The Jacksonville Riverwalk is a quiet, underutilized piece of downtown Jacksonville that has has some recent additions and improvements over the last few years. Consisting of the Northbank and Southbank that run parallel along the river and are connected but the Main Street Bridge and the Acosta bridge, a full circuit of the Riverwalk would be about 4 miles of urban walking.
We began just north of the Fuller Warren bridge, where you can find the Riverside Arts Market on Saturdays. Hidden behind some new construction in Brooklyn, you can find a quiet parking lot along the riverwalk at the pinned location in the map above. A few benches and water access for kayaks sit at the end of the parking lot. We walked down to the Fuller Warren and doubled back toward the Acosta. The Riverwalk winds its way past office buildings toward downtown until a brightly painted elevated walkway over the train tracks. At the end, it descends down into Corkscrew park – notable for the ‘corkscrew’ sculpture the doubles as workout device. Weights, kettlebells, ropes and various workout stations are there in the shade, along with a public restroom.
Walking toward what was once the landing, the path follows the river past the open grass field against the backdrop of downtown. The Northbank Riverwalk stops abruptly at the Berkman Plaza – across from Morton’s Steakhouse in the Hyatt. Working our way back a couple of blocks to Bay Street, we regained the path over the Main Street Bridge, which takes you to the Southbank, next to Friendship Fountain. The Southbank (at least on this Sunday afternoon) was quieter, and to the east will take you as far as the school board building. Walking west toward Friendship Fountain, we took a 2 block detour to Treat Oak Park, which we’ll need to revisit soon – a wedding was in progress under the giant oak. From Mary Street we were able to walk over the Acosta Bridge. Note that walking along the northbound side of the bridge will drop you off at Water Street, meaning a detour to get back to Brooklyn. The southbound side of the bridge connects directly into Brooklyn proper. Back in Brooklyn, you’ll find new apartments, several restaurants, and an ice cream shop, which we had to take advantage of as it warmed up.
For anyone looking for an easy urban walk with opportunities to exercise, relax, or get a bite to eat, definite plan a trip to the Jacksonville Riverwalk. Enjoy the photos: