We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“great 1/2 day trip from Boston- beautiful views!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Spectacle Island

Spectacle Island
Boston Harbor, Boston, MA (South Boston)
617-223-8666
Improve this listing
Book ahead on Viator
Top Rated
$26*
and up
Boston Historic Sightseeing Cruise
Ranked #67 of 195 Attractions in Boston
Type: Islands, Outdoors
Activities: Birdwatching
Attraction details
Los Angeles, California, USA
Top Contributor
162 reviews 162 reviews
31 attraction reviews
Reviews in 60 cities Reviews in 60 cities
100 helpful votes 100 helpful votes
“great 1/2 day trip from Boston- beautiful views!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2012

Very easy ferry trip to/from Long Wharf in Boston to Spectacle Island for $15 round-trip. Bring a picnic! One of my favorite things to do in Boston during the summer.

Visited September 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

49 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    23
    19
    5
    2
    0
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
New Delhi, India
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Day Picnic - Spectacle Island, Boston Harbour”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2012

An ideal place to spend with friends or family. Things you can do: fishing, kite flying, swimming in the sea or just lying on your beach chair to get a tan - if its a sunny day. Changing rooms are there.
You take a ferry from Boston Harbor for $15 a head return ticket. The ferry takes nearly 20 minutes each trip.
Carry your food, water and beer. Swim trunks, towels if you are fond of being on the beach else there if you like to explore the winding paths in the island you are most welcome to do so.
If you have a portable BBQ, you can find a corner away from the hawk eyed marshals/rangers scouting the place and cook your own meats.
Fishing is also an option - carry your tackle. If you have young children in the group - I would suggest kite flying - children love it - carry your kites.
If you are located in Boston - you can even go to the island by your own boat.
Remember - you have to pick up all your garbage when you leave - the rangers will give you free bags for collecting the same. And go early - last ferry to return is around 6 pm
Summing it up - a lovely place to spend an entire day with family of friends.

Visited August 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
“A great escape”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2012

Just back from a Wednesday day trip on a hot summer day and Spectacle was wonderful. We took the 10:30 am ferry from Long Wharf and 20 minutes later we were hiking up to the North Drumlin to have lunch at the shade structure on top. Grab the self guided map at the visitor center or read the signs along the path to learn some history of the island. We brought our own lunches, so I can't comment on the Summer Shack food. One in our party bought a lobster roll ($18) and said it was good. The island is very open and could use more shade structures. Hats and sunscreen are a must. The views are stunning and there was a nice breeze. We walked back along the other side of the island and found south beach, with it's treasure trove of beach glass and pottery shards. Very fun to go hunting, just remember to release your finds (leave the stuff there for others to enjoy). Back to the visitor center to rest on the big adirondack chairs before going for a swim. At 3pm the tide had come in leaving lots of room for a dip; very cool and refreshing and I was glad I kept my beach shoes on as it is rocky. The island now has showers and changing rooms next to the beach. Inside the visitor center is informative displays and nice seating areas. Aside from more shade, the only thing we missed was ice cream, as the soft serve machine wasn't working. The 4pm ferry took us back to the city. A grand day out.

Visited August 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marlborough, Connecticut
1 review
“My Mom grew up there”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2012

Fri. 20, 2012.. My husband, myself and my Dad will be visiting Spectacle Island. My 2nd time, although the first was many years ago, before reclamation. My Mom grew up there with her family until marrying my Dad (Navy sailor aboard U.S.S. Massachusetts BB-59). My Mom, Dad & sis visited shortly before her passing, thankfully. This will be so touching for us all. Apparently their are photos of her and family in the visitor center. To be continued....

Visited July 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALBERT
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Summer Shack”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2012 via mobile

A great little island, pleasant walks and spots of shade, but don't expect too much from the Summer Shack. Definitely a BYO food place. They were understaffed and half the food on the beautifully written out brochure we had picked up at the information centre from Boston was unavailable. I was looking forward to Creamy Clam Chowder. Not available. I ordered a Chopped Green Salad which read a summer mix, cucumber, tomato, bacon & potato salad with ranch dressing. When I went to collect it the potato salad part of it wasn't there and I got charged full price. Also the pita bread used in Chicken Caesar wrap was only partially cooked. The salad was fine. The wrap was discarded. It's an island and they have a captive audience. BYO FOOD is my suggestion. The beautifully presented menu give you the impression that quality will be available. That was not the case.

Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Spectacle Island also viewed

 

Been to Spectacle Island? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Spectacle Island, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.