America, Travel Advice

Unique Boston Travel Experiences

4 Comments 27 July 2010

Pink sunset over Boston

My first trip to Boston was only 12 years ago. I was 28 and was finally starting to venture out of the ‘safety’ of the Midwest. I was excited to see the city where American history came alive; I wanted to walk the Freedom Trail, see the where all the famous events took place from Boston Common to the North Church to Bunker Hill.

Not only was I interested in the old Boston, but at the time I was interested in the new Boston. Twelve years ago Boston was better known for the setting of the TV show Cheers than the Boston Tea Party. I, like many people, was a big fan of the Cheers gang; I was excited to visit the replica TV show bar.

My style of travel has certainly evolved in the last 12 years and now the thought of going where everyone else goes, or where everyone knows my name is about as exciting as going for a papsmear. With this trip to Boston, I was ready to get off the same ole tourist trail and seek out more unique travel experiences.

Boston is visited by millions each year walking the Freedom Trail, riding on Duck tours, watching the Red Sox, drinking at Cheers Bar, and sampling the famous clam chowder. If you are tired of doing what everyone else does, then it’s time to get off the tourist track…and onto the Ottsworld track to Boston!

Juliet protecting her nest

Duck Tours? See the real swans instead

Why ride a metal car/boat when you can see the real thing? (yes, I know a duck is different than a swan – but they are both birds!) Stop by the Boston Public Garden (near BostonCommon) and you’ll find some lovely swans, named Romeo and Juliet, nesting by the serene lake. Sit and watch the swans build and maintain their nest to keep the eggs safe. Granted – the babies may have hatched by the time you read this – but that’s even more reason to go check out the young ones!

Red Sox? Watch the sand sculpting competition

Skip the green monster and go see the sand monsters instead! Revere Beach in Boston hold a sand sculpting competition each year in mid July. The sand sculptures are evaluated using four categories: (1) degree of difficulty, (2) originality and creativity, (3) quality of sculpting, and (4) overall visual impact – and to the winner goes a $15,000 check…yup – it may not be a million dollar baseball salary – but it’s no small change!

Cheers Bar? See the real brewers at Harpoon Brewery

Who needs Sam the bartender when you have the young tour guides of Harpoon Brewery behind the bar? The Harpoon brewery is located in South Boston at the seaport; an unlikely place for a brewery, but worth the trip. Tours are given on the weekends and only costs $5. The best part of course is the generous tastings you get to do on the brewery tour.

Boston Harbor

Clam Chowdah? Go for some soul…food

Sure, we all know that Boston is known for sea food and especially their famous clam c

howdah. I was also surprised to find a soul food restaurant in the heart of the city called the Hen House. No seafood here, just chicken, waffles, BBQ and greens! Open late and night and delivering to your door you can have the brilliant soulful combination of waffles and fried chicken!

Freedom Trail? Follow the stars to the Southie Trail

Each day thousands of people walk the Freedom Trail, but not far from the Freedom trail lies a real melting pot of ethnicity and architectural landscape – South Boston (aka Southie). This is where the Irish and Italians originally brought their families to settle down into blue collar Boston life. Southie is the scene of many Oscar nominated movies such as Good Will Hunting and The Departed. If you pay close attention as you walk around the South Boston neighborhood, you may even start to pick up that famous Boston accent…leave your r’s behind and fit into the neighborhood!

Break away from the tourist pack and find some new travel experiences in Boston!

View and purchase my best Boston Photography

Your Comments

4 Comments so far

  1. Donna Hull says:

    What interesting alternatives for those who’ve been there and done that in Boston. I especially like the way you paired your choices with the ones on the tourist track. A fun read.

  2. Shannon says:

    Great list of places in Boston that I didn’t even think about. These are definitely unique and ones that I’ll be sure to check out.

  3. Mark H says:

    What a superbly thought article contrasting each typical Boston expereince with another similar one.

  4. That’s a great round up of the lesser known things to do – I always like to find the more unusual attractions than follow the crowds to the ‘must-see’ sights.


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Sherry traveling the world

I'm Sherry, a corporate cube dweller turned nomadic traveler. I travel to off-the-beaten-path destinations to bring you unique travel experiences and photography. But it's not just about travel, it's also about life experiences of a middle age wanderer.
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