The Boston Events Calendar for July gets off to a rousing start with Harborfest, the big annual July 4th Boston Pops concert at the Hatch Shell, and spectacular fireworks over the Charles River.
Boston Harborfest, the Boston Pops Concert, and the July 4th holiday fireworks get the month off to a great start - but that's just the beginning of the month's fun events!
Other top July attractions include Bastille Day celebrations, free outdoor concerts, and Shakespeare on the Common. The French tall Ship Hermione, a hand-crafted replica the 18th century original, visits Boston as part of a celebration of the arrival of the Marquis de Lafayette to provide General Washington with troops, money, and arms in the fight against the British during the Revolutionary War.
July brings beach weather - so plan a visit to nearby Boston beaches, cruise out to the Boston Harbor Islands, or see fascinating marine life by joining a whale watching cruise departing from our convenient downtown waterfront.
You'll find lots of terrific things to do in Boston this month!
Celebrate America's birthday on July 3rd and 4th with the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular, America's premier Independence Day celebration.
From the opening notes of the National Anthem to the closing bursts of real cannon fire as part of the 1812 Overture, the July 4th Boston Pops concert at the Hatch Shell celebrates Independence Day in spectacular fashion, followed by dazzling fireworks over the Charles River. Special guests this year include Grammy-winner Susan Tedeschi from Norwell, MA and Ayla Brown from Wrentham, MA.
The concert on the day before, July 3rd, gives music lovers a chance to enjoy familar favorites (but no firewords at the end). Pops Conductor Keith Lockhart leads the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra during both concerts.
- Friday, July 3 - Oval opens at 5pm; concert begins at 8:30pm and ends at 10:00pm
- Saturday, July 4 - Oval opens at 9am; concert begins at 8:30pm and ends at 9:30pm, followed by fireworks from 10:30pm-11pm
Where: Hatch Shell, Boston Esplanade
More information: Boston Pops and Fireworks
4th of July Fireworks - 2015
When: July 4 at 10:30pm, immediately following the Boston Pops Concert - ends at about 11pm
Where: Charles River, between the Longfellow and Mass Ave Bridges
Nearest T stations: Depends on where you plan to sit - use Red Line/Harvard Square if you plan to be on the Cambridge side, and Green Line/Arlington or Red Line/Charles-MGH for the Boston side.
Free public transportation on the T: This year, since July 4 is on a Saturday, the subway lines and key bus routes will offer service until 2:30am. And, after 9:30pm, MBTA service will be free.
More information: Boston Fireworks
Boston's most spectacular firework display of the year follows the Pops Concert on the 4th. Watch from tall buildings (Top of the Hub view is spectacular - but reserve early!), rooftops, or the banks of the Charles River.
Top Hotels near July 4th Fireworks & Pops ConcertMore hotels close to Boston's July 4th fireworks
Half-Price Tickets for Boston Events in July
- Newsies @ the Boston Opera House
- IndepenDANCE Party Cruise - Boston Harbor
- Boston Challenge: Scavenger Hunt & After-Party - @ Boston Beer Works (by TD Garden)
- Downtown Boston Public Art Tour - Downtown Crossing, Chinatown, Theatre District, South End
- Ice Cream, Kids' Games, & Music - Family Event - @ WGBH Studios, Brighton
- Todrick Hall presents The Toddlerz Ball @ Berklee Performance Center
- Boston Breakers Women's Soccer @ Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium
- Boston Cupcake Crawl in Back Bay, South End, Boston Common
- Fireworks Cruise Plus 21+ Dance Party with DJ on July 3
- Sh*t-Faced Shakespeare @ Davis Square Theatre
- Trapped in a Room with a Zombie @ Room Escape Adventures, Somerville
- Improv by Fine Line Comedy @ The Button Factory in Fort Point - Comp & Half Price
- Oysters & Craft Brews Cruise: Sip & Slurp - Karma Crew Yacht Charters, Boston Harbor
- Revelry on Griffin's Wharf: Reenact the Boston Tea Party - Harborfest Event
- Boston Harbor Islands Picnic Sail on Tall Ship Adirondack III
- Craft Beer Festival @ WGBH Studios, Brighton
- Blue Man Group @ Charles Playhouse - Ongoing
- X-Rated Comic Hypnotist Frank Santos Jr @ the Wilbur
- Shear Madness at the Charles Playhouse
- Water Country Water Park in Portsmouth NH
- Huzzah Tavern Nights - Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum
- Romantic City Lights Sail of Boston Harbor
Return to top - Boston Event Calendar for July
Boston Harborfest - 2015
When: July 1 - July 5
Where: Main events take place at City Hall Plaza and Faneuil Marketplace, but with 200+ daily events, you'll also find plenty of other events happening in Downtown, Beacon Hill, the Waterfront, and other locations
Cost: Free to pricey - depends on the event! Some venues request donations.
