Helen's Leather Shop, Charles St., Boston, Ma.
Eugene Galleries, Charles St., Boston, Ma.
Dress, boutique on Charles St., Beacon Hill, Boston, Ma.
Flower Box, Beacon Hill, Boston, Ma.

Hidden Gardens, Boutiques and Antiques -- Spring on Beacon Hill, Boston

Spring blooms are on everyone's mind as each day brings out a new bud, a new petal, a new beginning. What better way to indulge your gardening fantasies than to attend the Hidden Gardens of Beacon Hill Tour on Thursday, May 17th, 2023. These private walled gardens secluded among the residences of the members of the Beacon Hill Garden Club are open to the public during this annual fundraiser for the group. This self-guided tour takes place from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., rain or shine. The tour has been going since 1929, and funds raised go to various environmental organizations. If you can't make it to Beacon Hill on the day of tour, visit the beautiful Boston Public Garden, with its swan boat rides in the Spring and Summer. You can see Nancy Schon's bronze sculpture of the ducklings featured in Robert McCloskey's Make Way for Ducklings, the delightful children's story about the (More)

Make Way for Ducklings sculpture, Boston Public Garden, Boston, Ma.

Mallard duck family who make their home in the lagoon of the Public Garden amidst the swan boats. Shops on Charles Street are nearby as are restaurants, inns and historic sites. There are clothing boutiques, antique stores, gift shops and a great antique map shop. The Whitney is a new boutique hotel with on-site dining at Peregrine Restaurant, located at the far end of Charles St. More cafes and restaurants are along Charles St. too so no reason to leave the area to find a snack, lunch or dinner.


The Charles River and the Esplanade are at the end of Charles Street close to the Charles St./Mass General red line MBTA train station. The Esplanade is a tree lined promenade that extends for three miles along the Charles River. On Beacon Hill, beautiful townhouses crowd the narrow streets. If you don't mind the hills, take a self-guided walk or a guided tour of the area. Walking through the Boston Common leads you to historic graveyards and more points along Boston's Freedom Trail.


The Charles Street shops are fun to browse and of course, there's the occasional sale. Flat of the Hill has wonderful candle aromas that greet you as you enter the small shop packed with gifts, jewelry, household and bath items. Blackstone's has a collection of upscale brands such as Vineyard Vines, Byers' Choice and Vera Bradley. Unique stationery, paper goods and decorations can be found in this friendly store. Crush Boutique, December Thieves Boutique, Dress, French + Italian, and Soondee are women's clothing shops to explore. Beacon Hill Chocolates has delectable and creative artisan chocolates. Eugene Galleries has a wonderful collection of antique maps, engravings and etchings. 

When you need a break from exploring Charles St., there are many cafes and restaurants for a meal or a refreshing snack. Paramount is great for a quick delicious lunch. Pancakes and eggs are served all day. They cook up paninis, sandwiches and burgers on the grill. Just order and pay at the counter and your meal is brought to you at your table. The small pizza chain, Upper Crust, has its original store here on Charles Street. Cafe Bella Vita has a full lunch menu plus Italian pastries for dessert. The cafe has Wi-Fi and lots of tables. Tatte Bakery and Cafe is great for hot coffees, teas and pastry, plus they serve quiches, sandwiches and salads all day. You can grab a fresh bread loaf to go as well.


Beacon Hill and the Charles Street shops are fun to explore. There are interesting boutiques, antique stores and gift shops to browse. Spring blooms are emerging in the gardens and parks. Historic Boston and Charles River views are a few steps away.


-M.A. Barrett (May, 2011, updated May, 2023)




Crush Boutique, Charles St., Boston, Ma.
Blackstone's of Beacon Hill, Charles St., Boston, Ma.
Beacon Hill flower box, Boston, Ma.
Beacon Hill Hidden Garden Tour street view, Boston, Ma.
Beacon Hill garden, Boston, Ma.
Mt. Vernon Street homes, Beacon Hill, Boston, Ma
Flat of the Hill, Charles St., Boston, Ma.
Beacon Hill Chocolates, Charles St., Boston, Ma.