Boston, Massachusetts, is the state’s capital. The city has a rich history that’s simply begging to be explored, as well as vibrant neighborhoods, modern attractions, and much more. The issue is, not everyone can afford to spend a bundle on entertainment. Luckily, you don’t have to break the bank to enjoy the city. If you’re looking for free things to do in Boston, Massachusetts, here are some exciting options that are worth checking out.
If there is one thing that you need to do while in Boston, it’s travel the Freedom Trail. This 2.5-mile-long path functions as a self-guided tour, ushering between various American Revolution sites and helping you learn more about the area and the city’s history.
Along the way, you’ll find helpful markers that fill you in on intriguing details of the 16 official historic sites. Plus, you’re close to great places to eat and lovely places to rest, allowing you to move at a pace that’s right for you.
Boston Public Garden
If you want to spend time wandering among flowers and plants, a trip to the Boston Public Garden is a must. It’s brimming with winding paths that are perfect for casual strolls through nature. You’ll find a wide variety of botanicals across the landscape, making the trip incredibly intriguing.
The Boston Public Garden isn’t just beautiful; it is also historically significant. It’s actually the first public botanical garden in the nation, giving it a unique position.
Plus, the park is home to the famous Swan Boats. While renting one isn’t free, even seeing them can be a joy. However, if you do decide that you want to enjoy some time in one, the price is very reasonable, making it a budget-friendly addition to your trip.
Samuel Adams Brewery
If you’re a beer-lover, a tour through the Samuel Adams Brewery may be right up your alley. You’ll get to learn about the company’s history, the brewing process, and the product line. And best of all, the tour is free, and people of all ages are allowed to come along.
For anyone age 21 or over (and with proper ID), you can also enjoy some beer samples along the way. There is also a store where you can make purchases if you find a new favorite you want to enjoy.
For the adventurous, you can choose to try out experimental flavors in the Beer Garden. While this does come with a cost, it’s fairly modest.
Boston Public Library
Originally opening to the public in 1852, the Boston Public Library is a breathtaking building that’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Not only is it stunning to behold, but it was also the first examples of a publicly-supported municipal library in the entire nation that was free to use, making it incredibly significant.
As a bonus, the library is in the Back Bay area. This means you can experience the hustle and bustle of the city, remain close to amazing restaurants and shops, and appreciate other buildings that make up the iconic skyline with ease.
If you’re looking for a lovely place for a picnic, it’s hard to beat Boston Common. This public park is incredibly well-maintained, making it a stellar destination nearly any time of year. Plus, it often hosts a variety of events, which can give you more options when it comes to entertainment.
One of the other great points about heading to this park is its location. It’s in Downtown, an area brimming with historic sites and other must-see destinations. Plus, it’s close to restaurants, shopping, and many of the area’s colleges and universities.
If you have a little money to spend, Boston Common is also home to the Frog Pond Carousel. It’s a whimsical attraction that can be fun for families. Plus, it’s fairly affordable, allowing you to have a fantastic experience without breaking the bank.
For history aficionados – particularly fans of military history – a trip to the Boston area simply needs to include a visit to the USS Constitution. You can experience a piece of military history first-hand, all without having to pay a dime.
Self-guided tours help you learn more about the role “Old Ironsides” played in battle, as well as the work that went into keeping it afloat. Plus, the museum has fun artifacts to discover, as well as hands-on events and interactive exhibits, ensuring people of all ages can have a stellar time.
While the museum does have a suggested admission fee, certain visitors can come through at no cost. This includes active duty and retired military members, EBT cardholders, Massachusetts teachers, and more.
Charles River Esplanade
A standout outdoor space that’s a favorite for anyone looking for a place to walk, bike, jog, or skate, Charles River Esplanade is the perfect option for enjoying nice weather. Plus, stellar picnic spots abound, and there is a playground in the area, giving children a place to expend some energy.
One neat point about this attraction is that it’s the home of the Boston Pops summer concerts. If you’re looking for a music-filled experience unlike any other, it’s certainly worth attending.
At the Arnold Arboretum at Harvard, you can explore 281-acres that is home to more than 16,000 accessioned plants and a variety of local wildlife. As an added convenience, it’s open every day of the year, ensuring you always have a place to enjoy.
As you explore the arboretum, you may be able to enjoy a variety of special events. This can include storytelling and global music explorations, seasonal displays, and more.
There are also tours focused on different topics. Many of them are accessible online, allowing you to stream the information as you travel along. Additionally, some of the routes are accessible, ensuring those with mobile impairments can enjoy an easy path through the arboretum.
If you want to combine some history with some fun in the sun, a trip to Castle Island is the way to do it. You can take a tour of Fort Independence, swim at the beaches, or take a casual stroll. Fishing can also be an option, and grilling is permitted at the picnic areas.
Plus, Castle Rock is highly accessible. There are accessible picnic areas, restrooms, and trails, ensuring that there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Bunker Hill Monument
Another must-see historical site, the Bunker Hill Monument recognizes the first major battle to occur during the American Revolution. The 220-foot granite tower is an impressive sight to behold, commemorating the bravery of those who fought during the Battle of Bunker Hill in 1775. There are also a handful of markers, giving you more details about the event.
While there, you can also check out the statue of William Prescot. If you’re up for a challenge, you also have the option to climb to the top of the monument. It takes quite a while to reach the top, but many – though not all – that do ultimately consider it worthwhile.
Around the monument, you’ll find a well-manicured park. It’s a lovely outdoor space, making it a nice area for a quick rest or picnic.
Are you aware of any other amazing free things to do in Boston, Massachusetts? If so, let us know. Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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