More information: Boston Harborfest
Harborfest is Boston's 5-day long gala celebration of American Independence, July 4th, and the joy of summer in Boston. Events include Revolutionary War reenactments, cruises, exhibits, free concerts, walking tours, and more exciting events showcasing Boston's colonial, Revolutionary War, and maritime history. So many events take place during the festival that you'll have trouble deciding what to do.
Tall Ship Tours & Cruises - French Tall Ship Hermione at Rowes Wharf
The French Tall Ship Hermione pays a visit to Boston's Rowes Wharf on July 11-12 as part of a special voyage to America.
The voyage celebrates the arrival of the Marquis de Lafayette in Boston in 1780 with French troops, money, and arms in the original Hermione to assist General George Washington during the the Revolutionary War against Great Britain.
Lafayette, 19 years old at the time, persuaded King Louis XVI, who had supported the American cause since 1776 and was later beheaded during the French Revolution, to send military and financial aid. This was instrumental in Washington's final defeat of the British 3 years later at the Battle of Yorktown and American independence formalized in the 1783 Treaty of Paris.
This ship is a handcrafted replica of the original 18th century frigate, and took 17 years to construct. The volunteer crew of 72 men and women will be available for tours (schedule to be announced later), educational initiatives, and other pier-side events.
More Harbor & River Cruises - Discount & Half-Price Tickets for July 2015
The best way to tour Boston! Save with Goldstar's listings for discount and half-price Boston Harbor & Charles River cruises - why pay more?
- Fireworks Cruise Plus 21+ Dance Party with DJ on July 3
- Boston Harbor Lighthouse Brunch Cruise
- Tall Ship Adirondack III - Day sail around Boston Harbor
- Charles River & Locks Cruise
- Provincetown Fast Ferry
- Sunset Harbor Cruise
- Boston Harbor Cruise - enjoy views of USS Constitution, Bunker Hill, more
- Boston Duck Tours from Museum of Science
- Summer Party Cruise on the MV Provincetown II
- Romantic Sunset Sail on the Adirondack III
- Boston City Lights Boston Harbor Sail on a classic schooner; passes by USS Constitution
Most of these cruises are available through early fall, and may have black-out dates around July 4th and Labor Day. Some (especially those involving food) require advance reservations, so check details carefully.
More Fun Boston Tours for July
Shakespeare on the Common - 2015
One of the most popular summer Boston events, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company presents King Lear, one of the Bard's most famous tragedies, for Shakespeare on the Common in 2015.
Bring a blanket or low folding chair, perhaps a picnic basket, and get ready to enjoy a magical evening of free theater under the stars.
Shakespeare on the Common is a highlight of mid-summer entertainment in Boston - don't miss it!
More information: Shakespeare on the Common
When: July 22 - August 9 at 8pm on Tuesdays through Saturdays, 7pm on Sundays, plus a 3pm matine on Saturday, July 25th (note - no performances on Mondays); ASL interpreted on Aug 2 & 7 (rain date Aug 7) and audio-described on July 26 (rain date Aug 3); July 31-August 8 concerts start at 6:30pm; August 9
- Note: all dates being confirmed for 2015, although these appear to be correct based on an early announcement
Where: Boston Common, near the Parkman Bandstand
Cost: Free admission; chairs available in return for a donation of $50 or more, with proceeds to benefit CSC.
Hotels near Boston Common
Free Friday Flicks at the Hatch Shell
Enjoy free outdoor concerts at the Hatch Shell on Boston's Esplanade throughout July and August.
