Boston Common Trails


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Boston Common Trails Facts

States: Massachusetts
Counties: Suffolk
Length: 6 miles
Trail end points: 69 Beacon St and Tremont St & Park St (Boston)
Trail surfaces: Asphalt
Trail category: Greenway/Non-RT
ID: 13195613

Boston Common Trails Description

Visit the oldest public park in the United States and explore its many treasures via a network of paved pathways. Located almost in downtown Boston, the Common is within easy distance of restaurants, shops, recreational attractions, historical sites, local residences, businesses, hotels, health facilities, and community spaces. For locals and visitors alike, the Common provides a respite from concrete jungle and offers recreational opportunities for all ages. Whether you're on your lunch break, just visiting town, or spending the whole day in the park, the Common has something for everyone.

Founded in 1634, the Boston Common is a fifty-acre pentagon bordered by Tremont, Park, Beacon, Charles, and Boylston Streets. Starting at the Visitor Information Center (139 Tremont St), you can learn about the park's rich history, gather information about the site, and talk with a guide. The center is open every day from 8:30am to 5pm and can be accessed from multiple entrances. 

The park's trails are paved, smooth, and flat. You may occasionally encounter stairs, but a guide at the Visitor Information Center can look over a map of the park with you and mark it with the accessible routes. The Friends of the Public Garden offers free public tours of the Common from May through September. Stop by their office on the Common at 69 Beacon Street for more information. 

Restrooms are located at Visitor Information Center. Seasonal public restrooms are located on east side of Charles Street between the Charles Street @ Beacon Street bus stop and the Edward Everett Hale monument (16 Charles St). They are open from 7am to 9pm during the spring, summer, and fall. Food trucks can be found at Brewer Fountain Plaza (except during the winter), the Frog Pond Boston Common café is open during the spray pool and ice skating seasons, and there are food/drink carts located throughout the park. 

The park has a wide variety of recreational amenities and facilities for all ages. Enjoy the lagoon by crossing over its suspension bridge or during the summer, taking a Swan Boat ride. Look for Duck Island and watch the lively swans. Fountains and sculptures like Make Way for Ducklings, are located throughout the park. Frog Pond has several seasonal activities—the carousel, the spray pool, and ice skating. The Tadpole Playground is near the pond and is open year round. Dogs on leashes are welcome and there are two off-leash areas within the Common. 

The Common is home to a number of historical monuments, including Lafayette Mall Monument, Soldiers and Sailors Monument, the Great Elm, and the Boston Massacre/Crispus Attucks Memorial. There are also statues of George Washington, Wendell Phillips, Tadeusz Kosciuszko, and Alexander Hamilton. 

Across the street from the north side of the park is the Granary Burying Ground, which is the burial site of a number of historically significant figures including Paul Revere, John Hancock, Samuel Adams, and James Otis. On the Common's southwest side, a linear stretch of park runs between the two sections of Commonwealth Avenue until it reaches Charlesgate Park, Kenmore Square, and Fenway Park. Nearby trails include South Bay Harbor TrailRose Kennedy Greenway, Charles River Bike Path (Charles River Greenway), Southwest Corridor Park (Pierre Lallement Bike Path).

Boston Common is open year-round from 6:30am to 11pm with 24-hour pedestrian access. Admission to the Common is free, although some activities may require payment. 

Parking and Trail Access

Boston Common is easily reachable using Massachusetts extensive public transit system, which includes the subway, bus, ferry, commuter rail, and Paratransit (the RIDE). In fact, the currently active subway tunnels under the Boston Common were the first to be built in the United States. Use the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's (MBTA) Trip Planner to plan your visit.

Nearby subway stations include the Park St station, Boylston station, Chinatown station, and Arlington station. Nearby bus stops include the Sation House, Tremont St opposite Temple Pl, Tremont St @ Boylston Station, Charles St @ Beacon St, Beacon St opposite Walnut St, and Beacon St @ Park St. 

For those who want to bike, there are bike racks available or if you prefer to use a bike-share, there are a number of bike-share locations on the streets around the park (including on Tremont St near its intersection with West St). 

Paid parking is available in a number of garages near the park, including the Boston Common Garage (0 Charles St, Boston) which is located under the park. The Boston Common Garage includes an electric vehicle charging station.

A mix of free, paid, and permit-required street parking is available in the area around the park.


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