Boston Public Library Tours

Founded in 1848, the Boston Public Library contains over 23 million items, making it the second largest public library in the U.S., after the Library of Congress. Of those millions, about 1.7 million are rare books and works, including medieval manuscripts and incunabula (a book or pamphlet printed prior to 1501 in Europe). Among the rare books are also the personal library of John Adams, early editions of works by William Shakespeare, drawings from Thomas Rowlandson and musical archives from the Handel and Haydn Society. 

The McKim Building, with its vast research collection, and the Johnson Building, where you can find the circulating collection, are two of the most important parts of the library. The McKim Building is even a National Historic Landmark. And while the library system technically includes a whopping 24 branches, the original Copley Square location offers plenty to see, including Bates Hall, the Chavannes Gallery, the Abbey Room and the Sargent Gallery.

Practical Info

The library is located at 700 Boylston Street in Copley Square. The main Johnson and McKim buildings are open Monday through Thursday from 9am to 9pm, Friday and Saturday from 9am to 5pm and on Sunday from 1 to 5pm.
Location
Address: 700 Boylston Street, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
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4 Tours & Activities to Experience

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Copley Square to Downtown Boston Freedom Trail Walking Tour

Explore elegant neighborhoods, historic streets and American landmarks on a 2-hour Boston walking tour from the Back Bay to Beacon Hill and downtown portions of the Freedom Trail. Learn about Boston’s history and culture as you stroll brownstone-lined avenues and walk the shady paths of the Boston Public Garden. Step into Boston’s Revolutionary history in the churches, cemeteries and battlegrounds of the American struggle for independence.
  • Duration: 2 hours
From
USD35.00
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  • Duration: 2 hours
From
USD35.00

Boston Freedom Trail to Copley Square Walking Tour

Travel back in time through the early years of American history during this 2-hour guided walking tour of Boston’s famous Freedom Trail and its most iconic landmarks. Relive the events of the American Revolution as you pass Faneuil Hall, see the Old and New State Houses and visit the setting of the infamous Boston Massacre. You’ll then head downtown past Boston Common and the modern John Hancock Tower, finishing in Copley Square. A professional guide will join your trip to help add context.
  • Duration: 2 hours
From
USD35.00
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  • Duration: 2 hours
From
USD35.00

New York City to Boston Day Trip with Spanish Guide

Explore the best of the East Coast, from New York City to Boston, on this guided tour. Explore one of the nation's oldest cities and check out its many top attractions and landmarks, like Beacon Hill, the Freedom Trail, Harvard University, Fenway Park, Faneuil Hall, and much more. Along the way, learn about Beantown's history, architecture, and traditions from a Spanish-speaking guide.
  • Duration: 14 hours
From
USD99.00
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  • Duration: 14 hours
From
USD99.00

Bustling Back Bay Pedicab Tour

Experience Boston’s trendy and historic Back Bay on a private pedicab tour with your group of up to three adults or two adults and two children. Marvel at the neighborhood’s beautiful Victorians as you explore with a flexible itinerary tailored to your interests. Skip the walking and let a local pedal you past destinations like Fenway Park, Copley Square, the restaurant from Cheers, and the Newbury Street shopping district.
  • Duration: 1 hour
From
USD95.00
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  • Duration: 1 hour
From
USD95.00


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