Aerial view of the entrance of Nantucket, Massachusetts. Image credit TeBe Inspires via Shutterstock.

10 Most Scenic Road Trips To Take In Massachusetts

Embark on a journey through Massachusetts and discover some of the state's most scenic road trips. From the coastal beauty of Cape Cod to the majestic Berkshire Mountains, each route presents a unique blend of natural wonders, charming towns, and cultural attractions. Drive along Route 6A on Cape Cod, explore the historic Mohawk Trail, or venture through the picturesque villages along the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway. Visit Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket for an island escape, or delve into the rich history of Plymouth County. These road trips offer a perfect opportunity to soak in the beauty of Massachusetts while exploring its diverse landscapes and cultural heritage.

Cape Cod

Colorful Chatham Lighthouse on the shores of Cape Cod MA
Chatham Lighthouse on Cape Cod. Image credit Exploring and Living via Shutterstock.

Cape Cod, located in southeastern Massachusetts, is a captivating destination for a scenic road trip. Begin the journey by driving along Route 6A, also known as the Old King's Highway, and bask in the charming towns and picturesque landscapes that Cape Cod has to offer. Explore the sandy beaches and dunes of the Cape Cod National Seashore, where visitors can enjoy leisurely walks and breathtaking ocean views. Stop at the Cape Cod Lavender Farm and indulge in the delightful scent of lavender while perusing its unique products. In Provincetown, browse the eclectic shops, art galleries, and eateries, and experience the vibrant LGBTQ+ community. Cape Cod is a haven for nature enthusiasts, history buffs, and beach lovers, offering a delightful mix of coastal beauty and cultural charm.

The Mohawk Trail

Backroads in autumn on Mohawk Trail in western Massachusetts, New England
Backroads of The Mowhawk Trail, MA. Image credit Joseph Sohm via Shutterstock.

The Mohawk Trail, located along Route 2 in Massachusetts, offers a scenic road trip through the picturesque Berkshire Mountains. Drive along this historic trail and be treated to stunning mountain views, charming New England towns, and abundant natural beauty. Stop by the Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls, a whimsical garden spanning an old trolley bridge. Explore the Natural Bridge State Park, where a natural marble arch formation can be witnessed and hike through serene trails. Do not miss the opportunity to reach the summit of Mount Greylock, the highest point in Massachusetts, where panoramic vistas await. The Mohawk Trail is a journey filled with enchanting landscapes, cultural attractions, and the allure of New England’s beauty.

The Berkshire Mountains

Norman Rockwell's Studio is nestled in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts
Norman Rockwell's Studio is nestled in the Berkshire Mountains. Image credit James Kirkikis via Shutterstock.

The Berkshire Mountains in Massachusetts provide a captivating backdrop for a scenic road trip. Driving through this region on Route 7 offers an opportunity to immerse yourself in the area's natural beauty and cultural attractions. Explore the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) in North Adams, where visitors can admire thought-provoking artworks in a converted factory complex. Visit the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge to appreciate the iconic American illustrator's works. As you journey through the Berkshire Mountains, stop in Great Barrington, where you can browse the boutique shops and galleries. The Berkshire Mountains road trip combines art, culture, and stunning landscapes, making it a must-visit destination for all types of travelers.

Coastal Route 127

Rockport Harbor and Motif Nr. 1 aerial view in Rockport, Massachusetts
Aerial view of Rockport Harbor. Image credit Framalicious via Shutterstock.

The Coastal Route 127 in Massachusetts offers a delightful coastal road trip from Gloucester to Rockport. While driving along this scenic route, travelers be treated to stunning ocean views and a chance to explore the charming towns along the coast. Start the journey in Gloucester and visit the historic Gloucester Fisherman's Memorial, a tribute to the city's fishing heritage. Continue to Rockport, where visitors can wander through art galleries, visit the iconic Motif No. 1, and indulge in fresh seafood. Explore Halibut Point State Park, known for its rugged coastline and panoramic vistas. The Coastal Route 127 is perfect for those seeking coastal beauty, charming towns, and a taste of New England's maritime culture.

Essex Coastal Scenic Byway

 Sign of Massachusetts Essex Coastal Scenic Byway on Washington Street near Marblehead town hall in Marblehead Historic District, Marblehead,
Marblehead, MA with sign for Essex Coastal Scenic Byway. Image credit Wangkun Jia via Shutterstock.

The Essex Coastal Scenic Byway, or Route 133, offers a picturesque road trip through charming towns and coastal beauty in Massachusetts. Driving along this route allows you to explore the delightful towns of Essex, Ipswich, and Newburyport. In Ipswich, visit the stunning Crane Beach and enjoy its sandy shores. Explore Essex's antique shops and historical attractions, known for its rich maritime heritage. In Newburyport, wander through the historic district and browse the unique shops and galleries.  Appreciate the area's natural beauty, including Plum Island and the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. The Essex Coastal Scenic Byway is a beautiful choice for those seeking a blend of coastal charm, history, and natural splendor.

