Famous for its academic institutions and pivotal role in the American Revolution, Boston is the capital city of Massachusetts and is located on Boston Bay in the North East. In US terms, it is geographically small but it is densely populated with an inner-city population of well over half a million people. Nestled against the shoreline of the magnificent Charles River, the city is made up of a series of neighbourhoods, each offering its own unique experience. Whether it is the famous Irish pubs of Southie, the mouth-watering Italian cuisine of the North end, or the iconic Fenway Park in Kenmore Square, home to the city’s beloved Red Sox baseball team.
As one of the first settlements in America, Boston has much to offer lovers of history and culture. The birthplace of the American Revolution, Boston showcases her history through walking tours such as the Freedom Trail, where visitors can learn about the city’s role in the revolution, as well as the Black Heritage Trail, that focuses on her significant role in the anti-slavery movement. During the spring/summer months, a visit to the Boston Common and Public Garden is a fantastic starting point to take in the historical sites. As America’s oldest public garden, it is home to magnificent shady trees, luscious greenery, fountains, and beautiful statues. It is also home to the iconic Swan Boats offering 15 minute cruises for a small fee.
As a modern city, Boston has a reputation for being at the cutting edge both politically and culturally, boasting innovative architecture and forward-thinking urban planning. The recently established Institute for Contemporary Arts symbolises this city’s historical reputation as a cultural and artistic leader. At any time of the year, there are a plethora of cultural activities, festivals and events. Perhaps the most picturesque time to visit is either at the end of spring or early autumn when the city’s parks are awash with colourful leaves or vibrant flowers.
But a visit to Boston would not be complete without acknowledging the profound influence of its academic institutions, attracting an influx of world-class scholars, artists, writers and philosophers who have charged this city with a thriving and exuberant energy. A visit to Harvard University is an essential component of the Boston experience. Established in 1638 it is one of America’s oldest and most highly regarded universities. With its ivy-covered buildings and cloistered ambiance, it is a great way to enjoy American colonial architecture at its finest. Harvard Square is filled with bookshops, cafes, restaurants and roving street performers, reflecting the energy and diversity of its massive international student population.