The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has a long-standing tradition of taking steps to preserve the environment – for our residents, for future generations, and for you, our visitors. And we’re continually expanding our environmental efforts by taking advantage of new, innovative technologies – many developed in Massachusetts.
When you visit Massachusetts, you’ll see solar arrays and wind turbines – evidence of renewable energy programs at work. You’ll discover our hotels and restaurants are making determined efforts to reduce energy, water, and waste and to provide a healthy environment for guests and employees. Our chefs are teaming up with local farmers to present delicious locally-sourced meals. And the Natural Resources Defense Council recently named Boston as the top green city on the East Coast.
An array of public and private transportation options means you can go car-free in Boston and several other areas of the state. Bike trails and dedicated bike lanes make it easy to pedal around.
And thanks to land and wildlife conservation efforts, you’ll find lots of opportunities to enjoy great landscapes; view wildlife; and hike, bike, and paddle through the countryside, along the coast, and in urban areas.
While you’re here, we’ve got places you can go to see some of our environmental programs in action. Plus fun green activities and tips on what you can do to be a green traveler.
So, here are some ideas to get you started on your next Massachusetts green getaway.
Click here to watch an interview with MOTT's Director of Communications, Lisa Simmons, about "going green" in Massachusetts on Fox 25.
Planning a trip to Massachusetts without a car or want to minimize driving once you’re here? Here’s how.
There’s an extensive network of airports that serve Massachusetts (in-state and in nearby New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire); Amtrak’s high-speed Acela service along the Northeast corridor; and highly-competitive bus service from New York. Amtrak also provides service from Portland, Maine to Boston and from Chicago, Cleveland, and Buffalo to Pittsfield, Springfield, Worcester, and Boston.
Around the state:
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, known as the T, operates trolleys, trains, buses, and ferries in the Greater Boston area. The T’s commuter trains go as far as Lowell and Newburyport to the north of Boston; west to Worcester and Fitchburg; and south to Plymouth, Middleborough, and Providence, Rhode Island. Bicycles are allowed on selected buses and trains and all ferries.
Boston is a remarkably compact city. Best travel options: walk, bike, or take the T. Check out the City of Boston’s Boston Bikes program for a free bike map and other bike-friendly programs. For a nominal fee, you can hop on a sturdy bike from New Balance Hubway, Boston's new bike share program. Pick up and drop off bikes throughout the city.
Heading to Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, or Nantucket Island? Take a ferry or plane, then hop on a bus or rent a bike. Details.
More car-free options:
Many of Massachusetts’ hotels, restaurants, and attractions have developed programs to reduce power, conserve water, and reduce solid waste while maintaining superior service to their guests and visitors.
For a tourism business that has environmental programs in place, its listing will include a link to information on their Web site that explains their green programs.
In addition, some tourism businesses have met one of the national green standards: ENERGY STAR (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency), LEED (the U.S. Green Building Council), Green Seal (Green Seal), Green Key Eco-Rating Program (Green Key Global), and Certified Green Restaurants(Green Restaurant Association). To search for a certified hotel, attraction, restaurant, or store, check the Green Certified boxes in the Amenities section when conducting a search.
