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Boston: South Bay and the Shirley-Eustis House Walking Map

Boston: South Bay and the Shirley-Eustis House Walking Map

If you look past the South Bay’s energy of modern commerce with some imagination, you can still visualize three-masted sailing ships, muscular steam locomotives, aristocratic estates, horse-drawn streetcars, and personalities of an earlier age who shaped and were shaped by the evolution of this area.

When the Puritans arrived in Boston, they found two large bays separated by a narrow isthmus roughly following today’s Washington Street. The southern bay—unsurprisingly named South Bay—was a large tidal marsh.

The bluffs overlooking South Bay, graced by the stately mansion of British royal governor William Shirley, were gradually lined with homes by the local gentry of the young republic. Influenced by the Industrial Revolution, over the 19th century these forces transformed the bay into a place devoted to industry and commerce.
Today only the Fort Point Channel remains as a remainder of South Bay’s watery history. Explore today’s South “Bay,” the neighborhood that landfill built.


Click for “WalkBoston’s South Bay and the Shirley-Eustis House Walking Map” on Google Maps

Boston: South Boston and Dorchester Bay Walking Map

Boston: South Boston and Dorchester Bay Walking Map

South Boston has the longest continuously accessible ocean waterfront of any Boston neighborhood; it also has one of the city’s highest hill, complete with panoramic views of Boston Harbor and Dorchester Bay. In comparison with the downtown side of South Boston, where port activities dominate, the south side of the peninsula is highly accessible, with many public beaches and walkways. Here active waterfront uses predominate–large public bathhouses and beaches, shaded pavilions to take in the views, yacht clubs, and fishing spots.


Click for “WalkBoston’s South Boston and Dorchester Bay Walking Map” on Google Maps

Boston: Beacon Hill North Slope

Boston: Beacon Hill North Slope

Explore the section of Beacon Hill bounded by Cambridge, Bowdoin, Myrtle, and Charles streets. Learn about the architectural history of the Hill’s 19th-century African-American community, the town houses of Yankee gentry dating from the early 1800s to the Civil War, and the tenements that housed European Jews during the period of 1880 to 1920. Meander along the alleyways and cul-de-sacs that for decades were considered part of the old West End neighborhood. The tour route will include the residences of abolitionist senator Charles Sumner, meat packer J.P. Squires, African-American civil rights advocates Louis and Harriet Hayden, and bohemian poet and editor Louise Bogan.


Click for “WalkBoston’s Beacon Hill North Slope Walking Map” on Google Maps

Boston: Hyde Park and Victorian Fairmount Walking Map

Boston: Hyde Park and Victorian Fairmount Walking Map

On a hillside overlooking the Neponset River lies a little Victorian time capsule known as Fairmount. This walk will take you up and down Fairmount’s steep streets on a trip back in time past stunning and fascinating structures.

Together with Cleary Square, Hyde Park’s shopping and administrative center, Fairmount occupies Boston’s southernmost tip; it’s further from downtown than any part of the city. This remote location mean that Fairmont was somewhat of a late bloomer among Boston neighborhoods and is why it peaked in the Victorian period.

Hyde Park remained an independent town until 1912, when its residents voted to join Boston. As this walk will reveal to you, the Fairmount neighborhood retains several of its original twenty homes and, with them, its own unique identity. It is an enclave of Victoriana on its hillside overlooking the Neponset.


Click for “WalkBoston’s Hyde Park and Victorian Fairmount Walking Map” on Google Maps

Jamaica Plain Walking Map

Jamaica Plain Walking Map

Affectionately known as “J.P.,” Jamaica Plain is one of the greenest neighborhoods in the city–surrounded on three sides by large tracts of forested and much-loved open space. With bucolic Arnold Arboretum, picturesque Jamaica Pond, expansive Franklin Park, and historic Forest Hills Cemetery, J.P. is an outdoor oasis.

Still, don’t let all the natural beauty obscure J.P.’s abundance of architectural intrigue. The neighborhood hosts a number of “Painted Lady” Victorians on Summer Hill. Stately mansions line Jamaica Pond and nearby streets.

These days J.P. hosts wealthy “hip” suburbanites returning to the city, plus a large Hispanic and Caribbean population. They join longtime Irish Catholic residents, an LGBT contingent, students, and many others.

This walk gives you a sampling of what they perhaps love best about J.P.: quiet residential streets, spectacular mansions, a vibrant commercial district, and—most of all—Jamaica Pond, a major park and haven for the city-weary.

Click for “WalkBoston’s Jamaica Plain Walking Map” on Google Maps