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Back Bay - Neighborhood Guide

Did you know one of Boston's most desirable neighborhoods used to be a swamp?  It's true.  In the mid 1850's, the area was wetlands, a tidal bay.  Trains brought in gravel from places like Needham to fill in the 700 acres now known as the Back Bay.  These days, the Back Bay is considered to be one of Boston's top neighborhoods, with its stately brownstones, quaint shopping and top-notch restaurants. Talk about places in demand, according to LINK, the Back Bay had 112 condo sales in Q4 of 2021 with an average selling price of $2,972,135 and an average price per square foot of $1,555 (12% higher than 2020).

It is perhaps the most walkable part of the City.  The streets are a grid laid out in alphabetical order starting at Arlington Street. It's a short stroll to Fenway Park, Copley Place and the Prudential Center. In fact you can walk to all of the attractions in this area of the City, and it's one of the top areas in the City for bike riders.

Some of the most popular spots in the Back Bay:

Charles River Esplanade – Perfect for afternoon exercise, this State-owned park stretches in a 17 mile loop along the Charles River. It is one of Back Bay’s most popular spots when the weather warms up and is filled with playgrounds, hiking, and biking trails. You won't find a better place in the city for a picturesque run, walk, or picnic!  Watch the sailboats or rowers out on the river. It's THE place to be for the annual 4th of July concert by the Boston Pops and fireworks show at the Hatch Shell.

Newbury Street - Running from the Public Garden through Brookline Ave., Newbury Street is best known for its high-end shops and restaurants. Still, there is something for everyone and it is a wonderful place to wander and spend an afternoon.

Public Garden - The famous George Washington statue is there to greet you as you enter the Public Garden at the end of Commonwealth Ave.  It's one of the most photographed green spaces in the Country, let alone in Boston.  Sit under a tree in the shade and read a good book, or maybe take the kids and enjoy a ride on the iconic swan boats, or pose for a picture by the Make Way for Ducklings statues.

Boston Public Library - This Library has over 23-million items, making it one of the largest collections in the Country. It includes pieces from William Shakespeare, Mozart and the personal library of John Adams. Historian David McCullough called it one of the five most important libraries in the United States. Grab a coffee and read a book or make a reservation to have an elegant 90 minute dining experience at the Courtyard Tea Room.  Located in Copley Square, the Boston Public Library is a wonderful Back Bay treasure.

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