The 15 Best Hiking Trails in Massachusetts!

During all four seasons of the year, Massachusetts is home to some wonderfully scenic hiking trails. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker—or going just a few paces above a leisurely stroll—you’ll experience nature at its best during any season on the following trails. In addition to the scenery and the benefit of some rigorous outdoor exercise, several of these trails are of historical significance, too.

1. Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, Newburyport, MA

Beginning as far north as Newburyport’s Plum Island, the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge was established as a feeding and nesting ground in Massachusetts for migratory birds. Comprised of more than 4,700 acres, including salt marsh, freshwater marsh, sand beach, cranberry bog, maritime forest and more, the refuge is home to more than 300 migratory bird species. In the midst of this productive ecosystem are hiking trails that allow outdoor enthusiasts to take it all in. In addition, visitors can tour the grounds via bicycle and kayak. Depending on how much snow covers the ground in winter, the trails may or may not be open. Hikers are welcome in spring, summer, and fall. Hikers of all skill levels will enjoy these trails.

2. Appalachian National Scenic Trail, North Adams, MA

The Appalachian National Scenic Trail spans from Georgia to Maine, featuring hikes in those states and every one in between. In Massachusetts, hikers take to the trail in North Adams. A visit in October affords hikers a taste of Massachusetts in its peak of finery during the Fall Foliage Festival. Not recommended for novice hikers, it’s best to have at least a bit of experience before hitting the trail.

3. The Doyle Estate, Leominster, MA

An easy 3.5 miles of hiking trails grace The Doyle Estate in Leominster. An urban oasis that is open year round, the trails are part of a former family estate and include parklands, a formal garden, woodlands, meadows, and open fields. Gorgeous any time of year, it’s the perfect place for novice hikers to build up their stamina for more skilled hikes.

4. Mount Misery, Lincoln, MA

Part of the Lincoln Land Conservation Trust, Mount Misery in Lincoln features marked hiking trails that are also opened to cross country skiers and horseback riders. Bicyclists may use trails that are clearly marked for them alone. Open from dawn to dusk year round, there is ample designated parking for hikers. The trails are perfect for those with novice to intermediate skills.

5. Cape Cod National Seashore, Cape Cod, MA

Twelve easy hiking trails, which are all open year round, comprise the Cape Cod National Seashore. The Fort Hill, Buttonbush, Red Maple Swamp, Nauset Marsh, and Doane trails are in Eastham. The Atlantic White Cedar Swamp and Great Island Trails are in Wellfleet, and the Beech Forest Trail is located in Provincetown. Visit the website and print a trail guide for each one. In addition to these beautiful trails, the Cape Cod National Seashore’s many miles of pristine beaches are a favorite among hikers.

6. Blue Hills Reservation, Milton, MA

Located just outside of Boston, in Milton, the Blue Hills Reservation features hiking trails in both an upper and lower forest, along marsh, swamp and pond edges, and in both meadows and a white cedar bog. Perfect for hikers of all skills, the reservation is rich in both archaeological and historical significance. One of the first areas purchased and set aside for recreation in the Boston region, Native Americans once graced the land. It was later farmed by Massachusetts farmers. Quarry workers worked the land there, too.

7. Noanet Woodlands, Dover, MA

Dover’s Noanet Woodlands features 17 miles of hiking trails. A hike to the top of Noanet Peak affords hikers some amazing views of the Boston skyline. An easy half mile hike on Caryl Trail is perfect for children. The Peak is recommended for more experienced hikers. In addition to hiking, the trails are available for cross country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter, and for birding all year round.

8. Monument Mountain, Great Barrington, MA

Featuring 503 acres of open space, Monument Mountain is the name given a reservation in Great Barrington. Located in the southern Berkshires, hikers have been drawn to the area for more than 200 years. At the 1,642-foot summit of Squaw Peak, those who have successfully ascended the trail will be treated to views from the New York Catskills to southern Vermont. Monument Mountain isn’t for the faint of heart. While there are circular trails for less accomplished hikers, only those with some experience should climb to the top.

9. Mount Greylock State Reservation, Lanesborough, MA

Featuring 70 miles of hiking trails—11.5 of which intersect with the Appalachian Trail—Mount Greylock State Reservation in Lanesborough features the highest spot in the state of Massachusetts at 3,491 feet. Weather permitting, the roads to the trails are open from May through the end of October. The first wilderness state park in the state, it was purchased by Massachusetts back in 1898. The website provides a printable trail map for hikers.

10. Middlesex Fells Reservation, Medford, Malden, Melrose, Winchester, & Stoneham, MA

Situated on 2,200 acres spanning Medford, Malden, Melrose, Winchester, and Stoneham, Middlesex Fells Reservation is a state park with easy hiking trails—many surrounding Bellevue Pond. Featuring 100 miles of trails, hikers can ascend from the pond up to Wright’s Tower, where they can take in gorgeous views of Boston Basin. Comprised of the Skyline Trail, Reservoir Trail, The Rock Circuit Trail, Crystal Springs Trail, and the Cross Fells Trail—the reservation is open to hikers from May through the end of October.

11. Minute Man National Historic Park, Concord, MA

If history and hiking are fighting for first place in your list of interests, you’ll enjoy the Minute Man National Historic Park in Concord. An easy hike to the North Bridge in this scenic park brings you to the place the first Revolutionary War battle took place. Close your eyes upon arrival and imagine the sound and smell of musket fire.

