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Efficient_Art_1144 t1_j6iq893 wrote

Walking the freedom trail is worth it. Stop at all the historic stuff. Duck into the north end for lunch. Definitely touristy. Definitely worth it.


Efficient_Art_1144 t1_j6iqnof wrote

And if you like baseball, do a Fenway park tour and then dip into bleacher bar.


wobwobwob42 t1_j6jny5q wrote

I dont even like baseball and the tour was great.


RMR6789 t1_j6k7aty wrote

My friend visited from Buffalo and the Sox were away when she was here.. so we took her to a Fenway tour. Thoroughly enjoyed it.


[deleted] t1_j6jkxoh wrote

I finally did this the other day! Put the Maine Coon in a stroller and we shared some clam chowder, and had an awesome walk. I read him all the plaques. He peed on some old graves. It was a blast.


doctor-rumack t1_j6jteqe wrote

I find your username questionable after having read this.


3owlsinatrenchc0at t1_j6ixjfg wrote

Hard agree. Did this with a friend awhile back on one of those gorgeous 60 degree fall days. We didn't feel the need to pay for a guided tour, we just walked the various sites at our own pace. Bonus points for the fact that we did this on a weekday (she came up for a long weekend) and there was NO line at Mike's. I was introduced to the Boston area by someone who tended to avoid the touristy areas, which is all well and good, and some of those off-the-beaten-path areas are now among my favorite places, but sometimes it's really fun to be a total stereotypical tourist for a day.


skylarrolstad t1_j6lgj6p wrote

Absolutely agree. I went and did the Freedom Trail this past summer because I needed something to do. I really learned a lot and it’s a great tour of the city. Plus, you can pick and choose where to stop and spend time


krissym99 t1_j6n0dnv wrote

We periodically do the Freedom Trail and then end up at Ernesto's and somewhere in the North End for dessert, usually Caffe Vittoria. I enjoy it every time.


DearChaseUtley t1_j6pjmrr wrote

Pro tip: do it in reverse. You then don’t have to double back from Charlestown. Plus it makes for a cool story in reverse chronology.


ColorMeStunned t1_j6j9t0k wrote

I have never waited longer than 20 minutes in line at Mike's Pastry, and even that might have only been on like the 4th of July or something.

Don't let the throng of tourists scare you. The people behind the counter are unbelievably efficient, and the cannolis are more than worth it.

Also, the Public Gardens are prettier and cleaner than the Common, which draws a lot of crowds. Go anyway. Take your time. Do the swan boats. Sit on the Good Will Hunting bench. It really is a singularly beautiful spot.


IrelandDzair t1_j6kges5 wrote

Honestly I cant fathom not going to both the commons and the public garden they are right next to each other. Some nice bench time in both places middle of the day is just the stuff of dreams


nsolarz t1_j6jsk51 wrote

go to Bova's instead. no line and the cannoli are just as good, if not better


TurtleLikeReflx t1_j6k1bc9 wrote

Disagree. The line can get just as long at Bova’s on a busy night and the cannoli at Mike’s is definitely better.

Took me way too long to get a Mike’s cannoli because of this type sentiment on this subreddit


blackknight1 t1_j6k3imb wrote

This may be an unpopular opinion but I lived in the north end and was never enthralled with anything from Bova’s. Mike’s or Moderns for me


whatevenisaprofessor t1_j6kwzx6 wrote

Agreed—never understood the Bovas hype, feels like a “I’m a local so I don’t go to tourist traps” snobby thing. Mikes, any weekday or weeknight, no line. It’s the best


dathorese t1_j6l0bz4 wrote

I think the appeal for Bovas is simply the fact that if you want a cannoli at 330AM after drunken shenanigans, you can get one there... unlike Mikes or Modern..


some1saveusnow t1_j6m34r1 wrote

The “don’t go here go to bova’s” like clockwork posts WHENEVER cannolis is brought up leads me to believe you’re 💯right


brufleth t1_j6nhrnp wrote

I don't know why people like cannoli so much when lobster tails (if you can handle the size) are the superior option.


ohhowexciting t1_j6me8z5 wrote

My feeling is that once you reach a threshold of not being terrible, they plateau and are pretty much the same -- an okay, but overall unremarkable dessert in the mix of options.


