The North & South Rivers

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Welcome to the North & South Rivers! Here are some fun facts and some great resources to help you explore and enjoy this great river.

Towns in the North and South Rivers Watershed:

  • Norwell,

  • Hingham

  • Scituate

  • Marshfield

  • Hanover

  • Pembroke

  • Whitman

  • Hanson,

  • Duxbury

  • Weymouth

  • Rockland

  • Abington

Major Tributaries:

North River: First Herring Brook (Scituate), Second Herring Brook (Norwell), and Third Herring Brooks (Norwell and Hanover) and the Herring River (Scituate).

South River: Furnace Brook (Marshfield) and Phillips Brook (Duxbury).

Relevant River Information

Environmental Concerns for the North and South

As of 2020, the biggest environmental concerns for the North and South Rivers include old dams, reduced groundwater from human use, and bacterial pollution. To learn more about environmental challenges currently facing the North and South Rivers, click here.

Additional Facts


  • Prior to the 1898 Portland Gale, Old Mouth was the mouth of the North River.
  • The North and South Rivers were known for shipbuilding from the mid 1600s to the late 1800s
Did You Know?:
  • home to ~ 150,000 people.
  • The NSRWA website has tips and tricks for how to be WaterSmart!
  • The North River Scenic Protective Order made the North River the first and only state scenic protected river
  • Each year 2,500 students and 350 parent volunteers from 10 communities on the South Shore participate in NSRWA’s Water All Around You program (part of the WaterSmart program)

Here are some great organizations that help keep this river clean, healthy and fun to enjoy:

Click an icon below to learn more about North & South Rivers activities
Hiking, Walk & Run
Boating & Sailing

To learn more about the North and South Rivers events, click here.

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Where to go Swimming


There are many beaches that people can travel to. To get more information about individual beaches (ie. hours, parking, lifeguards), please go to the NSRWA website: here

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Hiking, Walking, Running

Where to go on a walk, run, or take a hike


To find walking and hiking opportunities in the North and South Rivers watershed, click here. The NSRWA website provides descriptions of the trails, habitat, and wildlife, as well as information about facilities, parking, and ADA accessibility.



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Where to go paddling (listed in direction of upstream to downstream)


There are many places to go paddling in the North and South Rivers watershed. The NSRWA website provides information about put-in locations, parking, ADA accessibility, and directions.

  • You can also download the NSRWA Canoe and Kayak Guide for free off of their website. It will ask you to provide an email.

  • Rental places include:

    • Billington Sea Kayak: 41 Branch Point Rd, Plymouth, MA 02360

      • Using public transit: You can take the Freedom Link to Shaw’s (Kingston), then walk 1.4 miles

    • Bulman Marine: 80 Kings Landing (off Rt 123) in Norwell

    • Levitate: 871 Ocean Street, Marshfield, MA 02050

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Boating & Sailing

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Where to go Fishing

There are many places to go fishing in the North and South Rivers watershed, including guided trips by the NSRWA. Please stay up to date on health advisories. To learn more about fishing opportunities, click here.