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Massachusetts science centers and nature preserves thrill visitors

Science and nature are underfoot, in the air and water, indoors and out all year long. Explore fresh water and inland ecosystems, salt marshes and swamps, forest and grasslands. Walk footpaths and trails for to observe wildlife in their native habitats. An observatory can take you to the stars while farms, sanctuaries, refuges, and preserves can bring you up close to native plants, animals, and marine life feeding, resting, nesting and spawning. See 500 butterflies of 50 species from around the world and dinosaur footprints and bones from local sites. Nature centers and trail side museums offer hands on exhibits and programs. Resort lodgings are your own nearby refuge.

Crane in Rowley-credit-Merin Gray
Reptile Exhibit 500x250 - Southwick's Zoo - Mendon, MA
Southwick’s Zoo

2 Southwick Street Mendon, MA, 01756 Phone: 800-258-9182

Learn about animal ecology, behaviors – and have fun! – at New England’s largest zoo

Day trips to Southwick’s Zoo offer explorers the opportunity to discover the world around them. With hands-on experiences and interactive exhibits, everyone will leave with a greater understanding and appreciation for the animals and ecosystems of our planet.
Whether observing the majestic African Lions, exploring the North American Exhibit on a trip aboard the Woodland Express Train, or learning about conservation efforts for endangered species at the EARTH Discovery Center, a trip to Southwick’s Zoo is an unforgettable experience for guests of all ages. Hear from one of our keepers during a chat about animal behaviors, and watch as birds take flight during a Bird Show. With so much to see and do, visit Southwick’s Zoo!
Orion Outlined - Blake Planetarium - Plymouth, MA
W. Russell Blake Planetarium

117 Long Pond Road Plymouth, MA, 02360 Phone: 508-830-4470

Sit back and explore the night sky at this Plymouth planetarium

Star-gazers at the beginner and advanced level will love the out-of-this-world experience at the 4K full-dome W. Russell Blake Planetarium. The planetarium’s high-tech systems offer surround-system and full-screen images that blanket the circular room’s entire ceiling. Sitting back in your angled chair, you’ll enjoy fantastic voyages that focus on the current night sky and show you how to use a star map that you can take home.
The Butterfly Place

120 Tyngsboro Road Westford, MA, 01886 Phone: 978-392-0955

Massive glass atrium building contains up to 500 butterflies of 50 species from around the world. Display cases in the observation area contain butterflies at various stages of development. This area also includes a 15-minute video describing the life cycle of a butterfly. At the Show & Tell Bench, staff members discuss these fascinating creatures. Gift shop features Papillon Hatching Kits.
mashpee river reservation
Mashpee River Reservation

Quinaquisset Avenue and Meetinghouse Road Mashpee, MA Phone: 508-679-2115

This tidal river extends from Mashpee Pond to Pepponesset Bay. Its clean shoreline, spawning grounds, and clean water make this river a major Massachusetts source of sea-run brook trout. Miles of trails wind through the reservation.
long point on martha's vineyard
Long Point Wildlife Refuge

Off Long Point Road West Tisbury (on the island of Martha's Vineyard), MA Phone: 508-693-7662

At more than 600 acres, Long Point is one of the largest publicly accessible properties on Martha's Vineyard. It encompasses beach, dune, and woodland. Popular in summer, the property is also an off-season treasure, especially for birders and other nature-watchers. The property has 2.1 miles of flat trails through woods and open areas, plus beachfront. Easy walking. Facilities: Public restrooms,picnic tables, bike rack, small visitor center.
Hours: Mid-June to mid-September, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mid-September to mid-June, daily, sunrise to sunset.
Admission: Mid-June to mid-September, $10 per car plus $5 per adult; pedestrian/bicyclist $5; children 15 and under, free. Mid-September to mid-June, free to all.
parker river wildlife refuge
Parker River National Wildlife Refuge on Plum Island

