Passionate About Boston
and the Moms Who Live Here

Boston City Guide :: Your Go-To for Dining, Museums, Getting Around, and More!

Welcome to Boston!

Whether you are coming here for a day, a week, or a lifetime, Boston has a ton to offer! From figuring out how to get around the city to finding a kid-friendly place to stop for a bite to eat, Boston Moms Blog is here to guide your journey!

Let’s talk about Beantown now, shall we?

Boston - Boston Moms Blog

As far as “big cities” go, Boston is actually one of the smaller ones! It is comprised of myriad neighborhoods that make up the Greater Boston metro area.

In the middle of the Hub is downtown Boston, where you will find that big-city feel while wandering through tall buildings and bustling city life. Head over to Fenway/Kenmore if you want to catch a Red Sox game, or the North End if you want your choice of some fantastic Italian food. Go on down to South Boston (or Southie to us locals!) to see some great waterfront areas and take a stroll along Castle Island. Hyde Park is the southernmost part of the city and is known as “a small town in the city.” The airport is located over in East Boston, and the State House resides in Beacon Hill. You can shop along Newbury Street and visit Copley Square in the Back Bay, gaze upon the Victorian row houses in the South End, and take in the magic that is Chinatown. Stroll along the Freedom Trail in Charlestown, and bask in the beauty of the Arnold Arboretum in Roslindale and Jamaica Plain. Learn a thing or two at the Museum of Science in the West End, sing along to some great music at the Paradise Rock Club in Allston, and enjoy a stroll around the lovely Chestnut Hill Reservoir in Brighton. Visit Symphony Hall in Roxbury, and the JFK Library in Dorchester, then see the animals at the Franklin Park Zoo in Mattapan and the beautiful stained glass at the Theodore Parker Church in West Roxbury.

Though they aren’t technically neighborhoods of Boston, cities like Cambridge, Somerville, and Brookline are all part of the Boston metro area and have many great things to offer as well!

So, now that you know about some of Boston’s neighborhoods, how do you go about getting to them?

Looking at a map of the city may make Beantown look like a confusing maze of spaghetti noodles, but don’t fret! This is just what happens when you let cows make your roads! (Though a myth, it is a fun one!)

There are many ways to get around Boston.

  • null

    By Car

    If you are just here for a visit, this may not be your best bet. Boston drivers are lovely people when they are outside of their vehicles. When they are trying to navigate traffic, though? Well, be ready for some honking. And a whole lot of traffic. If you do decide to venture out in your car, be prepared to either pay for parking or hunt for it. Pay close attention to signs when parking in neighborhoods, as many will be marked “resident only” during certain hours of the day.

  • null

    MBTA

    Paying to use the MBTA is as easy as ever with the use of the Charlie Ticket and Charlie Card! These reusable cards can be loaded online and at most MBTA stations. You can add a specific dollar amount, or choose a daily, weekly, or monthly pass. Children under 11 years old ride free on public transportation when they are accompanied by an adult. People who are blind or visually impaired also ride for free. If you have questions about how to pay your fare, simply click here.

    The MBTA also has a trip planner on its website. Simply enter your starting location and your desired destination, and it will tell you the best way to go!

  • null

    The T

    Our four main T lines are color coded.

    Red Line: Use this line if you want to go north or south of the city, as it goes from Alewife (in Cambridge) north of the city to Braintree or Mattapan south of the city (make sure you are getting on the correct train, as after JFK/UMASS, the line splits to different locations). Along the way, you will find stops at Harvard Square, Boston Common, the JFK Library, and South Station.

    Green Line: The most confusing of the T lines, this one goes from Lechmere at one end (in Cambridge), and splits off into four separate branches on the other. Once you hit the Copley Square stop, the green line separates into the the B line toward Boston College, the C line toward Cleveland Circle, the D line, where you can cheer on the Red Sox at Fenway Park, and the E line, which goes past the Longwood medical area (home to many of the top hospitals in the area), Symphony Hall, and the Museum of Fine Arts.

    Orange Line: Running from Forest Hills to Oak Grove, this is the line you’ll take if you want to visit Chinatown.

