Christian Science Plaza: The Best of Boston

17 Nov

Christian Science Plaza- Boston

What is your favorite place in Boston? Is there a specific reason? Everywhere I have lived I have always been asked what my favorite place is. In London it was a no brainer for me: Trafalgar Square. But I did not realize what my favorite place was in Boston until this summer. I am in love with the Christian Science Plaza.

It is unbelievably peaceful yet is hustling with the traffic from the city. It is near to tourist attractions so you still get to see the faces of tourists when they enter the plaza for the first time. But it is also a place for Bostonians and their kids who just want to cool down in the fountain on a hot summer day. The plaza is a meeting spot for friends and families, a resting spot for travelers and a relaxing spot for students and professionals. The large reflecting pool reminds me of Washington DC, a city I am also in love with. The view of the Back Bay reminds you that you are in a city and surrounded by different cultures. Then, of course, there is the gorgeous Christian Science Church standing in all its glory.

The Back Bay from the Christian Science Plaza.

Christian Science Church- Boston

This past summer I would often get off at the Prudential stop (because an E train always came to North Station first and because I am impatient and because I don’t mind walking when it’s nice out) and just chill at the Christian Science Plaza for an hour or so. I just loved sitting on the stone wall, reading, watching the kids run in and out of the fountain while their parents laughed and talked to their friends. (On a side note, the Christian Science Church is going to redesign the plaza. I think it is a great idea and the Boston Globe article on it can be found here.)

Anyways, you all have probably already been here so I should stop rambling, although that may not be possible. However, I want to offer a couple alternatives to just sitting outside. One day last year when my parents visited, my dad decided he needed to see the inside of the Christian Science Church. I told him that was weird to just walk into a church (and yet six months later I was in Europe walking into every church I came to- I know, I know, such a hypocrite). But we did and I still talk and think about it every time I walk by it. There was an elevator adjacent to the huge lobby and as we got to the main hall, a tour was starting, so we tagged along. Turns out the tours are free and offered Tuesdays through Sundays (they also meet in the lobby and last about a half hour). I would highly recommend the tour. It is informative about not only the church but also the religion and the founder, Mary Baker Eddy (who I mentioned in this post, as I saw a monument dedicated to her at Mt. Auburn Cemetery). The church is enourmous and gorgeous; the organ has 13,000 pipes. In addition, you get to see the original church, which is smaller and attached to the large one that we view in the plaza, as well as the extension. If you do not have time for a tour, you can still walk around and take pictures.

After the tour, my mom decided we needed to see the Mapparium, which is in the Mary Baker Eddy Library directly next door to the church. It is a three-story, painted glass globe that you can walk through (there is a 30-foot long bridge across the middle of it). It was created in 1935, and there is a presentation called A World of Ideas containing music, lights and information on how the world has changed. It does cost a few dollars and although it wasn’t my favorite thing, my parents loved it and the church was free, so it all evens out.

The Fountain at the Christian Science Plaza, Boston

How to get to the Christian Science Plaza: take the Green Line to Prudential and walk across the street. If you are not on the E line, take the Green Line to Hynes and walk down Mass Ave until you hit the church. The #1 bus also goes right past there, and the Orange Line stop Massachusetts Ave isn’t too far either.

Note: the Christian Science Church is not Scientology. Just fyi.

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One Response to “Christian Science Plaza: The Best of Boston”

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  1. A Revisit « Relax, Laugh, Explore - August 3, 2011

    […] My favorite place in Boston: the Christian Science Plaza […]

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