Places to Hike in Boston, Flickr: marirn

Hike the Harborwalk!


Before the big chills arrive to the New England area, it is best to enjoy the great outdoors in autumn. Boston is an incredibly scenic city with fall foliage and lots of natural surroundings. Part of a local Bostonian’s life is to hike around the area for some much needed de-stressing from the city life.

Harborwalk: The top place to take a “city” hike is along the Harborwalk. You’ll wind down the city waterfront from the downtown area through East Boston and possibly all the way to Dorchester if you like. It connects the city with the Boston Harbor, which gives you a glimpse to the maritime life. You can opt to go on your own trail as the walkway connects to other routes. You can even find things to do along the way, like at Battery Wharf which has an observation deck, a small museum and an upscale restaurant. Best of all, this 47-mile public walkway has many stops along the way where you can rest and freshen up.

Arnold Arboretum: For about 125 years, Arnold Arboretum has been Boston’s local city park. It is also owned by Harvard University, which makes this kind of an intellectual walk through history. It was founded as a green research institution to research types of trees, vines and other flora species. There’s no fee to pay to explore this scientific jungle that is being researched daily to understand the biodiversity of our changing world. Bring the kids along to enjoy a self-guided scavenger hunt where you can stretch your legs, explore the Arboretum and make it fun while doing so.

Fresh Pond:
If you’re looking for a fun hike that will only take just an hour and a half of your day, consider hiking Fresh Pond. Consisting of a large fresh lake that was part of a retreating Glacier 15,000 years ago, today it is a 2.25 mile path. This popular trail offers scenic landscape without leaving the Boston area. It’s a place where you can walk, run, bike or rollerblade while feeling like you’re on a journey encountering resident birds and a local green oasis. Note: This is a popular hiking area, so look out for the morning and after work crowds.

Walden Woods:
Transcendentalist, Henry David Thoreau, threw himself into nature as a social experience to understand himself and his role in society. Whether you’re on a similar path or simply looking for that same tranquil experience, Walden Woods is the hike for you. You’ll go on a group tour since it is preserved by the non-profit organization of the same name. This is the best way to learn about Thoreau’s literary influence and the real life inspirations that led him to his train of thought. It’s a 1.5 mile hike where you can enjoy quiet time and have lunch on the shore of Walden Pond.

Blue Hills Reservation:
We get it- you’re a serious hiker willing to get outside of the Boston area for a hardcore hike. One of the Boston area’s most strenuous hikes is at the Blue Hills Reservation. It was named by the Europeans who first arrived to the Boston area and noticed the blue like colors on the top of the slopes. The most popular hike includes the famous Skyline Trail. There are 125 miles of trail which range in difficulty, but the Skyline Trail offers amazing an view of the Boston skyline from the high peaks. This is a serious hike in which you’ll need the proper gear since it is a rocky terrain.

A cheap flight to Boston will make those hikes extra fun!

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photo: marirn

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