Swimming Spots for Spot in / around Boston
Updated: May 17, 2020
This is a compilation of places we have visited and places our members have told us about so please double check with the linked pages to make sure info is still accurate. Generally clicking on the place's name will link to a site with more info, the city or address will link to Google Maps. Info in quotes was provided by friends. If you have more info on any of these spots, have another spot to add, or if one becomes no longer dog friendly, please feel free to message us so we can update!
Hopkinton State Park 164 Cedar St Hopkinton, MA 01748 - This state park charges for parking but has lots of acres of trails to walk + a swim-able lake for dogs + humans. Added bonus - the boat rental place lets you bring dogs in their kayaks / paddleboards
Scorton Creek Sandwich, MA - We don't know anything about this place but someone told us dogs could swim here - let us know if you have more info / photos!
Cape Cod National Seashore Beaches - someone told us "The Cape Cod National Seashore allows dogs on the beaches as long as they are on a 6ft leash and you are past the lifeguard-ed area. Coastguard Beach in Eastham has shuttles when its crowded and those do not allow dogs so you would have to walk from the far parking lot if you get there later in the day."
Ashland State Park 156 West Union St, Ashland, MA 01721 - There are parking fees here. Apparently dogs are not allowed on the main lifeguard-ed area but if you hike past the main beach there are lots of lovely coves & islands
Fresh Pond Reservation Fresh Pond Pkwy Cambridge, MA 02138 - Parking is only for Cambridge residents w/ sticker and they are pretty strict on it. Cambridge resident dogs are allowed off leash (I believe must have Cambridge dog license to prove residency) but there is apparently a small swim area here!
Nahant Dog Beach - Opposite Tides, Nahant, MA - Across from the Tides restaurant / Dunkin Donuts area and into Nahant a bit is an always dog friendly beach. In other words, it's the Boston-facing side, not the people beach side. You either have to pay for parking @ Nahant Beach (during the season) or come off hours (before 8am, after 5pm). Low tide is best for this one since high tide eats up most of the beach real estate.
Callahan State Park Framingham, MA pond allows dogs off-leash
Stoddard's Neck Hingham, MA Lots of dogs, lots of off-leash dogs (not sure if this is technically legal or just what happens in practice) but it's a peninsula so water on most sides.
Lake Waban Wellesley - on-leash but someone told us she's seen dogs swimming there.
Cat Rock Dog Park has water access but changed their parking to resident only, I believe
Beach under the Bridge between Seacost & Hampton - From one of our friends "I live in Hampton Beach NH and although the main beach doesn't allow dogs there is an area that ppl bring dogs to. There is a parking area near Al's (across the street from the State park) not too far that has decent day rates. Walk over the bridge about 5-10 mins to the right or left just under the bridge. Ppl fish there, hang out and it doesn't have life guards or any postings."
Possibly Weir Hill?
Salisbury Beach on the river side
York, Maine "Not Boston, but just an hour North. After 6pm the beach is open to dogs."
Squantum Point Quincy, MA - "Sandy ocean beach. No life guards. Go closer to high tide because the water recedes a lot leaving muck and sharp shells. Dogs gather by the big stairs at the far end. The dogs are all off leash too though the park is technically on leash."
Gooseberry Island Westport, MA - "This place is a gem the water is warm you can bring your kayaks or hangout in the island with the pups."
Medfield State Hospital "I believe there is a spot to get down to the Charles river and the water I believe is pretty calm there."
Buffumville Charlton, MA - "
There is free disc golf, hiking, and boating as well. Dogs must be leashed."
Cutler Park 140 Kendrick St, Needham, MA - "Cutler park is good. Parking lot, easy access to the water, dogs are supposed to be leashed."