Each set of parks within the Greenway – North End, Wharf District, Fort Point Channel, Dewey Square and Chinatown – has a unique design that reflects the distinct character of each Boston neighborhood.
We invite you to explore the parks and get to know our thriving city along the way. Experience the entire Greenway on foot by starting at either Chinatown Park in the south or at the North End Parks. Enjoy diverse plantings, unique architectural features, historic landmarks, attractions and the beautiful Boston Harbor and waterfront as you go!
A lovely oasis at the southern end of the Greenway, this one-acre linear park contains design elements drawn from Asian traditions and art work. Designed by Carol R. Johnson and Associates, it contains a serpentine walkway edged by bamboo within bright red sculptural elements and a unique fountain that suggests a waterfall and shallow riverbed.
A section of pavement in Chinatown Park designed by California artist May Sun is patterned after a Chinese chessboard. The square within a circle pattern symbolizes heaven and earth in the Chinese culture. Running through the center of the chessboard is a "river" of stainless steel and colored concrete, depicting a map of Boston focused on Chinatown, South Station and the Fort Point Channel. Visit http://www.crja.com/parks/chinatown.html to learn more about the symbolism and meaning in the park's design.
A modern garden displays plants representative of the natural and created cultural landscape of Asia. The rhododendrons, cherry trees, irises, peonies, and chrysanthemums bloom with bountiful color during the year. Grasses, bamboo, and trees provide texture and structure year round.
People of all ages truly enjoy this park. The moving water delights and soothes children and adults. Chess players, particularly those who love the Chinese version of the game, Xiangqi, come to set up their tables and find worthy competitors. Others may enjoy dim sum, a Vietnamese sandwich, or a bowl of noodles and dumplings in one of the many nearby restaurants and then relax among the plants and trees that beautify the park.
A temporary public art exhibit, Make and Take, was installed in February and will be on display through the year in front of the modern red gate at Essex Street.
This park connects the major transportation hub of South Station to the Financial District. The park has gardens, lawn areas, and the adjacent plaza, which draw in commuters and nearby workers and residents.
Although the Dewey Square Park is one of the smallest on the Greenway, there are many events happening daily that attract both locals and tourists. With thousands of people working in the Financial District, this section of the Greenway allows for some time to relax and revel in the sun.
The tables, chairs, and our popular food vendors have made Dewey Square Park a popular lunch destination. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, we have up to six mobile food vendors from 11 am to 3 pm. On Tuesdays and Thursdays from May through November, two food vendors are joined by over 15 vendors for the Boston Public Market Farmer's Market.
The Greenway, together with the Boston Calling Music Festival and the Downtown BID present weekly block parties Thursday evenings from 5-8 pm featuring music and beer and wine for sale through September.
The Dewey Square Park is easily accessible by Commuter Rail from South Station or Red Line subway from South Station.
The goal of the Dewey Demonstration Gardens is to create a space that is visually lively all year-round while providing an educational playground for sustainable, urban, gardening practices. We have pollinator plants to attract beneficial insects, unusual edible plants, as well as a rain garden comprised of native plants of the Northeast. With this combination of green techniques, we’ve created a demonstration space for Greenway visitors.
Commuters and visitors to the city enjoy the changing seasonal landscape of these parks. The verdant gardens and open spaces were originally designed by Halvorson Design Partnership for the Massachusetts Horticultural Society in 2008 and installed with help from many volunteers including the Massachusetts Master Gardener Association. The landscape has evolved with the stewardship of the Greenway Conservancy and has frequently hosted public art installations.
Blooms heighten these parks in summer and enclose visitors as they relax on the lawn or pass through to escape the traffic outside. Taking a break from work in the new red lawn chairs or seeing the nearby sights, it’s a spot to enjoy both city life and relaxing green space.
There are wide varieties of trees and flowers found in the Fort Point Channel Parks, so before your visit, check out the Horticulture Page which highlights some of the interesting plants scattered throughout the parks. The Fort Point Channel Parks are some of the most colorful and with something always in bloom, there is always something new to see on the Greenway.
The Fort Point Channels Parks are easily accessible by Commuter Rail from South Station or Red Line subway from South Station.
An active civic space within the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway, the Wharf District Parks connect Faneuil Hall and the Financial District with Boston Harbor. Designed by EDAW and Copley Wolff Design Group, the parks contain areas of paved surfaces for active public use and a gathering space for public events known as the Great Room. You will find two unique fountains, specialized lighting structures, and many places to sit in these parks. Three open lawn areas, surrounded with plantings, provide more informal space.
Workers from the Financial District, neighbors, and visitors from the nearby hotels enjoy the wide spaces, walkways, benches and lawns in these parks that stretch from Atlantic Avenue to High Street. Walk under the London-plane trees that line the great boulevard or along the Mothers’ Walk path to enjoy a bountiful variety of plants native to New England and the northeast.
