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Newton Park and Conservation Lands

  Nahanton Park

LOCATION: South Newton

A field of cosmos

Newton Conservators trail map   (Buy a copy of our trail guide)

Location and driving directions on Google Maps for entrances at:

Nahanton Street  Winchester Street

MBTA: Route 52   

Other maps and aerial photos:   Newton Assessor   Bing   

Friends of Nahanton Park map

Connects to: Helen Heyn Riverway

Nearby: Cutler Park

SIZE: 57 acres

LONGEST WALK: 0.7 miles

ACQUIRED: 1890 and 1980

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: Parks and Recreation


The park includes riverfront, community garden plots, meadows, wooded hillsides, wild blackberry bushes, wetlands, a pond, and an open plateau overlooking the river valley. The park is used for walking, jogging, canoe launching, fishing, field games, kite flying, picnicking, nature study, cross-country skiing, sledding, and birding. The park is known to attract birders who come from far and wide to observe uncommon birds, particularly during spring and fall migration.

In 2010, Charles River Canoe & Kayak opened a rental facility in the park.


Florrie's Path, a handicapped-accessible path along the Charles River, starts by the nature center building where many summertime programs for children are held.


1890 Newton purchases 25 acres on Winchester St. from Thomas Ranney and John Doyle for the Poor Farm.
1890s Boston Catholic Archdiocese opened Working Boys Home
1900 Almshouse moves from Waban to a new building on Winchester St.
1964 City closes the Almshouse (then known as the City Infirmary).
1968 Newton Public Welfare Department is absorbed by the state.  The Infirmary and Poor Farm are transferred to the Recreation Commission.
1970s Parks and Recreation Commission declines to develop the property as a park.
1980 City purchased 32 acres from Xaverian Brothers with partial reimbursement from Urban Self-Help Program.
1983 Remaining land becomes Jewish Community Center
1987 Park opens.


Friends of Nahanton Park
525 Winchester Street
Newton, MA 02461
Friends of Nahanton Park logo


Help save the Nahanton Park Woodcock Meadow

Woodcock Meadow update December 2017

2015 June Doin'

Tree Swallows (from the Summer 2015 Newsletter)

Natural Resources Inventory and Management Plan (Mass Audubon Society, 2011)

Study done, now it's time to work

Birding in Nahanton Park, by Alison Leary

Birding reports

Charles River Canoe & Kayak

Paddling map

Bird News from Nahanton Park blog

Newton's Almshouses, by Michael J. Clarke

Photo gallery

Use of the park for dumping snow and Christmas trees in 2011

Park to receive temporary fire station, permanent conservation restriction

Spiderweb photo

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