Boston Nature Center & Wildlife Sanctuary

Located just outside of downtown Boston on the former grounds of the Boston State Hospital, the Boston Nature Center is a community-based urban sanctuary. Trails and boardwalks traverse meadows and wetlands, home to over 150 species of birds, 40 species of butterflies, and more than 350 species of plants. Year-round programs help foster an appreciation for nature and the environment. 

Location: 500 Walk Hill Street, Mattapan, MA 02126
Phone: 617-983-8500
Hours: Monday–Friday, 9 am-5 pm; Saturday, Sunday & Monday holidays, 10 am-4 pm; Trails daily, dawn to dusk

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Sanctuary News & Events

Kids snowshoeing at BNC

We have the cure for cabin fever—snowshoeing at BNC! Bring your own snowshoes, or rent a pair from us, and explore the great outdoors during a beautiful season.

Campers playing on hill behind BNC

Registration opens Thursday, January 31, at 8:30 am for BNC Camp in Mattapan and West Roxbury! We’re looking forward to sunshine, summertime, and days filled with adventure in the great outdoors.

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Upcoming Programs

January 26, 2019 (Saturday) 10:00am - 11:00am
Listen to a nature-themed story and then join our Teacher Naturalist for a short walk around the trails to learn about the res... Learn More >
January 26, 2019 (Saturday) 1:00pm - 2:30pm
The white of the snow provides an excellent background for the stark beauty of winter trees. We will use natural objects to cr... Learn More >
January 27, 2019 (Sunday) 10:30am - 12:00pm
Winter is a great time to explore the BNC trails and observe the tracks left by nocturnal animals and spot birds in their wint... Learn More >
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Birthday Parties

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BNC is the perfect place to celebrate an exciting and memorable birthday! 

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Nature Preschool

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At BNC, our Pathways to Nature preschool provides a high-quality nature program for children ages 3–6. 

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