Boston, Massachusetts is a favorite destination for those looking to dive deep into American history. It’s a place brimming with culture thanks to fantastic museums and science centers like the Museum of Fine Arts and the Museum of Science, and it’s an academic powerhouse, with schools like Harvard, MIT, Emerson, Northeastern, Boston College, and Boston University calling the city home. And it’s all waiting for you to come and explore.
“Boston is a vibrant city rich in history, world-class museums and a diverse culinary scene,” Saba Al-Hadi, Founder PhotoWalks in Bostonshared with Travel + entertainment. “Many attractions are within walking distance or easily accessible via the subway system.”
Meet the expert
Saba Al-Hadi is the founder of PhotoWalks Tours of Boston, which offers photography tours and historical walking tours of the city.
William Bunce is the General Manager of The Ritz-Carlton, Boston, a luxury hotel located in downtown Boston.
Another thing Boston is known for is its four distinct seasons.
“When you decide to visit Boston, no matter the season, there is always an energy and liveliness here that captivates our visitors,” said William Bunce, general manager of The Ritz-Carlton, Bostonsubscriber. “Our restaurants have quickly become some of the most diverse in the country, with chefs showcasing cuisine from around the world in neighborhoods within walking distance of downtown. That’s why they call us America’s Walking City! Our waterfront is programmed with seasonal activities that will keep you entertained.” Outdoors all year round.
Boston is one of the most famous cities in America. Although it offers excitement year-round, the weather can vary greatly from season to season. Crowds, hotel prices, and flights also vary throughout the year. The three main tourist seasons in Boston are:
- High season: Summer, from June to early September
- Shoulder seasons: Spring and fall, from September to November and from April to May
- Low season: Winter, between December and March
Here are the best times to visit Boston for fewer crowds, nice weather, and more.
Related: T+L Guide to Boston
Best times to visit Boston for small crowds
The best time to visit Boston for small crowds is during its low seasons. The city’s shoulder season runs from September through December, to low season from January through February, and again in early spring for the second shoulder season in March and April. Fortunately, the city’s main museums, attractions, hotels and restaurants are never closed, which means that even in the lowest tourist season, you’ll still be able to get reservations for everything you want to do, just with fewer other tourists around.
Best times to visit Boston for good weather
Although the idea of ”good” weather is subjective, it’s safe to say that you’ll enjoy comfortable weather throughout Boston’s high season in the summer, as well as the high season in the fall. like Weatherspark reportedBoston’s warm season lasts for just over three months, between early June and mid-September, when the average high temperature reaches 73 degrees Fahrenheit. (The warmest month is July when the average high temperature reaches 82 degrees.) Autumn is especially attractive in Boston, when temperatures drop into the 60s, causing the leaves to change into a kaleidoscope of colors. The leaves begin to change in September and usually reach their peak in mid-October. However, the colorful leaves can continue into November, when temperatures begin to drop into the mid-50s.
The best times to visit Boston at the lowest prices
The best time to visit Boston for great deals on hotels and potential discounts on excursions and other offers is during its low season during the winter months. In fact, prices have been known to drop dramatically at some of the city’s best hotels between December and March. like Get to know Boston The average daily rate for hotels in Boston was reportedly $186.38 in January 2023 and jumped to $334.28 in May. In addition to low hotel rates, the city’s museums also offer free days or discounted admission times throughout the year, including Boston Children’s Museumwhich offers a $1 admission ticket every Sunday from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m., and Museum of Contemporary Artwhich offers free admission every Thursday night from 5 to 9 p.m
The best times to visit Boston to exercise
In addition to excellent hotels, world-class restaurants, museums and historic sites, Boston is perhaps one of the best sports cities in the world. It’s home to several major sports teams, including the Boston Red Sox, Celtics, and Bruins (and technically the Patriots, but we won’t count them here since their stadium is in Foxboro, not Boston). It is also home to one of the most famous marathons on Earth, which attracts thousands of participants and spectators every year.
The best day to visit Boston for sporting events is Patriots Day, which honors the first battle of the American Revolution, and is celebrated each year on the third Monday in April. This also happens to be Marathon Monday, which visitors are welcome to enjoy from the sidewalks extending from Hopkinton to Boylston Street. Visitors can also watch a Red Sox game on Patriots Day. like Boston Hobby The Red Sox have played home games on Patriots Day (almost) every year since 1960, he explained.
“Our sports teams, much to the chagrin of those who live outside Boston, are often champions in their championships, and history buffs love to broaden their perspective through our Revolutionary past,” Ponce said. “There is always something going on in Boston that will undoubtedly fascinate and delight any visitor.”
If you miss Patriots Day, that’s okay, because the Red Sox play more than 80 home games at Fenway Park over the entire summer. This extends right into the basketball and hockey season, both of which start in October, so you can always tune in to a Bruins or Celtics game to root for the home team no matter when you visit.
Worst times to visit Boston
Again, “worst” is subjective, however, there are times when you may want to avoid visiting Boston. The winter months can be very cold and snowy in Boston. According to WeatherSpark, Boston’s cold season typically falls between early December and mid-March, with average daily highs in the 30s to low 40s. January is the coldest month in the city with the average high temperature reaching just 37 degrees and the average low temperature reaching a bone-chilling 24 degrees.
Additionally, since Boston is a college-centric city, you may want to avoid the city in early September during transition time and early to mid-May during graduation season. During these times, the city is crowded with students and their families, so if you are not among them, perhaps choose another time to visit.