Greenways Conservation Area

A level, easy trail through large open fields and shrubland brings the visitor to a knoll overlooking the Sudbury River. 

Visitors can explore more trails – to the north to visit a native pollinator field and to the south for a more “wild” walk by shrublands and wetlands along the river. 

At dusk on a springtime evening, it is possible to see or hear American woodcocks performing their fabulous aerial display.

Full Description

Greenways Conservation Area is a portion of the former Paine Estate, purchased by SVT and the Town of Wayland in 1995. Historic sites, woods, open fields, wetlands and almost one-half mile of shoreline on the Sudbury River make Greenways a remarkable place. Visitors can explore nearly two miles of trails, many of them old cart paths. 

With the Town of Wayland's Heard Farm Conservation Area across the river and the Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge extending both up and downstream, this stretch of the river is renowned for its biological richness.

  • Greenways is a birdwatcher’s delight. Birders have been recording bird sightings at this site for over 100 years. Species that have been spotted include great blue heron, downy woodpecker, great crested flycatcher, house wren, gray catbird, and chipping sparrow.
  • Take an early-evening walk in mid-April, and you may witness the incredible courtship flight pattern of the male American woodcock.
  • This portion of the river is part of a 14.9-mile segment that has been designated as a Wild & Scenic River by the National Park Service. This designation recognizes the exceptional character of these waters and ensures they will be protected and enjoyed for generations.
  • A canoe landing offers access from the river. A bench and picnic table overlook the river, allowing for a pleasant rest for hikers and paddlers.
  • Canoeists along this section of the Sudbury River see much of the same view that Native Americans saw as they traveled the river, perhaps en route to hunting and fishing encampment on Greenways’ riverside knoll.
  • SVT is working to restore pollinator habitat in the north field (adjacent to the country club), where we are replacing invasive plants with native grasses and wildflowers.
  • The privately owned Noyes-Parris house near the southern end of Greenways was once part of the Paine Estate. Built in 1669, this home is the oldest residence in Wayland.
  • Be sure to read the headstones at the Paines’ pet cemetery!


With mapping software, search for this address: 24 Green Way, Wayland, MA

From the intersection of Route 20 and Routes 27/126 in Wayland, go south on Route 27/126 for nearly 1 mile. After passing Sandy Burr Country Club, take the right turn onto Green Way. Once on Green Way, bear right at the fork, and continue on Green Way about 0.2 mile to the end. Parking is  near the kiosk.

Click here to visit Google Maps for specific directions from your home.

Nearby Nature Sightings

A bald eagle at Heard Farm Conservation Area in Wayland, photographed by Mason Missaggia.
Mason Missaggia photographed this bald eagle at Heard Farm Conservation Area in Wayland.
Common mergansers on Heard Pond in Wayland, photographed during a snow storm by Joan Chasan.
Common mergansers in the snow at Heard Pond in Wayland, photographed by Joan Chasan.
Milkweed at Greenways Conservation Area in Wayland, photographed by Nathalie Guerin.
Nathalie Guerin photographed milkweed and sassafras at SVT's Greenways Conservation Area in Wayland.