More than five miles of wide, family-friendly carriage paths provide a captivating environment for walking, exploring, and nature watching.
Appleton Farms Grass Rides was originally designed for horseback riding. Like a wagon wheel, five “rides”—an English term for carriage path—meet in a central clearing called the “Roundpoint,” where a large granite pinnacle salvaged from the demolition of the former Harvard College Library (and one of four pinnacles on the property) stands as a silent sentry.
The landscape here is comprised of forest, open fields, and wetlands. On the uplands, you’ll find secondary growth forest, interspersed with small fields.
From the Pigeon Hill overlook, take in a panoramic view of the entire pasture and the site of another pinnacle salvaged from Harvard.
Wetlands found on the Grass Rides are part of the watershed for the Miles and Ipswich Rivers. Look for the stone culverts and bridges that still work to maintain the existing wetland habitat.
Year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset. Allow a minimum of 1 hour, 3 hours if also visiting Appleton Farms.
South Hamilton, MA 01982
From Route 128. Take exit 45B and follow Route 1A North toward Hamilton for approximately 2.5 miles. Turn left onto Arbor Street (by First Church in Wenham and Wenham Town Hall). Continue on Arbor Street for approximately .6 miles. Arbor Street becomes Highland Street. Continue on Highland Street for approximately 3 miles. The Appleton Farms Grass Rides parking lot is located .1 miles past Cutler Road. The parking lot is located on your right.
Bathroom facilities are not available at the Grass Rides but are available in the Carriage Barn at Appleton Farms.
Accessible parking spots at both the Old House/Farm Offices and the Grass Rides. There are signs posted designating those parking spots. There are two of them at the Old House, right along the side of the building, close to the side door, and one of them at the Grass Rides, right near the pay station location.
Appleton Farms is an exceptional venue for weddings and other private events. Please contact us at email@example.com for more information.
Free trail map distributed from bulletin board in the parking area. Please understand that supplies periodically run out.
We recommend that you take a photo of the map on your phone so you can refer to it during your visit, or download a trail map before you head out.
We want everyone to experience and enjoy the Appleton Farms Grass Rides. To protect the Grass Rides for years to come, we ask everyone to follow a few guidelines and regulations while visiting the property:
The Trustees Hiking Challenge: With over 100 places and hundreds of miles of trails to explore, join our free challenge to get you hiking and exploring M...
To connect people with the rich history of farming at Appleton, a vegetable Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program was established in 2002.
Featuring Trustees-grown produce, meat, and eggs as well as local, organic food from the highest-quality producers.
The Grass Rides, part of the larger Appleton Farms estate dating to the mid-17th century, was created by the Appleton family, originally for horseback riding and carriage driving. The original acreage was a gift of Col. and Mrs. Francis R. Appleton, Jr., in 1970, with additional land given by Mrs. Appleton between 1970 and 1998.
One of my favorite places to walk, run or bike with or without my labs in tow. The paths are wide and maintained, including winter for xc skiing. This green area, 25 miles from Boston, is a minor miracle.
– Michael L, Trip Advisor Review
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