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Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

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Traveler Overview
  • Excellent77%
  • Very good19%
  • Average2%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“parker river”(31 reviews)
“bird watching”(30 reviews)
“piping plovers”(16 reviews)
Covering 4,662 acres of diverse upland and wetland habitats, this refuge was established to preserve the feeding, resting and nesting areas of migratory birds.
Suggested duration: 2-3 hours
6 Plum Island Turnpike, Newburyport, MA 01950-3220
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Reviews (310)
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All reviews parker river bird watching piping plovers visitor's center snowy owl bring binoculars national park pass entrance fee salt marsh wonderful place to explore late summer parking lot off season beautiful beach sea birds summer months wild turkeys
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1 - 10 of 307 reviews
Reviewed yesterday via mobile

The Visitors Center is worth a visit. Neat exhibits and an excellent 12 minute video. Plus the volunteer was very informative as to how to approach Plum Island. Note that the beaches are closed to protect the nesting Piping Plovers.

Date of experience: May 2019
Thank mgerhardt
Reviewed March 20, 2019

Beautiful area, staff super friendly and knowledgeable. Chilly day so we only took a short walk this time.

Date of experience: March 2019
Thank Cheryl F
Reviewed December 30, 2018 via mobile

We don’t go often, but this is a special place and worthy of many visits at any time of the year. Nature and the seasons dictate what you can explore; but, it doesn’t matter. Each time of year has its highlights. Bring binoculars and a...More

Date of experience: December 2018
Thank TraceM49
Reviewed November 6, 2018 via mobile

Since the boardwalk has been closed for repairs it was nice to be able to walk the dice which is normally closed.Some hawk activity, but just nice to have a different perspective.

Date of experience: October 2018
1  Thank Harry A
Reviewed October 29, 2018 via mobile

This place is a gem! On the weekends they offer free tours in a van with a guide . Saturday mornings and Sunday afternoons. A group of 14 people are taken out with a tour guide and get to see a lot of behind the...More

Date of experience: October 2018
2  Thank travel-hawthorne
Reviewed October 15, 2018

I visited here several years ago and decided I needed another trip. It was raining when we arrived so we visited the visitor center. The staff in there was very informative. The displays were great and helped us plan what we wanted to see while...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank kman1130
Reviewed October 2, 2018 via mobile

Parker River Refuge is a spectacular place to walk for miles. You’ll see so many types of birds, find shells and maybe see a seal. In the winter the Snowy Owl are often seen.

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank 7Pontosave
Reviewed September 25, 2018

This is the southern part of Plum Island reached by a causeway from Newburyport. The refugee is a Federal property, and there is an entrance fee. It is several miles along a paved road from the entrance to the tip of the island. It is...More

Date of experience: September 2018
2  Thank Michael M
Reviewed September 6, 2018

This place is not far alway from Boston. But the beach is very nice, which is comparable to Cape Cod. And there are many birds on the right side. You may find snowy owl there on winter. They charge 5 dollars per car, but leave...More

Date of experience: August 2018
2  Thank zimingz2015
Reviewed September 1, 2018 via mobile

I cycled here whilst staying on Plum Island. It was beautiful and plenty of bird hides - or blinds. Amazing access to the beach too though this is not possible April to mid August whilst the piping plovers are nesting. Saw lots of birds but...More

Date of experience: August 2018
1  Thank carolinet146
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Questions & Answers
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Karen B
March 3, 2017|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from RonT833 | Reviewed this property |
Parker River admin contact: 978-465-5753, parkerriver@fws.gov
September 25, 2016|
AnswerShow all 11 answers
Response from mucontinent | Reviewed this property |
That is correct still to date
July 9, 2015|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from Gscriven | Reviewed this property |
Not sure of the location of the reading nook, but we walked every trail in the park except the Bird Blind trail as the small parking lot was always full. I think the reading nook may be located at the park headquarters and... More