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A restaurant patio features lush greenery, heat lamps, a brick surface, and floor-to-ceiling windows looking into the restaurant
Oleana's patio
Kristin Teig/Oleana

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The Boston Outdoor Dining Guide

Start your al fresco adventure here

As soon as the snow disappears for the year, Bostonians rush to shed extra layers, plan beach trips, and huddle on the first few restaurant patios to open for the season. Sure, those early patio days might necessitate a blanket or a heater, but there’s something special about eating outdoors, even when conditions aren’t perfect. Whether it’s those chilly early days of the season or the last good days of early fall, it’s a joy to eat outdoors when weather permits.

Here’s a round-up of Eater Boston’s outdoor dining maps and guides, along with other spring- and summer-friendly picks. Looking for a patio with a serious wine list or dollar oysters? A rooftop with a view? Look no further.

This guide was originally published in May 2016; the date of the most recent update appears above, and periodic updates continue throughout the warmer seasons.

Restaurant Patios and Rooftops

From secluded gardens to sky-high roof-decks, these restaurant patios will satisfy all your needs.

A small restaurant patio, set up against a red brick building, features wooden tables, string lights, and trees lining the edge.
The Brewer's Fork patio in Charlestown
Brewer’s Fork

Sun’s Out, Buns Out

Some of the best things to eat on a bun on some of the best patios, illustrated.

Sun's Out Buns Out Emily Phares/Eater

Picnic and Beach Trips

Pack some snacks and go.

A view of Walden Pond in Concord, with a tree-lined beach in the background
Walden Pond
Dana Hatic/Eater

Get Your Vitamin (D)essert

Special sweets to eat on special patios, illustrated.

Vitamin D(essert) illustration Emily Phares/Eater

Other Summer-Friendly Info

Here are some other warm-weather essentials, to be enjoyed on a patio or not. But preferably on a patio.

The Maine lobster roll at Neptune Oyster is served on a grilled hot dog bun atop a white plate, and is accompanied by French fries and a ramekin of ketchup.
Maine lobster roll at Neptune Oyster
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater Boston
Boston Restaurant Openings

New York City’s Blue Ribbon Brasserie Makes Its Boston Debut

Boston Restaurant Openings

A Sought-After Sichuan Restaurant Arrives in Boston

Weekend Recommendations: A Festive Chef Series and a Boozy Holiday Market