Gore Place
GOOD FOR: All Ages

Source:Outdoors with Kids Boston (AMC Books)
Address:52 Gore Street, Waltham, MA
Hours:Grounds, dawn to dusk daily
Fee: Grounds: free; mansion tour: adults, $12; children ages 5–12, $5; children under age 5, free

goreplace.org; 781-894-2798

Bathrooms: None (unless you pay to rent a backpack or take a tour)
Water/Snacks: None

USGS Newton

At this historic property you can rent an activity backpack that will have kids racing around to explore the grounds and farmyard.

A small barnyard at historic Gore Place is home to sheep, goats, chickens, and rabbits.
Photo by: Kim Foley MacKinnon

Gore Place, a Federal period house built in 1806, was the estate of Massachusetts governor Christopher Gore. Rescued from demolition in the 1930s and restored by the nonprofit Gore Place Society, the 48-acre property consists of the mansion, manicured grounds, gardens, and a barnyard that tots will adore.

You can go right into the fenced-in barnyard to say hello to the animals— sheep, goats, chickens, and seemingly dozens of rabbits. Gore Place’s fantastic backpack program for kids is called Take A Walk and is offered year-round and changes with the seasons. For $5, you have use of a backpack that contains binoculars, a magnifying glass, and seasonal activities that take kids around the property for an hour. Backpacks for kids ages 3 to 8 are available, as well as themed ones, such as Archaeology, Raised Garden Beds, and Math Challenge for elementary-school-aged children. The backpacks are available Mondays through Fridays 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Saturdays from noon to 3 p.m. In winter, you can also rent snowshoes for $5.

On a 10-acre field, Gore Place grows a variety of crops; much of the food is donated to charities, but some of it is for sale. An honor-system farm stand is located behind the Farmer’s Cottage next to the barns. In season, a flag with the word “open” means you can come see what’s in stock. You might find squash, garlic, onions, or other produce. Bring exact change and leave it in a box provided.

Several fun events are scheduled at the property over the course of the year, including a sheep-shearing festival, a Jane Austen tour, Santa’s tea, full-moon house tours, and preschool story hours. Visit the website for details.

Remember: The mansion is open only for guided tours. Call ahead to check the hours in case a special event is scheduled.

Plan B:

Habitat Education Center and Wildlife Sanctuary offers a chance to see more animals in the wild.

Where to Eat Nearby:

You’ll find places to eat on Main Street.


Get outdoor tips & trips
Yes, I want to receive expert advice on getting my family outside!



Castle Island »
boardwalk, swimming, concession stand
2010 Day Boulevard South Boston 02127

Mary O'Malley Waterfront Park »
The park extends along the beach of the Mystic River
59 Commandants Way Chelsea, MA 02150

Alewife Reservation »
beavers, turtles, hawks, muskrats, ospreys, and more!
Acorn Park Drive, Cambridge, MA 02140

Rock Meadow Conservation Area »
walk, bike, birding, swingset
Mill Street and Concord Avenue, Belmont, MA


Castle Island »
boardwalk, swimming, concession stand
2010 Day Boulevard South Boston 02127

Piers Park »
skyline views, sailing center, spray park
95 Marginal Street, Boston, MA 02128

Belle Isle Marsh Reservation »
Salt marsh, observation tower
Bennington Street, East Boston, MA

© 2023 Appalachian Mountain Club | 10 City Square, Boston, MA 02129
About | Privacy Policy | Contact Us