- Hiking is probably the most popular recreation enjoyed along the towpath's 184.5-mile stretch. Additional side trails are available at Great Falls including Gold Mine trail, River trail, and the nationally known Billy Goat Trail. There is a handicapped accessible walkway from the towpath to an overlook of the Great Falls of the Potomac. There is also a trail over the top of the Paw Paw Tunnel. Trail guides are available at Georgetown, Great Falls Tavern, Williamsport, and Hancock Visitor Centers, Western Maryland Station Center, Antietam National Battlefield Park, or by calling the Parks and History Association.Maps, books, and other publications highlighting the canal's recreations are sold at the various visitor centers. The National Park Service offers interpretive tours seasonally. Hiking and biking opportunities run the full length of the canal. Horseback riding is permitted from Swains Lock to Cumberland, Maryland. Canoeing, boating and fishing opportunities vary based upon location of canal. Family campgrounds, group campgrounds, and primitive sites are offered at designated areas along the trail. Picnicking is permitted anywhere, however, campfires are prohibited outside designated areas. Swimming is not allowed.
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