12. Ward Reservation, Andover, MA

Ward Reservation in Andover features three sizable hills—all connected with hiking trails. Shrub Hill, Boston Hill, and Holt Hill offer hikers beginner to advanced beginner trails. Solstice stones on Holt Hill mark the highest spot in all of Essex County. The views from tops of all three hills are spectacular.

13. Mass Audubon’s Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary, Topsfield, MA

Offering hikers 12 miles of hiking trails, comprised of meadows, forests, esker, drumlin and wetlands, Mass Audubon’s Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary in Topsfield is also a birder’s paradise. Special events—including a Halloween Trail in October—take place until winter. Diehard outdoor enthusiasts wanting even more exercise and adventure can take a canoe down the river following their hike.

14. Great Brook Farm State Park, Carlisle, MA

Great Brook Farm State Park, located in Carlisle, features a moderate hike along The Acorn Trail. A narrow, winding trail, hikers follow it through woods and a field, and up a small hill. The state park features an ice cream stand that stays open until mid-October, for those wanting to treat themselves after their hike. The ice cream is sourced from the Holsteins that have been present on the property for about 60 years. Prior to that, Native Americans used the land for some of their sacred rituals.

15. Race Brook Falls, Sheffield, MA

When hiking Race Brook Falls in Sheffield, hikers can visit two summits—Mount Everett and Mount Race. Mount Everett is the highest peak in the southern part of the Berkshires. Just over the border from Connecticut, the trails are popular with hikers in the tri-state—Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York—area.

Once you’ve hiked these 15 best hiking trails in Massachusetts, you’ll not only be a rather accomplished hiker, you’ll also know a lot more about the Commonwealth. Keep this list handy so you can eventually check each of them all off yours.

Massachusetts Search
View more Massachusetts Hiking Trails.
Find Hiking Trails Near You
Find Hiking Trails Near You
One Jackson Street, Lawrence, MA
A restored boarding house with two floors of interactive exhibits tells the tale of Lawrence, one of the nation's first planned industrial cities. ... Read More
160 Pawtucket Blvd, Lowell, MA
Lowell boasts a remarkable network of nineteenth-century canals created to provide power to the bustling textile mills that operated along the wate... Read More
Rte. 49159 Walker Pond Rd, Sturbridge, MA
Wells State Park is a popular 1,400-acre woodland park. The two principal activities are camping and hiking. The campground has 60 attractive sites... Read More
30 Peck Road, Wales, MA
The Norcross Wildlife Sanctuary was established in 1939 by Arthur D. Norcross. Its present area comprises approximately eight thousand acres of woo... Read More
499 Mountain Rd, Princeton, MA
Located within the Wachusett Mountain State Reservation, Wachusett Mountain Ski Area operates in cooperation with the Massachusetts Departmenet of ... Read More
162 West Union Street, Ashland, MA
Ashland State Park has 470 acres including the 157 acre Ashland Reservoir. The park is operated seasonally and provides opportunities for swimming,... Read More
3488 Main St, Brewster, MA
Travel the road to the upper campgrounds in Nickerson State Park and you may think for a moment that you have been magically transported to the Ber... Read More
194 Cranberry Rd, South Carver, MA
Sprawling across the southern sections of Plymouth and Carver, Myles Standish State Forest is the largest publicly owned recreation area in southea... Read More
1199 Middle Road, Clarksburg, MA
Clarksburg State Park offers 368 acres of abundant and unspoiled northern hardwood forest with breathtaking views of the Hoosac Range, Mount Greylo... Read More
915 Walden Street, Concord, MA
Henry David Thoreau lived at Walden Pond from July 1845 to September 1847. His experience at Walden provided the material for the book Walden, whic... Read More
Route 2, Erving, MA
Daily Parking Fee: $8 MA Vehicle, $10 non-MA Vehicle This forest provides a wide variety of recreational pursuits including, boating, swimming and... Read More
Green Street, Fairhaven, MA
One of the smaller parks in Massachusetts, Fort Phoenix State Reservation combines historic features, scenic views and a variety of recreational fa... Read More
289 Pearl St, Gardner, MA
Daily Parking Fee: $8 MA Vehicle, $10 non-MA Vehicle This 130-acre park features a 20 acre pond, walking trails, swimming, fishing, picnicking, pu... Read More
78 Cape Street Rte. 112, Goshen, MA
The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) donated 1,020 acres to the Commonwealth for a state forest in 1929. Since then more than 750 additio... Read More
3920 Mystic Valley Pkwy, Medford, MA
Open year round, dawn to dusk. The banks of the Mystic River are almost entirely publicly owned, from the Amelia Earhart Dam at the mouth of the My... Read More
840 Hillside Street, Milton, MA
The Department of Conservation and Recreation invites you to spend the day and enjoy the calm, clear waters of Houghton’s Pond in the scenic ... Read More
1041 Cascade St., Pittsfield, MA
Cascading streams, waterfalls and flowering shrubs abound in Pittsfield State Forest. 65 acres of wild azalea fields are a profusion of pink blosso... Read More
51 Howe Rd, Spencer, MA
Spencer State Forest, a 965-acres area provides swimming and picnicking facilities on Howe Pond. Other activities offered at Spencer include fishin... Read More
392 Montague Rd, Wendell, MA
Located south of the Millers River, Wendell State Forest covers 7,566 acres of rolling forested hills, streams, ponds, and trails. Purchased in the... Read More
Show More
Select a Massachusetts town to find
the Best Things-To-Do and Places To Go around you
Nantucket County