Visitor Center, 6 Plum Island Tpk. Newburyport, MA Phone: 508-465-5753

Parker River National Wildlife Refuge provides feeding, resting, and nesting habitat for migratory birds. Located on the barrier beach of Plum Island, the refuge is comprised of more than 4,700 acres of sandy beach and dune, cranberry bog, maritime forest and shrub land, and freshwater marsh.
Visitors can drive the 6.5 mile long Wildlife Drive and view a variety of habitats including salt marsh, dune, and maritime forest. The Hellcat Interpretive Trail boardwalk includes both a marsh and dune loop. A number of other boardwalks provide access to the refuge’s ocean beach. Note: beaches are closed April 1 through late summer to protect piping plovers). The refuge visitor center has exhibits, an auditorium with an introductory video about the refuge, and a gift shop. Refuge map.
Robert S. Peabody Institute of Archaeology - Phillips Academy - Andover, MA
Robert S. Peabody Foundation for Archaeology

ar Phillips Academy - Phillips and Main Streets Andover, MA, 01810 Phone: 978-749-4490

Exhibits focus on prehistoric archaeology and anthropology.
Teen Science - Franklin Park Zoo - Boston MA
Franklin Park Zoo

One Franklin Park Road Boston, MA, 02121 Phone: 617-541-5466

Learn about nature while having a the time of your life at this Boston zoo

At the Franklin Park Zoo, 72 acres in the “crown jewel” of Frederick Law Olmsted’s Emerald Necklace park system, visitors can learn about the natural world and its immense variety of inhabitants while having a great time. Creatures featured range from the delicate butterflies of Butterfly Hollow to colorful budgies in the Aussie Aviary (you can feed them from seed sticks), African lions in the Kalahari Kingdom, zebras and wildebeests at Serengeti Crossing, gorillas and hippos in the Tropical Forest and kangaroos along the Outback Trail. Zookeeper chats and behind-the-scenes tours and other programs are educational and fascinating, as are strolls through the zoo’s organic garden, where food is sustainably grown for zoo inhabitants, and a visit to the Franklin Farm’s petting zoo.
Hyacinths at Berkshire Botanical Garden - Stockbridge, MA
Berkshire Botanical Garden

5 West Stockbridge Road Stockbridge, MA, 01262 Phone: 413-298-3926

This very old and respect botanical garden is a place of learning as well as pleasure. Classes and lectures are offered on many aspects of gardening and horticulture.
McLaughlin State Fish Hatchery

East Street, Route 9 Belchertown, MA Phone: 413-323-7632

Learn about the raising of fish at one of the largest hatcheries on the East Coast. Wildlife area covers 1,400 acres. Open seven days a week.
Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge

Accessible only by boat, this refuge is home to more than 250 bird species. Visitors are also permitted to surfcast in certain areas. Commercial boats provide transport to the refuge in season.
Botanical Trails of the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth

Route 6A Yarmouth Port, MA Phone:

Stroll through outdoor splendor of 50 acres with oak and pine woods, berry plants, rhododendrons and other Cape flora. Located behind the post office on Route 6A, the trails are open throughout the year during daylight hours.
Wildflower Gardens of Massachusetts
Garden in the Woods

180 Hemenway Road Framingham, MA, 01701 Phone: 508-877-7630

This enchanting "hidden" forest is full of a rich ecosystem, including many rare species of flora. You can even purchase some of the plants to root your own magic garden at home.
Hitchcock Center for the Environment

525 South Pleasant Street Amherst, MA Phone: 413-256-6006

Exhibits, programs and nature trails focus on the environment, ecology, and natural history. There is also a library on the property.
Taylor-Bray Farm

Bray Farm Road Yarmouth Port, MA Phone: 508-398-2231 Ext - 29

Picnic tables and walking trails offer you the chance to spend a leisurely afternoon. The farm was established in the late 1700s. It continues to be a working farm and is listed on the National Register of Historical Places. Open throughout the summer.
Sandy Neck Trail

A 4.8-mile round-trip marked trail at takes you past salt marshes and dunes, leading to the beach. The views of Cape Cod Bay are awesome.
Maria Mitchell Association Natural Science Museum

7 Milk Street Nantucket, MA, 02554 Phone: 508-228-0898

The historic Hinchman House property features a museum of natural history, focusing on plant and animal life on Nantucket. A cross between a classic natural history museum, a zoo, and a science center, the Maria Mitchell Natural Science Museum is a great place to learn about the plants, animals, and birds of Nantucket. Classes, lectures, nature walks and other events are scheduled throughout the season. Gift shop. Hours: Open in summer, but science activities are offered year-round. Admission: Adults, $5; children, $4. Information: www.mmo.org/science-museum.html
Webster Lake

Other than being a nice lake to visit, this lake is notable for an unusual reason--it's native American name is Lake Chargoggagomanchaugagochaubunagungamaug. The translation: "I fish on my side, you fish on yours, and no one fishes in between us."

