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Things to do in Boston

Things to do in  Boston

Welcome to Boston

With a brassy revolutionary spirit, Boston invites visitors to explore America’s past and vibrant culture. Trace the Freedom Trail through the heart of the city, where colorful neighborhoods are dotted with historic sites and parks. Try the chowder at Boston’s oldest restaurant, head to the Italian-accented North End for cannoli and pizza, or snack on hot dogs in the stands at Fenway Park. Browse collections of masterpiece artwork in the city’s many museums, then get beyond the city limits on a day trip to old-fashioned villages, Cape Cod’s sandy beaches, or one of New England’s top shopping destinations.

Top 10 attractions in Boston

#1
Boston Public Library

Boston Public Library

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Founded in 1848, the Boston Public Library contains over 23 million items, making it the second largest public library in the U.S., after the Library of Congress. Of those millions, about 1.7 million are rare books and works, including medieval manuscripts and incunabula (a book or pamphlet printed prior to 1501 in Europe). Among the rare books are also the personal library of John Adams, early editions of works by William Shakespeare, drawings from Thomas Rowlandson and musical archives from the Handel and Haydn Society.The McKim Building, with its vast research collection, and the Johnson Building, where you can find the circulating collection, are two of the most important parts of the library. The McKim Building is even a National Historic Landmark. And while the library system technically includes a whopping 24 branches, the original Copley Square location offers plenty to see, including Bates Hall, the Chavannes Gallery, the Abbey Room and the Sargent Gallery.More
#2
Boston North End

Boston North End

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Boston’s oldest residential neighborhood, the North End has been inhabited since the 1630s and is now the city’s Little Italy. Visit to see a variety of historical and cultural attractions, such as the Paul Revere House (the starting place of his famous “midnight ride” in 1775) and enjoy Italian-American fare.More
#3
Boston Common

Boston Common

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The starting point of the Freedom Trail, Boston Common is the oldest park in the country. At 50 acres (20 hectares), it is the anchor for the Emerald Necklace, a system of connected parks that winds through many of Boston’s neighborhoods. The historic park was once a campground for British troops during the Revolutionary War.More
#4
Faneuil Hall Marketplace

Faneuil Hall Marketplace

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Faneuil Hall is a bustling marketplace best known for its ever-changing lineup of street performers and its central location on Boston’s historic Freedom Trail. Tourists and locals alike flock to the complex’s shops and Quincy Market, featuring 30-plus food stalls selling everything from exotic coffee to fresh seafood and artisanal bread.More
#5
Massachusetts State House

Massachusetts State House

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Newcomers to the city of Boston often refer to it as “the city of history” because while walking along the Freedom Trail, you encounter so many important historical points—points that were instrumental in the founding of America. It makes for an incredible walk through time, and one of the highlights on this Freedom Trail is a visit to the Massachusetts State House.Built in 1788, the “new” Massachusetts State House is built across from the Boston Common on the top of Beacon Hill. Known far and wide for its gilded gold dome (it’s actually made of wood and copper, but topped with 24-karat gold), the State House symbolizes what the founding fathers had envisioned upon landing at Plymouth Rock – to build a city upon a hill. Inside, the working State House houses working government officials, beautiful murals depicting colonial times of war, spacious marble-filled corridors, and other historical items that reflect the heritage of the Boston area – a pinecone high atop the dome pays homage to Boston’s logging industry, and the “Sacred Cod” is a nod to the fishing industry—both paragons of the early industry that made Boston one of the most influential cities in America.More
#6
Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

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The Boston Public Garden is a 24 acre (10 hectare) botanical oasis of Victorian flowerbeds, verdant grass, and weeping willow trees shading a tranquil lagoon. At any time of the year, it is an island of loveliness, awash in seasonal blooms, gold-toned leaves, or untrammeled snow.A statue of George Washington, looking stately atop his horse, greets visitors at the main entrance on Arlington Street. Other pieces of public art in the park, however, are more whimsical. The most endearing is Make Way for Ducklings, always a favorite with tiny tots who can climb and sit on the bronze ducks. But it’s the peaceful lagoon that draws visitors and locals a like to the Public Garden. For it is hear, you should take on the slow-going swan boats, a serene relic of bygone days.More
#7
200 Clarendon (John Hancock Tower)

