Nickerson State Park, Brewster

4.6
#1 of 10 in Nature in Cape Cod
Nickerson State Park is a state-owned, public recreation area of more than located on Cape Cod in Brewster, Massachusetts. The state park's sandy soil and scrub pines surround many kettle ponds which are dependent on groundwater and precipitation. The largest of these are Cliff Pond (the largest at across), Flax Pond, Little Cliff Pond, and Higgins Pond. Ruth Pond, Keeler's Pond, Eel Pond and Triangle Pond provide additional water habitats.HistoryThe land comprising the state park was once part of the estate of Samuel Mayo Nickerson (1830-1914), an area native and Chicago liquor distiller who made a fortune as one of the founding officers of the First National Bank of Chicago. In 1890, Nickerson built Fieldstone Hall on land overlooking Cape Cod Bay, a mile west of the present-day park, to be the home of his son Roland C. Nickerson, Roland's wife Addie, and their three children, Roland Jr., Samuel, and Helen. Fieldstone Hall was lost to fire in 1906, and a larger mansion was built on the same site. That building subsequently became a seminary and is now a major feature of the upscale resort known as Ocean Edge.Shortly after Fieldstone Hall burned down, Roland Nickerson died at age 51, his death at the time being ascribed to his heartache at the loss of his home and personal possessions. His son, Roland Jr., a naval lieutenant, died in the 1918 influenza epidemic. In 1934, Addie Nickerson donated that portion of the estate on the south side of Route 6a for use as a "state forest park." It became the Commonwealth's first state park and was named in honor of her late husband and late son.
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Nickerson State Park Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
236 reviews
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4.7
TripAdvisor
  • Nickerson StatePark is a gem! lots of trails to hike,lakes to see and plenty of camping areas too.have seen so different kinds of wildlife--deer,fox,coyote and smaller crtitter too. visit for an after...  more »
  • Local staple, unbelievable beach and views, overall a terrific time but the parking situation can be a little overwhelming.  more »
Google
  • I've grown up camping here almost every year with my family and friends. Great facilities, great secluded camping spots, great price. And I LOVE the ponds. I could play/swim in them for hours.
  • Spent a weekend here camping. Not too busy and campsite was clean and the staff was nice. I really enjoyed kayaking on the lake, was very tranquil!
  • A nice way to get away from the bustle. The Cape Cod rail trail clips through a corner of the park. There's a variety of camp sites available and a bunch of easy trails around a series of ponds. It's easy to forget these other options on the cape, aside from the beaches.
  • A state park, we had to pay to park. Beautiful winding roads, lots of biking and hiking trails. We got lost, just driving, it took a while to find our way out of the park. Lots of campsites.
  • This is my favorite place to go camping on the Cape. Big sites with space between them so you really feel like you have some room to unfurl with your friends and family. Fire pits allow for campfire cooking and the camp store sells firewood. The best part are the ponds and beaches though. Higgins and Little Cliff are my personal favorites although this can change is water levels rise from flooding or there is abundant algae growth. If you snorkel, there are fish, turtles and frogs or tadpoles to see depending on the time of year you visit.

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