Snoo68415 t1_j6ivwcm wrote

Went to the Mapparium for the first time this past weekend and it was much cooler than I expected.


therealcmj t1_j6k0b1c wrote

Pro tip: Dip out after you see the Mapparium to skip the religious indoctrination part of the tour.


free_to_muse t1_j6n6o4g wrote

But that part is really interesting as well. Disturbing but interesting nonetheless.


therealcmj t1_j6nsx5d wrote

True. It’s all in Wikipedia but hearing it from their mouths made it extra weird.


Megalocerus t1_j6l1ok9 wrote

Went down with my grandson, who is into maps. Then went to the Boston Library.


Snoo68415 t1_j6l7vt1 wrote

Love the Boston Library. What a great city we have!!


LFS2y6eSkmsbSX t1_j6kxpex wrote

My first thought was the B mapparium. So cheap, so fast, so cool.


OkOpinion5519 t1_j6n7c5i wrote

+1 Mapparium! I enjoyed bringing out of town people here when I lived nearby


Jewboy-Deluxe t1_j6jprwn wrote

Harvard’s Museams, worth it for the glass flowers alone but there is a lot of cool stuff in the “hallowed halls”


sbtier1 t1_j6k7a73 wrote

Check out the mineral galleries.


LFS2y6eSkmsbSX t1_j6kxyod wrote

Natural history museum in particular. Was free on Sundays after 12pm for MA residents, not sure if it still is.

Though they got rid of the skull evolution chart, which was really cool. Showed Australopithecus, homo erectus, etc.


thejosharms t1_j6ojepg wrote

Taking my 7th grade class into the glass flower room every year takes years off my life.


brufleth t1_j6nhy6v wrote

One of my top favorite museums. So much neat stuff to look at.


Own-Reaction1681 t1_j6iray1 wrote

Duck boats! I loved it!


Kat-2793 t1_j6jf6ck wrote

Ghost and graveyards tour too!


AlarmedRecipe6569 t1_j6jkw1h wrote

Came to give votes to these two ideas! We see them all the time… but the history is fun and these guys do a great job.


buck_II t1_j6n7vu2 wrote

I think this is a good tour. They do it year round but the groups get too large in the fall. I like it in the winter.


nerdponx t1_j6krpgw wrote

Not sure about the Boston duck boats specifically, but I've heard that a lot of duck boat operators are seriously negligent when it comes to repairs and maintenance, and sometimes the modifications to make the boats in the first place aren't safe. It was awesome to do it as a kid, but I'm not sure I'd do it again after hearing that.


brufleth t1_j6ni2gi wrote

Depends heavily on your tour guide. We've gone several times and most of the time it was super fun. Last time was a little bit of a letdown because the guide was really struggling. I would still recommend them!


hce692 t1_j6jbfno wrote

Barking crab is fun on a summer day I don’t care what anyone says. Food is good too if you stick with New England classics like lobsters and fried clams


wobwobwob42 t1_j6jo9m2 wrote

A bartender pissed me off in 1998. They are dead to me.


Adorableviolet t1_j6kfl2v wrote

Ha. And the feces discovery in the lobster tank sealed it for me. And i used to love it!


wobwobwob42 t1_j6kulj9 wrote

That's why I got pissed off at the bartender. Threw me out for leaving an Upper Decker in the lobster tank. What? Have you seen their bathrooms?


brufleth t1_j6nijp5 wrote

In the early 2000s I got a fried clam (paper) bucket thing. They laid a piece of paper over the top of the bucket, pushed it down only a little bit, and only filled that little bit at the top. So it was way less food than it looked like.

