Discover the great outdoors at The Adventure Park at Heritage Museums & Gardens!
Heritage Museums & Gardens strives to provide visitors with great experiences that align with our mission to promote outdoor discovery and build strong families. This new educational experience offers great opportunities for visitors to learn about trees and the environment that will surround the aerial experience. The Adventure Park is sited on land that hasn’t been open to the public before – the place where Charles Dexter’s famous hybridized rhododendron seedlings were tested.
Additionally, since its inception Heritage has been part of the ‘Let’s Move! Museums’ program – a national network of museums offering exhibits and programs that get children moving in healthy ways. The Adventure Park fits perfectly with our commitment to this national initiative and to providing healthy, educational outlets for our community’s young and young at heart.
The Adventure Park at Heritage Museums & Gardens is located on four wooded acres on Heritage-owned land that has not been previously open to visitors. The focus is a forest experience, with many opportunities for learning about forest ecology and geology as well as physics. It offers two experience options:
On the Ground:
Interpretive pathways on the ground will guide visitors through the landscape to experience the beauty of Heritage’s world renowned Dexter rhododendrons, see patterns in the forest, and understand the natural world from a new vantage point. Trail length: 1,368 linear feet (about ¼ mile) of trails
In the Trees:
Above, on five “aerial trails” of varying degrees of difficulty, visitors will experience the tree canopy, be treated to unparalleled views of the gardens and partake in a fun and educational outdoor discovery experience.
The Adventure Park is filled with great educational elements.
- On the ground, aerial features ten stops with fun and educational signage that engage visitors in learning about forest formation, history, workings of a forest ecosystem, interdependence and interactions within forest ecosystems, forest succession and human impact on ecosystems.
- Interactive components include opportunities to see and touch tree rings, listen to and identify forest sounds, and learn the names and distinguishing features for Pitch Pine, White Pine, Black Oak, American Beech, and Pignut Hickory trees.
- In the trees, it offers educational signage focused on motion, gravity, energy, magnetism, and friction.
Nature lovers will enjoy wonderful sights!
The aerial trails afford views of some of the nicest Rhododendrons on the property. Participants will also see a typical New England forest ecosystem that includes several tree species, high bush and low bush blueberries, mountain laurel and other shrubs. They might also see squirrels and chipmunks and a variety of local birds, including chickadees and finches, and if they are lucky, Heritage’s resident red-tailed hawk.
In addition you will learn:
- Woodland geology and ecology
- Cape Cod habitat and ecosystem
- Self- reliance skills
- Teamwork skills
For schools, Heritage offers two sixty-minute school programs for Grades 6-8 set on the grounds of The Adventure Park. Visit our School Field Trips page to learn more.
Enjoy the five aerial trails through the treetops of our forest adventure park. Over 60 tree to tree bridges and 7 zip lines will challenge your strength, strategy and balance. Like a ski mountain, each trail is color coded for difficulty, allowing beginners to experts to select their own challenges. Climbers as well as non-climbing observers will also enjoy the interpretive pathways on the ground, filled with educational information about the forest ecosystem.
Climb & Museum Visit Combo Ticket
Spend a full day at Heritage Museums & Gardens, enjoying both The Adventure Park and the main museum grounds including the Auto Gallery, the Carousel, the Windmill, and the various gardens and indoor exhibits. You’ll need approximately 2.5 hours (min.). for The Adventure Park and approximately 2 hrs. for the museum. Save yourself lots of time, and pre-purchase your tickets; your harness will be ready for you when you arrive along with your museum admission voucher! After that, it’s all FUN IN THE TREES!
Last Call Climb (Summer Schedule)
Big Savings at Last Call: our twilight adventure climb! Guests reserving in the final 2 hours of the day love the big discounts and find the shorter climbing time more to their liking. Last Call climbers have full access to the Yellow, Green, and Blue trails. Please keep in mind that the most challenging trail, the Black Course, closes earlier than the easier and intermediate trials and generally is not available to Last Call climbers. Pre-purchase your tickets and your harness will be ready for you when you arrive! After that, it’s all FUN IN THE TREES!