Purgatory Chasm State Reservation

198 Purgatory Road Sutton, MA Phone: 508-234-3733

Purgatory Chasm is a split between granite walls rising as high as 70 feet. It is a quarter-mile in length. Enjoyed by picnickers and rock-climbers. The Chasm was formed by the release of glacial meltwater about 14,000 years ago. Trails lead to a wide variety of rock formations, like The Corn Crib, The Coffin, The Pulpit, Lovers' Leap and Fat Man's Misery. Restrooms are wheelchair accessible.
Caratunk Wildlife Refuge - Audubon Society of Rhode Island

301 Brown Avenue Seekonk, MA, 02771 Phone: 508-761-8230

Caratunk Refuge, operated by the Audubon Society of Rhode Island, provides a protected habitat for native plants and animals as well as many educational programs. Camp is held here in the summer for children and public programs concerning the environment are held year-round for concerned citizens of all ages.
Central Sanctuaries

226 Union Street Leominster, MA Phone: 781-259-9500 Toll-Free: 800-AUDUBON

Maintained by the Massachusetts Audubon Society, these four separate preserves offer visitors ample opportunity for wildlife observation and study. Nature programs are scheduled throughout the year. There is an admission charge.
Gay Head Cliffs

Lighthouse Road Gay Head, MA Phone:

This national landmark is a must-see for any Martha's Vineyard visitor. The cliffs, formed by glaciers, offer an almost other-worldly, multi-colored view.
Falls at Natural Bridge State Park - North Adams, MA - Photo Credit Leh-Wen Yau
Natural Bridge State Park

McCauley Road, off Route 8 North Adams, MA, 01247 Phone: 413-663-6392

Park rangers are available in summer to guide visitors through this park, with the only naturally formed white marble arch and man-made white marble dam in North America. The park has a beautiful deep gorge formed the Hudson Brook and an abandoned marble quarry. There is a walkway above and through the chasm.
Maria Mitchell Association Aquarium

28 Washington Street Nantucket, MA, 02554 Phone: 508-228-5387

Open: Seasonally; call for hours.

Satwater and freshwater tank exhibition and a gift shop with unique gifts for all ages. The aquarium is the starting point for marine ecology field trips led by staff members. There is an admission fee.
Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary

472 West Mountain Road Lenox, MA, 01240 Phone: 413-637-0320

Visitors will enjoy seven miles of walking trails covering nearly 1,400 acres and featuring beaver ponds and a hummingbird garden. Public programs are offered. Open year-round.
Laughing Brook Education Center & Sanctuary - Hampden, MA
Laughing Brook Education Center and Sanctuary

793 Main Street Hampden, MA, 01036 Phone: 413-584-3009

The 18th century house owned by children’s author Thornton Burgess highlights the 354 acres of walking trails and natural beauty. A library and exhibits offered. - Trail Map (PDF)
Hours: Trails are open daily, dawn to dusk
Beneski Museum of Natural History, Amherst College

Amherst College, 11 Barrett Hill Road Amherst, MA, 01002 Phone: 413-542-2165

Exhibits at this museum focus on dinosaurs, minerals, and crystals. The 80,000 holdings cover historical and scientific topics.

Norcross Wildlife Foundation - Wales, MA
Norcross Wildlife Foundation

30 Peck Road Wales, MA, 01081 Phone: 413-245-1264

The sanctuary encompasses 8,000 acres of forests, meadows and gardens; Many learning programs in biology and horticulture are offered through the year, for children and adults. Hundreds of plant species can be found in the various gardens of the sanctuary. The public is invited to classroom programs (September-June), bluebird nest box activities for kids (January-March); year-round naturalist’s programs for adults and children, a winter Lecture Series for adults, and guided tours on foot and by vehicle.
Hours: Year-round, Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. except holidays
Wolf Hollow

98 Essex Road Ipswich, MA Phone: 508-356-0216

Nature center focusing on the American gray wolf, its role in the ecosystem and the environment around it. There is an admission charge.
Menemsha Hills

