zip to a nature preserve right outside your city

Someone said something about taking the road less traveled, and that means finding cool places on the way - like these Nature Conservancy preserves that are right outside of your city. Check 'em out:

    Boston, MA.

  • Mileage markers are calculated from the Zipcar Boston office:
    2 Liberty Square Boston, MA 02109


    Download and print pocket guide here.

  • Black Pond Bog Preserve 24mi

    Black Pond Bog Preserve (Norwell, MA)

    Ever seen a quaking bog? Follow the short trail and connecting boardwalk at Black Pond Bog Nature Preserve for up-close views of the bog's unique and mysterious plant life, including sundew, cranberry and cotton grass.

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  • Lime Rock Preserve 50mi

    Lime Rock Preserve (Lincoln, RI)

    Get ready to geek out: Ledges of dolomitic marble at Lime Rock produce a special soil that nurtures 30 rare plant species - more than any other site in Rhode Island.

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  • Manchester Cedar Swamp 59mi

    Manchester Cedar Swamp (Manchester, NH)

    Nearly 2 miles of hiking trails meander through a cedar swamp, white pine and red oak woodlands, and giant rhododendron thickets that produce showy clusters of pink and white flowers in spring.

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  • Lubberland Creek Preserve 61mi

    Lubberland Creek Preserve (Newmarket, NH)

    Don't forget your binoculars! Lubberland Creek contains one of the largest salt marshes in the Great Bay Estuary, providing visitors with great birding opportunities and expansive views of Great Bay.

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  • Sheldrick Forest Preserve 66mi

    Sheldrick Forest Preserve (Wilton, NH)

    Step back in time when you visit this 227-acre preserve in Wilton, New Hampshire, and get up close and personal with trees that have been around for nearly two centuries.

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  • Mount Agamenticus 72mi

    Mount Agamenticus (Southern Maine)

    Watching wildlife is better than any reality TV show, right? Mount Agamenticus provides a refuge for critters large and small, including wood frogs, blue-spotted salamanders, wild turkey and the great horned owl.

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    Chicago, IL.

  • Mileage markers are calculated from the Zipcar Chicago office:
    160 N. Wabash Avenue Chicago, IL 60601


    Download and print pocket guide here.

  • Indian Bound Prairies 25mi

    Indian Boundary Prairies (Markham)

    This clusters of four prairies just south of Chicago is an important sanctuary for butterflies, including the dreamy dusky wing butterfly. More than 750 insect species are known to inhabit this preserve!

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  • Midewin Tallgrass 56mi

    Midewin Tallgrass (Joliet)

    Listen for sandpipers, meadowlarks and sparrows as you explore the woods and wildflowers at Midewin, the largest open space in the Chicago metropolitan area.

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  • Kankakee Sands 72mi

    Kankakee Sands (St. Anne & Pembroke Townships)

    Kankakee Sands takes its name from its sandy soils, which provide a rich habitat for birds and small animals. Pack your hiking boots and wander through barrens of stunted oak trees, prairie grasses and wildflowers.

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    New York, NY.

  • Mileage markers are calculated from the Zipcar New York office:
    1265 Broadway, 2nd Floor New York, NY 10001


    Download and print pocket guide here.

  • Uplands Farm Sanctuary 35mi

    Uplands Farm Sanctuary (Cold Spring Harbor)

    True to its name, Uplands Farm Sanctuary retains the appearance of an old dairy farm, complete with a silo and open fields where cattle once raomed. A double-loop trail takes you through bird and butterfly meadows, forests, and a shaded ravine.

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  • Arthur W. Butler Memorial Sanctuary 43mi

    Arthur W. Butler Memorial Sanctuary (Bedford)

    Look to the sky! Each fall, visitors flock to this preserve to observe migrating hawks and falcons. You might also spot a white-tailed deer, red fox or an owl.

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  • Mianus River Gorge 47mi

    Mianus River Gorge (Bedford)

    The wild Mianus River rushes through this steep gorge on its way to Long Island Sound, passing by a magnificent cathedral of 350-year-old hemlocks standing more than 100 feet tall. Beyond the river, explore the lush fern gullies surrounding lovely Havemeyer Falls.

