Visit Blue Hill Observatory!

The Blue Hill Observatory welcomes thousands of visitors each year to take a tour, learn about the weather, visit our gift shop, hike the local trails, or just to enjoy the view from the summit of Great Blue Hill.

Tours

Tower Roof: Self-guided visit to the 360-degree view at the top of the Observatory and through the Mish Michaels Exhibit Hall for Scientific Discovery (about 15 minutes, not including the Exhibit Hall).

General Tour: Walk-through the Observatory with a guide and visit the Mish Michaels Exhibit Hall, the History Room, and the top of the Observatory tower (about 30 minutes, not including the Exhibit Hall).

In-Depth Tour: Guided tour of the Mish Michaels Exhibit Hall, the History Room, the Observer’s Room, and the outdoor instrument enclosure, with in-depth description and discussion of the equipment followed by a visit to the top of the Observatory tower (about 1 hour, not including the Exhibit Hall).

 

1 Observatory Service Rd, Milton, MA 02186

Public Tour Hours

Saturday & Sunday:
(Year-Round)
10AM-4PM

Federal holidays
and Patriot’s Day:
10AM-4PM

 

Access to our gift shop at the Observatory is free. Tours for all children under 5 are free. 

Admission

Tower Roof Tour:
$5 Adults
$4 Students (with ID), Military, Seniors (over 65), Members of GBH, MA Audobon, AMC
$3 Ages 5 – 17
Free BHO&SC Members

General Tour:
$8 Adults
$6 Students (with ID), Military, Seniors (over 65), Members of GBH, MA Audobon, AMC
$5 Ages 5 – 17, BHO&SC Members

In-Depth Tour:
$12 Adults
$10 Students (with ID), Military, Seniors (over 65), Members of GBH, MA Audobon, AMC
$8 Ages 5 – 17, BHO&SC Members

Observatory Renovation Info:

The recent renovation of our facility has been completed, and the Observatory is open for regular tours at the hours shown above. Come visit our newly opened Mish Michaels Hall for Scientific Discovery and other new attractions at the Observatory.

COVID-19 Info:

The Observatory and our Gift Shop are currently open without restrictions at the hours shown above.

Directions From the North:

Take either Route 128/95 south or Route 93 south to the Route 138 exit in Canton (Exit 2). Follow Route 138 north approximately 1 mile north through one set of traffic lights to the Blue Hill Ski Area and Trailside Museum parking area on the right. Hiking trails lead to the summit of Great Blue Hill from these parking lots.

Directions From the South:

Take Route 95 or Route 3 north to Route 93 to the Route 138 exit in Canton (Exit 2). Follow Route 138 north approximately 1 mile north through one set of traffic lights to the Blue Hill Ski Area and Trailside Museum parking area on the right. Hiking trails lead to the summit of Great Blue Hill from these parking lots.

Accessibility

The pedestrian route from the parking lot to the observatory along the summit road is approximately one mile in length, with an average slope of 15-20%. This road is not open to public vehicles. Special arrangements can be made for specific vehicles to drive to the Observatory. If you have concerns about reaching the Observatory, please contact Program Director Don McCasland.

Blue Hill Observatory is over one hundred and thirty years old, and was built in several stages on top of the hard granite hilltop. The route up to the tower includes steep slopes up to 18% and rocky natural terrain. Once inside, many of our public rooms are accessible to guests with limited mobility, but there are some areas that can be reached only by steps, including the observation room and higher spots in the tower. Many of the exhibits within the Observatory can be moved to accessible areas, and accommodations will be provided for those who do not wish to or cannot travel to the upper rooms.

The hilltop around the Observatory is rocky and uneven in many places, with steep slopes and abrupt changes in level. Accommodations will be provided for those who do not wish to or are unable to navigate the hilltop.

For more information or to request an accommodation, please contact Program Director Don McCasland at 617-696-0562 or dmccasland@bluehill.org.

Reservation Trail Map

The Blue Hills Reservation has prepared a map and description of the many color-coded hiking trails on the reservation, which can be downloaded below.

Blue Hills Trail Map