- By Globerouter
- On Oct 25, 2019
- North America
- Travel Tips
If you’ve got Boston travel plans in the works, it’s never too early to start planning your itinerary. Massachusetts’ capital is a wealth of historical, artistic, and culinary marvels, and with a few handy travel tips up your sleeve, you’ll be guaranteed a journey to remember.
Boston is about as safe as any major US city, particularly as gun laws in Massachusetts are some of the strictest in the nation. Even so, you would be wise to take the same safety precautions you would in any unfamiliar place. Avoid travelling alone whenever possible, especially at night, and stick to well-lit areas after dark. If you’re without a travel buddy, travelling with a tour group could give you an extra sense of security, but going solo is still an option as long as you’re well-prepared. At the very least, you should get your hands on a map of the city and mark out the safe paths from your accommodation to the spots you want to see.
Take a tour
A dedicated Boston guide can not only help to keep you safe on your travels, but also make sure you get the best of the city’s sights and experiences in a matter of days. Like many of its neighbouring cities, Boston covers a full spectrum of attractions, from historical monuments to unforgettable slices of nature. For this reason, even travellers who are short on time should set aside at least three days to explore this metropolitan hotspot. There’s plenty for lovers of the arts, from the Institute of Contemporary Art to the Mary Baker Eddy Library, and sports fans will feel right at home in Fenway Park, while nature fiends can find their bliss at the New England Aquarium. Being by the water, you can even book a spot on a whale-watching cruise or a Duck Tour, a boating experience unique to Boston, and get closer to some of nature’s most fascinating creatures.
Every Boston trip has the potential to be unique, but there are a few experiences not to be missed, and you’ll find many of them along one winding road. The Freedom Trail is one of the city’s most historic walking tours, telling the story of the American Revolution through a series of buildings and landmarks. You’ll see museums, churches, parks - including the famous Boston Common - and even cemeteries along the way, and you’re almost guaranteed to learn a few things about American History. Highlights include the Old State House, the city’s oldest building and once-central point for all things political, social, and business-related, and the sombre site of the Boston Massacre itself.
Try everything once…
A list of Boston tips would be incomplete without a run-down of the best menu options on offer, and there’s plenty of flavor awaiting. Given its position on the US coastline, seafood makes up many of Boston’s signature dishes. Clam chowder, lobster rolls, and oysters are amongst the most popular selections, but there are also great options for the days when you can’t stomach something fishy. The city has no shortage of hotdogs, ramen noodles, and sandwiches, ranging from roast beef to an unusual combination of almond butter, banana, honey, and bacon known as the T-Rex bagel. and decadent desserts. Finally, when the time comes for something sweet, a classic Boston cream pie is a great way to treat your tastebuds. So much food, so little time.
…and then stick to the cheap stuff
Once you’ve experienced the best of Boston’s culinary scene, opting for the cheapest eateries is a great way to save wads of cash. The aptly-named Tasty Burger serves up your fast-food favorites for tourist-friendly prices, with poutine haven Saus and Mexican chain Anna’s Taqueria to give them a run for their money. If you’re feeling inspired, don’t be afraid to sniff out a low-cost grocery chain and throw some fresh meats and vegetables in a pan. The extra money will be a reward in itself, and you might just be more inclined to enjoy your drinks at home rather than burning notes at your nearest bar.
Choose your hotel carefully
Travellers wondering where to stay in Boston should be mindful of the high costs associated with inner-city accommodation. Visiting Boston can be expensive, but it is possible to keep expenses down by staying a little further out of town or in shared accommodation. Hostels are becoming more popular with visitors and tourists as the prices on other forms of accommodation inflate, so don’t be afraid to make a few new friends, especially if you’re travelling solo.
Save on experiences
Travelling through Boston on a budget may not be easy, given the city’s reputation for high living expenses, but it is possible to enjoy the main attractions for less with a Boston city pass. A single-pass covers your entry into four of the city’s most popular attractions - New England Aquarium, Museum of Science, Skywalk Observatory, and the Boston Harbor Cruise - and enables you to skip long ticket lines. Whatever you do, don’t forget about all the great experiences you can have for free - whether it’s a musical experience at the Hatch Shell, a beer tour, or a hike up a historic monument, there’s no minimum spend for a day of adventure.
There’s plenty to see and do in Boston, and carefully planning your trip ahead of time is the best way to get around to it all. Take the time to do your research before packing your bags, and you’ll be guaranteed a memorable trip - all the more if you’re willing to cut a few corners (and costs) along the way.