200 Clarendon (John Hancock Tower)

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Though recently rebranded as 200 Clarendon, this towering Boston structure was for decades known as the John Hancock Tower. The building soars nearly 800 feet above the city, and is not only Boston's tallest building but also the tallest building in all of New England.The 62-story John Hancock Tower was built in 1976 as the home of John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance, but in 2004 the company moved to a different Boston location. The building is now officially known as Hancock Place.It's a glass-covered skyscraper in the shape of a parallelogram rather than a square or rectangle, and the blue-tinted glass panels beautifully reflect the city and scenery around the tower. There is an observatory deck at the top of the John Hancock tower, but it has been closed to the general public since the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The observation deck is available for private events, however.More
#8
Granary Burying Ground

Granary Burying Ground

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Founded in 1660, the Granary Burying Ground is Boston’s third-oldest burial ground, and final resting site of some of the most famous Bostonians to ever walk the earth, including three signers of the Declaration of Independence, Paul Revere, and five victims of the Boston Massacre. With as many as 2,345 graves, few cemeteries anywhere else in the world hold such a high percentage of notable people in such a small space, and for this reason it is routinely featured as a highlight along Boston’s famous Freedom Trail.Still, there is something timeless about visiting historic cemeteries, and perhaps this is why so many choose to stroll the green lawns of Granary Burying Ground, thinking of the times before ours, and, perhaps, the time to come afterwards.Notable burials among the Granary Burying Ground include John Hancock (a statesman and signer of the Declaration of Independence), Samuel Adams (also a statesman and signer of the Declaration of Independence), Paul Revere (civil war patriot), John Endecott (first Governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony), Samuel Sewall (Salem Witch Trials Judge) and many others.More
#9
Charlestown Navy Yard

Charlestown Navy Yard

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Dating back to 1800, Charlestown Navy Yard was among the most prolific, historic, and vital navy yards in U.S. history. It served as the home of many of the nation's elite warships for the purposes of resupply, maintenance, retrofitting, and service.The navy yard's most critical role was during America's two largest wars before it closed for good in 1974. From the beginning, Charlestown Navy Yard remained a pioneer of shipbuilding technology and served as a center for electronics and missile conversions. During its almost 175-year history, its staff constructed, christened, and launched over 200 ships and serviced thousands more.After its closing, thirty acres of the yard were earmarked as part of Boston National Historical Park. Today, the U.S. National Park Service oversees this most critical portion of the shipyard. In addition, as part of their overall program, the USS Constitution and USS Cassin Young combine to represent Boston's rich, almost 200-year history of ship building.As a bonus, the Boston Marine Society can also be found at Charlestown Navy Yard. Marine history buffs will appreciate this as the world's oldest association of sea captains, in operation since 1742. Admission is free and visitors are invited to stop by Building 32 – home to a noteworthy collection of historical art, artifacts and a small library of books.More
#10
Fenway Park

Fenway Park

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Boston’s most cherished landmark isn’t Bunker Hill or the Tea Party Ships, but rather old Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox. A must-see for sports enthusiasts as well as history and architecture buffs, Fenway Park is famous for its uniquely shaped playing field and towering left field wall known as the Green Monster.More

Trip ideas

How to Experience Fall Foliage in Boston

How to Experience Fall Foliage in Boston

Sightseeing on a Budget in Boston

Sightseeing on a Budget in Boston

Must-See Museums in Boston

Must-See Museums in Boston

Top Parks and Gardens in Boston

Top Parks and Gardens in Boston

Top activities in Boston

Boston Odyssey Dinner Cruise
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out

Boston Odyssey Dinner Cruise

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$159.69
Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise
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Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise

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$48.00
Boston Private City Tour

Boston Private City Tour

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$449.90
per group
Boston CityPASS

