Boston, the largest city in New England, has many charms, both old and modern. It’s a place where you can explore colonial history, shop in some trendy neighborhoods and enjoy a variety of cultural activities and sporting events.
- Boston Tea Party Ships -Learn about one of the most pivotal events of the American Revolution and see artifacts from the actual Boston Tea Party. This is a genuine floating museum that exhibits, films and live re-enactments to educate and entertain the whole family.
- Neighborhoods -Boston has a variety of distinctive neighborhoods. Beacon Hill is known for its beautiful homes and also has some interesting antique stores and other shops. Newbury Street is one of the city’s trendiest shopping districts, where you’ll find lots of boutiques and art galleries. Another exclusive Boston neighborhood is Back Bay, which has many great hotels, Victorian homes and office buildings.
- Skywalk Observatory -If you’re the kind of traveler who likes to find the best views of a city, you’ll want to come to the observation tower on the top of the Prudential Building. Great views of the harbor as well as the entire city, as long as you go on a clear day.
- Fenway Park -One of the nation’s oldest and most famous sports stadiums. It’s been the home of the Boston Red Sox for more than a century. If you’re a baseball fan, you’ll want to take a tour of the stadium even if you aren’t able to catch a game.
- Museums -Boston is full of great museums, including the Museum of Fine Arts, which is the city’s largest and most comprehensive art museum; John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library, which has lots of books, artifacts and films from the Kennedy era; Museum of Science, an interactive science museum with hundreds of exhibits and an IMAX theater and the USS Constitution Museum, which gives you a chance to see what life was like aboard an old battleship.
Dining and Nightlife
Few cities offer the culinary diversity of Boston. As a harbor town, there’s plenty of seafood. There are also many varieties of ethnic cuisine, with Italian being one of the most prevalent. Here are just a few of the best choices.
- Mamma Maria, in the North End (which has many good Italian places) on North Square, is a spacious restaurant with five private dining rooms, great views of downtown Boston and a menu with many great Italian, American and seafood dishes, including black bass, pork tenderloin, halibut, monkfish & lobster and clam pasta.
- One of Boston’s best authentic seafood places is James Hook & Company, located downtown on Northern Avenue. This is the place to come for Boston lobster, lobster rolls, stuffed clams and lots of other seafood delicacies.
- Pizza lovers will appreciate Pizzeria Regina in the North End on Thatcher Street, which opened in 1926 and has won numerous “best pizza” awards. They now have many other locations, but Boston has the original one.
- If you’re in the mood for steak or any kind of meat, Fogo de Chao Brazilian Steakhouse, in the Back Bay on Dartmouth Street, has many mouth-watering choices, including sirloin, pork, flank steak, chicken, lamb and seafood. They also offer a fine selection of salads, desserts and wines.
- Myers & Chang, in the South End on Washington Street, offers modern Asian fusion dishes, including Chinese, Thai and Vietnamese specialties. In addition to meat and seafood dishes, there are many vegetarian, gluten-free and shellfish-free options.
For entertainment and nightlife, you can see a play or concert at one of the city’s major venues such as Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston Ballet, The Boston Pops or Symphony Hall, to name just a few.
Improv Asylum in the North End on Hanover Street is the place to go for standup comedy. Boston also has hundreds of pubs to choose from, from local dives to high-end establishments. Top of the Hub, in the Back Bay on Boylston Street, is the place to get a meal or a drink right at the Observation Tower of the Prudential Building. Cheers Beacon Hill on Beacon Street was the inspiration for the famous TV show Cheers and is still open for business.
Frost Ice Loft, downtown at Faneuil Hall Marketplace, is a unique bar with an “ice” theme that includes ice sculptures, ice furniture and an ice bar. They supply you with parkas and gloves if you’re not dressed for the cold.
Where to Stay
For an upscale hotel in the center of the city on Stuart Street, it’s hard to do better than Revere Hotel Boston Common, within walking distance to the theater district and lots of great restaurants and walking. You might also like to dine at Rooftop at Revere, which provides amazing views of the city.
Best Western Plus Roundhouse Suites on Massachusetts Ave. is a good choice for South Boston, close to attractions such as South End and Boston Ballet. It’s also a fine hotel with amenities such as a gym, business center, free breakfast and free WiFi.
If you’re looking for economy, Boston can be challenging, but you can still find some great values. The Midtown Hotel on Huntington Ave., is an older hotel without a wide range of amenities, but it’s centrally located and a good value for the price. The Chandler Inn on Chandler St., a recently renovated hotel, has small but comfortable rooms and is on a nice street with old brownstones.
For B & B’s, some of your best choices are Oasis Guest House Bed and Breakfast, on Edgerly Road in the Fenway/Kenmore area and Gryphon House on Bay State Road, near the Back Bay. Green Turtle Floating Bed and Breakfast offers something different, a B & B on a houseboat in Boston Harbor.