Need to clear your mind and de-stress?
Nothing helps like a calming walk in the heart of nature.
In fact, forest bathing has become all the rage for its verified health benefits.
Whether you enjoy:
- A leisurely stroll on a smooth and easy trail along the beach
- Or prefer the challenge of trail running
Hiking near Greenwich CT offers miles of trails and something good for all skill levels. Greenwich hiking trails at picturesque parks provide serenity and respite from hectic city life. And they’re all an easy drive from downtown Greenwich and New York City.
Top hiking near Greenwich, CT
Here are some of our favorite hiking trails near Greenwich, CT to relax and delight you.
Map design by Stanton House Inn
Montgomery Pinetum Park and Nature Center
130 Bible Street, Cos Cob
This enchanting park is an homage to the last private owner of the land, Colonel Robert H. Montgomery and his artist wife Nell. When he bought the land back in 1928, what started as a hobby ended in a stunning “pinetum” featuring 850 species of conifers. This was the Colonel’s way of sharing his love of nature with the community. Nell donated the land to the town in 1952 with the caveat visitors must stick to the walking trails to protect the beauty of the 30-acre estate. Since then, its informal footpaths have offered a peaceful setting for locals and tourists alike to enjoy the beauty of the Colonel’s life work.
Greenwich Point Park
11 Tod’s Driftway, Greenwich
Are you looking to take in the beauty of Long Island Sound?
Greenwich Point Park offers an easy 2.35-mile beach loop trail to explore the marshlands and take in the expansive views. A unique feature of this park is its position on a peninsula jutting into the Sound. You can enjoy watching both the sunset and sunrise from here. The beach is also the perfect place to relax after your hike and dip your tired toes into the cooling waters.
Mianus River Park
Cognewaugh Road, Greenwich
This park straddles Greenwich and Stamford, with Greenwich’s entrance on Cognewaugh Road. Of the 391 acres, the Town of Greenwich owns 110. The Mianus River winds through the park, taking a turn to the southwest as it makes its way into Greenwich. It eventually ends at the Long Island Sound. The pond trail is the easier of the two, traveling the lowland area.
A word of warning though:
This becomes a swamp in the wetter months.
You can admire the almost haunting contrast of red maples against mature oak and beech trees leading up the sloping hills to the west. Keep your eyes peeled along the trails for a wide variety of wildlife including bald eagles. The trails also feature 13 points of interest including:
- The Wetlands
- The Brothers Brook Dam
- Dan’s Bridge
- The Cliff
- Fallen Trees
- And the Vernal Pool
North of the Merritt Parkway, Greenwich
This lovely nature preserve covers about 300 acres and has been left to its own devices to undergo natural changes. As a result, you can enjoy the nature trail that winds through undisturbed forested land with:
- Century-old trees
- And small mammals
All in their natural habitat.
This is nature at its best but can prove to be a more challenging hike with some quite rocky areas. You’ll also find boardwalks and smoother areas throughout providing a nice break to slow your pace.
The forest wetlands are cool and shady and feature graceful weeping willows. Throughout the season, the hills display colorful wildflowers including rhododendron and azaleas. One of our favorite sites is the Babcock Preserve waterfall which is luckily quite close to the park entrance. If you aren’t in the mood for a longer trek, this quick hike is worthwhile.
For incredible wildlife viewing and Connecticut hiking trails, Audubon Greenwich is ideal. The main sanctuary has seven miles of trails for guests to enjoy that venture through hardwood forests, old fields, lakes, streams, and vernal pools. Wildlife enthusiasts also love visiting the sanctuary to see river otters, muskrats, wood ducks, white-tailed deer, coyotes, flying squirrels, nesting bluebirds, wild turkeys, bats, and a wide array of reptiles and amphibians.
Head up the scenic Riversville Road to the picturesque little hamlet of North Greenwich to find the Audubon’s welcome center. The hiking trails slope into the park behind the center.
Even more hiking near Greenwich, CT: Westchester County
Connecticut hiking trails offer plenty of diverse landscapes to experience. That said, the Hudson River Valley is closer to downtown Greenwich than much of Connecticut.
We’d be remiss not to mention some of the great parks and trails managed by Westchester County or the New York State Park system!
In order, again, of distance from Stanton House Inn:
Considering how fantastic this park is, it’s amazing that it’s not better known. This writer only discovered this park in 2018!
Rye Marshlands has about 3 miles of trails through woods, meadows and trails down to the forest and marshes of the harbor and Long Island Sound.
From the cliffs, there are some beautiful views of Rye harbor that the trees surrounding you perfectly frame.