    Blue Line: With stops from Bowdoin to Wonderland, this is the line you will take if you are going to or coming from the airport in East Boston. You can also find Suffolk Downs along this line!

    Silver Line: This is actually a bus line, which will carry you through the Airport, Chinatown, Tufts Medical Center, and Dudley Square. A bonus — if you get on at the airport, this line is free!

  • null

    Bus

    Buses run throughout the city and neighboring areas. All buses are accessible. You can pay for the bus either with your Charlie Card or with cash. Bus schedules and maps are online or in paper pamphlets available at most bus stops and stations.

  • null

    Commuter Rail

    This line is made up of trains that travel to locations further than the Boston metro area. Unlike the T, commuter rail trains are on a timed schedule, so you can look up what time you will get to your destination here.

  • null

    Ferry

    Perhaps the most enjoyable way to travel into the city is our ferry! Traveling from Hingham and Hull, respectively, these boats drop off at Rowes Wharf and Long Wharf North. There is also a ferry from Logan Airport and from Long Wharf Central to the Charlestown Navy Yard.

There is no shortage of places to stay in the Boston area! If you are looking to stay in the city, be prepared for a hotel to be on the pricier end, especially if you are visiting in April, when the Boston Marathon takes place, or in May, when our multitudes of colleges hold graduation ceremonies.

You’ll find huge hotel chains and small local hotels throughout the city, as well as a wide variety of bed and breakfasts. If you are looking to save some money on lodging, take a peek at hotels in surrounding towns. There are a great variety of places to stay, many of which are just a few T stops from all the action of the city!

If you are looking for a place to accommodate a larger family, Airbnb is also a great option! You can often rent an entire house for the price of a hotel room!

It isn’t difficult to find great food in Boston! Whether you are looking for a great place to have brunch, an amazing doughnut, local ice creamoutdoor dining options, kid-friendly pubs, or places where kids can eat cheap (or even for free!), Boston Mom’s Blog has you covered with plenty of ideas!

  • null

    With the Kids

    • Brassica Kitchen (Jamaica Plain) :: A cozy little restaurant located near the Forest Hills T station featuring American fare.
    • Boston Public Market (Boston) :: This indoor market is part farmers market, part food court, and all delicious! It features locally sourced produce and prepared food, as well as a little play area for the kids! It is located near the Haymarket T stop.
    • Five Horses Tavern (Boston) :: Roll that stroller in right off the street! Plenty of stroller access, kid-friendly foods, and an expansive beer menu for the adults to enjoy too!
    • Ashmont Grill (Dorchester) :: Open for lunch on Fridays, brunch on the weekends, and dinner every night, Ashmont Grill serves homey American food.
    • UBurger (various locations) :: This local fast-food-style chain located in Boston features fresh, quality ingredients.
    • Picco (Boston) :: Fantastic pizza from wood-fired ovens plus homemade ice cream make this place a hit!
    • Tatte (various locations) :: This cafe and bakery offers the most delicious baked goods. Check out the Charles Street location for breakfast or lunch and then walk around the neighborhood for the perfect tourist experience.
    • Temazcal Tequila Cantina (South Boston Waterfront) :: Kids will get a kick out of dining right on the waterfront!
    • Max Brenner (Boston) :: This entire restaurant is based on chocolate! Kids and adults alike will be in heaven! They do serve a variety of dinner foods, so it isn’t all chocolate!
    • Sweet Cheeks (Fenway) :: This Southern-style fare is made with local and responsibly sourced meats and produce.
    • Flour Bakery (various locations) :: Flour has the most delicious baked goods! Frieda Garcia Park is right across the street from the Back Bay Flour, begging you to bring your snacks over for a picnic!
    • The Beehive (Boston) :: Enjoy some live blues while you are having brunch on Sunday morning! Brunch begins at 10.
    • Flatbread (various locations) :: This delicious pizza is sourced with local ingredients. The locations in Davis Square (Somerville) and Brighton offer bowling as well!
    • Full Moon (Cambridge) :: Developed by two moms as an alternative to fast food, each meal is served with fruit and veggie sticks. Kids will love the ample play space where they can have fun while waiting for their food to be ready! Go for brunch on the weekends!
    • Fire and Ice (Boston) :: Kids will love the experience of choosing their food and watching the chefs put on a show while cooking it in front of them!
    • Zaftigs Delicatessen (Brookline and Natick) :: Kosher-style deli with delicious homestyle meals, sandwiches, bagels, and brunch. The Brookline spot is located in Coolidge Corner on the Green Line (C line).
  • null

