Passionate About Boston
and the Moms Who Live Here

2017 Boston Summer Bucket List

It’s that time! Summer time!

Time for lazy evenings spent on the porch, time for getting outside and exploring new places, and time for fun with family. There is so much to do all over Boston and beyond, and we’ve got a great list to keep you busy every day and night! What’s on your “must do” list for the summer?

Just click the tiles below to get all kinds of great ideas for summer fun!

Family Fun

  • Focus on family. Craft your family culture.
  • Have a sleepover outside under the stars.
  • Build a campfire and cook dinner.
  • Go through your pictures and create a photo project, like a family yearbook.
  • Swim in an inflatable pool in your yard or run through the sprinklers.
  • Decorate with sidewalk chalk, blow bubbles, set up an obstacle course — just get outside!
  • Make bubbles and experiment with different sizes and shapes.
  • Make playdough.
  • Have a date day with each of your kids.
  • Stay in and have dinner delivered.  
  • Have a water balloon fight.
  • Watch the sun set.
  • Watch the sun rise.
  • Binge watch a new TV show.
  • Teach your kids how to bake. Get messy!

Food and Drink

  • Eat lots of fresh corn on the cob. Get it from your local farm stand!
  • Have a picnic dinner in the park or in your own backyard, watch the sunset, catch some fireflies, and enjoy a glass of cold white wine.
  • Get outside and grill. Whether it’s burgers or vegetables, cooking and dining al fresco is a blast.
  • Get ice cream from the ice cream truck. Nothing like a Choco Taco for nostalgia.
  • Check out all the local, family-owned ice cream shops. Try to visit as many as you can.
  • Make popsicles or ice cream at home. Use juice or create your own concoctions for a sweet treat.
  • Make s’mores over a fire pit — yours, a friend’s, or at a local restaurant!
  • Head to Kimball Farm for ice cream and lots of family-friendly activities.
  • Head to a new bagel spot and have a breakfast picnic.
  • Enjoy rainbow cookies, cannolis, or another delicious treat while strolling through the North End.
  • Check out a farmers market. There are markets every day of the week all over the area!
  • Join a CSA. Get creative with your grilling!
  • Grab your girlfriends or your significant other and enjoy a cocktail on a rooftop on the waterfront.
  • Plant a garden. Take care of it all summer, watch it grow, and eat the fruits (and veggies) of your labor. If you don’t have space for a garden, go pick your own berries, flowers, or tomatoes. Check out some of our top berry-picking spots!
  • Walk to your local ice cream shop then head to the playground with your cones.
  • Dine al fresco (at home or at a great restaurant).
  • Grab the kids (or go without) and head to a brewery for some local beer.
  • Spend a hot morning inside at a hipster coffee shop.
  • Put on your fancy clothes and head to an afternoon high tea.
  • Try something new and exciting at a local food festival!

Out and About

  • Grab those bathing suits and head to a splash pad or spray deck.
  • Go for a ride on the world famous swan boats. Say hi to the ducks and swans in the water.
  • Check out an event or just go hang on the Lawn on D. Play ping pong, catch a concert, or just swing.
  • Go see fireworks! Whether they are for the Fourth of July or just to celebrate summer, lay out a blanket and watch the sky.
  • Fly a kite at Castle Island. Have some ice cream while you’re there.
  • Cheer for the Red Sox. There are many themed and specialty games to have even more fun at.
  • Go to a theme game with the Lowell Spinners.
  • Take a ride on a merry-go-round at the Public Garden or on the Greenway. Splash in the Frog Pond or in the fountains after taking a spin.
  • Take a Duck Tour. Quack at everyone you pass by, and get ready for splash down!
  • Take a cruise! There are day cruises around the islands, night cruises, and specialty cruises — something for everyone.
  • Head up to Gloucester and spend the day at Wingaersheek Beach.
  • Learn to sail, canoe, or kayak at the beach or on the Charles.
  • Enjoy the summer series at The Street. Sit outside for dinner and enjoy a new activity every week.
  • Learn to swim — there are so many great programs in the area!
  • Go to a Fourth of July parade.
  • Explore one of the many “outside malls” in the area.
  • Spend the day shopping on Newbury Street.
  • Tour the grounds at the deCordova Sculpture Park.
  • Visit an indoor playground.
  • Go play 18 holes.
  • Get some worms and go fishing.
  • Grab your girlfriends for an epic girls’ night out.
  • Plan a date with your kids.

Get Active

  • Go mini golfing. Keep score and get competitive — winner gets ice cream!
  • Spend the day at the beach and collect shells. Don’t forget your sunscreen.
  • Visit a Mass Audubon wildlife sanctuary and take a hike. Visit the animals, pack a picnic, and work up a sweat.
  • Go to summer camp. Check out our guide for specialty, day, and sleepaway camps
  • Check out a local amusement park. Six Flags and Canobie Lake Park have rides and entertainment for everyone.
  • Head to the Cape and take the bike path to Woods Hole.
  • Go for a swim (or a hike) at Walden Pond (and don’t forget to stop at Dairy Joy after!).
  • Take up a new workout!
  • Go trampolining.
  • Go tubing, water skiing, or stand up paddleboarding.
  • Head indoors. It doesn’t have to be raining to have fun away from the sun.
  • Grab the whole family and take a nature walk or a gentle hike.
  • Learn to dance!


  • Get local friends together for a lemonade stand. Donate the profits to a favorite charity.
  • Make a new friend! There are lots of fun ways to meet someone new.
  • Spend the day cleaning up a local park.
  • Get the neighborhood together for a yard sale, and donate the proceeds to your community.
  • Visit your library and explore new books and genres.
  • Plant a garden for everyone to enjoy.

Art and Entertainment

Beyond Boston

  • Visit the Cape. Spend a week, the weekend, or even take a day trip.
  • Take a day trip to Newburyport.
  • Go to Old Orchard Beach.
  • Drive out to Springfield and visit the new Dr. Seuss museum!
  • Check out Ogunquit.
  • Visit one of the lakes in the Berkshires.
  • Head to Story Land. Make a whole weekend of it.
  • Head to Manchester-by-the-Sea and visit Singing Beach.
  • Go camping in the White Mountains.
  • Road trip!
  • Have a “staycation.” There is so much to do right in our own backyard!
  • Explore one of our great day-trip ideas.
  • Spend the day (or weekend) in Portland.
  • Mohegan Sun or Foxwoods (yes, even with the kids).
  • Spend a weekend driving up the coast looking for the best lobster rolls.
  • Check another state off your list.
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