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  Explore the coastline at Halibut Point Reservation
Explore the coastline at Halibut Point Reservation

What to Bring

Walking shoes   Fleece
Camera   Hat
Water   Snacks


From Boston, take route 128 North
Take Exit 9 onto Route 127 north (Eastern Avenue) toward Rockport for 3 miles
At 5-way intersection, turn left onto
Railroad Avenue (remains Route 127) and follow for 2.4 miles
Turn right onto Gott Avenue
Entrance is opposite the state park's parking lot
  Good to know in advance
Free parking from Columbus Day to
Memorial Day; $2 per car the rest of the
year (free year-round for TTOR members)

Open year-round daily, sunrise to sunset

Public restrooms at the visitor center
Interpretive tours and programs for families and adults offered throughout the year.
Visit the events calendar at
Trail map available on site and online at
Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times
Carry out all your trash
Respect all postings

ID Card

Overall rating: Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating
Difficulty: 2/5
  Time from Boston: 1 hour, 10 minutes
  Duration: Few hours


  Main activity:


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Want to introduce your family to the secrets of sea life? The weather-beaten bluffs of Halibut Point are a great place to start. A low rocky coastal shelf covered in bayberry, greenbriar, and shadbush, Halibut Point has many tidal pools harboring snails, hermit crabs, and sea stars. During storms, the waves crashing over the rocky shore make for a powerful scene.

Located on Cape Ann, a bit more than an hour northeast of Boston, Halibut Point is a quiet place for a weekend nature walk with the kids. With 12 acres, the place is not huge but the 2.5 miles of trails, combined with the rocky shore itself, can make for a good afternoon outside. In fall and winter, the place is mostly deserted and offers a great spectacle in poor weather (bring a water-resistant jacket, as wind and sometimes rain can be fierce here); in summer, Halibut Point is a great place for a picnic before or after a swim in the ocean. You can stop at nearby Rockport for a hot chocolate or an ice-cream, depending on the season.

Above the reservation is the former Babson Farm Quarry, now filled by natural underground springs. Granite quarried here at the turn of the 20th century paved thousands of city streets and built bridges, tunnels, monuments, warehouses, and buildings, such as Boston's Custom House Tower.

The place is wells-sized for families: too small for children to get lost but large enough for them to run around freely, and for parents to have a good walk with the younger ones. There is no need for detailed walking directions here: from the parking lot, you can take the main trail towards the small visitor center and then branch out on the many trails on both sides of the quarry pond. As usual, it is still a good idea to download the trail map before your visit to hit the trail easily once you are here.

Halibut Point is cooperatively managed by The Trustees of Reservations (TTOR) and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management (DEM). DEM operates the small visitor center and museum dedicated to telling the story of Cape Ann's historic granite industry. The reservation is a link in Rockport's Atlantic Path.

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