This series of family movies sponsored by WBZ NewsRadio 1030 and the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) provides the perfect excuse to grab a blanket, pack a picnic, and head for an evening of entertainment under the stars.
The July movie lineup for 2015 includes:
- July 10 - Paddington
- July 17 - Big Hero 6
- July 24 - ET
- July 31 - Indiana Jones & Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
When: Movie starts at sundown (about 8:15 in July)
More information, including the movie schedule and weather cancellations: Call the Free Friday Flicks Hotline at 617-787-7200
Summer Arts Weekend in Boston - 2015
Celebrate summer and Boston's vibrant arts community at a 2-day festival from July 25-26 centered around Copley Square in Back Bay.
Free concerts throughout the days feature jazz, classical, folk, and Americana music - look for a star-studded mix of performers ranging from Emmylou Harris to the Dirty Dozen Brass Band to the Handel and Haydn Society.
At night, musicians move indoors to restaurants and bars, which will offer specials and deals. Add in theater performances, local artists, street performers, food trucks, and food vendor in and around the square - Copley Square is where you'll want to be this weekend!
Boston Hotels near Copley Square***y-hotels-copley-charlesmark-mandarin-fairmontcopleysq-lenox.shtml***
Whale-Watching Cruise + New England Aquarium
What's better than sightseeing in Boston?
Heading out to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary on a special 3-hour cruise to get close-up views of humpback whales, Atlantic dolphins, sea birds, and friendly porpoises from the three outdoor decks. It's a different world!
After your cruise brings you back to Boston's Central Wharf, spend time at the New England Aquarium exploring fascinating exhibits and watching sharks, stingrays, penguins, and more.
Your ticket includes both the whale watch cruise and the Aquarium at a special discounted combo price. Find out more
Fun Sightseeing Tours of Boston
Red Sox Games on July 4th Weekend!
What's better than sightseeing in Boston?
Boston Red Sox tickets are easier to get than usual on July 4th weekend because everyone focuses on the Boston Pops Concerts and Harborfest.
But baseball fans know that the real action is at Fenway Park - and in 2015, the Sox play a 3-game series at Fenway against the Astros on July 3rd, 4th, and 5th.
Want to stay nearby? Hotels near Fenway Park:
More: Hotels near Fenway Park
Boston Red Sox Schedule for July Games at Fenway Park - 2015
- Friday, July 3 vs Astros - 7:10pm
- Saturday, July 4 vs Astros - 1:35 pm
- Sunday, July 5 vs Astros - TBD
- Tuesday, July 7 vs Marlins - 7:10pm
- Wednesday, July 8 vs Marlins - 7:10pm
- Friday, July 10 vs Yankees - 7:10pm
- Saturday, July 11 vs Yankees - 7:15pm
- Friday, July 24 vs Tigers - 7:10pm
- Saturday, July 25 vs Tigers - TBD
- Sunday, July 26 vs Tigers - TBD
- Monday, July 27 vs White Sox - 7:10pm
- Tuesday, July 28 vs White Sox - 7:10pm
- Wednesday, July 29 vs White Sox - 7:10pm
- Thursday, July 30 vs White Sox - 7:10pm
- Friday, July 31 vs Rays - 7:10pm
Boston Theater & Shows for July 2015
Shakespeare on the Common
Shakespeare on the Common, taking place almost nightly between July 22 and August 8, 2015, attracts enthusiastic crowds for a wonderful summer evening of theater under the stars on Boston Common.
This year's production is King Lear.
