Boston Tourist Activities
Logan International Airport is located nearby downtown Boston, a city which is found in the state of Massachusetts, in the United States of America. The airport currently handles over 28 million passengers per annum, some of which are international visitors. Many facilities are available for passengers, including information booths which provide more details regarding Boston attractions. The city of Boston is a lovely place to explore on foot, and is well known for its historical attributes, as it was first settled in the 17th century. It was in 1822 that it was incorporated as a city.
Boston is the state capital and county seat of Massachusetts, and has a population of over 600,000 in the city and over 3.2 million in the metropolitan areas. It covers an area of 48 square miles, or 124 square kilometres, and the predominant language spoken is American English. Boston is cold in the winter times, with an average January temperature of two degrees Celsius, but nice and warm in the summer, with average July temperatures of 28 degrees Celsius. The city has many interesting neighbourhoods and districts, a number of well established tourism centres and some elegant and upmarket hotels. The districts of note include Back Bay, Beacon Hill, Chinatown, Fenway-Kenmore, Dorchester, North End, South End, West End, Hyde Park and Charlestown. Downtown Boston is the location of the Financial District, and is characterised by magnificent high-rise buildings.
Since that many of Boston’s historical attractions are within walking distance of one another, there are many popular walking trails available to tourists and visitors. The Freedom Train is perhaps the most famous and popular, and links many of the interesting historical sites of the city. The Freedom Trail was created by William Schofield, who was a local journalist, in 1951, and is about three miles in length, taking approximately two hours to walk. However, it is not a race, each historical site should be entered to fully appreciate its existence, and the trail will therefore take longer. The route is outlined in red, and is quite easy to follow. It is an excellent opportunity to learn more about Colonial and Revolutionary Boston. The trail begins at Boston Common, America’s first public park, and includes the sites of the State House, Park Street Church, the First Public School site, Global Corner Bookstore, Old South Meeting House, the Boston Massacre Site, the Paul Revere House, Bunker Hill Monument and the Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market, which is an ideal place to stop for a break and some lunch. There are sixteen historical sites in total.
A number of other interesting walking trails are also available. One is the Black Heritage Trail, visiting the Robert Gould Shaw and 54th Regiment Memorial that honours the first black regiment to be recruited in the North, and passes many lovely residences that can be viewed from the outside. It also gives a glimpse of Victoria Boston. The Irish Heritage Trail covers thirty sites and tells the story of the Boston Irish, and the Boston Woman’s Trail is a self-guided tour relating to the city’s most prominent female residents (dating back four centuries). The trail starts at the Old South Meeting House and ends at Tremont Street. On this street (number 174), the Boston School of Cooking was the first professional school of its nature in the city. The Boston Waterfront Trail is another favourite.
Boston tourist attractions include the famous Duck Tours, which are really the very best way to see the city. They are combined land and sea tours, on land in World War II vehicles and on sea in a lovely boat for a harbour cruise. The tour is always reported to be fun and very interesting. Trolley tours are also available on bus-like trams. Your ticket is valid for the whole day, and you can hop on and hop off at any of the stops. The tours offer interesting commentary filled with facts regarding the city of Boston. The New England Aquarium is an establishment with over 7,000 creatures of the sea, as well as penguins, and features a huge ‘Giant Ocean Tank’. It is a wonderful day out for the whole family. At the edge of the ‘Sea Exhibit’, visitors can even touch sea stars, sea urchins and horseshoe crabs. Scuba divers can also be watched as they feed the sharks and fish. The aquarium is found at Central Wharf.
The aquarium of Boston also offers whale-watching tours, as there are ideal conditions for the sighting of whales nearby. From April to November is the best time to spot some of these huge mammals. The types of whales that are mostly commonly seen in the area include finback, humpback, minke and right. The Northern hemisphere humpback whales can reach an impressive weight of approximately 37 tons, and are considered as an endangered species. Massachusetts is one of the top ten spots in the world for whale-watching, and therefore this activity is one of the city’s major draw-cards
The USS Constitution is another wonderful attraction of Boston. It is the world’s oldest commissioned ship in the US Navy, and holds the reputation of being undefeated in battle. The ship had a total of 42 successful engagements in the war of 1812, and was famous for its uncanny ability to stay in tact. It is also often referred to as ‘Old Ironsides’. Visitors of Boston will find the ship docked at the Charlestown Navy Yard, and there is a museum here as well which offers many interesting exhibits explaining the technology of the ship. Free guided tours are frequently available. Additional Boston attractions include the Boston Public Library, which was the first free publicly supported municipal library in America, the Franklin Zoo Park, a large and popular zoo with many wonderful animals to view, the Symphony Hall home to the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the John Hancock Tower, which is the tallest building in New England. Unfortunately, due to the events of September 11, 2001, the 60th floor observatory is permanently closed. Boston visitors can also take the Ghosts and Gravestones Tour, which is thrilling, frightening and extremely enjoyable all at the same time.
Some of the most popular museums of Boston include the MIT Museum, the Gibson House Museum, the Children’s Museum, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library and Museum, the Museum of Science and the Sports Museum of New England. Many others are well worth a visit as well.
Boston, often referred to as the birthplace of the United States, and as the seventh most popular of cities in the world, has a great number of additional attractions. Find out more information at the tourist areas of Logan International Airport, or at the tourism offices in the city such as the Boston Common Tourist Information Centre, the Boston National Historical Park Visitors Centre and the Cambridge Office for Tourism Information