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  • David Weld Sanctuary 52mi

    David Weld Sanctuary (Nissequogue)

    Giant tulip trees display magnificent spring blooms at this preserve on Long Island's North Shore, attracting hummingbirds and eastern tiger swallowtail butterflies.

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  • Pawling Nature Reserve 75mi

    Pawling Nature Reserve (Dutchess)

    Take a walk on the odd side at Pawling Nature Reserve, a prime location for spotting unusual plants like the walking fern, devil's bit and the hobblebush. Twelve species of amphibians also frequent this 1,060-acre preserve.

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    San Francisco, CA.

  • Mileage markers are calculated from the Zipcar San Francisco office:
    191 2nd St San Francisco, CA 94105


    Download and print pocket guide here.

  • Marin Headlands 10mi

    Marin Headlands (San Francisco)

    These spectacular steep hills anchor the northern end of the Golden Gate Bridge, creating one of the Bay Area’s most iconic images.

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  • Mt. Hamilton 75mi

    Mount Hamilton (Santa Clara)

    Majestic oaks, rare native grasses and fields teeming with wildflowers can be found at beautiful Mount Hamilton, the last major stretch of wildness between Silicon Valley and the Central Valley.

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  • Cosumnes River 81mi

    Cosumnes River (Northern CA)

    On a single winter day, observers tracked 58,000 birds at this preserve on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada. Among them were many threatened greater sandhill cranes, known for their enormous gray wings and bassoon-like cries.

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  • Elkhorn Slough 98mi

    Elkhorn Slough (Monterey Bay)

    On any day, you might spot sea otters hunting the rich waters or lounging on their backs at Elkhorn Slough. At high tide, sharks swarm in the slough's shallow waters, where they feed and give birth.

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    Washington, DC.

  • Mileage markers are calculated from the Zipcar Washington office:
    403 8th St. NW Washington, DC 20004


    Download and print pocket guide here.

  • Potomac Gorge 19mi

    Potomac Gorge (Maryland / DC)

    Grab your water bottle and join the many hikers, bikers and paddlers who seek out this natural refuge in the outskirts of D.C. each year. Despite its close proximity to our nation's capital, the Potamac Gorge is home to one of the highest concentrations of globally rare species in the United States.

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  • Fraser 25mi

    Fraser (Fairfax Co., VA)

    Looking for a romantic date spot? Roughly 300 species of wildflowers have been identified at Fraser Preserve, including rare and unusual species like the purple cress and marsh marigold.

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  • Battle Creek 47mi

    Battle Creek (Prince Frederick, MD)

    Let your imagination roam at Battle Creek Cypress Swamp, where now-extinct animals like mammoths once walked! The preserve harbors the only stand of bald cypress in Maryland west of the Chesapeake Bay.

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  • Wildcat Mountain 55mi

    Wildcat Mountain (Fauquier Co., VA)

    This forest preserve is popular with both hikers and wildlife. Move quietly on the trail and stay you might glimpse a deer, fox or raccoon.

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  • Voorhees 71mi

    Voorhees (Colonial Beach, VA)

    Locals love Voorhees Preserve so much that they helped rebuild the trail here after it was hit hard by hurricanes Irene and Sandy. Visitors are treated to scenic views of the Rappahannock River and frequent sightings of bald eagles.

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Looking for more adventures?

Find oodles of nature preserves near you here.


how it works

4 Simple Steps to Zipcar Freedom

1. join

Apply online today. It only takes a few minutes. Once you're approved, you get your very own Zipcard and can start planning road trips.

2. reserve

Reserve a Zipcar - for a couple hours or the entire day. Do it online or on your mobile.
We're easy.

3. unlock

Walk to the car and hold your Zipcard to the windshield for a few seconds. The doors will unlock and it's all yours!

4. drive

Drive away... and return to the same reserved parking spot at the end of your reservation. That's it! (And remember, gas and insurance are included.)

find your nature buddy

Bring along one of your friendly neighborhood Zipcars to a nature preserve near you.

meet the nature conservancy

They work to conserve the lands and waters on which people and nature depend. In other words, they help to keep our planet green.