More Shows in Boston in July 2015
- Newsies - Boston Opera House - Continuing through July 5
- ainstage Show - ImprovAsylum - July 2-31 - Check Goldstar for half-price tickets
- Blue Man Group - Charles Theatre - Get schedule & tickets
Boston Theatre District Hotels
Find more Boston Theatre District hotels
Boston Concerts & Shows - July 2015 - Tickets
- Imagine Dragons - TD Garden - July 1
- Boston Pops July 4th Concerts - Esplanade - July 3 and 4 (free performances)
- Mormon Tabernacle Choir - Wang Theatre - July 6
- Slightly Stoopid - Blue Hills Bank Pavilion - July 9
- U2 - TD Garden - July 10-15
- Frank Santos Jr - Wilbur Theatre- July 11
- Vans Warped Tour - XFinity Center- July 14
- Billy Joel - Fenway Park - July 16
- Foo Fighters - Fenway Park - July 18-19
- Smashing Pumpkins & Marilyn Manson - Blue Hills Bank Pavilion - July 28
- Steely Dan, Elvis Costello & The Imposters - Blue Hills Bank Pavilion - July 30, 31
Tickets:TicketLiquidator | AceTicket | Goldstar - Half-Price Tickets
Berklee Navy Yard "Swinging Summer Nights" Concerts
Head over to the Commandant's House Lawn in historic Charlestown Navy Yard at 6pm on every Friday night in July for a free concert given by musicians from Berklee College of Music.
Bring a blanket or lawn chair and settle in for a relaxing concert under the stars. Food will be available to purchase nearby; no alcohol permitted.
Fun way to get there from the Downtown Boston Waterfront: Hop on the Inner Harbor Ferry (part of Boston's "T" system) at Long Wharf. But do note: the last ferry back departs shortly after 8pm, so if you miss it, be prepared to walk 10-15 minutes to get back to Boston - you can check the ferry schedule here: http://www.mbta.com
ICA Boston Art Show Opening in July
July through September 1- First major museum show of work by Boston-based artist Steve Locke.
A visit to the Institute of Contemporary Art to see this show gives you the perfect excuse for exploring the South Boston Waterfront and nearby Fort Point areas.
This is the city's fastest-developing (and possibly trendiest) neighborhood - and with several top museums, Harborwalk, the Blue Hills Pavilion, and more restaurants than you can count (with new places opening almost every month), there's plenty to do here.
Plan Your Visit: Popular South Boston Waterfront & Fort Point Hotels near ICA Boston
Bastille Day in Boston - 2015
Bastille Day, the French national holiday celebrating the storming of the Bastille prison, the beginning of the French Revolution against the tyranny of the monarchy in 1789, and the birth of modern France occurs on July 14. Boston's French Cultural Center celebrates it on the preceding Friday by blocking off Marlborough between Berkeley and Claredon for a huge street party.
Francophone acts Paris Combo and The Hot Sardines will provide plenty of high-energy music for dancing in the streets. Several of the top French restaurants in Boston will sell French food and drinks for 2,000 revelers. Come join in the fun, sing "La Marseillaise," and raise your glass to Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité in support of people throughout the world seeking liberty.
When: Friday July 10 from 6pm - 11pm (music ends at 10pm) - rain or shine
Where: Marlborough Street, between Berkeley and Clarendon
Nearest T station: Green Line/Arlington
Cost: $28 in advance, $35 at the door; free for children under 10 (warning: tickets always sell out early)
Tickets: 617-912-0400, WorldMusic.org
Boston Comic Con Expo - 2015
When: July 31-August 2
Where: Seaport World Trade Center, South Boston Waterfront
More information - Check the August Events Calendar for details
Fun Sightseeing Tours of Boston
Free Concerts in Fort Point
Stop by Made in Fort Point(300 Summer Street, South Boston Waterfront neighborhood) to catch their series of free summer concerts this summer every Thursday from 5:30-8:00pm.
The eclectic lineup of musicians brings you a new experience each week - plus the concerts give you the perfect excuse for dinner at one of the terrific nearby restaurants: try the lamb sausage flatbread at Trade (540 Atlantic Ave), grilled Island Creek oysters with jalapeno-chorizo butter at Papagayo (283 Summer St), or tagliatelle with Bolognese sauce at Barbara Lynch's Sportello (348 Congress St).
Made in Fort Point exhibits and sells the creations of 75+ Fort Point artists. More information: www.fortpointarts.org
Boston Common Spray Pool Opens - July 2015
For 2 glorious months after school ends, Frog Pond turns into a spray pond and becomes the best place to cool off in the city ... if you're 12 or under. The Grand Opening Celebration features family-friendly entertainment, music, art, a gala ceremony, and of course, the chance to play in the 30-foot spray at the center of the pond. Lifeguards will be on duty this summer during all open hours.
