Running on a beach is one of life’s great pleasures. For runners, there’s nothing like the feeling of firm sand underfoot, the splash of water kicking back, and that open, free feeling of a seemingly unlimited horizon. Here are some of the best beaches for running on Boston’s South Shore that meet our criteria of fairly flat, firm sand, and at least 1 continuous mile. Nantasket Beach and Horseneck offer paved promenades alongside the beach. Beach running conditions are always situational, and are best near low tide. See the tide tables provided.
Nantasket is sort of the south shore cousin of Revere Beach. An oceanfront playground dating back more than a century, Nantasket offers a nearly seamless 3.5 mile run, on the beach or along a 1.5 mile paved promenade along the beach starting from near the intersection of Nantasket Ave. and Atlantic Ave. (Beachfire restaurant), all the way out to Point Allerton. There are some fun spots and sights along here, including the old-fashioned Fascination arcade, and the Paragon Carousel. A nice-add-on option is to combine with a run/walk in nearby World’s End reservation, or a meal and some shopping in lovely Hingham Center.
6 miles one-way. TIDE TABLE
Parking: Town-owned and public parking lots. Can fill up on busy days.
One of the more popular beaches on the south shore, Duxbury Beach is generally good for running. Fairly flat with firm, compact sand. A beach bathhouse and a snack bar are bonuses.
2-3 miles of beach running and a paved path along beach. Can combine with East Beach Rd. for paved run up to 8 miles! MAP TIDE TABLE
Parking: Horseneck Beach State Reservation Parking Lot
Another great beach for running on Boston’s south shore, Horseneck Beach is located on Buzzards Bay, near the Rhode Island border. The main beach is 2 miles long from the campground west to Horseneck Point. There’s a paved multi-use path along the beach, which goes for ~2 miles. Nice views of the water and the dunes! One can also run the other side — from the Campground to Westport Point — on the beach or along E. Beach Rd. In the right conditions, it’s possible to continue another 1 mile parallel to Little Beach Rd. Beach running conditions are very tidal dependent here. There’s ample parking at the State Reservation parking lot. Combining the paved path along Horseneck Beach and E Beach Rd. is a run of up to 8 miles. MAP