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Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve
Open today: 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
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Review Highlights
The bay watch

The walk was pleasant and not too tiring--the bay was alive with osprey and we saw horseshoe crabs... read more

Reviewed December 23, 2017
Henry M
,
North Hampton, New Hampshire
Lovely place to visit

This is called the Great Bay Discovery Center on Google maps. There's a short boardwalk and a trail... read more

Reviewed June 13, 2017
Stewart T
,
Boston, Massachusetts
via mobile
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Reviewed October 12, 2016

We had a perfect day at the Discovery Center. The friendly staff take time to answer questions. The new walkway is impressive. Dress warmly. The breeze off the bay can be quite chilly at times!

Date of experience: October 2016
1  Thank phyllisd762
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed October 11, 2016

Very kewl spot with hikes and lots of kewl things. I will post pics so u can see. Did a few different trails. Great for kids and adults.

Date of experience: October 2016
1  Thank Dibird50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 13, 2016

Science-based events and exhibits for the Great Bay Estuary, itself a hidden gem of the New Hampshire seacoast area. Good for kids and adults alike with many hands-on activities and just plain fun. Information on the status of Great Bay and the science currently being conducted there, with trained guides/docents to help you maximize your intake.

Date of experience: July 2016
1  Thank simplegifts2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 3, 2016

The Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve encompasses over 10,000 acres. Most of it is water and wetlands that includes Great Bay and Little Bay. The reserve begins at the General Sullivan Bridge on Dover Point and extends through to Stratham.

Public access by land is at several places including the Evelyn Browne Trail at Adams Point in Durham, the Cy and Bobbie Sweet Trail in Durham, Chapman's Landing in Stratham, and Sandy Point at the Great Bay Discovery Center in Greenland.

On my most-recent visit, I entered at Sandy Point at the Great Bay Discovery Center, the reserve’s educational facility.

The center has interpretive exhibits and a touch tank. There are exhibits on horseshoe crabs, oysters, and other creatures that inhabit Great Bay. One can learn about tides, plankton, salmon migration, and research on the Bay. I particularly liked the interactive exhibit about farming salt marsh hay and the special tools used for harvesting that crop.

The center had a lot of printed material. I saw several issues of the “Wild Times” which is a publication for youngsters. One issue taught about forests and wildlife inhabitants. There was a good section on identifying the various evergreens. Another had information on what each animal eats. A third was about what an estuary is. A fourth was about the four layers of soil. They were all educational and well done.

From the center, I trekked down to the kayak launch area and then walked the trails and boardwalk. The loop of boardwalk trails is about ½ mile. The boardwalk was redone for 2016. The trails go though different habitats that include upland forest, fields, eelgrass beds, salt marshes, mudflats, and rocky inter-tidal zones. There are several interpretive info boards along the way. The views of the bay from the far end of the loop are very scenic.

On the Woodland Trail, one finds a replica of a Native American summer fishing camp with a rounded wigwam covered in birch bark. Inside the wigwam are benches used during educational programs. When the Native Americans lived there, they slept on similar benches. The construction of the wigwam was interesting.

Admissions to the preserve and related Discovery Center are free.

I highly recommend this attraction and the adjacent Great Bay Discovery Center. Both are wonderful family attractions for all ages that afford opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and to learn about the Great Bay Estuary in a fun way.

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Date of experience: August 2016
3  Thank Maurene_K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 22, 2016 via mobile

On the day we went the center itself was not open so we could not get much info on the area. They have about a half mile of trails, some of which go to the bay. The area is pretty and quiet. Looks like there is potential for additional trails which would be nice.

Date of experience: August 2016
1  Thank Bden99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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