Take a leisurely stroll through the oldest botanical garden in the United States and get a feel for Boston's charm and grace. 1877 marks the start of the Garden's fame for the Swan Boats that float along the pond when the weather warms; a necessary ride for the kid in all of us. The Swan Boats do not get all the attention, as the grounds truly are a sight to hold. Pack a picnic and sprawl across the lawn to enjoy the beauty of this inner city treasure. Year round, the beauty of Public Garden shines, and makes for excellent photo opportunities.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The beauty of the Boston Public Garden changes with the seasons, enjoy rides on Swan Boats, checking out the landscape or the perfect picnic setting.
Jessica's expert tip: Ideally located in the heart of Boston so that you can integrate a visit to the Public Garden with other sightseeing in the same day (the Boston Common perhaps).
Hop aboard a Boston Mini Speed Boat Tour and be the captain of your own boat. This sightseeing tour mixes with a fast flying adventure to get your heart rate up and your adrenaline pumping as you fly around Boston Harbor on your very own boat. The hour and half excursions are both informative and fun, lead by tour guides who keep the history brief, the information clear and the tour moving along. See many of Boston's best sites from an entirely different angle as you float alongside at the helm of your own boat. Follow your guide out into the Harbor where you'll enjoy the feeling of total freedom while pushing your boat to its limits and speeding around. Grab a friend and share the time on this tour of a lifetime.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Boston Mini Speed Boats combines an exhilarating ride with popular landmarks ensuring you have fun seeing many popular Boston area sites.
Jessica's expert tip: No need to fight of the wheel, you can switch drivers halfway through the tour.
The adventure begins before you step foot through the door. Watch the Harbor Seals swirl around in the outdoor tank while you wait for your tickets, or linger when you finish and recount your time inside. A four-story tank spans the center of this aquatic marvel; filled with marine life this is a sight to be seen. Catch a show in the glass enclosed classroom overlooking Boston Harbor, plunge your hands into the touch tank where rays and sharks are circling and awaiting your touch. Whale Watch cruises are available seasonally and are a special way to enhance your day.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The New England Aquarium is a waterside perch for sea life exploration. Tanks filled with common, rare and exotic ocean life makes for great viewing.
Jessica's expert tip: The Aquarium is small and gets crowded. The first hour they are open, as well as late in the day allows the easiest access.
Roam the galleries or watch a show in a waterfront building that is as beautiful as what is housed inside. The modern art is an eclectic mix of what may sometimes seem to be mayhem. Funky fun displays rule the roost at this cutting edge art museum. Where new and established artists display a variety of handiwork. An on-site cafe offers outdoor seating where you can marvel at the waterfront views over food and drink. Tips for visiting with kids, as well as special family days make instilling a love of art in your kids an easy task all the while enjoying something you love.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The Institute of Contemporary Art offers the modern art aficionado the opportunity to see great work as well as performances in a cutting edge facility.
Jessica's expert tip: Play-dates are offered monthly and feature focused crafts for kids and free admission for families.
Boston fans are crazy about baseball. Ask many and they will claim it as their religion, and offer Fenway as their place of worship. Even if baseball is not your thing, be sure to catch a game at Fenway Park, home of the legendary Green Monster, and one of the hardest homers to hit in the league. You'll quickly find yourself caught up in the action, and may be come a fan before the ninth inning has ended. If a game is out of reach, enjoy a tour. An in depth inside look at one of baseball's most beloved ballfields is yours for the taking for a small fee.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Fenway Park is the oldest major league ball-field in operation, and a historical landmark making it a must see Boston attraction.
Jessica's expert tip: Tickets can be hard to come by, seek them out well in advance.
Faneuil Hall was originally established as a market for merchants, fishermen and vendors, but has transformed throughout the years. From playing host to prominent figures like Samuel Adams and George Washington, to its transformation into one of America's premiere urban marketplaces. Currently, Faneuil Hall Marketplace is home to more than 50 shops, 14 restaurants, and 40 food stalls. Here you can do it all while taking in the variety of street performers who take to the sidewalks to entertain the masses. Faneuil Hall attracts locals and tourists alike. This urban outdoor mall is more than just a spot to shop, but also a place to congregate and enjoy all it has to offer.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Faneuil Hall Marketplace is a historically significant "mall" featuring an eclectic mix of shops, restaurants, bars and street performances for your enjoyment.
Jessica's expert tip: Take your time while strolling through and stop to enjoy the variety of street performers who bring Faneuil Hall to life.
The Boston Symphony Orchestra is one of the most respected orchestras in the world and Housed in one of the best designed (acoustically) music halls in the world, Boston Symphony Hall. Playing host to a variety of concerts throughout the year, including the Holiday Pops, The Boston Symphony Orchestra wows crowds. History has been made within these walls where songs like the popular "Sleigh Ride" have been composed. In 1946 Leroy Anderson composed this piece of music specifically for the Pops and it was performed first by the Boston Pops on May 4, 1948, before the words were added two years later. The stunning setting and talent of those playing the music on stage will put you in a trance as you journey with the BSO on a musical adventure.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Boston Symphony Orchestra performances are ideal fro those seeking a transformative musical experience; the acoustics in Symphony Hall are beyond compare.
Jessica's expert tip: Purchase tickets in the center or on balconies for the best views.
Although it was not just one night that led patriots to take matters into their own hands to begin a fight for freedom, it was the continued lack of freedoms and representation that brought about the Tea Party. Here, you can relive the catalyst to the American Revolution and see memorabilia from the time and event. The museum holds insight into America's path to becoming a free country. This tour is an interactive experience that starts with a meeting at an Old South Meeting House replica led by actors in period garb and continues onto recreated vessels where you'll be come a Patriot and participate in tossing tea into the sea. After getting to know the ships themselves you'll move into the museum where short films depict the Tea Party and its aftermath. After your tour visit Abagail's Tea Room for a tea tasting.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum brings the Tea Party to life and is a fun way to learn about history.
Jessica's expert tip: This tour is best for those eight plus. Order tickets in advance to ensure you get the time you want.
The MFA is one of the largest museums around. An entire day could be spent admiring the works, both ancient and modern, that live within these walls. Along with many amazing (and famous) paintings, the MFA offers visitors the chance to enjoy artifacts from around the world. Home to four dining venues, there is a choice for all tastes eliminating the need to exit throughout the day. The MFA hosts many unique events including lectures, music, films, art opportunities for kids, and even cocktail parties. The gift shops offer art inspired items that allows guests to reflect on their favorite parts of the museum.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The Museum of Fine Arts is home to a wonderful permanent collection as well as those that change, allowing every visit to be special.
Jessica's expert tip: The Museum of Fine Arts offers many children's programs and ways for families to explore art while making it fun for all.
The best way to see Boston. Starting at the Boston Common, but easily picked up at any point along the way, the Freedom Trail offers historical insight into the city and its surroundings. Check out one, some or all of the sites on this route where a red trail painted on the sidewalks takes you throughout Boston. With 16 official stops along the way, you can walk past, or further explore the historically significant spots lining the path. Easy to hop on and off, the Freedom Trail weaves throughout the city and highlights some of Boston's most special. Guided tours are available for a fee.
Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The Freedom Trail contains most of Boston's important historical sites making this built in city map the best way to easily see the most sites.
Jessica's expert tip: The perfect way to explore the city at your own pace. See most sights while walking the red line.