The following entry was written by Mary Quigley, Class of 2015.
There’s nothing like living and studying in the heart of an amazing city, but there will likely be a moment during your time at Emerson when you’re craving a break from urban life and wishing for a greener place. When I want a break from my usual routine at Emerson, I gravitate to a place where I can take in a refreshing breeze and be shaded by 15,000 trees.
My favorite natural retreat is the the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, a nearly 300-acre botanical garden that’s only a 30-minute ride from Emerson on the MBTA Orange Line. Large pathways wind through the arboretum and lead to different collections of plants, such as the Bonsai collection and the shrub and vine garden. Certain plants are found in separate areas because the arboretum is technically a museum; each plant sports its own scientific label. In addition to the labels, tour guides and brochures are available at the arboretum’s visitor center if you’d like to learn a little more about the plant life you’re seeing.
I always learn something new at the arboretum, but I also make sure I take the time to relax when I go. Admission is free and there are plenty of benches and walls where you can sit and enjoy a book or just soak up some Vitamin D. Walk up to the top of Peters Hill for a beautiful lookout point of the Boston skyline. It’s a great way to spend a beautiful spring day exploring a lesser-known part of the city, and the arboretum helps you find a little zen amidst your busy life at school.