Looking for ways to enjoy the beautiful summer weather with family and friends? Not only does the city have picturesque views of the Merrimack River and its historic mill buildings, but there are enough trails, walkways and fishing spots to keep you on your feet this summer! Here are some free outdoor activities to enjoy while soaking up some vitamin D.
Lowell's Urban Trails
1. The Riverwalk
If the heat is weighing you down, take a scenic walk along the Merrimack River to escape the humidity and cool off with a refreshing river breeze. The Riverwalk is located along the Mile of Mills on the southern bank of the Merrimack River, connecting the Boott Mills, Tsongas Center, UMass Lowell as well as Lelacheur Park. Not only is this walkway great for running and taking pictures, it has some of the best sunset views in the Merrimack Valley! You may even see a Blue Heron, so make sure you bring your camera.
2. The Western Canalway
Located right behind the Tsongas Center, the Western Canalway is not only a beautiful walking path, it contains historic elements such as The Lawrence Turbine House, Hickey Hall Dam and the Tremont and Suffolk Mills. The Western Canal has a natural quality, and once you’re done walking, outdoor picnic tables located behind the Tsongas Center provide the perfect spot to relax and refuel.
3. The Concord River Greenway
People typically associate the Merrimack River when they think of Lowell Massachusetts. While the Merrimack does cut through the city, the Concord River Greenway Park is a gem to keep in mind this summer. This hidden treasure is not only a scenic walking route, but a part of the cit’'s regional trail network that connects to Lowell’s largest open spaces- Shedd Park and Rogers Fort Hill Park- to the center of the city. Other links in the Concord River Greenway are in the planning process and once complete will add to the network of walkways that have been developed by the City of Lowell and Lowell National Historic Park. Although the Greenway is undergoing some expansion, there is plenty of walkway to enjoy in the meantime!
U.S. National Park Services
4. Lowell National Historical Park
The Lowell National Historical Park offers a wide variety of programs that include boat tours, mill & trolley tours, free-fee days at the Boott Mills Museum and Visitors’ Center and free family programs throughout the summer. Whether it’s taking a relaxing boat tour, or spending the day with a park ranger, there are enough activities and events to fill up your summer. The National Park’s popular series of family programs called Your City Saturday occurs on the third Saturday of every month, so be sure to check out these programs before the summer comes to an end!
5. Hike, Fish and Bike through the Lowell-Dracut-Tyngsboro State Forest
Located in three towns, this forest contains 1,140 acres including 180 acres of ponds, swamps, and wetlands. The forest has six miles of trails designed for hiking, bicycling and horseback riding. If you’re searching for the perfect fishing spot, the state forest is filled with ponds and you’re bound to catch something even if you’re a first time angler!
6. Lowell Walks
Looking to learn about the history of Lowell? Lowell Walks are free walking tours of Lowell led by knowledgeable tour guides. Walks begin on Saturdays at 10 a.m. from Lowell National Park Visitor Center, 246 Market Street and typically last 90 minutes. The walking tours will run all summer long and no registration is required. Come explore Lowell and learn about its historical background from experts.
If your goal is to stay active and outdoors this summer, Lowell offers an abundance of activities that cater to all ages, so be sure to check out these local sites while the weather is nice!