The Best Time to Visit Boston

Arnold Arboretum

Violet Smirnova / TripSavvy

As with other New England cities and towns, the best time to visit Boston depends on your favorite season, as you can truly experience all four in Boston, but popular opinion from locals and tourists alike reveals your best bet for great weather and fewer crowds is in the spring (May to June) or fall (September to October).

Late spring and early fall are the best time to visit because it’s not too hot, not too cold, and you can take advantage of key attractions that make the city a top tourist destination. No matter what time of year you choose to visit Boston, refer to this guide as you plan what to do, where to stay, and what to pack.

Weather in Boston

One of the best parts of Boston is that you can experience all four seasons, as each is quite different when it comes to weather. There are benefits to each season, but choosing the best season to visit depends on whether you prefer snow, foliage, or sunshine.

Spring typically brings highs in the 50s to 70s degrees F, increasing to the higher end as you get into June. In the summer, average temps will reach the low 80s. July and August see average highs in the low 80s, though June and even September can get hot as well. During hotter months, you may consider taking a day or weekend trip to Massachusetts beaches north or south of the city, or even heading to Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, or Nantucket. But if you choose to stay overnight in a coastal destination, expect peak season pricing from Memorial Day Weekend all the way through October in many cases.

As you get into fall, the end of September and sometimes early October can remain in the 70s—but eventually, October and November bring chillier, more fall-like weather.

Once December hits, the temperature drops significantly and stays that way until spring comes around. Snowstorms have hit Boston as early as November and as late as April, so be aware of that as you book travel arrangements. Boston can be unpredictable in this way, but the snowstorms can also make for beautiful scenery throughout the city.

Seasonal Prices in Boston

May through October is when you’ll typically experience the highest price for accommodations, with October topping the list in recent years. July and August don't see quite as high prices as the other months, likely due to hot temperatures that oftentimes make for a better day spent at the beach than in the city. For the most economical option, pull out your parka, and head to Boston in January or February.


Even during peak season (May through October), you’ll likely find that the crowds aren’t as crazy as in other popular tourist destinations. More often than not, you won't find yourself waiting in hours-long lines that you can find in other major cities. But keep in mind that for local families, kids are typically only out of school during July and August (snow days tend to keep public schools open through the end of June). This adds to the crowd situation at tourist attractions, especially those that are ideal for families. If you have specific museums and activities in mind, it's always helpful to plan ahead and grab tickets online if you can, which will not only secure you a spot but may also help save some money.

Tourist Attraction Availability

During peak season, you’ll be able to access the major sights with no problem. You may even want to find a way to head to one of the Boston area beaches in the summer months.

Attractions like the popular Boston Duck Tours, which take you out on the Charles River and through various points within the city, operate daily from April to late November. Holiday Duck Tours have also been offered.

The city certainly doesn’t shut down during the winter months, as Bostonians are well acclimated to the chillier temps and snow. For outdoor activities, you can go ice skating at the Frog Pond or browse the city’s festive holiday décor, especially in neighborhoods like Beacon Hill.

And whether it’s cold or rainy at any time of year, there are plenty of indoor museums to visit, ranging from the Museum of Science to the Children’s Museum. One that you’ll want to save for nicer weather is the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, as you’ll be outdoors for a bit during the reenactment and dumping of the tea overboard.

Popular Events in Boston

One of the most popular events that brings people from all over the world to the city is the Boston Marathon, the country’s oldest marathon that takes place each year on Patriots’ Day in April. Whether you’re a runner or spectator, it’s quite the experience, as long as you don’t have a problem with crowds. If you’re traveling to the city on the weekend of Marathon Monday, expect hotel rates much higher than usual, and be sure to book far in advance.

St. Patrick’s Day is a popular Boston holiday, especially in Irish neighborhoods like South Boston, where a parade takes place each year. And there are lots of activities around Independence Day along the Charles River, including the annual Boston Pops concert and fireworks.

There are plenty of other events throughout the year, with more month-by-month details on what to check out and prepare for below.


While the holiday season may be known for snow and chilly weather, it’s actually January when Bostonians historically experience the coldest temps of the year, with highs in the mid-30s and lows in the 20s. Stats also show that it’s the snowiest month in Boston. There’s still plenty to do in Boston during this time of year—and hotels are typically cheapest in January—but you’ll want to bundle up as you walk around or consider taking an Uber or Lyft from place to place.

Events to check out:


The weather in February doesn’t change much from January, with averages only a couple of degrees higher. Over the past several years, there have been a number of big snowstorms during this month, so keep that in mind as you book travel. Hotel prices are typically in line with January, making February another affordable month to visit Boston with few crowds. Locals will either be hibernating for winter or hitting the slopes for skiing up north.

