Karen Lawley's Blog
Boston, with its rich history and cultural scene, is a city that can easily take a week to explore. So what can you do if you have just one day to experience its wonders? While you won’t be able to see it all, there are some must-see attractions that you can work into a day. Here’s what you’ll want to do.
Focus on Downtown
Downtown Boston is where its oldest, history-rich neighborhoods are, so this is where you’ll want to spend your time. This is also where the museums and art galleries are. You may want to decide just a couple of things to see and experience, depending on your preferences. However, if you’re wanting to see as much of the city as possible, focus your efforts on the historic sites downtown.
Start with the Freedom Trail
The Freedom Trail is a 2.5-mile-long red line that takes you past some of the most historic sites in the city. It can take all day to walk and experience the Freedom Trail, but you can focus on the first two-thirds of the trail if you wish to see other things as well. Start your journey at Boston Commons, and pick up a Freedom Trail pamphlet from the Boston Common Visitor Information Center. This trail will take you through several of Paul Revere’s historic sites, as well as other important pieces of Boston’s history.
Do Your Shopping
You’ll want to grab a souvenir or two on your trip. During your walk down the Freedom Trail, end at Faneuil Hall, where you can find plenty of shopping options. Among those are Quincy Market, which is the hall’s food court. You’ll find a lot of excellent meal or snack options to grab-and-go as you continue your exploration of the city.
Grab Some Coffee
If you’re getting a little tired at this point, head to Hanover Street, which is known for its many coffee houses. Bag an espresso and a fresh-baked pastry, and see the historic buildings of the city’s North End while you indulge.
Head to the Waterfront
Now you’re ready to see the waterfront. Walk from the North End to the harbor, and jump on a ferry ride from Long Warf to Charlestown and back. You’ll also have the option to tour the New England Aquarium or the Institute of Contemporary Art in this area. This will finish out your day, and you will end at the perfect spot to pick up some fresh seafood for dinner.
You can’t fully experience Boston in a day, but you can get a good taste. With this itinerary, soak in many of the most important parts of the city and get a feel for its history and culture before your travels take you elsewhere.