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Kristen Morse / Gavel Media

5-Hour Itinerary: Study Spots Beyond the Heights

5-Hour Itinerary is a series—based on the New York Times’ “36 Hours”—in which we serve as your guide to the ultimate Boston day-trip, stringing together thoughtfully chosen locations into a one-of-a-kind itinerary.

It’s almost finals season on the Heights, which means due dates are approaching, studying is piling up, and everyone is looking for the perfect place to get their work done. While Boston College’s campus is home to many great study spots, sometimes a change in scenery is necessary for students to succeed during this stressful time. With this in mind, The Gavel compiled a list of our favorite off-campus study spots, both indoors and outdoors.

Boston Public Library

With its long tables and quaint green lamps, the Boston Public Library is an essential study spot. The library offers the same quiet and productive environment as those on campus, but in a new setting. It is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, and it is located at 700 Boylston Street—right next to the Copley stop on the green line.

Peet’s Coffee & Tea

With locations in Chestnut Hill, Brookline, Newton Centre and downtown Boston, Peet’s Coffee & Tea is the perfect place to crank out those final papers. This spot offers a relaxed environment, free Wi-Fi, and some of the best coffee you’ll find.

Fuel America

With fresh-pressed juices, tasty sandwiches and salads, and—of course—coffee, this is a great place to spend your day. Fuel is open weekdays from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and weekends from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., so gather your friends, grab a table, and get to work. Located at 152 Chestnut Hill Avenue in Brighton, Fuel is only about a 25 minute walk from campus, but students can also take the B line or Comm Ave. bus to South Street and walk from there to make the commute a bit shorter.


Situated at 380 Washington Street in Brighton, Cafénation offers students sandwiches, salads, and plenty of sweets to make studying a little bit easier. About a six minute drive from campus, this café is the perfect cozy and quiet study spot. It is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends.

Caffe Bene

A bit further from campus, Caffe Bene, modeled after a traditional European coffee house, is home to a relaxed atmosphere within a busy city. This cafe has lots of seating and serves both sweet and savory items to keep students satisfied no matter what they’re in the mood for. Located at 333 Massachusetts Avenue, Caffe Bene is about a ten minute walk from the Hynes Convention Center stop on the green line. Its hours are Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday 7 a.m. to 12 a.m., and Sunday 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Trident Booksellers & Cafe

For students who prefer studying with more background noise, Trident is the perfect option. According to their website, “Trident is the perfect place to catch up with friends, study for your exam, grab brunch, or browse a wide selection of books and magazines.” Open daily from 8 a.m. to 12 a.m., Trident Booksellers & Cafe is great for students who have a long day of work ahead. Trident serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, in addition to their coffees, teas, smoothies, and juices, so you’ll never be hungry. Since the Cafe is located on Newbury Street, students can take the green line to Hynes Convention Center for an inexpensive and fairly quick commute.

Render Coffee

Located at 563 Columbus Avenue in Boston, Render Coffee offers a great indoor and outdoor spot for studying. The inside of the small coffee shop has a great ambiance, and the outdoor deck provides a relaxing, distraction-free environment. Render Coffee is a little bit farther from campus—about a 20-minute drive—but the cozy atmosphere is well worth the commute. This spot is open on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on weekends from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Boston Commons, John F. Kennedy Memorial Park, and Harvard Yard

For the warm and sunny days of finals season, these three areas are perfect for getting work done while enjoying the great weather. Bring your friends and have a picnic while you study at any of these locations. If you’re heading to Boston Common, take the green line to Boylston Street, walk about ten minutes to 139 Tremont Street, and then settle down in your favorite spot. If you’re looking for something a bit less busy, head to John F. Kennedy Memorial Park in Cambridge, where you can look at the Charles River as you work. For those who still want a taste of the college atmosphere, Harvard Yard will be full of students for the rest of the semester.

Avid optimist who likes long walks on the beach with a Long Island bagel and iced coffee in hand. As my favorite man Drake once said, "I swear this life is like the sweetest thing I've ever known."