Near enough for regular visits, but with a feeling of remoteness that will transport you far from your cares, Farandnear lives up to its name.
What Makes Farandnear a Special Place?
Farandnear was the summer home of Arthur Banks – an accomplished political scientist and professor – and his family for several generations. Banks’ grandfather, Charles Goodspeed, named the property, because, at 50 miles from his home in Wollaston, it was “far” enough to require a two-days’ journey by horse to reach, but “near” enough to be a vacation home. Farandnear will be open for you to enjoy, forever, thanks to the generosity of Arthur Banks, The Trustees of Reservations, and people like you.
What to See and Do
There’s more than meets the eye at Farandnear. Its park-like grounds are perfect for playing, picnicking, relaxing, and more. Along its 2.7 miles of easy wooded trails, you’ll find fields of wildflowers; an arboretum full of more than 80 cool conifer trees; and the remnants of an old cranberry bog. And don’t miss “Paradise,” where huge hemlocks grow.
Fun for You
LISTEN: You’ll hear lots of birds calling, including black-capped chickadees, catbirds, and barred owls.
COUNT: How many butterflies and dragonflies can you see in the wildflower fields?
PLAY: Race around the trees in the arboretum.
LOOK: You might find black bear, bobcat, or deer tracks on the ground.
2.5 mi. of trails
When to Visit
Year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset.
Please observe these rules and regulations when you visit Farandnear:
The Trustees reserves the right to photograph or video visitors and program participants for promotional use, and usage of our properties implies consent. Find the full policy here.
Center Road, Shirley, MA 01464
Get directions on Google Maps.
From Points East
From I-495 S take exit 29B to merge onto MA-2 W toward Leominster. Take exit 36 toward Shirley Road/Shirley. Merge onto Fort Pond Road (0.1 mi). Turn left onto Shirley Road (0.9 mi) and continue onto Lancaster Road (1.2 mi). Take a slight left onto Center Road (1.6 mi) and parking for Farandnear will be on your left.
From Points West
From MA-2 E take exit 36 toward Shirley Road. Keep right at the fork, follow signs for Shirley Road/Shirley/Ayer and merge onto Shirley Road (1.0 mi). Continue onto Lancaster Road (1.2 mi). Take a slight left onto Center Road (1.6 mi) and parking for Farandnear will be on your left.
When to Visit
Year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset. Allow a minimum of ½ hour.
FREE to all
For more information about becoming a member, click here.
Management Planning for Our Properties
Since 1891, The Trustees of Reservations have worked to protect special places in Massachusetts and maintain them to the highest standards. To ensure these standards are met, a program of careful planning and sound management is essential. Comprehensive property management plans are created for each reservation and are completely updated approximately every ten years. We often work with volunteers, property users, and members of the community to carry out this planning, which typically involves several steps:
Trail maps are available at the bulletin board in the parking lot. Please understand that supplies periodically run out. We recommend that you download a trail map before you visit.
Before You Go
Wherever your travels take you, please observe all posted regulations, follow special instructions from property staff, and keep in mind the Stewardship Code:
Click on links below for further visitor information:
Dog Walkers’ Etiquette
Before Setting Out
Enjoying other Trustees Properties
Opportunities for Hunting on Designated Trustees’ Properties
We encourage you to visit as many Trustees properties as you can.
We’d love to hear about your visit! Here are three easy ways to let us know what you think:
Our challenge to get out and hit the trails. Hike 125 miles between May 21 & December 31 and be entered to win prizes.
Let's get hiking >>