Boston is one of America’s largest and most historical cities. It is the Mecca of the six-state region known as New England, and offers a multitude of activities for all ages, at all times of the year. Below is a list of my recommended things to do in and around this great city.
1. Walk the Freedom Trail – Grab your walking shoes and pick up a map at the kiosk in Boston Common, or at the Visitor Center, inside the Old State House. The walk will take several hours depending on how long you stay at each stop and how many breaks you take. My walking tour of Boston (see Archives) incorporates much of the Freedom Trail and is an alternative, since it is designed as a loop.
2. Visit the Boston Museum of Science – This museum, lauded for its many hands-on exhibits, is located on the Massachusetts Avenue Bridge and is informative and entertaining for both adults and children.
3. Enjoy Lunch or Dinner in the North End – Boston’s North End is the Italian section of the city. It is well known, throughout the region, for its excellent restaurants and bakeries.
4. Do Some Shopping at Fanueil Hall – This historic area of the city has been transformed into a bevy of shops and restaurants and has become a major gathering place in the city.
5. Check out the Marine Life at the New England Aquarium – This venue is one of the premier aquariums in the world. Its huge central tank contains numerous species of fish and other sea creatures. The walls around this tank offer a variety of exhibits to entertain and educate visitors about the oceans and other bodies of water on our planet.
6. Become immersed in the World of Witches at Salem – A short (15-20 miles) excursion north of the city involves stepping back in time, to a period in American history when fear and paranoia ruled. The Salem Witch Trials of the late 17th century are vividly recreated in numerous venues within this Boston suburb.
7. Stroll Around the USA’s Oldest Public Park, Boston Common – Stop Number 1 on the Freedom Trail is this large area of green in the city center. In winter there is ice-skating on the Frog Pond, and in summer, the swan boats ply the lagoon in the Public Garden, just across the street.
8. Attend a Boston Pops or Boston Symphony Concert at Symphony Hall – The home of the Boston Symphony and world-famous Boston Pops Orchestras is a great place to enjoy an evening of exceptional music.
9. Visit the Boston Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) – This excellent art display has exhibits from ancient Egypt all the way to the present and is a great way to spend a morning or afternoon.
10. Make a Grave-Rubbing at a Historical Cemetery – Boston, with its long and fabled history, has several historic cemeteries in the city center. Here you can find the gravestones of many famous Americans, such as, Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, and John Winthrop.
11. Return to Camelot at the John F Kennedy Memorial Library – This beautiful location in South Boston recreates, with numerous memorabilia and multi-media presentations, the life of our nation’s beloved, 35th president whose life was cut short by an assasin in November of 1963.
12. Catch a Game Involving One of Boston’s Celebrated Sports Teams – Depending on the season in which you visit, you may be able to get a ticket to see either the Boston Celtics (professional basketball), the Boston Bruins (professional hockey), the New England Patriots (professional football), or the Boston Red Sox (professional baseball).
13. Enjoy a Panoramic View of the City from the Top of the John Hancock Building or the Prudential Center – Two of Boston’s tallest skyscrapers afford visitors glorious views of the city.
14. Visit the USS Constitution – Take a self-guided tour of one of the country’s oldest warships, Old Ironsides.
15. Browse the Stalls at the Quincy Market – Next to Faneuil Hall is a kaleidoscope of interesting and nutritious food. It is a popular place for lunch and is enjoyed by locals as well as tourists.
16. Relive College Days in Nearby Cambridge – Across the Charles River from Boston is the suburb of Cambridge, home of two of the country’s most celebated institutions of higher learning, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A short walk from the city accesses this charming area.
17. See the Birthplace of the American Revolution at Minuteman National Historical Park – Just west of Boston are the towns of Lexington and Concord, pivotal locations in America’s fight for independence from England.
18. Stop in at the National Heritage Museum – While in Lexington, the American Free-masons offer a display of memorabilia and capsules of American history. The best part is that the museum is free!