamp Rabbit Trail? The Inn has its very own Bike Shed out back, where you can rent bikes for a half- or full day.
From southern inspired farm-to-table fare to ethnic food trucks, Greenville literally has every genre of food to fit whatever your tastebuds are craving. Looking for a mid-ride eatery along the Swamp Rabbit Trail? The Swamp Rabbit Cafe has killer sandwiches and coffee drinks, not to mention an awesome community feel and locally inspired grocery. Tandem Creperie and Coffeehouse in Travelers Rest is too good for us to do any justice, so just take our word on it and go there.
Need coffee? Everybody does. Our favorite is Methodical Coffee right downtown. The vibe is cool, the people are too, and the coffee is just out-of-this-world-delicious. We didn’t think we were coffee snobs until we had some cold brew here, so be forewarned—once you go Methodical, it’s hard to go back.
Like any of the stuff we’re rockin’ in the images above? Check out the IceMule Cooler to meet all of your beverage-cooling, adventure needs, LifeStraw for clean water no matter where you go, Farm to Feet socks for bar-hoppin to thru-hikin, and ENO for chillaxin wherever there be two trees.