Azalea Trail is a 1.4 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Greenbelt, Maryland and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, and mountain biking and is accessible year-round.
Directions from Washington, D.C.: (The park is located 12 miles from Washington, D.C.) Take Exit 23 (Route 201) Kenilworth Avenue South to (Route 193) Greenbelt Road East. The park is a quarter mile on the right. The park address is 6565 Greenbelt Road (Route 193). The trail begins in Sweetgum Picnic Area located near the entrance of the park. Upon entering the park, proceed to the stop sign. Make a right hand turn and the Sweetgum Picnic Area is the first left.
Great for a quick in/out with young kids...Park at Sweetgum Picnic area, you can't miss the Azalea trailhead sign as you enter the parking area. The first part of Azalea loop is a fitness trail, so the kids have fun on the equipment; while I grunt to do the exercises they breeze through them.
After about 2/10 mile the fitness path goes uphill (leaving the Azalea Loop) and ends at a swingset and small playground. Across the parking lot (your car is here) there are fountains, restrooms, and a larger playground with multiple picnic tables.
If you stay on Azalea after the Fitness Trail, it continues along the stream, then hooks to the left and meanders along through the park - still a nice, doable 1 Mile hike which ends at a point across the field from the Sweetgumparking area.
For adult hikers I recommend the 5.2 mile perimeter trail, which you can also pick up near the Dogwood parking entrance.
Nice trail, can connect to Dogwood and Perimeter if you walk a little ways. But BEWARE THERE ARE TICKS EVERYWHERE! I scrubbed off at least 20 little buggers.
The trail has exercise stations - park and start your hike at the Laurel picnic area.
Nice short family hike close to DC. But, man- ticks EVERYWHERE.