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Boston Public Garden

Explore the Boston Public Garden

Escape to Boston's tranquil oasis surrounded by the pulsing energy of the city. America's first botanical garden, this haven of lush greenery and colorful blooms invites you in to enjoy Boston from a more relaxed perspective. Stroll the paths that meander through enchanting floral collections, and get a glimpse into historic horticultural mastery.

Hop on the Boston Swan Boats for a leisurely ride around the lagoon. An eclectic collection of exotic plants and trees, historic monuments and fountains create a haven in the heart of downtown Boston.

  • Prices
    • Free
  • Hours
    • Open 24/7
  • Events
    • Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony
    • Duckling Day
    • Making History On The Common
  • Activities
    • Swan Boat Tours
    • Public Art
    • Public Garden Tours
    • Sightseeing
    • Photography
    • History

FAQs

  • Where can I find the Make Way for Ducklings Statue at Boston Public Garden?
    The Duckling Sculpture, as it is formally known, was created in 1987 by artist Nancy Schon to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Boston Public Garden. This popular attraction is a tribute to Robert McCloskey's 1941 children's book, Make Way for Ducklings, that chronicles the adventures of Mrs. Mallard as she leads her ducklings through the streets of Boston, aided by a friendly policeman. Her final destination? The safety of the Public Garden's lagoon. Commonly referred to as the Make Way for Ducklings Statue, this iconic piece of Boston art is one-of-a-kind, due to it's an inextricable link to the city. You can find this sculpture in the park near the corner of Beacon and Charles Streets. If you happen to be in Moscow, you can check out a tribute sculpture commissioned by Raisa Gorbachev after her visit to Boston Public Garden.
     
  • What is the history behind the Boston Public Garden Swan Boats?
    There is no more relaxing way to enjoy the natural beauty of Boston than with a boat ride around the Public Garden lagoon. This tradition began in 1870, when the first boat for hire license was granted to Robert Paget, a local entrepreneur. Inspired by the German opera Lohengrin, where a medieval knight crossed a river on a boat drawn by a swan to defend a princess, Paget brought Swan Boats to Boston. Ever since, these historic vessels have been gracing the lagoon's waters, operated by descendants of the original founder. Today these pedal boats, powered by the captain, are an iconic symbol of the city, and give you a chance to step back in time for a unique way to experience Boston.
     
    * Each swan boat ride lasts 12-15 minutes and you don't need to book in advance. The typical wait for a ride is no more than 5-10 minutes.
     
    * The swan boat season runs from April through September, and open every day, weather permitting.
     
    * Swan boat captains pedal up to 7 miles on a busy day, and each boat can carry up to 25 passengers.
 

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