A walk through Woods Hole can lead to some the most wonderful places: past idyllic Eel Pond and its eclectic houseboats, past dozens of charismatic New England style cottages, alongside lovingly tended perennial gardens, and to Nobska Light, a scenic spot overlooking Vineyard Sound.
Here are four great walks that will help you fall in love with walking in Woods Hole. The first three walks begin and end at the sundial in Waterfont Park on the left side of Water Street, facing the stately brick Lillie Laboratory Building at the Marine Biological Laboratory. Walk number four is in Falmouth, a short drive up the road from Woods Hole.
Walk #1: Eel Pond Loop
Roundtrip Distance: .5 miles
Time: Approximately 20 minutes
Stand with your back to the sundial in Waterfront Park on Water Street, the head left down Water Street toward the Fisheries Building and past its docks. At the end of Water Street, turn right onto Albatross Street. Walk down Albatross Street to Millfield Street and take a right. Follow Millfield Street to the end and take a right onto School Street. Take in the view of Eel Pond from this street. Follow it to the end to Water Street and turn right, looping back to your starting point in Waterfront Park.
Walk #2: Windy Day Walk
Roundtrip Distance: 1.5 miles
Time: About 30 minutes
Note: Because this route is more sheltered than the others, it is especially good for windy days.
Facing Lillie Laboratory and with your back to the Waterfront Park sundial, head to the left down Water Street toward the Fisheries Building. At the end of Water Street, turn right onto Albatross Street. Follow Albatross Street, which turns into Gardiner Road. Follow Gardiner around and up the hill until you reach Whitman Road. Turn right and walk until you reach Quissett Avenue. Go right on Quissett Avenue and follow it past Millfield Street, at which point it becomes School Street. Keep walking until you reach the intersection of School and Water Streets. Turn right onto Water Street to return to Waterfront Park.
Walk #3: Lighthouse Lovers Walk
Roundtrip Distance: 3 miles
Time: 1 hour
Facing Lillie Laboratory and with your back to the Waterfront Park sundial, head to the right and take Water Street through town to Route 28/Woods Hole Road. Continue past the Coast Guard Base and Little Harbor. Stay on Woods Hole Road until you reach Nobska Road. Go right onto Nobska Road, continue to the end of the road, and take another right. Eventually you'll come to the lighthouse, which will put you on Church Street. Continue on Church Street to Woods Hole Road and take a right. Continue on Woods Hole Road until you see Harbor Hill Road on the left. Take Harbor Hill Road until it ends, then cross the street to Buzzards Bay Avenue. Continue on Buzzards Bay Avenue until you reach Gardiner Road. Go left on Gardiner Road and continue to North Street. Go left onto North Street, then right onto MBL Street. Follow to the end to return to Waterfront Park.
Walk #4: Revitalizing Spohr Gardens Walk
(45 Fells Road, Falmouth, MA 02540)
Take a short drive up Woods Hole or Surf Drive and treat yourself to walk at this six-acre Cape Cod woodland garden. Springtime at Spohr Garden brings thousands of daffodils, followed by azaleas, rhododendrons and then daylilies. Even if you miss the spring show, you’ll love the revitalizing nature of this walk. From Falmouth, take either Woods Hole Road or Surf Drive towards the ferry. Take a left at the light onto Oyster Pond Road. After 1/2 a mile, turn towards the bay, left onto Fells Road. There is a small parking area near the property at 45 Fells Road. The main gardens and access to Oyster Pond are on the right side of Fells Road.