Launch a kayak or small boat from Emma Tripp Landing to explore the East Branch of the Westport River. This small town landing is a great place to begin a paddling adventure or go quahogging with your family, all while surrounded by the unique estuary habitat of the lower Westport River.
Discover a peaceful beech tree forest and remarkable freshwater views at New Bedford Waterworks, part of the protected Assawompset Pond Complex. This City of New Bedford-owned property not only protects an important public drinking water supply, but also offers one of Rochester’s nicest walks.
Barges Beach is part of Buzzards Bay Coalition’s Cuttyhunk Reserves and located just off the ferry dock on Cuttyhunk Island. Local history and natural beauty come together on Barges Beach, a one-of-a-kind barrier beach on the east end of Cuttyhunk Island. Explore the remains of 14 wooden barges emerging from the sands as you explore, swim, and fish from the cobble and sand shores of this publicly-accessible beach.
Launch a boat from Great Herring Pond Boat Ramp, in Bourne, for a day of fishing and exploring on one of the largest and most ecologically significant freshwater ponds in upper Buzzards Bay. This small state-owned boat ramp is a great place to launch paddle crafts or shallow draft boats, as well as a popular fishing spot.
Note: The Town of Plymouth issued a cyanobacteria advisory for Great Herring Pond on July 31, 2020. At this time, swimming in the pond, or drinking from it, are strongly discouraged.
Family-friendly fun awaits in the fields and forest of Pulaski Park, located in New Bedford’s North End. This town-owned park offers a basketball court and a broad meadow perfect for picnicking, as well as a mile of scenic walking and wildlife spotting along the Ross C. Mathieu Nature Trail.
You don’t have to travel far offshore to have an island adventure. Visit Bassetts Island, at the entrance of Bourne’s Pocasset and Red Brook Harbors, to discover pristine beaches and splash around in calm, shallow waters. Though much of Bassetts is private, town beaches on the island’s southern arm offer a slice of island paradise only a short boat trip from shore.
Take in woodland tranquility and abundant water views within the Assawompset Pond Complex, a system of conservation lands around five freshwater ponds in Lakeville, Middleborough, and Rochester. This area is named for Assawompset Pond, the largest body of fresh water in Massachusetts. Offering stunning vistas and extensive trails over roughly 10,000 acres, you’re destined to find something to love about this complex’s wooded swamps, ponds, forests, and waterfronts.
On a cool day last spring, Coalition Outdoor Exploration Coordinator Rebecca Vasa stood in front of a group of New Bedford fourth graders at the Sea Lab Marine Science Center and asked a seemingly simple question: “Who here has visited Buzzards Bay before?”
Without fail, whenever Vasa asks her Sea Lab students this question, only one or two students raise their hands. The fact is, most of these students have been to many locations around Buzzards Bay — but they have never truly connected their local beach, pond, or stream with Buzzards Bay, or with the marine ecosystem right in their backyards.