Boston Proper

Restaurants

–          North End seafood place

–          Mike’s Pastries: If you are looking for the quintessential Italian pastry place, this is it.  Mike’s is the pastry place to go to.  Cannollis are the main attraction but Sarah has found the rest of the pastries to be just as good.  Mike’s often has a line of tourists out the door.  Modern Pastry is just as good and usually less crowded.

–          Modern Pastries: The less crowded version of Mike’s Pastries.  Just as good with fewer tourists!

Hotels

Shopping

Newbury Street: This is the high-end shopping area in downtown Boston.  All the designer purse brands have a store front.  Some of Sarah’s favorites are Patagonia and Northface for things to keep her warm in the winter.  Stefan is enticed to go for a chance to play with the new ipads at the Apple Store.

Small Pleasures Jewelry Shop: Cursed with an unfortunate name, Sarah and Stefan stumbled on this antique jewelry shop when they were doing some pre-engagement ring shopping. Not a huge selection but the stuff is amazingly curated.  Definitely worth a look if you’re into jewelry.

Things to Do

Aquarium: One of the highest rated aquariums in the world. Lots of Penguins and Sharks!  Sarah loves aquariums too much and would go to this one all the time if it wasn’t $35.  Pricey, but It truly is one of the best in the world.  http://www.neaq.org/index.php

Freedom Trail: If you see any appreciable part of downtown Boston, you will stumble upon a “red brick road” that is the freedom trail.  Not really a historical trail, it is a walking route that will take you to all the historical highlights of Boston.  It is probably a little cold in January but should you be in the mood for some winter walking, the freedom trail is the walking tour to see.  http://www.thefreedomtrail.org/maps/pdfs/boston-nps-map.pdf There are also Costume Guided Tours.  More information is available here: http://www.thefreedomtrail.org/tickets/tours.html.

Harbor Islands: During the early days of the Commonwealth, the garbage was boated out into the harbor and dumped.  The dumps have been converted into parks and you can take a ferry out to these cute harbor islands.  The water is never warm in the harbor but the islands have sandy beaches and nice walking trails and the ferries have beautiful views of the boston skyline.

Sam Adams Brewery Tour: Off the green line in Jamaica Plain, the original Sam Adams Brewery is a beer testing facility with a FREE tour.  You listen to them explain the process of making beer and the history of the Sam Adams Brewing Company and then, they give you a commemorative 7 oz glass and serve you 3, 7oz samples of different beers.  So, basically, they give you 21oz of free beer, and a glass… can’t go wrong there.  The college kids love it! http://www.samueladams.com/age-gate.aspx?ReturnUrl=%2fshare-passion%2ftours.aspx

Faneuil Hall: In downtown Boston near the Aquarium, this old hall has been Christened the Cradle of Liberty.  The first floor is still a market lined with food vendors.  The real history occurred in the second floor meeting hall.  It is here than the protestations against the Stamp Act began and perhaps where the idea of “No Taxation without Representation” was first formed.  It housed the funeral for the victims of the Boston Massacre and is still the home of the oldest chartered military organization in the world, the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts.  The original building burned down in 1763 but was re-built in 1805.  Next door is Quincy Market, an extension of the market surrounding the building.  A good place to pick up lunch before a tour of the aquarium.

Old State House: It was here that the Boston Massacre unfolded.  It was on that balcony that the Declaration of Independence was first read.  John Adams once declared that “Then and There the child independence was born.”  There is a great kid-friendly museum housed in the building though if you don’t cross the street to get a view of the balcony, you are really missing the most iconic and historic site of the place.  http://www.bostonhistory.org

Old South Church: originally a Puritan meeting house, this was the site of the great debate that eventually led to the Boston Tea Party.  http://www.oldsouthmeetinghouse.org/default.aspx

 

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