Events to check out:

  • Head to Chinatown for the annual Chinese New Year celebrations.
  • Watch some of Boston’s best collegiate hockey teams in the Beanpot tournament.
  • If the Patriots are in the Super Bowl, take it all in at a local sports bar, and then celebrate in the city streets during the Duck Boat parade—the “Rolling Rallies”—if they win.


March can be a tease because it’s technically the kick-off of spring, but recent years have brought mid-month snowstorms, so watch the weather before you visit. It shouldn’t be too chilly though, with average highs around 45 degrees.

Events to check out:


The first day of spring may technically be in March, but in Boston, you tend to start feeling signs of spring in April with highs in the mid-50s, which ultimately leads to the beginning of climbing hotel prices as peak season approaches.

Events to check out:

  • The most popular April event is the Boston Marathon, which falls each year on Patriots’ Day.
  • Experience a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park; April is when the season kicks off.


Another beautiful month to experience Boston is May, as this is when you’ll get weather that truly feels like spring, with highs in the 60s. To coincide with the nice weather, this is also when you’ll notice hotel prices will start to climb, so keep that in mind.

Events to check out:


By the end of June, it’ll start to officially feel like summer, not only due to the weather, but also because the school year is coming to a close. During June, you’ll either have perfect weather for walking around, or it may get hot enough to hit the beach.

Events to check out:

  • Enjoy live music from June through August during the Summer in the City Entertainment Series on the Harborwalk Terrace.
  • Help fight cancer while eating ice cream at the Jimmy Fund’s Scooper Bowl.


Independence Day truly kicks off summer in Boston. This is when many Bostonians head to Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, or Nantucket to enjoy the beach season, but there’s still plenty to do within the city.

Events to check out:


August is similar to July with fewer big events happening around the city, so you may find it a tad less busy. However, most schools in Massachusetts don't start until post-Labor Day, so there will be plenty of families out and about enjoying the city in August. Typically, hotel rates are in line with July as well.

Events to check out:

  • Get no-cost admission to the city’s museums and other cultural spots through the Free August Adventures program.
  • August is when some of the bigger North End Feasts take place, such as St. Anthony’s Feast, where you can get your fix of authentic Italian food and culture.
  • Dine Out Boston is the perfect time to try out popular restaurants in discounted, three-course prix fixe meals for lunch or dinner.


September is a beautiful time to visit Boston, as the weather is still quite warm but some signs of fall start popping up here and there. Bostonians look forward to the start of the Patriots season and Red Sox playoffs, but there are also a variety of festivals to enjoy.

Events to check out:


The fall weather is usually here to stay come October, and with that comes peak foliage season and average highs in the low 60s. Because October is sweater-weather perfection, you can still expect hotel prices to be high, with this month seeing the highest average rate—over $300 a night—in recent years.

Events to check out:

  • Take part in the tradition of watching the Head of the Charles Regatta, a rowing head race that has been a staple event since 1965.
  • Take a day trip to America’s spookiest city, Salem, for some Halloween fun.
  • Get a ticket to a Red Sox playoff game at Fenway Park.


The holiday season officially kicks off during November, and the city will get into the festive mode with beautiful lights and displays around the city. Boston does usually experience its first light snowfall in November, but this has recently been the rainiest month of the year. It’s nothing to be concerned about when deciding when to visit, as Boston doesn’t have a “rainy season,” but rather intermittent rain throughout the year.

Events to check out:

  • Mark the start of the holiday season at the holiday tree lighting at the Boston Common.
  • Have some laughs at the Boston Comedy Festival.
  • Head to the Boston Ballet for the iconic Nutcracker performance.
  • Drive to Princeton, MA, to enjoy live music, beer, and savory bites at Fall Food Truck Fest.


‘Tis the season to get in the holiday spirit in Boston! During December, you’ll start to see a bit more snow and chilly temps. There are plenty of festive events throughout the city to check out, along with fun activities like ice skating at Frog Pond.

Events to check out:

Frequently Asked Questions
  • When is the best time to visit Boston?

    For the best weather and fewest crowds of tourists, the spring and fall are the best times to visit Boston, either between May and June or September and October.

  • What is the warmest month in Boston?

    July is the hottest month in Boston with an average high temperature of 82 degrees Fahrenheit (28 degrees Celsius) and an average low temperature of 67 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius).

  • What is the coldest month in Boston?

    January is the coldest month in Boston with an average high temperature of 36 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees Celsius) and an average low temperature of 23 degrees Fahrenheit (-5 degrees Celsius).

Article Sources
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  1. Current Results. "Boston MA Biggest Snowfall for Each Year." Retrieved March 2, 2021.