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National Parks in Massachusetts
Explore the Bay State’s rich history and beautiful landscapes from one of the famed National Parks in Massachusetts. Boston National Historical Park is a collection of eight National Historic Landmarks depicting Boston’s part in the American Revolution. Set foot for the Freedom Trail, beginning at Boston Common, and make your way through key attractions that include, Charlestown Navy Yard, Faneuil Hall, Dorchester Heights and the Bunker Hill Monument. Just about 10 miles north of Boston, The Essex National Heritage Area begins and encompasses hundreds of historical sites and landmarks that have shaped United States history, one being the Salem Maritime Museum. Visit the Adams National Historical Park where you'll discover the preserved homes of President John Adams and President John Quincy Adams, as well as a peek at the Stone Library, widely considered to be the first presidential library. Discover the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution with a visit to the Lowell National Historic Park and explore several historical landmarks, including the Boott Cotton Mills Museum, the Mill Girls and Immigrants Exhibit, and the Suffolk Mill Turbine and Powerhouse.
Adams National Historical Park
Travel south from Boston into Quincy and visit the Adams National Historical Park. At the park, you'll discover the preserved homes of President John Adams and President John Quincy Adams. You'll also find the John Adams Birthplace. Visit in-season, April through November, and enjoy a guided tour.
You'll get a peek at the Stone Library, widely considered to be the first presidential library. Don't miss out on a tour of the Old House at Peacefield – built in 1731, it was occupied up until 1927, and has been a national historic site since 1947. Any visit into Massachusetts should yield some historical insights into early American life – a day trip to the Adams National Historical Park is an ideal way to experience the history.
Boston National Historical Park
Established as a national park in 1974, the Boston National Historical Park is a collection of eight National Historic Landmarks depicting Boston’s part in the American Revolution. Seven of the eight sites are found along the Freedom Trail – a popular guided tour in Massachusetts.
Located in the Charlestown Navy Yard, the Boston National Historical Park consists of the Bunker Hill Monument, Charlestown Navy Yard, Dorchester Heights, Faneuil Hall, Old North Church, Old South Meeting House, Old State House, and Paul Revere House.
Lowell National Historical Park
Discover the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution with a visit to the Lowell National Historic Park, located in Lowell near Chelmsford in Greater Massachusetts.
Visitors are free to explore several historical landmarks, including the Boott Cotton Mills Museum, the Mill Girls and Immigrants Exhibit, and the Suffolk Mill Turbine and Powerhouse.
The visitors center also offers walking tours throughout the park and canal boat tours into the city's gatehouses and locks system, which, at the time, powered Lowell's textile factories.
Roger Williams National Monument
Established in 1966, Roger Williams National Memorial commemorates Roger Williams, co-founder of Providence and the Colony of Rhode Island, while offering a peaceful respite from the surrounding hustle and bustle of Providence.
Roger Williams National Memorial is found in the heart of Providence, along the east bank of the Moshassuck River, and only a short walk from the Rhode Island State House.
Both the four and a half-acre park and the Roger Williams Visitor Center are open seven days a week, year round
The visitor center hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. during the winter, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the summer. The visitor center only closes on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. Roger Williams NHS is a public, Rhode Island park, so there are no entrance fees required.
Roger Williams, sent away from his Massachusetts home for his political beliefs, landed in what is now known as Providence, Rhode Island in the mid 1600s. Today, you can become acquainted with Williams’ story and thus the story of how Providence came to be by visiting the park.
Attractions & Activities
First, you’ll want to stop at the Roger Williams Visitor Center. Here, collections of exhibits lend themselves to curious park-goers, while the five-minute orientation film helps contextualize the park and the nearby attractions.
After you’ve discovered the history of Roger Williams NM, its time to discover the scenery. Covering nearly five acres, the park grounds are extremely well maintained, serving as an excellent respite from the surrounding city. Be sure and catch a glimpse of the freshwater spring and common area of the first European settlement in Providence during a leisurely stroll through the park.
If you’ll be visiting during the summer, be sure and take part in one of the interpretive programs, like the Junior Ranger program, helping the kids earn their very own Junior Ranger Badge. Likewise, certain special events are hosted seasonally as well. Don’t miss the Downtown Sundown Acoustic Music Concerts held monthly throughout the summer.
After you’ve explored the park and discovered this small but significant piece of Rhode Island history, feel free to explore the walk-able streets of Providence. Nearby points of interest include the Benefit Street Mile, the John Brown House, Waterplace Park, and more.