Boston is one of the most historic and culturally rich cities in the New England region. Founded by Puritan colonists from England in the 17C, Boston became the hub of politics, commerce, education and religion.
Similar to New York City, Boston is cosmopolitan and expensive, but without the hustle and bustle. Since Boston is smaller than other US cities – like New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia – visitors shouldn’t feel overwhelmed when exploring it. Here are five things that you should consider seeing/doing when you’re in the area:
The Freedom Trail
For an excellent introduction to Boston’s past, you must take one of the walking tours sponsored by the Freedom Trail Foundation. On this 2.5 mile tour, you’ll learn about Boston’s significance in the colonies, its citizens who played influential roles in shaping the USA, and visit 16 key sites where major historical events occurred. When I took this tour, I was well – entertained by the very knowledgeable and witty guide named Jeremiah Poope.
For information and reservations, visit: http://www.thefreedomtrail.org/
Although Boston has many prestigious institutions of higher learning, Harvard is the oldest (in the entire USA) and most popular. It was established in 1636, by several Founding Fathers. Harvard was eventually named in honor of John Harvard because he bequeathed his large personal library and a substantial amount of money to the university.
In addition to being beautiful, Harvard’s campus is also in the process of becoming a green campus. This Sustainability initiative was started in 2008 and is anticipated to be completed by 2020.
The Boston Public Library – Copley Square Branch
Located in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, this magnificent building is a delight to tour.
Inspired by the Italian Renaissance palazzo, this structure was to be a palace for the people. As such, it was constructed from granite and marble, and its interiors boast mahogany wood panels, plus murals and sculptors by renowned artists such as Sargent and Pratt.
The library offers free tours of the facilities on specific days and times of the week. So, check their schedule before visiting: https://www.bpl.org/general/hours/
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Like any art museum worth its salt, the Museum of Fine Arts provides patrons and visitors alike with many galleries filled with priceless art, from different eras, culled from all four corners of the earth. You’ll find works by Old Masters, alongside those of unknown artisans.
The museum also has four levels devoted to American art dating from the ancient to modern times; plus period furniture and furnishings that are specific to the New England region.
Address: 465 Huntington Ave, Boston (Avenue of the Arts)
Subway: Take the Green Line “E” to the Museum of Fine Arts stop; or the Orange Line train to the Ruggles stop.
The Harpoon Brewery
Whether you are a beer drinker or not, a tour of the Harpoon Brewery is a fun way to end your trip. The company was started in 1986 by three Bostonian college classmates and is now employee owned. It has the distinction of being the first brewery in Boston to commercially brew and bottle beer in this city in 25 years.
Brewery tours cost $5, last approximately one hour, and include a beer tasting. Please note that you must be at least 21 years old and provide a valid ID if you want to tour the facilities and drink.
Address: 306 Northern Avenue Telephone: 617) 456 – 2322
Have you traveled to Boston? What are your strongest memories of that trip?