North Road, Chilmark Martha’s Vineyard, MA Phone: 508-693-3678

The highlight of Menemsha Hills is Prospect Hill, one of the highest points on Martha's Vineyard, whose spectacular view includes the village of Menemsha, the Elizabeth Islands, and Gay Head Light. Former woods roads and footpaths pass through several distinct ecosystems, including perched wetlands. At Menemsha Hills bluffs, a view of the Great Sand Bank provides a reminder of the Vineyard's glacial origin. Views are spectacular.
Directions: Starting from State Road in West Tisbury, turn right onto North Road heading westerly toward Chilmark and follow for five miles. Entrance, with parking spaces, is just past Tabor House Road, at right.
Blue Hills Trailside Museum - Milton, MA
Blue Hills Trailside Museum - Mass. Audubon Society

1904 Canton Avenue Milton, MA, 02186 Phone: 617-333-0690

Museum offers hiking trails, live animals and regularly scheduled programs. There is an admission charge.
Wildflowers - Arcadia Nature Center & Wildlife Sanctuary - Easthampton, MA
Arcadia Nature Center and Wildlife Sanctuary

127 Combs Road Easthampton, MA, 01027 Phone: 413-584-3009

This nature sanctuary, operated by Mass Audubon, touches upon the towns of Easthampton and Northampton, spreading a diverse terrain of forest, meadows, grasslands, marsh, and wetlands. The Connecticut River floodplain supports a glorious population of wildflowers. Among the offerings here are many walking trails, guided bird walks, and summer camps for children. - Trail Map (PDF)
Hours: Open Daily dawn to dusk. Nature Center is open Mon-Fri 9am - 3pm, Saturday 9am - 4pm and Sunday 10am - 2pm.
Rhododendrons - Ashumet Holly Wildlife Sanctuary - East Falmouth, MA - Photo Credit Winston O'Boogie
Ashumet Holly Wildlife Sanctuary

Ashumet Road East Falmouth, MA, 02536 Phone: 508-362-7475

Rare wildflowers line the eight-acre coastal plain pond; there are 65 kinds of holly trees here, along with vernal pools and migrating birds. More than 30 species of dragonfly can be found at Ashumet Holly.
Halibut Point State Park - Rockport, MA - Photo Credit MA State Parks
Halibut Point State Park

Gott Avenue Rockport, MA, 01966 Phone: 508-546-2997

Beautiful property above the Atlanic and Ipswich Bay. Enjoy watching shore birds and exploring wildflower areas. This was formerly a granite-quarrying area. On summer weekends, tours of the quarry are offered; these include a demonstration of granite cutting. There are wildflower walks and tide pool education programs in the summer and bird observation tours in the winter. - Park Map (PDF)
Coskata-Coatue Wildlife Refuge

Wauwinet Road Wauwinet (on the island of Nantucket), MA, 02554 Phone: 508-228-5646

Coskata-Coatue Wildlife Refuge is known for its historic lighthouse, white sand beaches, and world-class fishing. Rolling maritime dunes cover more than 200 acres. Refuge includes 16 miles of over-sand vehicle and walking trails and beach front. Gray and harbor seals feed in the Great Point riptide. Facilities include public restrooms between the Wauwinet Gatehouse and Great Point Lighthouse and at the lighthouse. Both are open May 1 to October 31. Bike rack at the Wauwinet Gatehouse. Seasonal tours of the Great Point Lighthouse and the natural wonders of the refuge. Hours: Year-round, daily, 24 hours (10 p.m.-5 a.m. - fishing access only). Cost: Free to all pedestrians and boaters.
Indian Lands and Conservation Nature Trails

Scargo Hill Road East Dennis, MA Phone:

You'll find a plethora of Mid-Cape flora, marshlands, and views of Bass River along several trails. A 2½-mile round-trip trail to Cape Cod Bay at Crow's Pasture will take you past wild apple and cherry trees, honeysuckle, and beach plum. Don't miss Scargo Tower with views of Cape Cod Bay and beyond. A very romantic place. Follow Scargo Hill Road to the tower.
Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge

Weir Hill Road Sudbury, MA Phone: 978-443-4661

At this sanctuary, visitors can enjoy nine miles of hiking trails, in addition to lectures and other programs in a renovated horse barn.
Garden in the Woods - Native Plant Trust - Framingham, MA
Native Plant Trust - Garden in the Woods

