Whether you’re looking for a place to play with the kiddos or to decompress with some off-screen time, our city has a plethora of parks and recreational spots to enjoy.
Ready to plan your trip to the park? Grab your shades and trusty water bottle — here are some of Boston’s best:
🌊 For harbor views
Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park, 100 Atlantic Ave.
You’ll find this park between Boston’s Commercial and Long wharves, just steps away from Faneuil Hall. It’s known for the signature trellis and proximity to the waterfront.
Fan Pier Park, 22 Liberty Dr.
This landscaped park along the marina is the perfect spot for watching the water after a busy Seaport shopping day. Try your hand at capturing a photo of the Boston Harbor Hotel.
LoPresti Park, 33 Sumner St.
Stroll along one of the walking paths by the water and drink in the Boston Harbor views. The four-acre East Boston park is also known as “North Ferry Park.”
Piers Park, 95 Marginal St.
This Eastie park along the harbor is located in the Jeffries Point neighborhood. There’s an amphitheater, an outdoor fitness system, a large playground, and a 600-ft walkway connecting two pavilions.
South Boston Maritime Park, 600 D. St.
Visit the award-winning park, located just off Northern Avenue, to enjoy views from the shaded lawn. There’s also a fountain, public art displays, and a seasonal daytime cafe.
🌱 For the nature lovers
Alewife Brook Reservation, Alewife Brook Parkway, Cambridge
Take the T to Alewife Station for a day of fishing, hiking, and strolling this urban forest. The wildlife sanctuary is managed by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation.
Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway
This botanical research institution and museum of trees is the oldest public arboretum in North America. Visit to learn about plants and mark your calendar for the annual “Lilac Sunday” celebration on May 14.
Back Bay Fens, 100 Park Dr.
This mix of formal and community gardens, ball fields, memorials, and historic structures is part of the Emerald Necklace Conservancy. Visit to see the Kelleher Rose Garden, and the “Victory Garden,” planted in 1941 to provide fruits and vegetables during the war.
Olmsted Park, 217 Jamaicaway
Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, this park has a wildflower meadow and scenic views of Ward’s, Willow, and Leverett ponds. Pro tip: Walk over to Allerton Overlook, the location of Summer Sundays in the Park concerts.
🌳 For family fun
Boston Common and Public Garden, 115 Boylston St. and 4 Charles St.
No park guide is complete without a mention of America’s first public park and botanical garden. Bring your camera along for a scenic family outing and take time to fully explore the lagoon in a Swan Boat.
Franklin Park, 1 Franklin Park Rd.
The largest green space in our city is getting some major enhancements in a few years, thanks to a detailed vision plan announced last year. While we wait to see the changes, spend a day enjoying the zoo, play areas, trails, and picnic sites.
Mayor Menino Park, 98 16th St.
Visit the Charlestown park for an accessible playground with new equipment — there are plenty of benches to sit at while the kids enjoy the play area.
Paul Revere Park, Chelsea Street and New Rutherford Avenue
Fun fact: The east half of this park was the first of the four parks built to mitigate the Central Artery/Tunnel project, aka The Big Dig. You’ll find the five-acre park on the Charlestown side of the North Washington Street Bridge.
Ramler Park, 130 Peterborough St.
Hidden in the Fenway neighborhood, this quaint green space has plenty of seating for a family picnic. There are also various trees, plants, and flowers to explore (read: home to lots of birds and wildlife).
Rose Kennedy Greenway, Atlantic Avenue
This contemporary public park is right in the heart of our city, complete with landscaped gardens, swings, plazas, fountains, and public art. Check out the calendar for programming like the Greenway Carousel and the Artisan Market.
🐶 For the furry friends
East First Street Dog Park, 768 E 1st St.
This quarter-acre pooch paradise opened in 2016 and is now complete with a doggie fountain and canine exercise equipment. Off-leash play is allowed for well-behaved pets.
Garvey Playground, 340 Neponset Ave.
Walk the dogs around the large loop circling the park, then head to one of the two fenced-in, shaded dog parks (one for small dogs and one for large dogs).
Pacific Street Park, Pacific Street, Cambridge
The Cambridgeport park, also known as the Tudor Dog Park, has a fenced-in area for furry friends to play. There’s also an open field, perfect for a game of catch with the pups.
RUFF North End, Richmond Street
Nestled between North and Fulton streets, this park has turf, agility courses, and a water play area. The North End space is open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
South Boston Bark Park, 1280 Columbia Rd.
The name says it all. The off-leash dog park by Carson Beach allows pets to run and romp with fellow pups in an enclosed space.
👟 For the athletically inclined
Danehy Park, 99 Sherman St., Cambridge
This 50-acre recreational facility was built on the site of a former Cambridge landfill. Now, the community space offers soccer fields and open space for ultimate frisbee games.
Langone Park, 529-543 Commercial St.
There’s plenty to do while you drink in the waterfront views at this park — think: basketball and bocce courts, wading pools, and checkers or chess tables.
Magazine Beach Park, 668 Memorial Dr.
Located along the Charles River, this urban green space has pull-up bars, a dip station, and other workout equipment. Pro tip: Take the Green Line to the BU Central stop, then cross the BU Bridge to access the outdoor fitness park.
Parkman Playground, 58 Wachusett St.
The recently renovated Jamaica Plain park has two little league fields, a basketball court, and a splash pad.
Ready to visit these parks, but don’t know where to start? We’ve created this handy map so you can easily find all of these featured parks. Plus, check out Urbnparks for even more local green spaces to explore.