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Boston Common

The oldest public park in the United States has been the stage for centuries of drama. These days it’s the perfect place to unwind.

Boston Common is the place where locals and tourists alike come to picnic, enjoy musical performances and play. It’s also the start of the Freedom Trail, and is often buzzing with eager tourists ready to begin their exploration of Boston’s Revolutionary-era landmarks. But before you hit the trail, don’t forget to spend a little time in this fabulous 50-acre (20-hectare) public park.

Each springtime the famous Swan Boats come out to glide the waters of the common, just as they have for over 130 years. Take your sweetheart for a cruise, and admire the gardens and the historic buildings in the skyline peeping above the trees.

In summer, sit and cool off by the elegant Brewer Fountain. Or head for the Frog Pond where children can splash in the spray pool. In winter the Frog Pond is transformed into an enchanting ice-skating rink. Whether you can skate or not, the Skating Academy offers a wide variety of lessons. You’ll be twirling, and maybe even cutting figure eights, in no time.

Climb the slight rise to Flagstaff Hill to the large, white granite Soldiers and Sailors Monument. The hill is a great photographic vantage point and a popular tobogganing run in winter. One of the parks most visited monuments is the bronze relief sculpture that commemorates the bravery of Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Infantry during the Civil War.

Boston Common had its beginnings as a cow pasture (“common”) in 1634. It was an encampment for British Red Coats prior to the American War of Independence, and was used for public hangings until 1817 and was a recruitment point during the Civil War. Stroll through the park’s historic Central Burying Ground, on the Boylston side of the park, and examine the hundreds of fascinating gravestones from the 1700s and 1800s. The Common has also served as a historic rallying point for protests, from anti-slavery meetings to anti-war gatherings.

Boston Common and the neighboring Public Garden are located in the heart of the city. They serve as two of the links in Boston’s network of parks and gardens known as the Emerald Necklace. The Boston Common Visitor Information Center is located on the Tremont Street side of the park near the start of the Freedom Trail. It’s open daily, and admission is free.


Guide to Exploring around Boston Common


Best Lodging Options Near Boston Common

See all 1,732 Properties near Boston Common
Hyatt Regency Boston CA $155
Hyatt Regency Boston

Hyatt Regency Boston

One Avenue De Lafayette, Boston, MA
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Downtown Boston, this hotel is steps away from Boston Opera House and Downtown Crossing. The Freedom Trail and Boston Common are also within 10 minutes. Chinatown Station and Downtown Crossing Station are within a 5-minute walk.

    Boston Park Plaza CA $176
    Boston Park Plaza

    Boston Park Plaza

    50 Park Plaza at Arlington Street, Boston, MA
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Back Bay, this historic hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Newbury Street, Boston Public Garden and Boston Common. Copley Place and Hynes Convention Center are also within 1 mi (2 km). Arlington Station is only a 2-minute walk and Boylston Station is 8 minutes.

      Revere Hotel Boston Common CA $184
      Revere Hotel Boston Common

      Revere Hotel Boston Common

      200 Stuart St, Boston, MA
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Downtown Boston, this romantic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Charles Playhouse, Boch Center, and Wilbur Theatre. Copley Square and Boston Common are also within 10 minutes. Arlington Station is only a 5-minute walk and Boylston Station is 6 minutes.

        The Bostonian Boston CA $156
        The Bostonian Boston

        The Bostonian Boston

        26 North St, Boston, MA
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Downtown Boston, this romantic hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Faneuil Hall Marketplace and New England Aquarium. TD Garden and Boston Common are also within 15 minutes. State St. Station and Haymarket Station are within a 5-minute walk.

          The Godfrey Hotel Boston CA $128
          The Godfrey Hotel Boston

          The Godfrey Hotel Boston

          505 Washington Street, Boston, MA
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Downtown Boston, this boutique hotel is steps away from Boston Opera House, The Freedom Trail and Downtown Crossing. Boston Common and Orpheum Theater are also within 5 minutes. Downtown Crossing Station and Chinatown Station are within a 5-minute walk.

            Loews Boston Hotel CA $182
            Loews Boston Hotel

            Loews Boston Hotel

            154 Berkeley Street, Boston, MA
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Back Bay, this romantic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of John Hancock Tower and Newbury Street. Copley Square and Copley Place are also within 10 minutes. Arlington Station is only a 5-minute walk and Copley Station is 7 minutes.

              Hyatt Centric Faneuil Hall Boston CA $151
              Hyatt Centric Faneuil Hall Boston

              Hyatt Centric Faneuil Hall Boston

              54-68 Devonshire St, Boston, MA
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Boston Financial District, this hotel is steps away from Boston Massacre Site, The Freedom Trail and Downtown Crossing. Faneuil Hall Marketplace and Quincy Market are also within 5 minutes. State St. Station is only a 2-minute walk and Government Center Station is 4 minutes.

                Club Quarters Hotel in Boston CA $125
                Club Quarters Hotel in Boston

                Club Quarters Hotel in Boston

                161 Devonshire St, Boston, MA
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Downtown Boston, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Downtown Crossing and The Freedom Trail. Faneuil Hall Marketplace and Quincy Market are also within 10 minutes. State St. Station and Downtown Crossing Station are within a 5-minute walk.