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Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

Qld
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Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

We're staying in Boston in early June for 3 days. We've never been to Boston before and would love ideas on what to do and where to go. I've noted some of the "touristy" things but would love some local knowledge on the "must see" and "must eat" places that could be missed if we stick to the toursist sites.

Can't wait to get there!

Thanks

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Winchester...
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1. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

A lot of the "things to do" suggested in these forums are things I've never done or would even occur to me to do, so it always leaves me wondering what I do like to do in Boston.

I do like going to Jacob Wirth to drink Hofbrauhaus beer by the pitcher. I like going on little harbor cruises leaving from the aquarium. I like going to concerts at Fenway. I belong to the Science Museum and go there once in a while: I like the planetarium and the Omni theater.

Aside from that just about everything else involves a visit to a hospital in Boston or the Italian consulate.

The only other occasions to go to Boston is to show friends from out-of-town some tourist site.

Things I like to do with friends from out of town:

- Kennedy library

- Gardner Museum

- Aquarium

- Harvard Square

- Red Sox at Fenway Park or Celtics/Bruins at the Garden

- Duck Tour

Boston
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2. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

Highly recommend you read the two links to the right ... quirky things to do and our favorite things to do. Some good ideas generated there.

Winchester...
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3. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

Interesting link, Mahj. Apparently I gave much the same answer two months ago. At least I'm consistent.

It's tempting to make a list of the top 10 touristy things to do, which locals never do, in Boston, which (off the top of my head) would start with:

1. Go to Salem

2. Climb the Bunker Hill Monument

3. Walk the Freedom Trail

4. Find the "cheers" bar and take your picture outside it

5. Buy a Harvard T-Shirt

6. Eat baked beans

7. Eat Boston Creme Pie

8. Eat at Durgin Park

9. get Right Field Grandstand seats

10.

this is where it gets controversial. I really want to say "get a cannoli at Mike's Pastry" because I have no idea what the obsession with Mike's Pastry is, but I realize from reading Trip Advisor that this is something locals do.

Baltimore, Maryland
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4. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

Everyone gets hung up on tourist vs non tourist stuff. IMHO, the only real difference is that locals will just walk into a restaurant that looks good based upon the menu and if it seems crowded.

Also, locals will read the weekly/daily newspaper for seasonal events like festivals, craft shows, exhibitions,etc. Or maybe the locals will try the local theater vs the national touring company of Phantom which they already saw 3 times.

So, just walk around interesting neighborhoods, Beacon Hill, Back Bay, North End, etc and do what everyone else seems to be doing and you will be acting like a local.

Winchester...
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5. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

Another non-touristy thing you could do would be to take a one night course at the Boston Center for Adult Education:

www.gamblemansion.org/index.cfm…

There are similar courses (that might fit your schedule better) at the Cambridge Center for Adult Education:

http://www.ccae.org/

Boston
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6. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

I've never understood the concept of "must-see" in any city, and definitely don't get "must-eat". It's all so subjective. I wouldn't tell a non-baseball fan that Fenway is a must-see and I wouldn't tell a poor college kid that his visit to Boston will be lesser without doing the tasting menu at Craigie on Main.

When I travel to a new city my main interests are checking out various neighborhoods, eating and drinking. I don't think I've missed out on Paris because I've never been to the Louvre any more than seeing Big Ben made my trip to London.

What do you like to do? What do you want to see?

Boston
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7. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

"IMHO, the only real difference is that locals will just walk into a restaurant that looks good based upon the menu and if it seems crowded."

Wouldn't this be more what tourists do? If you are a local, you've probably heard about/read about a place and can make a more informed decision.

Baltimore, Maryland
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8. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

I guess that is just me. I don't pay much attention to movie reviews either.

Boston, MA
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9. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

Lovetravel08-

In the summer months, I love getting deli meat from J Pace & Sons going right outside their store to have a picnic at the Rose Kennedy Greenway. I love to walk the Boston Haborwalk. I enjoy going to Castle Island. (They offer free tours on weekends for Fort Independence) I enjoy sitting on the back steps of the ICA on a Thursday night. On a warm summer night, I like to listen to the live music outside of the Boston Harbor Hotel or at the Charles River Esplanade. Oh, The Boston Public Library is a real gem, try taking a free tour or at least have a beverage in their courtyard. These are just a few things that I can think of right now.

You might be interested in these links:

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g60745-i48-k362077…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g60745-i48-k362078…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g60745-i48-k313586…

Thomas - I go to Salem pretty frequently, I have climb the Bunker Hill Monument (many times)and have walked the Freedom Trail. I have had many cannoli's at both Mike's and Modern's (prefer the table service) but I sit in the bleachers at Fenway (enjoying the game, eating my Fenway Frank and singing Sweet Caroline.)

FYI- Fenway just started having concerts and they're only once a year, so how many concerts have you attended at Fenway?

Winchester...
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10. Re: Visiting Boston for the first time..want local knowledge

I've only been to one concert at Fenway, but that's more times than I've done the Freedom trail, or climbed the Bunker Hill Monument.

Which reminds me that concerts at the Bank of America Pavilion are fun.

Another non-touristy activity would be to get your teeth cleaned at a dentist.