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Walking Tours : New for 2023

Becoming Back Bay

Travel through Boston's Back Bay, a marvel of 19th Century civil engineering

Becoming Back Bay

Boston Public Library

Take a trip through the Back Bay neighborhood and learn where Back Bay started, how it evolved, and where it is today. Discover why and how the Bay was filled, and peek into the homes of the Victorian residents and their servants. Learn what made Back Bay such an engineering marvel in its time.

On this tour, explore why the filling of the bay was considered the most ambitious civil engineering achievement in nineteenth-century America, and uncover how it was a landmark event of urban planning in every sense of the term.

tour duration

90 minutes

tour distance

0.9 mile

tour terrain level 1

mostly flat surfaces and little to no inclines

This tour is not currently available as a private tour.

Starting Location

Meet your guide in the Public Garden in front of the George Washington statue facing Arlington Street

Finding Your Guide: All guides carry an 8×11 sign that says “Boston By Foot Walking Tours.”

Nearest Accessible MBTA Station: Arlington (Green Line)

Ending Location

This tour ends in the general area of 191 Commonwealth Ave.

Nearest Accessible MBTA Station: Copley (Green Line)