Scramble across ledges scarred for eons by wind and wave, and examine tide pools teeming with marine life.
At Halibut Point Reservation, bird watchers get an eyeful from this low coastal shelf overlooking dramatic surf, where storms wallop the craggy shore, and tidal pools harbor snails, hermit crabs, and sea stars. The state park adjacent to the reservation surrounds the former Babson Farm Quarry, where granite was quarried at the turn of the 20th century and used to build thousands of streets, bridges, tunnels, monuments, warehouses, and buildings.
Today, the quarry is filled by natural underground springs. Tidal pools harbor snails, hermit crabs, and sea stars. Weather-beaten bluffs make up a low rocky coastal shelf covered in bayberry, greenbriar, and shadbush, and during storms, waves crash over the rocky shore.
Follow two and a half miles of trails and get a glimpse of the reservation’s natural wonders. Elsewhere, the adjacent state park operates a small visitor center and museum that tells the story of Cape Ann’s historic granite industry.
When to Visit
Year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset. Allow a minimum of 1 hour, 2 hours if visiting state park and its visitor center and museum.
Parking for Halibut Point Reservation is shared with Halibut Point State Park. Admission is FREE for Trustees members, pedestrians, and bicyclists, but you must display your Trustees member sticker on the dashboard of your vehicle, with your membership number and expiration date clearly visible, in order to ensure free parking.
Parking fee for nonmembers year-round. Nonmembers may use the following parking passes for free parking:
Memorial Day through Labor Day:
Rockport, MA 01966
From Rt. 128 Exit 9, take Rt. 127 North for 3 mi. At Rockport Center, turn left onto Railroad Ave. (remains Rt. 127) and follow for 2.4 mi. Turn right onto Gott Ave. Entrance and parking (70 cars) on right.
Please note :The facilities at Halibut Point State Park are presently closed due to Covid-19.
The state park operates a small visitor center and museum devoted to Halibut Point’s natural history and Cape Ann’s historic granite quarrying industry, of which Halibut Point’s Babson Farm Quarry was a major part. The visitor center has public restrooms.
2.5 miles of trails. Moderate walking. The reservation is a link in Rockport’s Atlantic Path.
Interpretive brochure with map available for free from the gatehouse attendant and the State Park’s visitor center. The brochure covers both Halibut Point State Park (Department of Conservation and Recreation) and The Trustees’ Halibut Point Reservation. Please understand that supplies periodically run out.
We recommend that you take a photo of the map on your phone so you can refer to it during your visit, or download a trail map before you head out.
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Halibut Point was once home to a large granite-quarrying operation in the years around the turn of the 20th century. Granite quarried here at the turn of the 20th century paved thousands of city streets and built bridges, tunnels, monuments, warehouses, and buildings, such as Boston’s Custom House Tower.
Property Acquisition History
Purchased in 1934 with funds given by Dr. John C. Phillips and Rockport residents.
What a beautiful place to hike through. I loved the different paths. The walk around the quarry was picturesque. Then another path takes you down to the ocean side. Very beautiful. The weather was iffy put it was a great day to spend walking through the area.
– UnikelyFan, TripAdvisor
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