I'm still getting heated thinking about it. Doesn't look like they even sell clams in that container anymore, but their $40 fisherman's platter is criminally small looking.


devAcc123 t1_j6l3t9f wrote

Honestly seaport in general, pay for the overpriced beers at Cisco or trillium, take that stereotypical tourist photo on the harborwalk. Buy some mediocre quality seafood at barking crab.


doctor-rumack t1_j6juia4 wrote

About 15 years ago, I became a regular at the Top of the Hub for a period of time. My friends would laugh at me for going up there because it was a tourist trap with overpriced drinks, but I eventually got to know a couple of the bartenders, and I never got anything watered down. They had great jazz bands up there, and obviously the view was incredible. I thought it was the best kept secret in town.

Eventually the Pru started charging money just to take the elevator up, and I just stopped going. It closed a few years ago, but I heard they're bringing in a new bar restaurant up there to replace it.


FEdart t1_j6ktdnj wrote

The trick was to not try and get drunk at the Top of the Hub, because you'll waste a ton of money.

Top of the Hub was always an excellent way to start the night with your first drink or two with a view. Then you go somewhere cheap and dingy to get proper drunk.


3-1advantage t1_j6l6n9s wrote

“Then you go somewhere cheap and dingy” …. Now I am interested! Where?


FEdart t1_j6l8ct3 wrote

The answer to this question was Pour House. It was the cheapest place to get a drink (and food) in Back Bay IMO. But alas, it closed and I had to move out of Boston after a COVID layoff, so I don't really know a good spot anymore.

I hear Pour House is reopening from my old friends, but I kind of doubt that it will retain the old unbelievable price points it used to have.


thejosharms t1_j6ojtw1 wrote

1/2 Price Mexican on Thursday nights was our staple in our college and post-college years.


KtinaTravels t1_j6lm5n2 wrote

The Tam, for sure (if you don’t mind a bit of a walk or to hop on the T).


effulgentelephant t1_j6lhjh1 wrote

My friends visited back in 2019, before Top closed, and we had such a fun night up there, listening to music and enjoying the views.


some1saveusnow t1_j6m2teb wrote

I went randomly for dinner once about 16 yrs ago and was taken aback by how good the food was. Drove by tonight and lamented it’s absence.


buck_II t1_j6n7gce wrote

I always too visitors there. Why pay admission to the observatory when you can have a martini at the bar?


taremomo t1_j6kbhok wrote

The Boston Public Library is so lovely! The courtyard is a great place to enjoy a lunch or catch up with a friend. And you can find quiet areas in both the old and newer parts of the library if that’s more your thing. I’ve taken several locals there and am always surprised when it’s their first time.


MagicJava t1_j6n0urm wrote

Love BPL, never had an easier time getting a library card.


UltravioletClearance t1_j6iolom wrote

Mike's Pasty is not any lesser than Modern or Bovas. It just gets a bad rep because of the crowds. But the past 3 times I've gone to Bovas the line was even longer than Mike's. And Mike's has other locations which aren't anywhere as busy as the North End location.


ohhowexciting t1_j6jxt8b wrote

re: Bova's line even longer

I feel like we've come full circle with the cannoli gatekeeping, and that shitting on Mike's is arguably more touristy than being caught going there. It comes off as a tryhard chest puffing exercise to advertise that you're totally not a tourist and know the real spots. I've never met anyone from around here who actually gives a shit.


dannydigtl t1_j6jpuup wrote

I’ve conducted two blind taste tests of north end cannolis with random friends and family over the years. Both times Mike’s won almost unanimously.


nkdeck07 t1_j6l8bhx wrote

The other Mikes really aren't as good though. You can tell the cannolis sit in the other locations and it hurts them.


stargrown t1_j6kex74 wrote

I don’t want to see anyone named Mike wearing pastys on a regular day in the N End


some1saveusnow t1_j6m3csn wrote

Also bovas doesn’t move ppl through super fast as the counter is small


Caninus-Surdis t1_j6k3byt wrote

I really enjoy going to the USS Constitution. One of my friends commissioned on there as an Ensign and I routinely do the tour and always learn something new.


downwardspiralstairs t1_j6jqrcc wrote

The Boston Aquarium whale watch.


