Boston has never managed the same worldwide popularity as other American cities like Chicago and New York. Steeped and shaped by its history as part of the American Revolution, it is a proud city but also humble one. From its lush green parks to architectural masterpieces, it is a haven for tourists without the unnecessary brashness of tourist gimmicks.
Founded in 1729 by Englishman, William Blackstone and a year later by John Winthrop, Boston originated as a home for Puritan colonists escaping religious oppression in England. However during the late 18th century it was at the centre of many conflicts during the American Revolution.
As a result, a plethora of statues and impressive monuments decorate the city as reminders of its fight for independence. The Bunker Hill Monument is a magnificent construction to commemorate the equally impressive display of bravery by 1’200 Bostonian civilians who under the command of William Prescott fought against the advancement of the British Army who were attempting to gain control the nearby area of Charlestown. It took three attempts to dislodge the civilians from their defensive position, with the British army suffering heavy losses.
One of the best ways to learn the history of Boston and see the best of the city is to walk the renowned Freedom Trail. The trail is a 2.5 mile journey marked by red bricks which snake across the city and pass 16 historical sites which piece together the tale of the American Revolution.
One stop on the trail is Faneuil hall, a former meeting house and market place which is now lined with restaurants, shops and market stalls. The area is great for tourist night life and is particularly beautiful when its buildings are lit by hundreds of lights.
Perhaps the most recent historical landmark is however the world famous Cheers Bar. Made famous by its namesake programme, the Cheers bar is featured in the show’s opening credits. Today the exterior remains the same but the interior is vastly different.
However if you are looking to see a like for like of the interior of the Cheers show, just head to The Replica at Faneuil Market where you can also grab a tasty bite to eat. In both venues there is a Cheers gift shop for fans of the show to buy memorabilia.
My favourite way to tour around the city however is to take one of the many tour bus options available. I took the Hop-On-Hop-Off Boston Trolley Tour which hits several tourist hotspots and included commentary from its knowledgable and personable bus drivers. This included a free harbour cruise allowing the best views of Boston’s eclectic architectural designs. The cruise is lesuirely, informative and allows tourist to take in the full effect of the city’s breathtaking skyline.
If of course the idea of touring around the city becomes all too much for you, you may wish to rest on the lush green lawns of the country’s oldest park; Boston Common. You can even go on a boat ride in the park’s picturesque lake which features ducks and nearby weeping willow trees.
And so to end your day you may wish to have a nightcap at America’s Oldest Tavern, The Bell In Hand which was established in 1795. More recently it received an award for being The Best in Faneuil Hall bar which judging by the number of those situated around that area, is no mean feat.
Thus here is to Boston for its beauty, history, charm and utter uniqueness. It is a place I would happily revisit. Cheers!