When: July 1, 11am; remains open from 11am to 6pm every day through Labor Day, unless there's a thunderstorm
Where: Frog Pond at Boston Common
Nearest T station: Green Line/Park
Return to Top - Boston Events Calendar for July
Harborwalk Sounds at ICA Boston
When: Thursdays in July and August, starting July 9 through August 27, 6:00pm - 8:30pm
Where: ICA Boston, on Fan Pier in the South Boston Waterfront
Cost: Free - and admission to ICA is always free on Thursday nights
Musicians from all around the world perform free concerts featuring jazz, world music, reggae, dance music, Latin, and more on Harborwalk next to ICA Boston. Relax and enjoy great music and gorgeous views.
Not Sure about Boston Neighborhood Locations?
This neighborhood map should help you get oriented. You can find a list of top attractions in each neighborhood here.
Need a more details? Here are our favorite free and low-cost Boston maps.
North End Feasts and Festivals - July
Boston's North End Italian Feasts and Festivals draw huge crowds to this historic neighborhood. You can smell the wonderful food, hear the music, and sense the excitement as you walk across the Greenway to Hanover Street, where many of the celebrations take place.
These festivals take place almost every weekend throughout the summer.
North End Festivals scheduled for July:
Madonna della Grazie's Procession - July 12, 2pm - Starts at St Leonard's Church (Hanover and Prince Streets)
St. Rocco's Procession - July 19, 1pm - Starts at St Leonard's Church (Hanover and Prince Streets)
St. Agrippina di Mineo Feast and Procession - July 30-Aug 2 - Feast starts at 12 noon each day - procession at 12 noon on Sunday starting at Hanover and Battery Streets
Magic 106.7 Family Film Festival
Enjoy this free fun family activity - movies under the stars in Prudential Center's lovely South Garden (go up the escalators from Huntington Ave, and the garden is to your right; from Boylston, it is on your left).
When: Every Saturday from July 11 - August 29; entertainment and children's activities start at 5pm, and movies start at sundown; rain dates will be held on the following Wednesday
Where: Prudential Center, South Garden
Nearest T station: Green Line/Prudential
Nearest parking garage: Prudential Center Garage - get discounted parking with a $10 purchase
Here is the 2015 schedule:
The Boxtrolls - Saturday, July 11
Frozen - Saturday, July 18
Big Hero 6- Hood vs Evil - Saturday, July 25
UP - Saturday, August 1
Paddington - Saturday, August 8
Ratatouille - Saturday, August 15
Toy Story- Saturday, August 22
Dispicable Me - Saturday, August 29
Boston Discount Cards for Attractions, Tours, Cruises
Best way to save in Boston. Save 50% or more when you take a Boston Harbor cruise or Duck Boat tour, visit Plimouth Plantation, the New England Aquarium, Museum of Science, Prudential Skywalk Observatory, Museum of Fine Arts, Fenway Park Tour, and more. Compare to find out which one is best for you.
Vintage Baseball at Georges Island
Park Rangers don vintage uniforms and demonstrate how baseball was played during the Civil War Era using original rules - you can watch, or join the game.
Keep in mind there's lots more to do on Georges Island - hike, explore, swim, picnic, bird watch. You're in a different world - but only 20 minutes by ferry from Boston!
New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium
Watch our local soccer team, the New England Revolution, bring men's soccer to a new level at Gillette Stadium.
Only 1 home game is scheduled for July:
- July 18 at 7:30pm vs NYCFC
Hotels near Gillette Stadium
Futures at Fenway
When: Saturday, July 12 (to be confirmed), 3:30pm (gates open at 2)
Where: Fenway Park
Closest T station: Green Line / Kenmore
If you drive: Best parking garages and lots near Fenway Park
Staying over: Hotels near Fenway Park
Tickets: From $15
The 9th annual Futures at Fenway event combines kid-friendly activities and affordable ticket prices and discounted concessions with an exciting game starring 2 top minor league teams, the Lowell Spinners (Red Sox AA Affiliate) vs the Mahoning Valley Scrappers (Indian A Affiliate).
