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First time visitor to your city....

florida
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First time visitor to your city....

We will be arriving from Florida to Boston July 4th for a 7 day visit - departing on July 10th. This is the first visit to your city - 4 adults- mid 40's(two couples). We are interested in the Red Sox (of course!) history, and siteseeing. Not into the bar and party scene.

We already have reservations at the Hilton Bay Back, Red Sox Tickets (bought thru Stub Hub) and 5 day Go Boson Card.

This is our plans:

Day 1 - July 4th - fireworks

Day 2 - New England Seacoast Tour

Day 3 - Whale Watch Tour-Rowes Wharf/morning

Ghost and Gravstone Tour - night

Day 4 - Beantown Tolley

Fenway Park Tour - Red Sox Game

Day 5 - Paul Revere House, Old North Chuch, Boston Harbor Tour, USS Constitution - Red Sox Game

Day 6 - Boston Duck Tour, JFK Museum, Prutential Skywalk

Day 7 - chill out and leave for airport

Can anyone give me any "must know" to any of these tours? Are we within walking distance to most of them?

We will be arriving at Logan at 3:00 - do you think we will have any problem getting to the hotel with all the 4th activities? Will we be able to see fireworks from Hilton Back Bay or are we within walking distance?

Thanks for any tips.

Boston
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1. Re: First time visitor to your city....

You've got a nice schedule there. Seems very doable. You are within walking distance of most everything, although the Waterfront and the North End are too far for some folks. For those you might need the "T". The Ghost and Graveyard Tour leave from the Waterfront, so that applies as well.

The only "definite" "T" need is for the JFK Museum. I would also add Harvard Square and Harvard Yard one evening, as that's a great take. You would need the T Red Line for that. And you're missing the Downtown End of the Freedom Trail, so you need to allot time for that as well.

You will run into some traffic difficulties getting to your hotel. The normal route would be via Storrow Drive, but by then it will be closed off. Your Taxi Driver hopefully will be experienced enough to go around the "back" way from the Ted Williams Tunnel via Kneeland and Stuart Streets, and St James and Huntington Avenues. If not, you can gently drop these street "hints" on him.

Ask your hotel if they some "high" viewing areas available for you. If not, it is walkable to the River, too.

AlanM

florida
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2. Re: First time visitor to your city....

We will have a two day pass on the Beantown Trolley -I have seen some bad reviews regarding the wait time at trolley stops. We were thinking we would use that for transportation on day 4 and 5. Have you have any experience with the trolley - good or bad?

What is at the Downtown end of the Freedom Trail and how for is that from the Hilton?

Also, what is in Harvard Square and Harvard yard?

I will print your driving instructions from the airport just in case the cab driver needs them - THANKS!

Boston
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3. Re: First time visitor to your city....

The Downtown End of the Freedom Trail actually has some of the most historic sites in it, including The Old State House and Fanueil Hall. The start on Boston Common is about a mile from your hotel. Harvard Square is, well, Harvard Square. Funky, fun, with street musicians, quirky architecture, outdoor chess games and all different kinds of folks. Harvard Yard is the closest Harvard has to a campus, especially "spooky" at night.

AlanM

florida
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4. Re: First time visitor to your city....

Thanks for the info - we will add those to our stops.

Harvard Square sounds especially fun.

Boston...
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5. Re: First time visitor to your city....

Hi,

First off, I'm jealous! TWO Sox games! Where ya sitting?

It looks like a good plan. I'll start with the trolley tour. If you don't already know, you will have to get your GoBoston cards activated at the Mass. Trans. Bldg. at 16 S. Charles St.{stop#6}. This is the only place you can activate them. After you activate them you will head off to stop 7{of course}. Now, stop 9 is Harvard Square so you can hop off and scratch that one off your list of places to see. Back on the trolley, stop 10 is your hotel, the Hilton. I suggest you travel down to stop 11, the Museum of Fine Arts, well worth seeing. After that, pretty much next door, check out the Isabella Gardner Museum, beautiful.{sad to see the 6 empty frames still on the wall without their paintings, stolen, est. value 300 mil.} That would be a good days worth and next day you could catch the trolley right outside your hotel to see the rest of the stops. P.S. If you haven't already reserved your Seacoast Tour, you can reserve at the same building you activate your cards.

Don't forget sweatshirts/windbreakers for your whale watch. It can be chilly out there even in summer.

Fenway tour: On game days the last tour ends about three hours before gametime and is slightly abbreviated{45 min. instead of 1 hr.}

Finally, I had some friends who watched the fireworks from a building and they didn't enjoy it as much as being outside. They couldn't feel the excitement nor hear the "booms" like being down on the river. It's all your preference.

Here's a decent trolley tour map that will also help you acclimate yourselves to the city. Just enlarge it if it's not already. That's all, kind of long, sorry. Have a great time.

buybostontours.com/images/bos_gray_line/Bost…

florida
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6. Re: First time visitor to your city....

Well Will007,

My husband talked me into giving up the JFK Museum Wednesday afternoon and going to THREE Red Sox games!

Thanks for all the suggestions. We figured we would get a 5 days Charlie Card and use that and the trolley to get around.

Alanm said we could walk to the park where the fireworks are so we will probably just stroll down there to get the full effects. Is it standing room only or are there places to sit?

I have learned so much about Boston reading these posts - much more then any website!

Any recommendations on the ghost tour?

Boston...
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7. Re: First time visitor to your city....

The Esplanade and riverfront will be packed. Just try to find a good spot away from the Esplanade with a view of the river. Basically, avoid areas that have trees blocking your view. You might find a grassy area to sit on, but expect to stand.

3 Sox games! Geez, I'm SUPER jealous! Let's hope for a sweep.

florida
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8. Re: First time visitor to your city....

We have the GoBoston Card and will use one of the day tours outside of Boston. We had planned on the New England Seacoast by Grayline which provides hotel pickup.

The other options are:

Cape Cod by Grayline which also provides hotel pickup.

Newport Mansions but they do not provide transportation - is there public transportation to Newport and if there is are these mansions within walking distance?

Salem - I have seen on other posts that there is transportation to Salem but then once there are all the sites within walking distance?

Any recommendations on these tours?

Boston...
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9. Re: First time visitor to your city....

Hey SoxFanFla,

I thought you had everything all figured out? hehe.

Salem is certainly walkable for a day trip.

Cape Cod tour thru your GoBoston card is a good trip from the reviews I've read.

Although there's no transportation to Newport to use your go card at the three mansions, you could book a sightseeing tour. I believe it's the same company who runs the Seacoast and Cape tours. It's $65 per person and includes 2 mansions, a 10 mile cruise on Ocean Drive and allows time for passengers to visit the waterfront area to lunch or shop and check out the harbor.

www.city-discovery.com/boston/tour.php…

A free tour to the Cape or paying for one to Newport? Decisions, decisions! I would probably spend the money and go to Newport.

florida
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10. Re: First time visitor to your city....

Everytime I think I have it figured out I read something else that gives me more choices. There seems to be so much to do in Boston!

Any opinion on the New England Seacoast Tour (free) and what is the best ghost tour?

I am intrigued by the Newport Mansion - may have to spend the $ and do that. I see posts about the cliff walk in Newport - within walking distance from the mansions?

As you can see I am trying NOT to rent a car for any part of this trip.