Adorableviolet t1_j6kfuz3 wrote

I went and the tour guide (truthfully) said: cannot promise you will see a whale, but i can promise you will see vomit!


Logical-Error-7233 t1_j6l3abk wrote

Can confirm I used to work these, 100% fact. Most people wouldn't give a shit about the whales by the time we got there due to the puke. We called the boat the vomit comet.


iliketuurtles t1_j6jy486 wrote

That was the worst5 hours of my entire life.... I have been on cruises and was OK, but that boat was just sea sickness hell. I'm sure it would have been nice otherwise haha


AccousticMotorboat t1_j6l4k2e wrote

I went on one that was so incredible that the concession workers closed their tills and went to the railings. Breeching whales soaking people, mama nursing her calf. So cool.


superducktoes t1_j6j4jdp wrote

we went to cheers in december and it was definitely overpriced but pretty decent. bartender told us the best time to go if you are local is december to march since thats usually their slowest time


guangsen t1_j6jw85a wrote

Stopped in with a friend one time as a joke we took seriously. Ended up having a real nice time chatting with folks that were excited to visit Cheers & Boston. It’s nice to see your home through the eyes of someone that’s excited to be there


superducktoes t1_j6k27b7 wrote

that's funny, we had the same thing happen to us. were supposed to be there for just one but met a bunch of people from out of town and ended up having a blast that night.


dannydigtl t1_j6jpmns wrote

Duck boat tours. Duck boat tours are awesome.


michael_scarn_21 t1_j6iw5nx wrote

Ice skating on the frog pond.


[deleted] t1_j6jlkyp wrote

When I lived in Back Bay we’d go late at night, after the bars closed. We all owned skates just for that, and we’d stop home and get them then hop the boards at like 3am. Cops never bothered us but the stupid Zamboni chased us off more than once. Kinda weird to Zamboni at 3:00am, but it probably doubled as security because it worked lol.


ZippityZooZaZingZo t1_j6j441t wrote

The real move here is to skip the Frog pond and skate on the pond in the Public Garden


AboyNamedBort t1_j6j8dne wrote

I have news for you...


lifeisakoan t1_j6jnavs wrote

It is gonna be -3 or -10 or something Friday night.


some1saveusnow t1_j6m3kd2 wrote

Does it need to be sub freezing for a few days?


lifeisakoan t1_j6mm4pv wrote

The current forecast has just a few hours on Thursday that will be above freezing. Anyway, I won't be out on the lagoon Saturday morning.

It was frozen over once already this season. And it has been cool enough that the ground won't keep the water warm for as long.


Lemonio t1_j6llkj4 wrote

The ice skating rink in larz Anderson is excellent


MaineSportsFan t1_j6n99v9 wrote

Hmm, I'm honestly not sure how I feel about skating here.

I love the location and charm of Frog Pond and absolutely worth going if you've never been. However, the skating experience itself is pretty subpar in my opinion...

The rink is so tiny that makes it impossible to avoid other skaters.

I might just be biased because every single time I rent skates, the skates feel so worn and don't fit properly.

Wish we also had warming huts or even a larger enclosed building to warm up / drop off gear like many other cities have.


Victor_Korchnoi t1_j6jolho wrote

I had a florentine cannoli from Mikes Pastry recently and it was actually amazing. I had never been to Mikes because I assumed it was too touristy.


RMR6789 t1_j6k89xq wrote

The Florentine cannoli from Mike’s is THE ONLY cannoli IMO lol


Maj0r_Ursa t1_j6ltvm5 wrote

Holy hell I had no idea Mike’s had a Florentine cannoli. I gotta try it asap


RMR6789 t1_j6ly9zz wrote

You won’t be disappointed! (I hope!)