Boston CityPASS

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$64.00

Recent reviews from experiences in Boston

star-5
Pall's Boston Super Tour
John_K, Nov 2021
Boston City view Bicycle Tour
Great way to see city.
star-5
Loved captain Matty! His...
Kathleen_L, Nov 2021
Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with 15 Stops
Great way to see Boston!
star-5
Very nice boat ride, a...
Aurora_M, Nov 2021
Boston Historic Sightseeing Harbor Cruise with Up-Close View of USS Constitution
Very nice boat ride, a lots of things to see and learned from Boston ‘s History.
star-5
If you go anywhere, go here
Zachary_W, Nov 2021
Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum Admission
My #1 recommendation of where to visit while in Boston!
star-5
Boston Tour
Patricia_P, Nov 2021
Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with 15 Stops
We are from the Philadelphia area, and it was nice to see another port city!
star-5
Fun and Informative
Michael_G, Nov 2021
Boston's North End Small-Group Walking Food Tour
Wonderful way to see a great area of Boston and a national treasure.
star-5
Great TOUR!
Lisa_M, Nov 2021
Best of Boston Tour
We were able to see parts of Boston we couldn't reach by foot.
star-5
Our guide Bernard was...
Matthew_S, Oct 2021
Boston Ghosts & Gravestones Night-Time Trolley Tour
It was informative, entertaining, and one of the most fun things I've done in Boston.
star-5
Scenic, Historic, Customizable, Friendly & 5 Stars!
Mike_P, Oct 2021
Boston Private City Tour
This is the best way to see the most of Boston in 4 hours.
star-5
It really is the best of Boston, fantastic.
Bertha_c, Oct 2021
Best of Boston Tour
The whole tour was great, first time in Boston , I got to see a lot, and Mohammed our tour guide was wonderful, from Harvard university, to ssr ship, the bout ride, little Italy, and much more, I would recommend this 100%.
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Boston first-timer
SUE_R, Oct 2021
Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with Harbor Cruise Option
My first time in Boston, great way to see the city.
star-5
A Boston Must See Tour
Jessica_P, Oct 2021
Tour of Historic Fenway Park, America's Most Beloved Ballpark
We got to see everything in the ballpark and this was my favorite thing we did during our time in Boston.
star-5
This was a great...
Monica_I, Oct 2021
Boston Ghosts & Gravestones Night-Time Trolley Tour
It was a perfect fall evening and our tour guide was lively and energetic.
star-5
The Way To see Boston
Shari_N, Nov 2021
Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with 15 Stops
I’ve gone to Boston four times and this is the best way to see the city and getting a chance to relax your feet from walking
star-5
Totally worth it
Maria_P, Oct 2021
Boston to Plymouth Day-Trip including Quincy, Plimoth Patuxet and Mayflower II
Great way to see history in Boston and Plymouth.
star-4
Seeing Boston
Debbie_T, Oct 2021
Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with Harbor Cruise Option
We had a great time was able to see Boston Highlights this way for about 5 hours and most of drivers made it special with the history
star-5
Fun cruise
Matthew_C, Sep 2021
Sunset Sailing Cruise on a Tall Ship in Boston Harbor
Such a nice way to see the city!
star-5
Great guides and wonderful itinerary
Marsha_G, Sep 2021
Boston City view Bicycle Tour
The itinerary was excellent and allowed us to see lots of the city.
star-5
Best experience
Loris_H, Aug 2021
Sightseeing Day Sail around Boston Harbor
I would recomend it to every one to do it when they whant to see Boston from another point
star-4
Good activity with teens
Jennifer_S, Aug 2021
Boston Ghost Tour
Fun way to see Boston at night.

All about Boston

When to visit

After a bone-chilling winter, Boston knows how to party once summer arrives. Peak season prices come with perks such as baseball games at Fenway Park and festivals including Boston Pride, Harborfest, and Comic Con. Visit in early autumn for discounted rates and a chance to admire New England’s famous fall foliage before the freeze sets in.

A local’s pocket guide to Boston

Angelica Pella

A native New Englander, Boston-based Angelica spends as much free time by the ocean as possible, and her favorite coastal town is Newport, Rhode Island.

The first thing you should do in Boston is...

explore each of the downtown neighborhoods on foot. Walking the Freedom Trail, either independently or on a tour, is a good way to get started.

A perfect Saturday in Boston...

starts with brunch at Lincoln Tavern and includes a walk along the Waterfront or Seaport, shopping at Faneuil Hall, and an Italian dinner in the North End, with espresso martinis at Caffè Vittoria afterward.

One touristy thing that lives up to the hype is...

Fenway Park. It's the oldest ballpark in America and great even for non-baseball fans. Take a stadium tour or catch a Red Sox game during baseball season.

To discover the "real" Boston...

stop by some of the historical sites, such as the Paul Revere House or Bunker Hill Monument, or catch a Red Sox, Bruins, or Celtics game. It doesn’t hurt to try a lobster roll either!

For the best view of the city...

take a harbor cruise, get drinks at a rooftop bar (try the Envoy Hotel), or walk across the Harvard Bridge and see Boston from the Cambridge side of the Charles River.

One thing people get wrong...

is not visiting other parts of New England, like Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, Newport, Cape Cod, Salem, Portsmouth, Portland, or Kennebunkport.

Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
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