To add to the excitement, for the first time ever, you can bring your dog and sit in special designated sections. (Yes, your dog will need a ticket too!) Ticket information
A special showing of the classic baseball movie, Field of Dreams, follows the game (starts about 30 minutes after the game ends).
Find out more about Boston discount cards, and how they give you big savings on top attractions.
When: Wednesday July 22, 6pm - 9pm (boards at 5:30pm) (Date and time to be confirmed for 2015)
Where: Provincetown II cruise ship, departing from World Trade Center Pier (200 Seaport Blvd, South Boston Waterfront)
Nearest T station: Red Line/South Station (about a 10 minute walk - or take the Silver Line from South Station)
Cost: Tickets are $30, with net proceeds going to the Boston Bruins Foundation bike team
More information: Bruins website
Join Boston Bruins alumni for a fun-filled Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise to raise funds for the Bruins Foundation Bike Team riding in the Pan-Massachusetts Challenge from Sturbridge to Provincetown in August. With great music, dancing, and of course, spectacular harbor views, this 21+ event is the perfect way to spend a balmy July evening while contributing to a good cause.
Don't forget to check out Boston Bruins Stanley Cup Apparel for hats, shirts, and other commemorative gifts.
Landmarks Orchestra Concerts at the Hatch Shell - 2015
The Boston Landmarks Orchestra's weekly free summer Esplanade concerts attract larger crowds to the Hatch Shell each year with its mix of classical, traditional, modern, and contemporary music. Concerts start at 7pm and run about 2 hours.
The Landmarks Concert schedule for July includes:
July 15 - Rhapsody in Green - Selections from Debussy, Mendelssohn, Pulitzer Prize winning composer Kevin Puts, Alan Hovhaness, and hometime performer Jayne West performing Berklee professor Francine Trester's new setting of At the River (world premier)
July 22 - Fiesta Sinfonica - salsa meets symphony
July 29 - Longwood Symphony - A Night at the Ballet
Weather alerts and alternate locations in case of rain: 617-987-2000; orchestra website
Sand Sculpting Festival at Revere Beach - 2015
Over 500,000 spectators gather at Revere Beach during the course of the 4-day New England Sand Sculpting Festival to watch renowned master sculptors from across the U.S. and Canada work their magic with individual 12 ton allotments of sand imported from Hudson NH, plus water. The sculptors compete for $14,000 in prize money, and the sculptures they create will amaze you with their detail and artistry.
With music performances, food trucks, and crafts activities on site as well, you'll find plenty of family entertainment - and don't forget to bring your swimsuits, sunscreen, and towels for the beach!
Fireworks provide the grand finale for the sand sculpting festival.
When: July 24-26; sculptors work from 8am until 8pm - fireworks at 9pm on Sunday (fireworks still being confirmed)
Where: Revere Beach, Revere (about 2 miles north of Boston)
Nearest T station: Blue Line/Wonderland - the beach is just 2 blocks away
Outside the Box Free Performing Arts Festival
When: July 14-19, with performances starting at 5pm on opening night and from 12 noon - 8pm on other days.
Where: Boston Common
Cost: Free (thanks to Outside the Box founder, philanthropist Ted Cutler)
Getting there: Take the "T" - Red & Green Line/Park Station (more about Boston's subway)
More information: otbboston.com
Over 100 talented artists and organizations from New England and beyond take part in this amazing 6-day performance arts festival, which also includes the Earth Day celebration. Boston Common gets transformed into a huge performance stage for the musicians, dancers, actors, and other performers who provide non-stop entertainment during the Outside the Box Festival. Hands-on activities for kids of all ages will also be available.
Bring a blanket, food (vendors will also be nearby), sunscreen, and water (no alcohol).
Free Sunday Night Movies in Christopher Columbus Park
Enjoy free outdoor movies during a 6-week series in Christopher Columbus Park, the entrance to Boston's North End, sponsored by the Boston Push Cart Association.
Movies include a number of favorites from the past 40 years, and start at dark.
Here's the lineup for July 2015:
July 12 - Driving Miss Daisy
July 19 - Toy Story
July 26 - Shrek 2