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Massachusetts destinations, parks and attractions

Are you going on a road trip to Massachusetts, looking for tips about the destinations so you and your party can enjoy it, be comfortable and not spend a fortune?

Here are some of the top destinations in Massachusetts and tips about visiting them

Top Massachusetts destinations

  1. Boston - there is so much to see and do here. See this page!
  2. Plymouth - 137 Warren Avenue, Plymouth, Massachusetts.  Plymouth Rock is here, of course as well as the Plimouth Plantation, a living history museum that shows how the Pilgrims lived in the 1600's. Also is The Mayflower II at Plymouth Plantation (aka, Plimoth Plantation) - The Mayflower and Plymouth Plantation should require no introduction. This stop has a living history museum ( Plimoth Plantation). demonstrating daily life, including gardening, building, cooking, and military training. There is also a  full-scale reproduction of the Mayflower, docked nearby.
  3. Martha's Vineyard - Famous as the summer playground of the rich, like the Obama's and other celebrities, the first Jaws movie was filmed here in 1974. It is just  off Cape Cod, take a public ferry
  4. The Berkshires - A beautiful hilly region of western Massachusetts with rolling hills and hiking trails, including the Appalachian Trail.
  5. Salem - Known for the Salem witch trials, there is a witch museum, this quaint town is also home to Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The House of the Seven Gables.
  6. Cape Cod - This famous fisherman's peninsula is located on the easternmost part of Massachusetts. Besides the docks, there are lighthouses, cranberry bogs, beaches, and trails along the Cape Cod National Seashore. Also on Cape Cod is Provincetown (the site of the first landing of the Pilgrims), Hyannis, Barnstable and other quaint towns. See the Cape Cod National Seashore website here.
  7. Nantucket -  Yes, there once was a man from Nantucket, who had so many things to see, he said... well, never mind what he said, today it is the home of ultra wealthy liberal New Englanders, but is also a popular summer destination with harbors, cliffs, sandy beaches, lighthouses, and an annual summer music festival.
  8. Cambridge - Home to 2 Ivy League universities, Harvard University and MIT (the Massachusetts Institute of Technology), the city dates back to 1630 and has many interesting historical buildings, such as the Church of St. Mary the Great, Holy Sepulchre, Ely Cathedral, and All Saints’ Church and many s museums

National parks and monuments in Massachusetts

Massachusetts State parks and historic sites

Many DCR facilities have a parking fee. Massachusetts residents pay lower fees than non-residents. Resident and non resident status is determined by the vehicle license plate. Some parks only charge fees during certain times of the year. Click the link below to view the most recent parking fees schedule for every state park.

Parking fee locations and schedule

Annual Parking Pass

You can save money on park visits by getting an annual ParksPass. A ParksPass waives the daily parking fee for most DCR parks. The parking pass costs $60 for Massachusetts residents.

Senior ParksPass

Massachusetts residents aged 62 and older can buy a lifetime parking pass. The lifetime Senior Parks Pass costs $10. Senior Parks passes may only be bought in person or by mail.

Learn how to get a lifetime Senior ParksPass

Massachusetts Seasons, bugs, topography and climate

Massachusetts is mainly a humid continental climate, with hot, humid summers and cold, snowy winters and plenty of precipitation. The state does have extreme temperatures from time to time with 100 °F or 37.8 °C in the summer and temperatures below 0 °F or −17.8 °C in the winter not being unusual. Bugs... near stagnant lakes and marshes black flies, no-see-ums and mosquitos.

Massachusetts Camping tips

Massachusetts has accessible tent sites, too, with hard-packed level ground, pedestal grills, and accessible picnic tables. All our accessible sites are marked on Reserve America with a figure in a wheelchair.

You'll always find accessible restrooms in the same loop as accessible sites, though there usually isn't an accessible pedestrian route between the sites and the restrooms. Before you make a reservation, you should contact the park to see if their cabins, yurts, or tent sites fit your specific needs. Also, be sure to learn about DCR campground regulations before you reserve your campsite.

If you have questions about accessible camping in general, please contact the Universal Access Program.

There are both state parks and private campgrounds in Massachusetts.