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First Day Hikes Near Boston, MA

New Year's Day Hikes for Boston Families 2024First Day Hikes Near Boston, MA

New Year's Day is a fresh start on a brand new year. What better way to spend it than to enjoy an invigorating first day hike with friends and family in the great outdoors.

Several venues host annual first day hikes near Boston.  Most notably, DCR's Blue Hills Reservation started this tradition in Massachusetts over 20 years ago.


Blue Hills Reservation Annual First Day Hike

Join the “Granddaddy of First Day Hikes” and celebrate New Year’s Day in the Blue Hills.

January 1 

  •         Meet Blue Hills Wildlife from noon – 1 pm
  •         Hot cocoa & snacks for sale
  •         Three DCR Ranger-led Hikes at 1 pm

From noon to 1 pm, visit with live wildlife from the Trailside Museum, purchase a cup of hot cocoa or a snack from the Venture Scouts, share some holiday cheer by the warming fire, and then stretch your legs on one of three easy to moderate guided hikes which all depart at 1 pm. 

For more info, call 617-727-4573, ext. 4.  Meet at the Houghton's Pond main parking lot at 840 Hillside Street in Milton. Arrive early for this popular event. Parking is limited.


Enjoy the Outdoors!

First Day Hikes offer individuals and families an opportunity to begin the New Year with a rejuvenating outdoor experience by reconnecting with nature and fitting in a few hours of exercise.  

What to Bring / Wear

Visitors attending should wear appropriate foot wear for the conditions and bring hats, gloves, scarves and other necessary outdoor apparel.


Popular First Day Hike destinations near Boston:

Blackstone First Day Hike — 10 a.m., 287 Oak St., Uxbridge. Meet at the Visitor Center. Registration begins at 9:00 am. 1-1/2 mile hike. Hot chocolate in visitor center after hike
Co-sponsored by the Blackstone Heritage Corridor.

Breakheart Reservation First Day Hike — 10 a.m., 177 Forest St., Saugus. A pair of 2 mile hikes. Meet at the Christopher P. Dunne Visitor Center. Hot chocolate and fire in visitor center after hike. Co-sponsored by the Friends of Breakheart.

Great Falls Discovery Center First Day Hike — 1 p.m., 2 Ave. A, Turners Falls. Meet at the main entrance for a 3-mile hike. Hot chocolate in visitor center after the hike. Co-sponsored by the Friends of the Great Falls Discovery Center.

Halibut Point SP First Day Hike — 10 a.m., 4 Gott Ave., Rockport. Meet at parking lot starting at 9:00am for a 2-mile hike. Co-Sponsored by the Friends of Halibut Point State Park.

Middlesex Fells First Day Hike — 10 a.m., 4 Woodland Rd, Stoneham. Meet at the Botume House 1 to 2 mile-long hike. Hot chocolate will be served in Botume House after the hike. Co-Sponsored by Friends of the Middlesex Fells.

Mt. Greylock First Day Hike — 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., 30 Rockwell Road, Lanesborough. Two hikes. Pre-registration required. Hot chocolate and fire after hike in visitor center.

Purgatory Chasm SR First Day Hike — 2 p.m., 198 Purgatory Road, Sutton. Meet at the Visitor Center. Registration begins 1:00pm. 1-1.5 mile hike. Hot chocolate served after hike in visitor center

Wachusett Reservoir First Day Hike — 11 a.m., 167 Temple St. (Route 140), West Boylston. Meet at Gate 22 on Rt 140 starting at 10:00am 2-mile hike Warm up with hot chocolate after hike. No dogs allowed.

Walden Pond Park First Day Hike — 915 Walden St, Concord. Meet at the Visitor Center for a 1-mile-long hike. Hot chocolate will be served in the visitor center after the hike.

Best wishes to you and yor family for a healthy and prosperous New Year!  Get your year off to a great start with our handy guide to January Events in Boston, and take advantage of lots of fun winter activities for families & kids.  And if it happens to snow, being in the know about where the best sledding hills near Boston is key for outdoor family fun. 

And if hiking and walking is your thing, you can find dozens of great places both in and around Boston to enjoy the great outdoors.

We hope that this list of Free things to Do in Boston has been helpful to you.  There is certainly so much more to explore - check out our Boston Events Calendar here, or our Rainy Day guide to finding fun ways to be entertain your Boston family when it's raining.  


Stacey Sao
Stacey Sao has been the Managing Director of the family-friendly events and
activities website, BostonCentral for over 20 years.  She continues to enjoy discovering and exploring new places to visit in the Greater Boston area.