180 Hemenway Road Framingham, MA, 01701 Phone: 508-877-7630

This organization operates six native plant sanctuaries in New England: the Annie Sturgis Sanctuary, Harvey Butler Rhododendron Sanctuary, and Robert P. Tristram Coffin Wild Flower Reservation, all in Maine; the Hobbs Fern Sanctuary and Plainfield Sanctuary, both in New Hampshire; and the Eshqua Bog in Vermont.
Nash Dinosaur Tracks

Amherst Road South Hadley, MA Phone: 413-467-9566

A display of dinosaur footprints and bones that were found on the site. Open seasonally.
Moose Hill Wildlife Sanctuary - Sharon, MA
Moose Hill Wildlife Sanctuary

293 Moose Hill Street Sharon, MA, 02067 Phone: 781-784-5691

The Massachusetts Audubon Society operates this nature center, the oldest in the state founded in 1916.
Hours: Trails open daily, sunrise to sunset. Nature Center is open Weds-Sun, 9am - 4pm. Admission: Adults $4, Seniors 65+ $3, Children $3. Members & Sharon residents Free.
Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary - Lincoln, MA - Photo Credit Mass Audubon
Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary

208 South Great Road Lincoln, MA, 01773 Phone: 617-259-2200

Visitors to this nature preserve will enjoy hiking trails, live farm animals and hayrides. During the winter season sleighrides are offered. - Trail Info & Map
Botanic Garden of Smith College

16 College Lane Northampton, MA, 01063 Phone: 413-585-2742

Stroll through a floral wonderland of thousands of plants! Specialty gardens and pressed flowers await plant lovers in the herbarium, and this is the prime place to learn about gardens, conservation, and science.
Bass Hole Boardwalk

Once the site of a schooner shipyard, the boardwalk will take you past marshlands to Gray's Beach. At the end of the boardwalk are benches overlooking Dennis's Chapin Beach.
Walking in Cape Cod National Seashore - Photo Credit Paul Scharff
Cape Cod National Seashore

Various Locations Chatham to Provincetown, MA Phone: 508-255-3421

Cape Cod is a peninsula extending five dozen miles into the Atlantic. It was created by glaciers that pushed and dropped rocky debris in a broad curved shape, creating and embracing Cape Cod Bay. At the tip of the peninsula, you can face westward and watch the sun set over the mainland. The seashore embraces a huge mixture of marine, salt meadow, fresh water, and inland ecosystems. Marine and estuary systems include beaches, sand and tidal flats, and salt marshes. Freshwater systems include kettle ponds, spring pools, bogs, and swamps. Visitors also find pitch pine and oak forests, dunes, and grasslands.
Crocker Neck Conservation Area

Ninety-seven acres of salt marsh to the east and a freshwater marsh to the south. Located on Popponesset Bay.
Trails at Stony Brook Nature Center - Norfolk, MA
Stony Brook Nature Center - Mass. Audubon Society

108 North Street Norfolk, MA, 02056 Phone: 508-528-3140

This nature center includes a self-guided hiking trail. An extensive boardwalk system lets you walk along the edge of Teal Marsh. The Nature Center is currently closed for construction, but nature trails are still open to the public. Currently taking registrations for Summer Nature Camp.
Sandy Point State Reservation - Ipswich, MA
Sandy Point State Reservation

Parker River Wildlife Refuge, Refuge Road Ipswich, MA Phone: 508-462-4481

Beautiful barrier island and ocean beach for walking, birdwatching

This barrier island and ocean beach at the end of Sandy Point are a beautiful place for walking and observing nature, particularly the aquatic bird life. The piping plover and least tern make their home and nest here. Visitors must enter through the adjacent Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Parking lots are available. Pedestrians may enter the beach but muse avoid fenced areas to protect birds and dunes. Open sunrise to sunset.
Harvard Peabody Museum of Natural History Marine Life Cambridge MA
Harvard Museum of Natural History