Strong_Election8659 t1_j6l87s8 wrote

Until you get the one from bovas


RMR6789 t1_j6ly7dd wrote

I like bovas a lot! I just prefer mikes for cannoli. I will give bovas cannoli another whirl though. it’s been a while and maybe my memory serves me incorrect haha.


some1saveusnow t1_j6m3gap wrote

I’ve only had it from bovas and it’s the only cannoli I get. Honestly, how is it at mikes?


Anustart15 t1_j6kr2xm wrote

The new Sam Adams tap room next to faneuil hall is honestly not bad. Ive always been able to get a seat at the bar upstairs, the space itself is pretty nice, beer is not expensive, and they have about 10 exclusive beers on tap there which are all very well made. Also a great place to practice a completely made up backstory for yourself since the bartenders will always assume you are from out of town.


dell828 t1_j6ju21j wrote

Yeah I had a great time at the Boston tea party museum. Hilarious, and great fun.


rahulhanda t1_j6kmtei wrote

If you want to try Mike’s but dont like crowds just go to the one in Assembly


ColorMeStunned t1_j6mr8or wrote

Plus you'll still get the real Boston experience: harried MGH employees trying to get to work!


amatz9 t1_j6khhj2 wrote

A boat tour of the Boston harbor. I have done it multiple times (albeit with out of state friends) but learned something new each time.


marketing-panda t1_j6lja6n wrote

Taking the ferry to any of the harbor islands in the summer is so fun! They have a bartender on board so after walking around the island and exploring you can have a refreshing cocktail for your boat ride back


too-cute-by-half t1_j6jz7pz wrote

I like all our touristy things, except the Tea Party Ship and Quincy Market (the indoor part with the food stalls and knicknacks).


brufleth t1_j6njope wrote

Quincy Market always feels depressing. I think it holds the record for the most we've paid for a really sad ice cream.


acobz t1_j6jr7zj wrote

My mom and I loved whale watching at the aquarium this summer!


Initial_Dimension541 t1_j6l70rb wrote

I was a docent dame at the state house and it’s the best free tour you can get


stametsprime t1_j6laig5 wrote

It’s expensive, but Codzilla was legitimately a lot of fun. Likewise the Liberty Fleet of tall ships next to the Aquarium. They’re great to just hang out and lazily cruise around the harbor for a couple hours.


ich_habe_keine_kase t1_j6ln95u wrote

Yeah, did one of the tall ships last year with an out of town guest. It was a really lovely afternoon.


morrowgirl t1_j6mvsit wrote

Codzilla is SO fun. I've been sailing in the harbor for years and would love spotting it. One day my husband and I were going to take our nephew sailing but there was NO wind so we decided on the spot to get Codzilla tickets. It did not disappoint.


brufleth t1_j6nhix0 wrote

Codzilla is definitely fun.

My only complaint about Liberty Fleet is sometimes their skippers are jerks to other boats in the harbor.


Adorableviolet t1_j6kggjx wrote

I always go to a city's art museum(s) when traveling and shamefully admit I have never been to ICA (? is that the name of museum in seaport?). I also lived in Seattle for 2 years and never went in the space needle.


AWalker17 t1_j6kq6m4 wrote

Mike’s Pastry, IMO. I don’t get why people get so upset over it. Half of the time, there’s not even a line, just a bunch of people taking up space.


Feisty-Weakness4695 t1_j6kulki wrote

The aquarium! If you go early on a weekday before field trips arrive and not during school vacation weeks, you have it mostly to yourself for a bit


jp112078 t1_j6ldz45 wrote

Lived in back bay about 13 years ago. Cheers on the flat of beacon (originally bull and finch) was the biggest tourist destination for many years. And was avoided like the plague by locals. But when I was there cheers (the show) had been done since early nineties. Used to go there all the time at night! No crowds, a few locals, ok food!


krissym99 t1_j6mo9c2 wrote

I thought Cheers was surprisingly fun. I only went for a drink once with an out of town friend but I thought it was cheesy and silly as the fan of a show.


scoobyj01 t1_j6ljrnf wrote

The North End of Boston is touristy but I wouldn’t call it a tourist trap.