    On a Date Night

    • Painted Burro (Somerville) :: You will love the food at this upscale Mexican restaurant and tequila bar right in the heart of Davis Square!
    • LaBrasa (Somerville) :: Famous for its middle-of-the-week family-style dinners every Wednesday night, dinner includes four appetizers and a main course to share!
    • Stephanie’s on Newbury (Back Bay) :: Enjoy comfort food in a sophisticated style.
    • Barcelona (Brookline) :: Located near the Washington Square T stop off the Green Line, this wine bar and restaurant serves amazing Spanish tapas.
    • Petit Robert Bistro (South End) :: If you are in the mood for French food, search no further!
    • Grotto (Beacon Hill) :: A quaint Italian restaurant for a romantic evening!
    • Forage (Cambridge) :: Four-course tasting menus for all! Enjoy meatless Mondays, Sunday suppers, Tuesday wine dinners, and more!
    • Summer Shack (Cambridge) :: You don’t have to wait for summer to enjoy a New England clam shack!
    • Myers and Chang (South End) :: The legendary “cheap date night” happens every Monday and Tuesday. This fun spread features themes like the “pig out date” and “a long walk on the beach.”

Boston is home to a wealth of culture! Whatever your interests, you will find myriad museums here to keep your whole family entertained and engaged!

If you happen to visit during the summer months, make sure to check out the Highland Street Foundations list of Free Fun Fridays, where many of our area museums have free admission!

  • Boston Children’s Museum :: This amazing museum on the Boston waterfront allows children to let their imaginations run wild!
  • New England Aquarium :: The tank in the center of the aquarium holds 200,000 gallons of water and an astounding amount of marine life! Visit over 20,000 creatures, including some adorable penguins!
  • MIT Museum :: This museum, located at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, houses collections of holography, robotics, technology-related art, maritime history, artificial intelligence, and so much more!
  • Museum of Science :: A fascinating museum, the MoS holds something for everyone, and revolving exhibits mean it will never be the same twice! Visit the planetarium and the Omni theater while you are there!
  • Mary Baker Eddy Library :: The highlight of this museum is the Mapparium, a three-story stained glass globe that is simply breathtaking to walk through. The library also hosts a number of events over the summer, so be sure to check them out!
  • Dreamland Wax Museum :: Visit over 100 wax representations of celebrities, history makers, and Boston’s hometown heroes!
  • Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) :: Learn about contemporary art as you tour this intriguing museum.
  • The Sports Museum :: For the sports fan, there is no place better! Located in the TD Garden, the museum has exhibits that focus on the history of sports in the Boston area, from college sports right on up to the major leagues!
  • USS Constitution Museum :: Explore “Old Ironsides” and learn about its history, including many hands-on exhibits!
  • JFK Museum and Library :: Learn about our nation’s 35th president at this museum.
  • Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) :: With nearly half a million works of art on exhibit, there is no shortage of art to explore! Check out these tips for touring the MFA with your little ones to make your trip as smooth as possible!
  • Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum :: Beautiful art awaits you right in the Fenway neighborhood!
  • Harvard Museum of Natural History :: Gaze at the beautiful glass flowers at this amazing museum, then check out wildlife from all around the world!

Boston is a beautiful city, especially during the warmer months when you can get outside to enjoy it!

