Sandy Point State Reservation

42.789206, -70.806415
(Parker River National Wildlife Refuge)
http://www.fws.gov/refuge/Parker_River/  
http://www.fws.gov/uploadedFiles/Region_5/NWRS/North_Zone/Parker_River_Complex/Parker_River/ParkerRiverMap.pdf 
Refuge Road
Ipswich, MA 01938
(978) 462-4481
Essex County

Sandy Point State Reservation is located in the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge in Ispwich, Massachusetts with both locations having beaches open to the public. The 6.5 mile drive from the entrance to Sandy Point Reservation is scenic with many stopping points for viewing wildlife. A gate attendant over-sees car traffic going in and out of the reservation where parking is limited and regulated to 50 parking spaces. The beach areas are scattered with driftwood at the back-end of the beach near the dunes. Numerous shells are scattered throughout the beach with small amounts of seaweed pushed up from high tide. During high tide the beach has ample space, due to the sheer size of the beach and the limited parking. Entry into the water is gradual, but the water does have a strong undertow. Four additional beach access points are available, each with long walks to the beach. Only one access point has bathrooms, with each beach having the same conditions as the Sandy Point Beach Reservation. Sandy Point State Reservation is not a quick stop location; a portion of the 6.5 mile drive is on a dirt road, and the speed limit is 25mph; however, it is a great location for those who appreciate untouched nature and solitude. This location has a portion of the beach closed for most of the summer months (April 1st through late summer) due to the breeding of the Piping Plover. Two beaches remain open for the entire season: Lot 1 closest to the main entrance and Lot 7, furthest from the main entrance. Restrictions are posted. Frequently asked questions regarding the closure can found at this link: http://www.fws.gov/uploadedFiles/pipingploverFAQs2014(1).pdf. 

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Hours Of Operation

Sunrise to sunset year-round, weather permitting

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Parking

$5 per car
$2, walking or biking, 16 and older
$20, commercial vehicles with 20 or fewer passengers
$30, commercial vehicles holding 20 or more passengers
For more group permit information please see the link: Permit Information
 Vehicle Annual passes are available for $20.

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Life Guard Schedule

N/A

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Campfires

Not allowed

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Food

Sandy Point State Reservation is a carry in/carry out beach with food vendors available within 5-10 minutes driving.

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Lodging

Motels/hotels and rentals are within 5-10 minutes driving.

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Pets

Pets are not allowed on the beach at anytime. The parking attendant will turn your car away if there is a pet in it.

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Picnic Area

No designated picnic areas; there is a picnic table located in the parking area near Emerson Rocks.

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Playground

N/A

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Public Transportation

The Cape Ann Transportation Authority (CATA) operates in the area. http://www.canntran.com/purpleLineCrane.cfm

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Restrooms / Showers

There are three areas with restrooms. The facilities closest to the entrance are the most modern and cleanest. The other two bathroom areas are similar to out-houses.

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Surfing/Kayaking/Paddle Boarding

Surfing and paddle boarding are not allowed at Sandy Point State Reservation or at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Kayaking and canoeing are allowed at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Canoe and Kayak Information

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Walking Trails

Walking trails are located throughout Sandy Point State Reservation. The Hellcat Interpretive Trail is a 1.4 mile walk through marshes and dunes. Walking Trail Information 

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Water Quality

N/A

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Water Temperature

http://ma.usharbors.com/harbor-guide/plum-island-sound/weather
(Click on “View more buoy data” to view water temperature.) 

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