Great news Bostonians: our beloved Swan Boats are cruising through the Public Garden pond once more! After their glorious comeback last summer, the iconic barges have returned to the pond as of Saturday, April 15 for their 146th season.
The Swan Boats were first created in 1877 by Irish immigrant and shipbuilder Robert Paget, and his family continues to operate the business nowadays. Paget found inspiration for his barges after attending the opera Lohengrin in NYC, at the end of which the hero crosses a river in a boat drawn by a swan.
The swan on each boat is made from either copper or fiberglass, depending on the age of the boat, and hides a paddle mechanism that is used to foot propel the boat through the water. Fully loaded, each Swan Boat weighs three tons, as they’re built on oak-framed pontoons sheathed in copper – the same construction originally used in 1877.
In 2020, for the first time in their 146-year history, the famous Swan Boats were kept out of the Public Garden lagoon due to COVID-19. Thankfully for us, the Paget family brought back this annual rite of spring last year, and it shows no signs of stopping now.
The boats operate from 10 to 4 daily. The 2023 season will run until September 4 this year.
For more information, you can visit the Swan Boats of Boston website, call 617-522-1966, or email them at email@example.com.