Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Freedom Trail

Famous For: its 2.5 miles walk following a red brick & red paint line that leads you to 16 historic sites

To Do: start from Boston Common Visitor Information Center & follow

the red line to see the site or sign up for 90 min. 18th century costume guide tour

at the center called Walk Into History Tour

11am 12pm 1pm & 3:30pm daily

10am 1:30pm & 4:30pm Mon - Fri

Optional Reading: You can also begin the tour at Faneuil Hall that’s called Reverse Walk Into The History Tour. Self-explanatory to its name your 18th century guide tour will starts the tour where the Walk Into History Tour ends. Sign up at the Bostix Booth and hours are daily at 10:30 am. There is another 18th costume guide tour called the North End Tour and hours are daily at 1:30pm. North End an Italian neighborhood that is the mid part of the tour. Personally, if I’m with my hubby I prefer to walk the Freedom Trail ourselves so we can spend some quality time together and have a romantic dinner at the end of the walk. Same thing with friends so we could freely laugh and have a good time while exploring the sites. But if I have a family the costume guide will be more interesting and educational for children. The Walk Into History Tour that starts in Boston Common is the most popular one among the three location you can start with. Here are the sixteen acclaimed historic sites you will encounter in your tour with or without a guide:

Boston Common
Massachusetts State House
Park Street Church
Granary Burying Ground
King’s Chapel
King’s Chapel Burying Ground
Old Corner Bookstore
Old South Meeting House
Old State House
Site of the Boston Massacre
Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market
Paul Revere House
Old North Church
Copp’s Hill Burying Ground
USS Constitution
Bunker Hill Monument

148 Tremont Street

Boston, MA 02116

(617) 357-8300

Adult $12

Senior & Student $10

Child $6

Subway Stop: Red line’s Park Street

Massachusetts State House

Famous For: its 23k gold dome

To Do: take the free guided tour & see The Great Hall

So why was the dome covered with gold? At first I thought it was to imitate a Muslim’s temple or maybe that’s just the way government show off. But upon my research I realize that at first the dome was made out of wood then it started leaking so Paul Revere (this man is everywhere in the history!) covered it with copper. Guess that didn’t work or something so they finally tried gold.

24 Beacon Street

Boston, MA 02133

(617) 727-3676

Open Mon - Fri 10 - 4

Subway Stop: Red line's Park Street

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Old Granary Burying Ground

Famous For: being the burial ground of Benjamin Franklin’s parents,

Samuel Adams, Elizabeth Vergoose (possibly Mother Goose), etc.,

To Do: freely walk around the cemetery

Optional Reading: I know it might be unsightly for some to tour a cemetery. But nevertheless this is a very famous site and if you are a history buff this is a must see. There are other notable burials such as the signer of the Declaration of Independence, John Hancock and Robert Treat Paine. Paul Revere, the Revolutionary War Patriot and Peter Faneuil, benefactor of Faneuil Hall and the five victims of the Boston Massacre are also buried here among the estimated 2,345. For a more interesting tour join the seasional two hour Ghosts And Gravestones Night Tour 617-269-3626 that takes you around a hair rising walking tour of Boston’s two oldest burying grounds and hear about Boston’s sinister characters like the Angel of Death and the Boston Strangler. There is a 24 hour phone in reservation require for this popular tour. It runs from April 11, 2008 til May Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only while on Memorial Day weekend til November 2nd they open seven nights a week. The tour is rated PG-13 so it may not be suitable for children under thirteen. Children under four are not permitted on tour.

58 Tremont Street

Boston, MA 02108

(617) 635-4505

Open daily 9 - 5

Free admission

Subway Stop: Red line’s Park Street

Friday, October 10, 2008

Faneuil Hall & Quincy Market

Famous For: its festivity of street performers, seafood & ethnic

cheap eats,souvenir carts, and chain stores.

To Do: see street performances * tour Faneuil Hall's museum on the

third floor * have a clam chowder soup in a bread bowl, raw oysters or scallops and

bacon in skewer at the Quincy Market building * see New England Holocaust Memorial

nearby at Congress Street Boston, MA 02116 (617)457-8755 * see US

oldest restaurant, Union Oyster, est. 1826 Sun-Thurs 11-9:30 pm Fri-Sat 11-10 pm

41 Union Street (617) 227-2750

Optional Reading: It's amazing that after two hundred sixty some years later Faneuil Hall and its area is still hubbing with merchants and vendors. Now totally five buildings it's a fun place to eat and shop. When I first moved to Boston I often have clam chowder in the bread bowl at Boston Chowda and then later my mom came across the $12 scallop and bacon in skewer from Boston Kitchen that I got hooked on. Rachel Ray, however, picked Carol Ann's Bake Shop for her $40 A Day Show (I, personally, prefer my pastry to be less sweeter). Another personal fav is the non-dairy real fruit smoothie at The Monkey Bar that cost me $6 everytime for a small cup. And as for shopping I liked the Best of Boston and Funusual when I was still a tourist. Now living in Boston I frequent the Urban Outfitters and stores like American Eagle and Gap that aren't listed by the Faneuil Hall web because they are located in the nearby commercial building I guess. Abercrombie & Fitch, Banana Republic, Clarks, Crocs and Brookstone are also not listed.