MaineSportsFan t1_j6n9hxv wrote

I think parts of the North End could be considered Tourist Traps, esp. Mike's. Agree with others in here thought that Mikes is underrated or overhated.


zwermp t1_j6mytsb wrote

SF's version of this was Alcatraz. It was actually really cool and rewarding.


SweetIsland t1_j6ktpjw wrote

Duck boat tours are great. I go with friends and family when they come visit.


buck_II t1_j6n85s3 wrote

The clipper ship tours of Boston Harbor are great! So cool when hoist the sails and turn off the engine. Always a hit with visitors


MrRemoto t1_j6lovol wrote

Union Oyster House is actually awesome.


Restopulus t1_j6mx7pe wrote

It's cool to experience the vibe, but the couple times I've gone (bringing people who hadn't been yet) I've been pretty underwhelmed with service and food, especially considering the price. I'm sure I'll keep trying, though


Snoo68415 t1_j6p9pyl wrote

I think the pro-move there is to sit at the bar on a cold winter night where they shuck the oysters, order a dozen oysters and a bowl of chowder, get a pint or three of whatever beer you like (I like the brick red Sam Adams), take in the history, and then leave. The history of the place is really cool, and the chowder and oysters are actually good, but otherwise it’s a waste of money and time.


MrRemoto t1_j6pfrfs wrote

I've only ever had the oysters and chowder after work Kind of surprised to hear the rest isn't as good.


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classicrock40 t1_j6ipsao wrote

Dunks, Market Basket and Faneuil Hall come to mind.


spud641 t1_j6iv53b wrote

Dying at the idea of a family from Colorado flying out to boston for the weekend to go to Market Basket.

"But Honey, they put STICKERS on the MILK!"


AccousticMotorboat t1_j6l5gmb wrote

My parents insisted on at least one MB trip when visiting from the west coast. Totally cheap date. They just loved hearing the stockers and checkers chat away in legit Boston accents and picking things out that were unusual to them to take home.

Going to a grocery store is almost always on my list for vacation. Great way to see how people live everyday.


AutoModerator t1_j6io3d2 wrote

Given its geographical location, Boston quickly came to rely on its port for commerce and sustenance. Trade was paramount and it was the emergence of Boston’s maritime merchants – trading goods like tea, sugar, fish, and tobacco – which ultimately led to a collision course with the British Empire. As the China Trade grew, along with Boston’s reliance on tea as an import and an export, and as Britain’s East India Company depreciated, a fraught situation developed; Britain, facing debt and discord, transferred war debts and trading deficits to its colonies. Boston was in a state of defiance and non-compliance from the outset. As the British Parliament passed a succession of acts aimed at taxing the colonists and restricting their political power, leading figures such as Sam Adams, John Hancock, John Adams and Paul Revere initiated a movement which transcended class lines and drove the people of Boston into open rebellion. 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Bizarre and controversial events such as the North End Molasses Flood, Boston Police Strike, Brinks Robbery, Boston Strangler crimes, busing crisis, and destruction of the West End caused a fair share of intrigue and discordance while political figures such as James Michael Curley, John F. Kennedy, Thomas Tip O’Neill, Kevin White, and Michael Dukakis became household names. As the nation celebrated its bicentennial in 1976, Boston used funds generated from the anniversary to transform and revitalize Faneuil Hall Marketplace and create the Boston National Historical Park. In the 1980s and 1990s, monumental tasks were undertaken to make Boston a cleaner, more aesthetically-pleasing city. The cleanup of Boston Harbor and creation of the Big Dig were the most prominent examples. Boston Harbor is now one of the cleanest urban harbors in the world. 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VoteCamacho2508 t1_j6j7ov1 wrote

Can we turn off these annoying bots. They aren't funny or helpful.