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A quick guide to the Esplanade

Find out why this three-mile-long park is one of Boston’s most picturesque green spaces.

Aerial view of crowds on the grass at Boston's Hatch Shell

For an outdoor concert or a picnic, head over the Hatch Shell.

Photo by @oschapov

Feeling very eager to get outside and enjoy some gorgeous weather? Look no further than the Charles River Esplanade for one of Boston’s most picturesque places.

Situated alongside the Charles River, predominantly in the Back Bay, the Esplanade encompasses a three mile-stretch between the BU Bridge and the Museum of Science. Following the completion of the Charles River Dam in 1910, the land was developed over the years, creating a vast and lush green space within the city limits.

Many locals can be seen riding their bikes, having a picnic, and just taking in the natural surroundings. If you like to be more active, there are also workout areas, boating clubs, athletic fields, and guided tours. On Sunday, May 19, head over to Community Day on the Hatch Shell Lawn, where you can strap on your sneakers for the Esplanade 5K, enjoy music by GroundBeat, or feast on some tasty morsels at the Jamaica Mi Hungry food truck.

A hard-to-miss landmark if you’re zipping down Storrow Drive, the Edward A. Hatch Memorial Shell can be found underneath the Arthur Fiedler Footbridge, named for the late conductor of the Boston Pops. Constructed in 1941, this amphitheater holds concerts and events year-round. The biggest event at the Hatch Shell takes place on July 4, when the Boston Pops performs its annual concert alongside a colorful fireworks display.

To get into the park, cross over Storrow Drive using one of the eight pedestrian bridges. While you can’t park directly on the Esplanade, there are public parking facilities throughout the area. If you are arriving via public transit, there are several MBTA train stops on both the Red and Green lines that are within walking distance of the park.