Massachusetts August 06, 2017
The 10 Best Backroads In Massachusetts For A Long Scenic Drive
There’s nothing like hopping in your car, rolling the windows down and taking off for a long drive. It’s as American as apple pie, and Massachusetts is filled with scenic roads that make the journey just as special as the destination. Check out these unforgettable scenic drives to take when you just can’t resist the call of the open road.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Mount Greylock Scenic Byway
This scenic road will take you through 16.3 miles of gorgeous countryside and lush forests. The foliage in the fall is particularly stunning along this route. It's the perfect road to take when you don't have any particular destination in mind but want to see something beautiful. If you stop at the summit of Mount Greylock and Western Gateway Heritage State Park, the drive will take you about two hours.
2. Route 6A
Route 6A is also known as Old King's Highway, as a portion of it served as the royal route during the early years of colonization on the Cape. Today, it's the beautiful, winding road that runs east to west across the arm of the Cape. Historic buildings line the route, and it's a great way to get a taste of the beauty of this region.
3. Chickatawbut Road
This scenic road is close to Boston, so city dwellers should definitely check this one out. It runs from Braintree to Milton and passes through beautiful forest and past the craggy cliffs and slopes of the Blue Hills. Stop by the Blue Hills Reservation to get out and stretch your legs.
4. Jacob's Ladder Scenic Byway (Route 20)
The Jacob's Ladder Scenic Byway is a beautiful route through the foothills of the Berkshires. You can take this route through the center of the town of Lee and admire the gorgeous architecture of this sleepy and historic town.
5. Central Hills Loop
Taking this Central Hills Loop route through New Salem near the Quabbin Reservoir affords beautiful views of the water and green forests. Driving through the village of Gilbertsville in Hardwick, you’ll pass over a lovely covered bridge and have the opportunity to stop at Hamilton Orchards.
6. Connecticut River Byway
This stunning road will take you through fertile farmland and miles of historic sites. There are actually 1,200 nationally recognized historic sites and buildings along the byway, so you won't be lacking in roadside entertainment. The Connecticut River Byway is also a charming road to take in the fall as the leaves are changing.
7. Cape Ann Shore
Driving along the rocky coast of Cape Ann guarantees loads of salty sea breezes and ocean views. If you start in Salem and end in Rockport you'll cover roughly 21 miles and pass plenty of things to do in between. Don't forget to stop at a roadside seafood shack!
8. Mohawk Trail Scenic Byway
This route was based on a Mohawk footpath and will show you some of the best scenery this state has to offer. Travel this road in the fall for an eyeful of vibrant foliage, or hop on in the spring or summer to check out places like Old Greenfield Village and the Barton Cove Recreation Area in Gill. The entire route covers about 42 miles.
9. Southwest Berkshires
If you hop in your car and drive the 27 miles between Sheffield and Pittsfield, you'll encounter all sorts of beautiful sites. Stop by the Pittsfield State Forest for a dose of nature and then head to the Hancock Shaker Village for a trip back in time.
10. Lexington to Concord
No two town names are so recognizable a pair as Concord and Lexington. These historic towns played a crucial role in the Revolutionary War, and driving the seven miles between them is a treat in all seasons. Stop by the Minute Man National Historic Park to learn about the famous conflict and spend the night at cozy Concord's Colonial Inn.
For more road trip inspiration, check out
these places to visit in Massachusetts on your next weekend off.