26 Oxford Street Cambridge, MA, 02138 Phone: 617-495-3045

Don’t leave Boston without exploring the 16 galleries in this family-friendly museum displaying 500 taxidermy animals -- elephant, rhino, hippo, tiger, bison, even a 15-foot giraffe -- not to mention huge whale skeletons. Dinosaurs include the skull of one of the first Triceratops ever discovered. Don’t miss the Pteranodon and the world’s only mounted skeleton of the 42 ft.-long Kronosaurus. Explore a timeline of Earth’s history, and admire 3,000 rare minerals, meteorites, and gemstones. New and changing multi-media exhibitions showcase cutting-edge research. Harvard’s most-visited museum is an easy 8-minute walk across the historic campus from Harvard Square’s shops, restaurants and T stop. The museum is connected to Harvard’s Peabody Museum, and one admission fee covers both museums.
Great Island Trail

Chequesset Neck Road Wellfleet, MA Phone:

This is on the Outer Cape, on the Cape Cod Bay side (west). The shifting sands have built a pathway out to Great Island, which is restricted to only walkers and boaters. Talk with the rangers at Race Point in Provincetown about conditions and timing for the tides. Sometimes there are ranger-led trips to Jeremy Point, considerably safer than going on your own. To reach the start of the trail, take Route 6 to Wellfleet and follow signs to the town pier. Turn right onto Kendrick Road, then left onto Chequessset Neck Road. There's a parking lot at the end of the road. This trail is somewhat strenuous, moving through woods, dunes, and swamps. During high tide it may be wet in places. Expect to spend nearly four hours if you walk the full length of the trails.
Lloyd Center for Environmental Studies

430 Potomska Road South Dartmouth, MA Phone: 508-990-0505

Visitors can enjoy walking trails and exhibits at this nature preserve, set on 55 acres.
Sandy Neck Great Salt Marsh Conservation Area

Sandy Neck Road Barnstable, MA Phone:

This is the largest salt marsh on the East Coast, some 4,000 acres, and there's a nine-mile (round trip) trail to Beach Point that takes about four hours to complete. Summer birders have a chance to see the nests of the endangered piping plovers in the sand. But it's best hiked in the cooler seasons, as this is a vigorous trek. Reach the area in Barnstable by heading to the end of Sandy Neck Road, where there's a parking lot.
Spring Apple Tree at Arnold Arboretum - Boston, MA
Arnold Arboretum

125 Arborway Jamaica Plain, MA, 02130 Phone: 617-524-1718

Research plant biology in the arboretum's library or listen to scientists talk about Asian flora; if you're looking for New England's center of plant science, you've found it.
Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary - South Wellfleet, MA - Photo Credit Mass Audubon
Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary

291 US Route 6 at West Road South Wellfleet, MA, 02663 Phone: 508-349-2615

This nature center offers a variety of educational programs for children and adults, including walks and workshops. Enjoy a naturalist-led bird walk on our property or listen to an evening lecture. This sanctuary has a nature center, walking trails, trail to Goose Pond, seasonal classroom, gardens, and a campground. Picnicking, birdwatching, restrooms, wheelchair accessible. Of particular interest is the boardwalk trail through the salt marsh. - Trail Info & Map
Fisher Museum of Forestry

Route 32 Petersham, MA Phone: 508-724-3302

This unique museum focuses on the topography of New England's countryside and how it has been affected throughout the 18th, 19th and, 20th centuries. Hiking trails lead from the center out into the forest. There is an admission fee.
Race Point

This beach walk is at the tip of the Cape. From the ranger station to Race Point Light is a two-mile westward ramble along the shore. Seasoned hikers may sniff at such a distance, but by the time you reach the lighthouse, you'll have sampled the extra labor of walking in sand and be glad for a lunch break! Return the same way, but by now the tide will have changed the look of things, and you've got a fresh view, out into the Atlantic, to keep you in awe of the water and weather. Be prepared for stiff breezes, and wear sun block.

There are walking tour maps available at the Provincetown Heritage Museum (% 508-487-0666) at Commercial Street and Center Street. It's open from mid-June to mid-October. Or just do it on your own by walking up and down Commercial Street, poking your nose into the harbor at MacMillan Wharf, and heading uphill to the Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum.