Children and adults alike delight in the Rings Fountain at Milk Street and its unpredictable and irresistible water patterns that jet into the air from a flat paved surface. After dinner at one of the nearby restaurants, the Wharf District Parks are a great place to stroll, as the Light Blades perform colorful displays.
A moving feature of the Wharf District Parks is the Mothers’ Walk, a meandering path where sons and daughters of all ages have inscribed pavers with the names of special people who have loved and inspired them. It begins just south of the intersection of Atlantic Avenue and Cross Street and flows along the harborside walkway in a curving path toward its southern terminus at High Street. Spanning the length of the Wharf District Parks, the engraved Mothers’ Walk pavers (each on a 6”X 6”concrete paver) are clearly visible. Mother's Walk pavers can be purchased for $500, details are here.
The Boston Harbor Islands Pavilion officially opened June 2, 2011. It was designed by Utile, Inc. Architects to raise awareness of the nearby Boston Harbor Islands - a natural resource that is only a twenty-minute boat ride from the Greenway. The open-air pavilion is staffed by National Park Service rangers welcoming visitors and providing helpful information about the Greenway, the Harbor and the Boston Harbor Islands. Ferry tickets and Boston Harbor Islands park merchandise are available for purchase at the pavilion.
Food trucks operate year-round at Rowes Wharf Plaza - up to five in the busier summer months Monday through Friday. In addition, several food trucks operate at Milk Street from May through September. Check our Food Vending schedule for up to date information.
Located just south of the North End Parks, between Faneuil Hall and Christopher Columbus Park, the park consists of two key features surrounded by seating, brick paving and landscaping.
The Abstract Sculpture, a split dodecahedron mounted on a reflecting pool, represents the immigrant experience. Annually, the two halves will be reconfigured symbolic of all who pulled away from their country of origin and came to the Massachusetts shores, establishing themselves in new and different ways. The water of the Reflecting Pool wash over its sides and re-emerge as a single jet of water at the center of the Labyrinth, representing hope and rebirth. The Sculpture is dedicated to lives lost during the Armenian Genocide of 1915-1923 and all genocides that have followed.
Annually in late March, the Abstract Sculpture, a split dodecahedron, at Armenian Heritage Park on the Greenway is reconfigured in celebration of the immigrant experience.
The annual reconfiguration commemorates all who were pulled away from their country of origin and came to these Massachusetts shores reconfiguring their lives in new and different ways, contributing to the richness of the American life and culture.
The Labyrinth, a circular winding path paved in granite and set in lawn, celebrates life's journey. A single jet of water and the symbol of eternity mark its center. Art, Service, Science and Commerce are etched around its circle in tribute to accomplishments and contributions made to American life and culture.
Armenian Heritage Park and its endowed public programs including the annual reconfiguration of the Sculpture are a gift to the City of Boston and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts from Massachusetts Armenian-Americans. The Armenian Heritage Foundation, sponsor of the Park, provided this description. The Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy maintains and operates the Park under an agreement with the Armenian Heritage Foundation.
The parks reflect the comfortable scale of the adjacent North End neighborhood. Spacious lawns surrounded by densely planted perimeter beds define these parks that were designed by Crosby, Schlessinger, Smallridge LLC and Gustafson Guthrie Nichol Ltd.
Along the eastern edge, a trellis “pergola” covers a long “front porch” that provides both a place for sitting and an overlook for the lawn and the historic architecture beyond. A shallow water “canal” runs the length with vertical water jets adding sparkle and movement. This fountain harkens back to a century ago when a canal connected the harbor to important industrial operations.
The parks include ideal spots for storytelling programs in the summer, picnics or sunbathing on the grass, and enjoying lunch or a snack from one of the nearby North End or Haymarket establishments. Children love the canal where they can wet their feet or watch their flip flops swirl around. It’s a great place to relax at the end of the day, meet friends, or watch passersby to your heart’s content.
Plants displayed here evoke a formal feel of past European style gardens with boxwood hedges enclosing a colorful array of spring blooming daffodils and summer perennials. Favorite perennials found here are Russian sage, lavender, purple cone flower, iris, and daylilies. Several flowering trees and shrubs encircle the gardens.
After a number of community meetings, the Conservancy undertook a series of improvements to the North End Parks, including installing swinging benches, updating and replacing several plant beds, and resurfacing the Pergola. For more information about these updates, please see the Improvements page!
The Freedom Trail runs through the parks on the north side of Hanover Street. At one corner is the marker detailing the site of the first house owned by an African-American woman in the Boston, Zipporah Potter Atkins, in the 1700s.
The North End Parks are easily accessible by Commuter Rail from North Station or subway from Haymarket.