By Matthew Geraghty
Your comprehensive guide to the best things to do, see and eat in Boston, Massachusetts.
1.SHOP at Wrentham Village Premium Outlets
Wrentham is one of the classic American ‘outlets’ that you’ve probably heard family and friends discussing upon return from a trip stateside. Located roughly an hour outside downtown Boston, Wrentham features an array of fashion brands selling high-end goods at much lower prices than their regular stores. Everything is reduced from the recommended retail price, with most stores offering huge sales of up to 60% off all year–round, leading to further reductions. Stores include Ralph Lauren, Gucci, Levi’s, Michael Kors, Nike and many more. Various buses leave Boston city centre for Wrentham daily and it’s definitely worth the trip, as stores in the city-centre are as, if not more expensive, than their Irish counterparts.
2. EAT at Tatte Bakery
With a couple of locations around the city, Tatte is one of the best places for coffee
to-go, or to sit down inside and people–watch. Their baked treats include excellent cheesecakes and muffins, but just be prepared to pay a bit more for high-quality coffee and baked goods. An ideal afternoon would involve taking your coffee and treats to Boston Common, finding a spot to lay out on the grass and people–watch for a while. More student–friendly (but not particularly healthy) options include Chipotle Mexican and Regina Pizzeria. Both have multiple locations across the city. Avoid the expensive food-stalls in Faneuil Hall. The Beacon Hill and Theatre Districts have good options for fine dining.
3. SEE a Baseball game at Fenway Park
A personal highlight from my summer trip was seeing the Boston Red Sox take on the Toronto Blue Jays at the world-famous Fenway Park. The baseball season runs from April to September, with the Red Sox playing at home quite regularly and cheaper tickets available. The games are invigorating, and the atmosphere is electric, especially on a hot day. Check game dates and buy tickets at www.mlb.com/redsox/tickets.
4. EXPLORE the Beacon Hill District
This district is located in the heart of Boston and is filled with red-brick buildings. Located mere minutes from the hustle and bustle of Boston Common and the Faneuil Hall area, this district contains many independent boutiques, restaurants and museums and should be explored on foot at a leisurely pace. A morning spent exploring here is not a morning wasted.
5. DO the Boston Duck Tour
This is a rite of passage, especially for first-time visitors. A former army vehicle takes tourists around the city, taking in the most famous landmarks and the stories behind them. For part of the tour, the bus takes to the water, transforming into a boat, offering sublime views across the city’s harbour. Engaging tour guides give an interesting history of the city but keep it fun throughout.