Mariton Wildlife Sanctuary
GOOD FOR: Ages 5-8
RATING:


Source:Outdoors with Kids Philadelphia (AMC Books)
Address:240 Sunnyside Road, Easton, PA
Hours:Dawn to dusk daily
Fee: Free
Contact:

natlands.org, 610-258-6574
 

Bathrooms: Outside the nature center
Water/Snacks: None
Map:

natlands.org (click on List of Preserves, then Mariton)
 


High on a rocky bluff overlooking the Delaware River, look for wildlife along trails in woods and meadows.

Mariton Wildlife Sanctuary
Photo by: Amy Dougherty

Natural Lands Trust’s Mariton Wildlife Sanctuary is a 200-acre nature preserve on the bluffs overlooking the Delaware River just north of Riegelsville, at the line between Bucks and Northampton counties. Its 4 miles of wellmaintained trails are sure to entertain kids; they range from gentle old roads bordered by stone walls to steep, rocky climbs. All are short and easily followed, marked by color-coded posts. This is a nice place for kids to practice mapreading because the trail system is not complicated, but it has enough choices to make it interesting.

The small nature center is a good place for families to get oriented. You’ll find exhibits about the many different kinds of wildlife to be spotted here during every season, from songbirds to butterflies. Mariton features lovely trails that traverse a wide variety of habitat, from old mature woods with towering trees, to young woods, to hilltops maintained as meadows. Kids will especially enjoy climbing onto rock outcrops to take in the views. River Lookout Trail, which connects to Main Trail next to the nature center, features the most dramatic vista, looking down onto the river from the top of an east-facing cliff (supervise children closely here). Chimney Rock, a little farther along Main Trail, has views through the woods from large boulders perched on a rise in the woods. Take Main Trail in the opposite direction to reach North Fox Trail and the Pine Circle overlook, from which you can see the woods from a steep, north-facing angle. While views are best in winter and early spring when the leaves are off the trees, Mariton’s woods are beautiful in fall when the leaves are turning color. The meadows are best in summer when the wildflowers are out.

Remember: Dogs must be leashed. Stay on trails.

Plan B:

Take in the views of the river from a different vantage point: Walk along the Delaware Canal Towpath.

Where to Eat Nearby:

Go back downhill to the borough of Riegelsville, on PA 611, where there are a few small stores and caf├ęs.



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