And at a distance of about a 25-minute walk from the Harrison train station, it’s one of the easiest options for hiking trails near NYC by train!
Mianus River Gorge
Just over the border from Greenwich in Bedford, NY, is the Mianus River Gorge. It’s the only patch of old-growth forest remaining this close to New York City!
The trail stretches along the Mianus River as it passes through a gorge (as the name implies) and out into a reservoir that supplies the area with drinking water.
The area has been kept in pristine condition to keep our water supply pure, which ensures some great hiking. It’s easy to forget how close you are to a major metropolitan area when you’re far enough along the trails.
The whole trail is about six miles of moderately-difficult terrain with very well-preserved trails, which would likely take the average hiker about two and a half hours. My favorite parts of this park are the trail markers showing things both typical of the area and things extraordinary.
Keep in mind that dogs are not allowed here, as the main focus of this park is the preservation of local wildlife populations, which are generally not fans of canines.
While you’re up there, this writer highly recommends stopping-in to the picturesque downtown of Bedford.
Ward Pound Ridge Reservation
Pound Ridge, NY
Ward Pound Ridge is what many consider the crowning glory of Westchester County, NY. This park is massive, covering 4,315 acres. And its most challenging and breathtaking trail offer unbeatable views of the Cross River Reservoir. Reached via a five-mile trail, locals say there’s a pretty good chance you’ll glimpse local wildlife on your journey.
It is also a favorite haunt for people searching for signs of local folk legend the Leatherman. He travelled a circuit of 365 miles every 34 days between Connecticut and New York back in the 1880s.
Rockefeller State Park Preserve
A gift to the state of New York from the Rockefeller family, the Rockefeller State Park Preserve in beautiful Pocantico Hills, NY, offers plenty of hiking trails to explore.
This park offers a more bucolic experience. The Rockefellers designed their carriage trails to pass through a mix of forest and farmland. These carriage trails turned hiking trails create a hike that feels like something out of Europe.
It’s a unique experience in this modern era to walk through the woods and enter a clearing to find a herd of sheep placidly grazing next to their friendly herding dog.
Once you’re done hiking, you can check out the Rockefeller Art Gallery as well as all there is to see in Pocantico Hills and Tarrytown.
Hikers can reach this piece of the Appalachian Trail off Route 9D. It is a challenging trail for the first half mile or so, but it leads to breathtaking views of the Hudson River and the Bear Mountain Bridge. This is for the fit and agile, yet well worth the effort. Also, because the trail does become more even after the first half mile you can more or less cruise the rest of the way.
The return hike is much easier because, of course, it’s downhill!
Bear Mountain State Park
Bear Mountain, NY
Home of the famous Oktoberfest at Bear Mountain festival, this State Park offers a series of trails that are just waiting to be explored.
Bear Mountain State Park’s for the real hikers. Located about a 45-minute drive from the Stanton House Inn in Bear Mountain, New York, this park can be pretty strenuous, with a rather steep hike up the hill to join part of the Appalachian Trail. The first section of the Appalachian Trail was originally constructed as a Bear Mountain State Park hiking path, and a current loop extends to the modern-day trail. Another popular trail passes by the Perkins Memorial Tower and offers spectacular views and rich history.
Bear Mountain State Park hiking trails do offer a spectacular view of the Hudson River, Peekskill, and the road to West Point.
While this writer admits this park is not actually in Connecticut, it’s still some fantastic hiking, and just over the Hudson River in New York State.
Hudson Highlands State Park
Cold Spring, NY
Hudson Highlands State Park is another massive park in our area. But an added benefit to this particular park if you’re in New York City is that it’s accessible by the Hudson train line. Considering how remote parts of the park feel, it’s surprising to think that it’s only an hour drive away from Greenwich and Stanton House Inn.
That said, its accessibility is not its only draw.
The portions that make-up this park stretch from Peekskill in Westchester County up to Beacon, NY, in Dutchess County.
There are some breathtaking views of the Hudson River, as well as some cool ruins, holdovers from when the park was a cluster of old estates.
The most inspiring views are at the end of a particularly challenging hike, as a word of warning.
While you’re up visiting Hudson Highlands State Park, be sure to check out some of the Hudson Rivertowns, like Cold Spring, Peekskill, and Beacon.
Keep discovering more hiking trails near Greenwich, Connecticut
New England and the Hudson River Valley have plenty more ideal spots of a nature-filled stroll.
If you want even more options, be sure to check out our guide to Connecticut hiking trails.
Or, plan a day trip or two to some of the charming CT towns near our top picks for hiking trails.
This writer hopes you enjoy your next adventure!