The Eastside Trail is the Atlanta Beltline‘s most popular stretch of pathway. The trail runs for 3 miles along the eastside of the city from Piedmont Park in the north to Reynoldstown in the south. As you walk, run, bike, or scooter the trail, you can take in skyline views and plenty of public art on the Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail.
About the Atlanta Beltline
The Atlanta Beltline is a former railway corridor around the city that is undergoing redevelopment. Plans include a streetcar loop, 2,000 acres of parks, and 22 miles of multi-use trails. Segments here and there have already been developed, but the whole loop hasn’t been completed yet. You can read about the Atlanta Beltline Northside Trail here.
The Eastside Trail Hike
The Eastside Trail was finally completed and fully paved in summer 2019 with the full length of the trail traveling from Piedmont Park to Memorial Drive. The trail has access to shiny new apartment complexes, bars and breweries, parks, and the incredibly trendy Ponce City Market.
You can park and access the trail from Piedmont Park or from Ponce City Market. My friend and I chose to park at Ponce City Market and start our hike from the middle of the trail. (I seem to have a habit of starting Beltline trails from the middle!)
Head South from Ponce City Market
Follow the signs from Ponce City Market to the Beltline. This will take you up to the second floor of the market and outside to a boardwalk that ends at the Eastside Trail.
The trail passes over North Avenue via a bridge decked out with local artwork and gives you a view of the midtown skyline. You’ll pass plenty of newly built apartment complexes and rotating artwork.
The next bridge you’ll pass over is Ralph McGill Boulevard. Here, you can still see the remnants of the Beltline’s old railway.
Soon, you’ll pass by the Old Fourth Ward Skatepark, Atlanta’s first public skatepark. It was partially funded by the Tony Hawk Foundation. On a sunny day, you may find people scattered across the lawn sunning or doing yoga.
You’ll then pass under Freedom Parkway; be sure to admire the expanse of graffiti painted under this bridge.
The Eastside Trail continues, passing under another graffiti-decorated bridge at North Highland Avenue. The trail continues across Irwin Street and Edgewood Avenue before running through a mixed-use development and along Dekalb Avenue.
Crossing Dekalb Avenue, the Beltline continues through Krog Street Tunnel, a tunnel running under a rail yard that is famous for the amount of graffiti that covers its walls, floors, and ceilings.
The trail then continues along Wylie Street before crossing over and running along the backs of a steel company. The trail then crosses Kirkwood Avenue and Maudlin Street before ending at Memorial Drive.
The walk from Ponce City Market to Memorial Drive is about 2 miles. Turn around and retrace your steps back to Ponce City Market for a full hike of about 4 miles.
Where You Can Eat and Drink on the Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail
The Beltline is pretty interesting because it’s not just a trail for exercising. It connects you to all these different Atlanta neighborhoods with vibrant social activities and nightlife, so you can go for a stroll with some friends and grab a drink if you want.
Here are the best places to eat and drink on the Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail:
- Park Tavern — near 10th Street and Monroe Drive
- Woody’s Famous Philadelphia Cheesesteaks — near 10th Street and Monroe Drive
- Ponce City Market — near Ponce De Leon Avenue
- Two Urban Licks — near Ralph McGill Boulevard
- Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall — near John Wesley Dobbs Avenue
- Krog Street Market — near Irwin Street
- Rathbun’s — near Irwin Street
Nearby Hiking Trails
Looking for more hiking trails in Atlanta? Check out more of these amazing Georgia hikes:
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What is your favorite part of the Atlanta Beltline to hike? Let me know in the comments!