  • Franklin Park Zoo :: Get a little wild! The zoo is open year round and boasts a wide variety of animals, as well as a fantastic playground!
  • Freedom Trail :: Marked off with a 2.5-mile-long red line along the sidewalks of Boston, the Freedom Trail winds through the city as you learn about 16 historical sites. You can opt for a guided tour, which leaves from outside of the Park Street T stop, or listen to the audio tour as you lead yourself!
  • Arnold Arboretum :: Like an oasis in the city, the Arboretum spans 281 acres of pure natural beauty. You can get there easily by using the Forest Hills T station on the Orange Line.
  • Boston Common and Boston Public Garden :: This is the Boston you see on TV! Located right in the heart of downtown, the Boston Common has a splash pad and wading pool, which is turned into an ice skating rink in the wintertime. Ride the Swan Boats, and don’t forget to visit the Make Way for Ducklings statues! Exiting the Park Street T station from the Red or Green Line will pop you up right in the Common!
  • Duck Boats :: After you visit Make Way for Ducklings, why not hop on a Duck Boat, and quack away the afternoon on this amphibious vehicle!
  • Quincy Market/Faneuil Hall :: Everyone will find something to love here! Small shops are sprinkled in with the larger shopping chains, and a giant food hall awaits with as many kinds of food as you can imagine! Street entertainers make sure there is never a dull moment! You can get here by taking the Green Line to Government Center.
  • Bunker Hill Monument :: You can take a climb up to the top of the monument and see where the Battle of Bunker Hill took place in 1775, during the Revolutionary War. You can get here by taking the Orange Line to the Bunker Hill stop.
  • Boston Harbor Islands :: Catch the ferry over near the Aquarium and visit one of the eight islands located just outside Boston! Beaches and hiking await once you get there!
  • Check out the Boston Moms Blog weekend activity roundups to find out what is going on in the Boston area each weekend!

 

If shopping is what you are looking for, you have come to the right place! Boston offers a wide variety of places to shop til you drop!

  • Prudential Center :: After you observe the breathtaking views of the city from the Skywalk Observatory, you can shop until your heart is content at this high-end mall.
  • Beacon Hill :: This historic neighborhood is full of quaint shops and cafes. You can get here by taking the Red Line to Charles Street.
  • Newbury Street :: If you are looking for art, cafes, and upscale boutique shopping, search no further. Newbury Street is where you long to be! Get here by taking the Green Line to Hynes Convention or Copley.
  • Assembly Row :: Assembly Row is just outside of the city in Somerville, but it’s totally worth the trip (and accessible via the Orange Line)! In this recently revitalized neighborhood, you will find outlet shopping and a fantastic selection of places to dine, including Slumbrew, a gastrobrewery that even has games and toys for the kids!
  • New England Open Markets :: Featuring local artisans, this outdoor market takes place on Saturdays from May to October along the Rose Kennedy Greenway (near the Aquarium), and on Sundays in the South End.
  • SoWa :: Boasting food trucks, a farmers market, and local artisans, it is no surprise that you can find amazing things at this outdoor market! It takes place on Sundays during the spring and summer in the South End.
  • If you are looking to venture out of the city for some shopping, there are some great neighborhoods to check out! Coolidge Corner (Brookline), Harvard Square (Cambridge), Davis Square (Somerville), and Centre Street in Jamaica Plain (Boston) are all great neighborhoods with interesting shops and restaurants to peruse!
  • And for those looking for a deal for the little ones? Check out these thrift shops!

We love our Boston sports!

  • New England Revolution :: Our professional soccer team doesn’t get nearly the attention that our other teams do, but this simply means tickets are easier to come by!
  • Boston Red Sox :: We broke the curse in 2004 and have been celebrating since! Come to Fenway Park to sing along to some Sweet Caroline with us, and find out why we love that dirty water!
  • Boston Celtics :: The TD Garden is practically electric when the green comes out! Join us as we cheer on the 17-time champs!
  • Boston Bruins :: The ice may be cold, but the energy is red hot! Come cheer on our favorite ice hockey team!
  • New England Patriots :: Bring along your warmest blankets and come to Gillette Stadium to cheer on our five-time Super Bowl champs! 
Boston - Boston Moms Blog

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

HTML Snippets Powered By : XYZScripts.com