Are you looking for a great way to enjoy the beautiful rivers that run through Columbia? Have you ever heard of the Three Rivers Greenway Trail or Columbia Riverwalk? No matter what time of year, the riverwalks within the Three Rivers Greenway Trail provide a fantastic place to exercise, take a leisurely stroll with your family, enjoy a picnic, fish, learn how to bike ride, and so much more. Below we’ve got all you need to know about the West Columbia Riverwalk, Cayce Riverwalk, and newly developed Saluda Riverwalk!
Columbia Riverwalks Within the Three Rivers Greenway Trail
There are 3 main “Riverwalks” in the Columbia area – West Columbia Riverwalk, Cayce Riverwalk, and Saluda Riverwalk. All three of these trails make up parts of the Three Rivers Greenway Trail. The Three Rivers Greenway Trail is not yet fully complete, but once it is, it will connect for more than 20 miles across the Midlands!
The Three Rivers Greenway Trail, including these 3 riverwalks, is all paved, wide, and perfect for all different types of activities and fitness levels – biking, walking, jogging, rollerblading, bird watching, backpacking, picnicking, and fishing just to name a few. What’s even better is that the majority of the trail is shaded and runs along the different rivers providing great views, a bit of a breeze, and the ability to dip your toes in on a “famously hot” Columbia day. Dogs are welcome on all of these trails, however, they must remain on a leash, and please don’t forget to clean up after them!
West Columbia Riverwalk
The West Columbia Riverwalk runs along the banks of the Congaree River and offers so many fantastic amenities! This part of the Three Rivers Greenway Trail is relatively flat with only small hills and curves. The trail runs under two bridges, offers great shade, and is open from dusk to dawn each day.
We recently took my son here to get some practice on his balance bike and it was the perfect place to do so! We also had our foldable wagon with us for my younger daughter and although we did pass several other groups of people, there was plenty of room for everyone and we never felt like we needed to leave the paved path to let others through.
Amphitheater at West Columbia Riverwalk
The main attraction here, aside from the trail itself, is the large amphitheater which can be used for concerts, fundraisers, theater events, and more. This is also a great place to rest and enjoy the beautiful views, stretch, or even add in some extra cardio by using the amphitheater steps.
Tubing and Kayak Rentals
The tube, canoe, and kayak rentals are another great opportunity at the West Columbia Riverwalk. There are several different tubing options – double tube, superstar, deluxe, and standard as well as guided canoeing and kayaking tours. Children must be at least 10 years or older to accompany you for this fun outing.
You will park and check in at the parking lot for the riverwalk and then be shuttled up to the Saluda River to begin your adventure. The whole trip will take about three hours. Coolers are permitted, however, they do not allow any styrofoam or glass bottles. You can make reservations online with Palmetto Outdoor or even walk up to rent your equipment. If you decide to walk up, please be mindful that they accept cash only.
Other Fantastic Amenities at the West Columbia Riverwalk
A new amenity at the West Columbia Riverwalk is permanent workout equipment all along the trail. This workout equipment is easy to spot and provides movements such as dips, arm presses, elliptical-style workouts, and more! I love this feature as it mixes two great things – outdoors and fitness, a perfect combination!
There is also a large restroom facility, plus benches and picnic tables along the trail, a paved parking lot, and water stations for both people and their furry, 4-legged friends! While here, don’t forget about Carraway Park right across the street from the main riverwalk parking area!
West Columbia Riverwalk and Amphitheater
Address: 109 Alexander Rd., West Columbia, SC 29169
Like the West Columbia Riverwalk, the Cayce Riverwalk can also be found along the Congaree River. Throughout this section of the riverwalk, you will find several historical markers that provide information about this area of town, once known as the Colonial Village of Granby. There are also restrooms here, free parking, and emergency call boxes throughout the pathways.
You Can See Beautiful Art Along the Cayce Riverwalk
Several local artists have pieces on display along the Cayce Riverwalk. You can search for animal sculptures carved into the wood of fallen trees, an iron bench shaped like the face of a lion, and a beautiful mural under the Blossom Street bridge.
Free Shelters for Rent
There are two covered shelters that can be rented FREE of charge at the Cayce Riverwalk:
- The Riverwalk Pavilion
- Located in the main parking area of the Cayce Riverwalk
- Includes 6 picnic tables
- Holds up to 50 people
- The Congaree Shelter
- Located at the intersection from Main Entrance
- Provides a fantastic view of the river
- Includes 2 picnic tables
- Holds up to 16 people
Address: Main Entrance – 201 Naples Ave., Cayce, SC 29033
Secondary Entrance – Intersection of State Street and Lyle Street
The Saluda Riverwalk is one of the newest expansions of the Three Rivers Greenway Trail. This pathway runs for 7.3 miles and is located near the Riverbanks Zoo. In the future, there are plans to connect the Saluda Riverwalk to the rest of the Three Rivers Greenway Trail and downtown Columbia. Please be aware that the restrooms here are not yet open to the public, but they hope to be finished by the end of this year.
How do you get to Boyd Island in Columbia, SC?
One super cool thing about the Saluda Riverwalk is that it leads to Boyd Island! To get here, go left once you park and enter the gate. It can be a bit confusing because the paved trail ends, making it seem like you’ve reached the end of the path, but keep going! You will come to a bridge that will then lead you onto the island where you can continue your adventure and day of sightseeing.
Address: Candi Lane, Columbia, SC 29210
What is your favorite way to spend time at the riverwalk?