GREEN CERTIFIED BUSINESSES
L LEED (through 2008)
ES ENERGY STAR
GS Green Seal
GK Green Key Eco-Rating
CGR Certified Green Restaurants
|ES||Andover SpringHill Suites||Andover|
|ES||Courtyard by Marriott - Andover||Andover|
|ES||Boston Andover Residence Inn||Andover|
|GK||Boston Omni Parker House||Boston|
|ES||Back Bay Hotel||Boston|
|ES||DoubleTree Guest Suites Boston||Boston|
|GK||Fairmont Battery Wharf||Boston|
|GK||Fairmont Copley Plaza||Boston|
|ES||Doubletree Hotel Boston-Downtown||Boston|
|ES||Hyatt Regency Boston||Boston|
|ES||The Lenox Hotel||Boston|
|GK||The Lenox Hotel||Boston|
|GK||Nine Zero Hotel||Boston|
|GK||Ritz-Carlton Boston Common||Boston|
|GK||W Boston Hotel & Residences||Boston|
|GK||Westin Boston Waterfront||Boston|
|ES||Westin Copley Place||Boston|
|GS||Westin Copley Place||Boston|
|GK||Westin Copley Place||Boston|
|ES||Boston Marriott Burlington||Burlington|
|ES||The Inn at Harvard||Cambridge|
|ES||Irving House at Harvard||Cambridge|
|ES||The Royal Sonesta Hotel||Cambridge|
|GK||Motel 6 -- Chicopee||Chicopee|
|ES||Courtyard Marriott Boston Danvers||Danvers|
|GK||Motel 6 -- Danvers||Danvers|
|ES||The TownePlace Suites Marriott||Danvers|
|ES||Courtyard by Marriott Boston Foxborough||Foxborough|
|GK||Motel 6 -- Framingham||Framingham|
|GK||Wyndham Bentley Brook||Hancock|
|GK||Motel 6 -- Leominster||Leominster|
|ES||Courtyard by Marriott||Lowell|
|ES||Courtyard Boston Milford||Milford|
|ES||Courtyard by Marriott||Norwood|
|ES||Boston Marriott - Peabody||Peabody|
|ES||Peabody SpringHill Suites||Peabody|
|ES||Boston Marriott Quincy||Quincy|
|ES||Comfort Inn & Suites Boston/Airport||Revere|
|GK||Comfort Inn & Suites Boston/Airport||Revere|
|GK||Motel 6 -- Sturbridge||Sturbridge|
|ES||TownePlace Suites Boston Tewksbury||Tewksbury|
|GK||Motel 6 -- Westborough||Westborough|
|ES||Residence Inn by Marriott Boston/Westborough||Westborough|
|ES||Boston/Woburn North Courtyard by Marriott||Woburn|
|ES||Courtyard by Marriott - Worcester||Worcester|
|L||Boston Children’s Museum||Boston|
|L||Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum||Boston|
|L||Provincetown Art Association & Museum||Provincetown|
|L||Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary||Wellfleet|
|CGR||Boloco||Boston, Cambridge, Medford, Natick, Wellesley (17 locations)|
|CGR||Biel & RumBa restaurants||Boston|
|CGR||New England Aquarium||Boston|
|CGR||Straight Wharf Restaurant||Nantucket|
The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation manages one of the largest state parks systems in the country. Its 450,000 acres comprise forests, rural and urban parks, greenways, historic sites and landscapes, seashores, lakes, ponds, reservoirs and watersheds.
Places to go/things to do:
More things to do in state parks
Visiting Boston? Stroll, picnic, and play in the Rose Kennedy Greenway, a brand-new one-mile linear park that replaced Boston’s elevated highway.
The great diversity of the Massachusetts landscape ranges from mountain peaks to pristine barrier beaches. The Trustees of Reservations is at the forefront of protecting properties of exceptional scenic, historic, and ecological value – 100 properties and 25,000 acres to date.
Places to go/things to do:
Experience the wonders of nature up close. MassWildlife, the state agency responsible for protecting wildlife, has mapped out 67 prime viewing sites along with viewing tips. Look for the brown binocular road signs indicating the sites.
Mass Audubon protects more than 34,000 acres of ecologically significant land in Massachusetts, and it is a leader in applying green technology to its existing and new buildings. Its sanctuaries represent some of the most spectacular habitats in Massachusetts, ranging from beaches and salt marshes on Cape Cod to woodlands and mountains in the Berkshires.
Places to go/things to do:
Massachusetts’ farmers welcome visitors. Here’s how to get a taste of rural life:
See renewable and energy conservation programs at work!
See wind power at work
Wind turbines are now becoming a common sight in Massachusetts. Here are some that are easy to visit.
See solar power at work
See a Green roof grow
Before you leave home:
During your Massachusetts getaway:
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