Beach Trail - Cedar Tree Neck Sanctuary - Vineyard Haven, MA
Cedar Tree Neck Wildlife Sanctuary

Indian Hill Road Vineyard Haven, MA, 02568 Phone: 508-693-5207

This preserve along the Martha's Vineyard north shore features several trails with numerous scenic views.
Stony Brook Reservation - Hyde Park, MA
Stony Brook Reservation

Turtle Pond Parkway Hyde Park, MA, 02136 Phone: 617-333-7404

A 475-acre park and wildlife refuge, featuring fishing areas, biking and hiking trails, public swimming, and picnic areas. Programs are scheduled there throughout the year.
Shellfish Hatchery

Winyah Lane Vineyard Haven, Martha's Vineyard, MA Phone:

A marine research and propagation center. Stairs lead down to the lagoon and a dock.
Zookeepers - Stone Zoo - Stoneham, MA
Stone Zoo

149 Pond Street Stoneham, MA, 02180 Phone: 617-541-5466

So many creatures featured in the many environments of this zoo

From snow leopards and black bears to kookaburras and roadrunners, the wildlife at the Stone Zoo reflects the immense variety of the natural world. Start with the special exhibit highlighting efforts to bring back the whooping crane from the edge of extinction, travel on to the Sierra Madre to see cougars, and jaguars; watch the colobus monkeys in their high perches in the Treetops and Riverbeds environment; admire the two-toed sloth in Windows to the Wild and two black bear brothers in the Yukon Creek. In an Animal Discovery Center, children can see an active honeybee hive; in the nature play area, they can climb into an oversized bird’s nest. Check out available zookeeper chats or mystery animal encounters.
Turtles - Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary - Natick, MA
Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary - Mass. Audubon Society

280 Eliot Street Natick, MA, 01760 Phone: 508-655-2296

At this sanctuary, visitors can enjoy nine miles of hiking trails, in addition to lectures and other programs in a renovated horse barn. - Trail Info & Map
Atlantic White Cedar Swamp Trail

This relatively short trail takes longer than you'd expect because the half-mile return is through soft sand. Start at the Salt Pond Visitor Center, reached by taking Route 6 to Eastham, where the site is well marked with National Park signs. (There are restrooms here, as well as abundant interpretive information. Note that the center is closed from mid-January to mid-March.) The trail is well marked; it drops through a stunted oak and pine forest into a mature woodland, then takes a boardwalk loop through the cedar swamp. In summer, be sure to use insect repellent. You'll enrich the experience of this trail if you soak up information at the visitor site first, to learn about the wildlife and vegetation ahead. Expect to spend 45 minutes on this ramble.
Beach Hiking - Felix Head Wildlife Sanctuary - Edgartown, MA
Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary

100 Felix Neck Drive Edgartown, MA, 02539 Phone: 508-627-4850

Vistors to this nature center will find plenty of self-guided trails, as well as live native birds. Of particular interest are ospreys nesting in their natural environment. There is an admission fee. - Trail Info
Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary - Topsfield, MA - Photo Credit Mass Audubon
Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary

87 Perkins Row Topsfield, MA, 01983 Phone: 978-887-9264

10 miles of trails and an observation tower are set in this natural preserve. - Trail Info & Map
Loines Observatory of the Maria Mitchell Association

Milk Street Extension Nantucket, MA, 02554 Phone: 508-228-9273

Open: Seasonally; call for hours.

Astronomy is the order of the day here. Programs include astronomy classes for children and lectures by astronomers of the Maria Mitchell Association. Open nights for telescope viewing are held year-round on Friday nights. There is an admission fee.
South Shore Natural Science Center

Jacobs Lane Norwell, MA Phone: 617-659-2559

Nature trails are the focal point of this site, which includes a trail for the visually impaired. Exhibits and programs are scheduled here daily.
Lobster Hatchery and Brush Pond

Shirley Road Oak Bluffs, Martha's Vineyard, MA Phone: 508-696-0552

Learn more about the natural habitat and propagation of lobsters. The hatchery is open daily. Found just off County Road.
Turners Falls Fish Ladder

Turners Falls Bridge Turners Falls, MA Phone: 413-659-3714

Visitors to this site can observe salmon as they swim upstream to spawn at a power company dam. Open only in the spring. There is an admission charge.
Cape Cod Bay Marine Life Cruise

This sanctuary comprises 1,100 acres of salt marsh, sandy beach, pine woodland, and freshwater pond, and is home to a wide array of wildlife. For fun and healthful activities, families can begin at the new Nature Center, visit the butterfly and hummingbird garden, and then wander along the five miles of trails. Indoor and outdoor educational activities for kids and adults, including walks, lectures, and cruises.