Travel New England This Summer with Our Unique Guide: If you’re still trying to make summer vacation plans, or just want to visit someplace new, we’ve got great getaway ideas for families and couples in all six New England states.
DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum Lincoln, Mass.
DeCordova is an excellent place for a picnic lunch while enjoying views of modern art sculpture installations. More than 60 sculptures are on view outdoors at any given time, and they’re constantly changing, so no two trips are the same.
South Beach on Martha’s Vineyard Edgartown, Mass.
This white sand beach is long and narrow, so there’s never that overcrowded feel. Roll out a blanket and lie back, and you’ll feel like you’re on your own private beach, unaware of the other visitors just over the dunes. Bodysurfers and swimmers will love the big swells. (Top photo courtesy Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce.)
7 Seas Whale Watch Gloucester, Mass.
These clean and spacious whale-watching vessels come with a sightings record of more than 99 percent for anything from humpback whales to sea turtles and sharks. The tour includes a trip to Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, which protects more than 800 square miles of the most productive ocean waters in the northwest Atlantic.
Salem Willows Park Salem, Mass.
The Willows seaside promenade has something for the whole family. Kids will love the amusement park, with its arcade games, rides and 19th century carousel, and adults can relax with a picnic in the park, or some fishing from the public pier. There’s delicious local food, too, including saltwater taffy, Salem’s famous chop suey sandwich, and fresh catches from the sea.
Skydive Pepperell Pepperell, Mass.
There’s only so much fun you can have on land. Imagine the wind in your face and all of Boston and southern New Hampshire below you. It sounds terrifying to us, but if you’re feeling adventurous, head to Pepperell, where they offer tandem skydiving for newbies and training for those really dedicated folks.
The Butterfly Place Westford, Mass.
Children and adults alike will love walking through The Butterfly Place’s indoor garden, admiring the free-flying exotic insects. Koi and free-roaming quail also call the garden home. Learn about the butterfly’s life cycle, and take home a hatching kit so you can raise and release one of your own. There are picnic benches under a tent outside, so you can make a day of it.
For our complete Summer Travel Guide, pick up the July/Aug issue of Merrimack Valley Magazine on newsstands now.