Free Things to Do in Boston
Free equals good! Grab your walking shoes and get out and explore Boston with these FREE options. Time your exhibits and exploring right, and you could do it all for free. Have fun!
Free Museums in Boston
Institute for Contemporary Art. The ICA is located in South Boston and features contemporary art and emerging new artists. It is very family friendly. Admission is FREE for all every Thursday from 5 to 9 PM during ICA Free Thursday Nights.
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The MFA has one of the largest collections in the world with nearly 500,000 works of art. They have art from ancient Egyptian to contemporary, special exhibitions, and innovative educational programs. Admission is FREE Wednesday nights after 4 pm (voluntary donations is suggested). Also, for youths ages 7–17, admission is free during weekdays after 3 pm, weekends, and Boston public school holidays; otherwise admission for youths is $10.
Commonwealth Museum. This museum has state of the art interactive exhibits. Its dramatic “treasures gallery” holds the great historic documents that protect our liberties. Admission and parking is always FREE to this museum.
Boston Fire Museum. This museum is located in an old firehouse at 344 Congress Street. You will find fire fighting memorabilia from the Greater Boston area as well as information on fire safety. The museum is open on Saturdays from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM and admission is FREE (donations accepted).
The following list if from the Boston Parks Department website and includes all the Boston Parks that make up what is called the Emerald Necklace–an 1,100-acre chain of nine parks linked by parkways and waterways. Download a map here.
From Boston Common to Franklin Park it is approximately 7 miles by foot through the parks.
- Boston Common
- Public Garden
- Commonwealth Avenue Mall
- Back Bay Fens
- The Riverway
- Olmsted Park
- Jamaica Pond
- Arnold Arboretum
- Franklin Park
The Freedom Trail is a 2.5-mile, red-lined route that includes 16 historically significant sites. Explore museums and meetinghouses, churches, and burying grounds. You can pay for a tour or complete a FREE self-guided one.
Self Guided Walk to the Sea
According to their website, “The Walk to the Sea encompasses four centuries of Boston history.” It begins at the State House on Beacon Hill and passes many historic landmarks and skyscrapers. The Walk from summit to sea is only one mile but brings the history of Boston to life.
Markets are great places to find unique items and equally unique people. Boston has some of the best markets in the world. Check them out.
- The SoWa Open Market. A community of artisans, entrepreneurs, and creative minds that believe in crafting quality hand-made goods you won’t find anywhere else.
- The SoWa Vintage Market. Boston’s weekly go-to destination for antiques, vintage, collectibles, art and many other one-of-a-kind curiosities.
- Faneuil Hall. This marketing place is known for its world famous street performers. Jaw-dropping stunts, musical acts, and mind-boggling balance routines will keep you entertained.
Planning a Trip to Boston
Since we are already talking about saving money, check out a great way to stay in Boston in one of several historical neighborhoods at a short-term apartment rental instead of an expensive hotel. We have several locations to fit your schedule. Call us! 877-795-4387