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5 places to find peace and quiet in Boston

Boston may be the noisiest city in the US, but these five local attractions allow you to escape the stresses of living in a big city.

Boston skyline view from Spectacle Island. Boston Harbor is in between the island and the city and a sandy beach and dock are near the photographer.

Spectacle Island is quite the site to see (and hear).

Boston is a bustling city, but did you know it’s also the noisiest city in the US? Based on research conducted by, 11.8% of Bostonians are exposed to noise levels exceeding 65 decibels on an average day.

That doesn’t mean you can’t find some peace and quiet. The study also found places where locals can escape noise pollution by identifying the top quiet places in big cities. To do this, researchers assessed 3,000+ parks and nature spaces across 245 cities with populations over 250,000 and assigned them “Quiet Scores.” The methodology considered:

  • Reviews of the attractions that include words like quiet, peaceful, or tranquil
  • The average visitor rating at each location
  • The attraction’s popularity, and how that impacts its peacefulness
Statue of Paul Revere on a horse at the Paul Revere Mall in Boston. A building with a white tower lies in the background.

This statue greets you at Paul Revere Mall.

Photo via @emery_bored

So, where can you go in Boston to find tranquility? Here are the five best spots to get some peace and quiet, ranked in order of their Quiet Scores.

  1. Spectacle Island — Replace city noise with the sounds of nature at this 114-acre island with stunning views of Boston Harbor. Enjoy your time here by exploring the hiking trails or relaxing on the beach.
  2. Arnold Arboretum — Stop and smell the roses, and thousands of other plants, at this huge Harvard University-owned park and botanical research institution.
  3. Paul Revere Mall — Free your mind while walking through this stretch of the Freedom Trail that includes a red-brick thoroughfare, tree-lined paths, and many historic sights.
  4. Georges Island — Take a walk through history at this 53-acre island that’s seven miles from downtown Boston, but the ferry ride only adds to the experience.
  5. Charles River Esplanade — When this three-mile park isn’t hosting events it’s a great place to go for a stroll, pack a picnic, and enjoy views of the river.