Boston Sights

Copley Square

  • Plaza/Square/Piazza

Published 07/07/2014

Fodor's Review

Every April thousands find a glimpse of Copley Square the most wonderful sight in the world: this is where the runners of the Boston Marathon end their 26.2-mile race. A square now favored by skateboarders (much to the chagrin of city officials), the civic space is defined by three monumental older buildings. One is the stately, bowfront 1912 Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel, which faces the square on St. James Avenue and serves as a dignified foil to its companions, two of the most important works of architecture in the United States: Trinity Church—Henry Hobson Richardson's masterwork of 1877—and the Boston Public Library, by McKim, Mead & White. The John Hancock Tower looms in the background. To honor the runners who stagger over the marathon's finish line, bronze statues of the Tortoise and the Hare engaged in their mythical race were cast by Nancy Schön, who also did the much-loved Make Way for Ducklings group in the Boston Public Garden.

Sight Information


Bounded by Dartmouth, Boylston, and Clarendon Sts. and St. James Ave., Boston, Massachusetts, 02116, United States

Published 07/07/2014


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