[This page will gradually be expanded to include more and more information about tourist attractions and activities in Boston, the greater Boston area, and all of New England.]
Boston and New England Attractions
The Boston Common
Very few cities in the United States can match Boston for all it has to offer for genealogical research facilities, wonderful historical and cultural sites, and the physical beauty of New England's mountains, lakes, and beaches—all within an easy drive. Boston and its environs are a great destination for your family's summer vacation. There are plenty of venues for the children as well as the adults. The city offers tours of all kinds, either by foot, amphibious vehicle, trolley, bicycle, or Segway. The compactness of the city makes walking a great way to wander the narrow streets, follow the Freedom Trail or the Black Heritage Trail, or stroll through historic Boston Common and the Public Garden with its Swan Boats or along the Charles River Promenade. Don't forget Boston's New England Aquarium and Boston's Waterfront Harbor walks, including the site of the genuine Tea Party. There is even a Jewish Cultural Walking Tour!
Old North Bridge, Concord
The T (the local nickname for Boston's public transportation system) introduced America's first subway when it opened in 1897. Today it can bring you to downtown Boston from the airport in a few minutes or to historic Cambridge and Harvard Square over the Charles River. The commuter rail can take you to historic Salem—scene of the infamous witch trials—in half an hour; to Gloucester and Rockport on Massachusetts's North Shore in about an hour; or in about half an hour to Concord and the Old North Bridge, where the "shot heard round the world" was fired, starting the Revolutionary War. It is a pleasant walk of less than a mile and takes you through the historic downtown Concord. Eat at the old Colonial Inn, originally built in 1716, or lunch at Helene's in downtown. Concord has one of the finest independent bookstores just down the street.
Rose Kennedy Greenway
You will never be far from good food in Boston as restaurants are plentiful. Have lunch at the Union Oyster House, America's oldest restaurant, as you walk the Freedom Trail. Or grab a bite at Durgin Park as you shop in the Fanueil Hall Marketplace. Walk off lunch along the Rose Kennedy Greenway or along the harborfront. Take a short boat ride over to the oldest commissioned ship in the US Navy, the USS Constitution, followed by a short walk to the Bunker Hill Monument. Take any boat back to dock in downtown Boston.
If you go over to Cambridge on the T, get out at the Kendall/MIT stop, tour the MIT campus, and eat at one of the many lunch spots near MIT. Harvard Square, two stops farther on the T, offers a variety of attractions, including Harvard University with its storied Harvard Yard, libraries, and museums, bookstores, and other shops, many fine places to grab lunch or a snack. Or just take a picnic lunch down to the nearby banks of the Charles River.
Come to Boston early or stay after the conference to see the city and surrounding destinations, such as Touro Synagogue in Newport, Rhode Island, celebrating its 250th anniversary in 2013. There is lots to see and do.
For more tourist information see the website of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Boston's CityPASS (888-330-5008) provides a single admission to each of five Boston attractions: the New England Aquarium, the Museum of Science, the Skywalk Observatory at the Prudential Center, the Museum of Fine Arts, and either the Harvard Museum of Natural History OR "Revolutionary Boston" at the Old State House. The cost of a CityPASS for an adult is $46 (full admission price is would be $90.90) or $29 for a child between the ages of 3 and 11 (full admission would be $62). Buy at any CityPASS attraction.