340 Faneuil Hall Market Pl

Boston, MA 02109-1634


Faneuil Hall Mon - Sat 10 - 9pm Sun 12 - 6pm

Quincy Market hours vary by stores

Admission free

Subway Stop: Orange line's Haymarket or Green line's Government Center

Validate ticket stub at any Faneuil Hall & Quincy Market merchants for

$3 off parking weekdays at 75 State Street Garage located on

Broad Street Open 24 hrs (617)443-2817

$10 parking after 5pm on weekdays, Sat, Sun & holidays validation needed as well.

Restrooms inside Quincy Market by souvenir carts

North End

Famous For: its "Little Italy" neighborhood

To Do: buy rum cake, tiramisu or canoli at the fame, usually packed

and cash only Mike's Pastry 300 Hanover St (617)742-3050 Mon Wed & Thurs 8-9pm,Tue

9-8pm, Fri 8-10:30pm, Sat 8-11pm, Sun 8-9:30pm * see Boston's

narrowest house pictured above at 44 Hull Street * dine at the fame, tiny and cash

only Giacomo's restaurant 355 Hanover St (617)523-9026 Mon-Thurs 5-10pm

Fri Sat 5-10:30pm, Sun 4-9:30pm * have gelato at Gelateria 272 Hanover St

(617)720-4243 Mon-Sun 10am-12am

Optional Reading: One of the interesting things I found out about North End is the Skinny House pictured above. It is so slim at 6.2 feet that an adult can touch both walls at the same time! And according to the owners, Spencer Welton and Jennifer Simonic, when they had a New Year’s Day party onetime everyone had to move to let one person go to the bathroom. Furthermore, people would just walk into their backyard, sit at their picnic table and take a couple of pictures of their house. You can see this Boston’s narrowest house at 44 Hull Street right across from Copp’s Hill Burying Ground, Boston’s second oldest burying ground. Oh, by the way, Giacomo’s was also Rachel Ray’s pick for her $40 A Day book/show. She had the fried calamari and pumpkin tortellini.

Boston, MA 02109


Subway Stop: Orange line's Haymarket

Paul Revere House

Famous For: being the house of Paul Revere, the American hero who

made the famous “midnight ride” to Lexington, Massachusetts in order to warn the

colonists that the British were coming

To Do: tour the house built during 1680 * see the 900 pound bell,

mortar, and a bolt from the USS constitution built by Paul Revere and his sons * buy

Paul Revere’s Three Accounts of His Famous Ride book at the museum shop

Optional Reading: So who was Paul Revere? Well, he wasn’t glorified as a patroit until 40 years after his death when Henry Wadworth Longfellow wrote a poem called, “Paul Revere’s Ride,” that although disputed by some as inaccurate was memorized by generations of schoolchildren. But nevertheless, during his lifetime he was a prosperous and famous silver bowl and tea services silversmith. He was also involved in organizing an intelligence and an alarm system to keep watch on the British, depicting the Boston Massacre and possibly the Boston Tea Party. This man was a busy body not to mention fathering sixteen children. One of whom became the grandfather of John P. Reynolds Jr., the man who had the insight and means to repurchase the house to prevent it from being demolished. Very good call, John. Very good call. Now we have this irreplaceable peace of the history.

19 North Square

Boston, MA 02113


Open daily except Mondays of Jan, Feb, March, Thanksgiving, Christmas Day & New

Year’s Day.

April 15 - Oct 31, 9:30 - 5:15 pm

Nov 1 - April 14, 9:30 - 4:15 pm

Adults $3

Seniors & College Students $2.50

Ages 5-17 $1

Subway Stop: Orange line’s Haymarket

Street parking very limited.

Group rates available. Check web.

Accessible only by standard size wheelchair. Enter through a portable ramp at the street

entrance provided by staff. Picture available for the second floor.

Printed panel & sign language lecture available. Check web or call.

Large brochure & audio tape readily available

No restroom or restaurant on premises

USS Constitution

Famous For: being the oldest commissioned vessel afloat in the world

To Do: visit the USS Constitution Museum first at Building 22 &

tour the ship next door of the Constitution, the USS Cassin Young, a World War II


1 Constitution Road

Charlestown, MA 02129-1797

April 1-Oct 31 Tue-Sun 10:30-5:30pm, last tour 5:20pm

Nov 1-March 31 Thurs-Sun 10:30-3:50pm, last tour 3:30pm

Guided tour of the top three deck available by the US Navy Sailor

Self-guided tour or speed line is for the top deck only

Bags and coats will be inspected

Subway Stop: Orange line’s Haymarket then bus 93 getting off at 1 Constitution Road

Four parking lots available 5-10 minutes from the pier

15-Oct 15 7days 9-6pm Oct 16-April 14 7 days 10-5pm closed New Year, Thanksgiving & Christmas