your paddlesports destination

Lynn Harbor to Marblehead in Massachusetts

Trip Overview

Park anywhere along Lynn Shore Drive, put in, then paddle North along the coastline. You'll pass Lynn, Swampscott, and Marblehead before arriving at a peninsula - Marblehead Neck - which you can either paddle around to enter Marblehead Harbor, or put in at the beach (Deveraux) if you're not up for that additional 35 - 45 minutes each way. If putting in at the beach, do so far enough away from the lifeguards, who will chase you away if you attempt to land on the swimming beach.

During the summer months, if you choose to halt at Deveraux, you can walk to Flynnie's on the beach, a large beachside take-out "snack shack" offering seafood and ice cream, and bring a "fried food" gourmet meal back to your 'yak at the far and of the beach. - And yes, they have restrooms too.

It's a nice paddle with some great views, both of the shoreline, the beautiful $$$ houses on $$$$ properties on Marblehead Neck, and Marblehead harbor. I've marked it moderate because depending on wind and tide conditions, there are places where you can get into some quite turbulent waters from waves going toward AND "rebounding" off the rocky shoreline. And not everyone is cut out for paddling several hours in one sitting, even in calm water - never mind windy conditions and chop.

Conditions, paddler skills and boats vary widely. As a confident open water paddler in a moderately fast boat, on a calm day with little chop, I'd say about six to seven hours there and back for someone paddling leisurely but continuously. For lunch, add another hour.

If that's too much for you and you have at least one beach bum in the family, problem solved: have beach bum drive you up 1 A until you enter Marblehead. Follow the sign to Deveraux beach and put in on the harbor side of the causeway. Then, just keep the land to your right and start paddling until you get back to Lynn Shore Drive - where beach bum has spent the last couple hours snoozing on the sand, using SPF 100 of course


Plenty of beaches to put in on in case of emergency or tiredness, although only some of them are public. However, I've never had anyone chase me off a private beach if I just stopped to stretch my legs.




From Boston - take Route 1 North to 16 East to Route 1 A North. You'll go through Revere before going over a big bridge, after which you're on the Lynnway. Follow the Lynnway until you're at the Nahant rotary, at which point bear right if you want to go to Nahant beach and swim (parking available for a fee) or take the second exit and follow the water and you're on Lynn Shore Drive already.


The Department of Conservation and Recreation has information on Lynn and Nahant beaches, including water quality audits.
  • Skill Level: Intermediate
  • Water Type: Open Water/Ocean
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip