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This post is about the best things to do in Boston in June, including family-friendly, free, as well as nighttime activities and attractions, all updated for 2023.

Be sure to check out our master guide on things to do in Boston at any time of the year.

Disclosure: While our recommendations are always unbiased, we may receive a small share of sales through some of the links below at no cost to you. See the full text.


TOP 10 THINGS TO DO IN JUNE

This section covers our top ten list for June. You might also read our post on things to do in Boston (at any time of the year).

For more ideas on popular things to do in Boston, check out our popular posts:

Some of the items listed in this post are included for free with the purchase of a tourist discount pass.


1. See a Concert

As you may have expected, there are always some great performers coming to the Boston area.

Here's who's playing in June:

Concerts

Festivals

Re:Set Festival | June 16th-18th

Boston miniFEST | June 24th

Happy Together | June 14th, 18th

  • Boygenius
  • LCD Soundsystem
  • Steve Lacy
  • James Blake
  • Toro Y Moi
  • and more!
  • Frizzy Mon
  • Molly O'Leary
  • Eta
  • Steve Robinson
  • Seventh Sun
  • and more!
  • The Turtles
  • Little Anthony
  • Gary Puckett
  • The Cowsills
  • Badfinger ft. Joey Molland
  • and more!

Check StubHub's calendar to see who else is performing in Boston this month.


2. Go to a Sports Game

Summer is the perfect time to go see a baseball game! You can combine your outing with a tour of Fenway Park.

For all the sports events this June, check StubHub for Boston sports tickets.

Baseball

Soccer

Basketball

Hockey

  • Bruins | if they reach the Stanley Cup Finals

If you are traveling with children, going to a sports event is a good way to keep them entertained. For more family-friendly things to do, check out the section below

Check for other Boston sports events in June.


3. Go Whale Watching

Now that the weather is getting nice, you may want to consider going out on the water to see some whales.

Several companies offer this service, and although they might be operating at reduced capacity, they are still open for business.

This is a very fun activity, and in the summer you should be able to see at least one or two whales while out on the Boston Harbor.

For more details, please check our full post covering Boston Whale Watching.


4. Go on a Sightseeing Tour

June weather makes it an ideal time to discover Boston on foot. Consider taking one of our pay-what-you-wish walking tours.

You can learn about the city’s history and the country’s history on our pay-what-you-like Freedom Trail Tour.

Or if you’re interested in Little Italy, we have a pay-what-you-like North End Tour too.

We also have GPS enabled audio tours and self-guided tours available for those who prefer exploring the city at their own pace.

If you want to cover more ground, you should also check out:


5. Head to the Aquarium

The New England Aquarium will be open to all visitors this June, and it's one of the best places to visit during the summer.

Even if you can't afford a ticket, you might still want to head over to the aquarium for their one free attraction: Atlantic Harbor Seals!

This exhibit is entirely free to enjoy and it's located outside of the building in the front plaza. 

Alternatively, you can get tickets ahead of time to avoid missing out.

Purchase tickets or learn more.

TIP: Don't forget that you can save money on tickets using the Boston CityPASS.


6. Save Money With a Tourist Pass

If you want to see multiple popular attractions while in Boston, you could save a significant amount of money by purchasing a city pass upfront.

Boston currently has several different types of passes to choose from, and they each include a lot of popular activities including tours, museums, cruises, and other things to do.

Here are a few of the most popular tours, museums, and other things to do included with these passes:

Depending on which type of pass you choose, you should be able to save at least 20% – 50% off or more from retail prices.

For additional details, please read our post covering Boston tourist passes.


7. Go to the Theatre

Boston has plenty to offer in the theatre department and you can see some great performances this month.

Here are a few of the best theatrical performances taking place in and around Boston this month:

Plays and Musicals

Performance Art

See what other performances are happening in June.


8. Celebrate Father’s Day

Falling on June 18th, 2023, Father’s Day is one of the biggest holidays of the month. There are several great activities you can enjoy with your dad, and we’re going to cover a few of the better opportunities in Boston.

Boston Harbor Sail – The best time to go sailing around Boston is during the summer when the weather is nice. What better way to show some love for your dad than to take him on a sail?

Check our post about Boston sailboat tours for more information.

Father’s Day Dinner – Many restaurants will be offering special menu items and discounts for fathers on this day. If you’re interested, check this list of Boston restaurants that will be celebrating this special day.

Visit a Brewery – The Cambridge Brewing Company will be open and offering plenty of different craft beers on tap.

Alternatively, you can also take a tour of Night Shift Brewing for free!

TIP: The Samuel Adams Brewery offers free tours to the public most days of the week, and they also have premium tours you can take which are included with the Go Boston Card


9. See a Movie in the Park

Summer is one of the most popular times to watch a movie, and it’s also the time of year when you’ll have several opportunities to see movies in the park.

There are at least a few locations where you’ll be able to enjoy a free film outdoors in Boston this June.

The Lawn on D 

This relatively small park just so happens to be one of the most popular places for community events and activities in Boston. 

The Coolidge at Greenway 

Every summer, the Coolidge Corner Theatre offers free film screenings at Greenway’s Wharf District Park. In years past, they have shown movies like Rear Window and Raiders of the Lost Ark.

The Hatch Shell 

This popular venue on the Esplanade usually offers free movies every Friday night during the summer. Films have included Thor: Ragnarok, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, and Coco.

Most of the films shown during these events are family-friendly, free, and they are screened after the sun goes down. For more free things to do, check out our section below.


10. Go to a Stand-up Comedy Show

Boston tends to attract a lot of the biggest comedians in the world throughout the year, and June will be an especially good time to see some live stand-up.

Here are a few of the more noteworthy comics performing this month:

If you're looking for even more opportunities to laugh, check this list of stand-up comedy performances in Boston during June.


Free Museum Entrance for the Summer Solstice 

Even Harvard gets into the spirit of summer with this fun and interesting activity. The Summer Solstice Celebration is a free event that is open to the public.

From 5 pm to 9 pm on June 21st, you can get free admission to the Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology, the Harvard Semitic Museum, the Harvard Museum of Natural History, and the Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments.

There will also be several outdoor activities such as circus performers, an animal farm, and a raffle to win museum memberships and other gifts.  If you get hungry, there will be food trucks nearby.

Harvard also offers free guided tours throughout the year. Even if you happen to visit during a time when they aren’t available, you can still take our free self-guided tour of Harvard University or join us on our pay-what-you-wish walking tour of Cambridge and Harvard.

Note that Harvard hasn't yet released info about this year's event, so keep an eye on their website for more information.


Charles River Swim Race

This annual one-mile swim is organized by the Charles River Conservancy of the River Dock.

It usually takes place in June, although the dates for 2023 have yet to be posted.

Participants pay a fee (between $45-$65) along with a one-day membership to USMS ($15)

For more information, visit their website.


Grab a Slice at the Boston Pizza Festival

Pizza lovers won’t want to miss this opportunity to try a variety of unique and interesting dishes from several different vendors.

The Boston Pizza Festival, now it's its fourth year, will welcome restaurants from around the country to show off some of their best food.

This takes place from June 24th - July 25th, 2023 in Boston City Hall Plaza.

After trying a bunch of samples, visitors will have a chance to vote for their favorite pizza at the event.

Even if you can’t make it out to this festival, you might want to consider taking our Little Italy Food Tour to discover some of the best Italian eateries in Boston.


THINGS TO DO AT NIGHT IN JUNE

If you’re looking for things you can do after the sun goes down, this section will provide a few different activities you can enjoy in Boston during the month of June. 

For even more ideas, check our post about things to do at night in Boston


Go Stargazing 

The Coit Observatory is one of the best places in Boston to see the stars. It doesn't cost a thing if you go on one of their Public Open Nights.

These take place on Wednesdays (provided the weather is cooperating!)  The starting time in June is 8:30 pm.

Note that you will need to reserve tickets ahead of time. There is limited space available, so they won’t be able to let everyone in. Get free tickets here.

TIP: Don’t forget that you can also attend Astronomy After Hours for free at the Boston Museum of Science


Enjoy a Music Festival

In addition to all of the great art festivals taking place during June, there will also be a handful of wonderful music festivals to attend as well.

You may also want to consider going to one of the concert series events that will be offered during this time of year.

While some of these activities will be free to attend, others may require a ticket.


FAMILY-FRIENDLY ACTIVITIES IN JUNE

This section will focus on things you can do with your entire family during the month of June.  Be sure to look at all the sections of this post as you will find other family-friendly activities, like seeing a show, going to a festival or seeing an outdoor movie.

If you’re looking for affordable attractions that your kids will enjoy, make sure to check our list of free family-friendly activities.


Visit the Frog Pond in Boston Common

During the summer, Boston Common turns on the water at their Frog Pond, allowing young kids to splash around and cool off on a hot day. 

If you’re looking for something else to do, consider heading to the Boston Public Garden on the Western side of the park where you can get Swan Boat rentals for a very low price. Tickets are included with the Go Boston Card.

NOTE: The Freedom Trail will take you right through Boston Common, so you may want to consider making a stop here while you’re walking the historic trail.


Go to the New England Aquarium

The summer is a perfect time to visit an aquarium with your family. The New England Aquarium includes a lot of great exhibits and fun things to see and do.

In addition to all of the interesting aquatic wildlife on display, there is also an IMAX theatre which provides screenings of various different films.

Your kids may also be interested in their animal encounter program, allowing them to visit with harbor seals, sea turtles and even go whale watching. 


Have Fun at Faneuil Hall Marketplace

There are a lot of fun things for kids to see and do at Faneuil Hall Marketplace. Many of the family-friendly activities are outdoors, so the summertime is actually a perfect time to visit.

There will be more street performers than usual, storytellers, and puppet shows. If you’ve got a creative child, there are also art classes available in the area.

The best part about all of these activities is that they are entirely free for kids, though donations are accepted.

If you or your children get hungry, it’s worth noting that the shops in the International Market often offer free samples.


Eat Some Ice Cream

The Jimmy Fund Scooper Bowl event has taken place for almost 40 years.

On June 2nd and 3rd, at Patriot Place in Foxborough, you'll find unlimited ice cream and live entertainment.


Attend a Parade

On June Day each year, the largest military parade on the East Coast takes place. In 2023 that's on June 5th.

30+ historic military organizations take part, marching from their headquarters at Faneuil Hall to the Granary Burial Ground where they lay a wreath.

The event is family-friendly and free. Visit the website for more information.


FREE THINGS TO DO IN JUNE

The following section will include a selection of activities you can enjoy for free in Boston throughout the month of June. 

If you’re looking for even more great ideas, check out our post about free things to do in Boston.


Visit the U.S.S. Constitution

Also known as “Old Ironsides,” the U.S.S. Constitution is one of the most famous vessels in the history of the United States. You can still hop on board and take a tour of the ship.

In addition to the free tour, the U.S.S. Constitution Museum is also technically free to enter. They do request a donation, but it isn’t required. Even so, we do recommend offering a little something for the work they do to keep this historic attraction in good shape.

NOTE: This landmark is included on our Freedom Trail tour


Celebrate Juneteenth

Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery in the United States, and Boston is filled with historic locations related to the abolition movement.

In honor of Juneteenth, the Museum of Fine Arts usually has free events scheduled. In past years, they have provided movie screenings, arts & crafts, musical performances, art tours, and much more.

Most of these activities will be free, but you might want to bring some cash for food and drinks. Read more about the event.


Go to a Free Museum

If you’re looking to beat the summer heat, consider going to an air-conditioned museum to enjoy some wonderful artwork and/or historic artifacts. 

While some are free during all available hours, others offer free hours during certain days of the week. See our post on free Boston museums.

  • Bunker Hill Monument/Museum
  • Boston Fire Museum
  • Institute of Contemporary Art
  • Fuller Craft Museum
  • Museum of Fine Arts
  • Museum of Bad Art
  • Waterworks Museum
  • Warren Anatomical Museum
  • The Plumbing Museum
  • Harvard Museum of Natural History
  • Harvard Art Museum
  • MIT Museum
  • Commonwealth Museum
  • Boston University Art Gallery
  • Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology

Take a Walk on the Charles River Esplanade

What better way to spend a nice summer day than by walking around the 3-mile stretch along the Boston harbor known as the Charles River Esplanade.

This is the location of the Hatch Shell, but they also have a lot of great things you can see and do for free. For example, you can take a free Esplanade Walking Tour offered by the Esplanade Association.

Be sure to check out the Patterned Behavior Art Mural, a fantastic mural created by Silvia Lopez Chavez. You’ll find this wonderful work of art just west of the Massachusetts Avenue bridge, visible from the walking path along the river.

If you’re looking for even more great ideas, check out our post about free things to do in Boston.


Attend the Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival

On June 11th, at the John W. Weeks Footbridge on the Charles Riber, you'll find this free festival.

There will be cultural performances and demonstrations, food vendors, arts and crafts, and of course, Dragon Boat Racing.

Visit the website for more information, and if you're up for it, you might register for the race itself!


Attend Bunker Hill Day Events

Bucker hill day takes place on June 17th each year in observation of the Battle of Bunker Hill which took place on June 17th, 1775.

There are a number of events held throughout Massachusetts, with some historical sites and museums hosting events.


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About The Author

Brian Burgess

Brian was born in Cambridge and has been living in the Boston area all his life. He is a graduate of Boston's Emerson College with a degree in communications with a journalism/history focus. He has been leading tours for Free Tours By Foot Boston since it was started in the city of Boston in 2012, and enjoys sharing his knowledge of Boston's rich history with not only the guests on his tours, but with everyone he meets.
Updated: March 28th, 2023
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