Martha's Vineyard

the Martha's Vineyard Camping association historic gingerbread houses in oak bluffs Massachusetts's on Martha's vineyard on a sunny day.
Gingerbread houes on Martha's Vineyard. Image credit Dan Hanscom via Shutterstock.

Martha's Vineyard, an enchanting island off Massachusetts's coast, is a perfect destination for a scenic road trip. Take a ferry from Cape Cod and explore the picturesque roads and stunning landscapes that await you. Drive along the island's coastline and be captivated by the beauty of the Gingerbread Cottages in Oak Bluffs, known for their vibrant colors and whimsical designs. Visit the quaint shops and art galleries in Edgartown, where you can admire the iconic Edgartown Lighthouse. Relax on the pristine beaches, indulge in fresh seafood, and immerse yourself in the laid-back island atmosphere. Martha's Vineyard offers a unique blend of natural beauty, charming towns, and coastal elegance, making it a must-visit destination in Massachusetts.


The decommissioned floating lighthouse has been declared a National Treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
 Historic Nantucket Lightship. Image credit cdrin via Shutterstock.

Nantucket, a picturesque island off the coast of Massachusetts, is a captivating destination for a scenic road trip. Board a ferry and arrive at this charming island, where visitors can explore its cobblestone streets and be amazed by its rich history and coastal beauty. Stroll through downtown Nantucket, lined with historic buildings, boutique shops, and art galleries. Visit the Whaling Museum to learn about the island's maritime past and see the impressive skeleton of a sperm whale. Drive along the scenic roads and admire the stunning beaches and lighthouses that dot the coastline. Nantucket offers a blend of historic charm, natural landscapes, and a relaxed island atmosphere, making it a perfect getaway for nature lovers and history enthusiasts.

Quabbin Reservoir

Overlook at the Quabbin Reservoir in the fall
Lookout on Quabbin Reservoir. Image credit Romiana Lee via Shutterstock.

Quabbin Reservoir, located in central Massachusetts, is a stunning destination to include on a scenic road trip. As one of the largest human-made reservoirs in the United States, it offers breathtaking views and a tranquil atmosphere. Drive along the Quabbin Park Scenic Byway, which surrounds the reservoir, and marvel at the vast expanse of water nestled amidst picturesque forests and rolling hills. Stop by the Enfield Lookout for panoramic vistas of the reservoir and surrounding landscape. Explore the hiking trails that meander through the area, providing opportunities to explore nature and spot wildlife. Quabbin Reservoir is a perfect retreat for nature enthusiasts, offering scenic beauty, recreational activities, and a serene setting away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Plymouth County

Town Wharf in Plymouth is home to a range of maritime activities from commercial fisherman, sightseeing craft and pleasure boats.
Town wharf in Plymouth. Image credit Mystic Stock Photography via Shutterstock.

In southeastern Massachusetts, Plymouth County is a historically significant and culturally rich destination for a scenic road trip. Begin your journey in Plymouth, known as "America's Hometown," and explore iconic sites such as Plymouth Rock and the Mayflower II. Drive along the picturesque coastline and enjoy stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. Visit Plimoth Plantation, a living history museum that recreates the 17th-century English village and Wampanoag homesite. Explore the charming towns of Duxbury, Marshfield, and Scituate, known for their beautiful beaches, lighthouses, and charming coastal communities. Take the opportunity to sample delicious seafood and visit local shops and boutiques. Plymouth County offers a blend of history, natural beauty, and coastal charm, making it a perfect destination for a memorable road trip.

Blackstone Valley

Blackstone River Valley National Historic Park. Ashton Mill brick smokestack. Former cotton mill now apartments for Providence area. Village remains example of a Rhode Island System mill village.
Blackstone River Valley National Historic Park. Image credit EWY Media via Shutterstock.

Discover the scenic beauty and rich history of the Blackstone Valley on a road trip through Massachusetts. Drive along Route 146 and explore the historic towns of Uxbridge, Whitinsville, and Woonsocket. Visit the region's industrial heritage and visit the River Bend Farm Visitor Center, offering insights into its agricultural past. Experience the natural beauty along the Blackstone River Bikeway, perfect for a bike ride or leisurely walk with picturesque river views. Make a stop at Wrentham Village, a renowned shopping outlet with a wide selection of stores. The Blackstone Valley road trip promises a blend of history, nature, and retail therapy for a memorable journey.

Final Notes

Massachusetts offers many breathtaking road trips showcasing the state's scenic beauty and cultural riches. From the serene coastal drives to the mountainous landscapes, these routes provide an unforgettable experience for nature lovers, history enthusiasts, and adventure seekers alike. Whether it is through exploring the idyllic towns of Cape Cod, basking in the artistic charm of the Berkshire Mountains, or discovering the coastal treasures of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, the scenic road trips of Massachusetts promise captivating sights, memorable stops, and delightful encounters. So get your car, hit the road, and embark on an unforgettable journey through the heart of Massachusetts.


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