Boston Common, America's oldest public park, is the best starting point for your Freedom Trail excursion. If you're in a real hurry and in pretty good shape, you can cover the length of the trail in as little as an hour, but that won't really allow you the time to stop and visit any of the sites along the way. Your best bet is to allow three hours or more to walk the trail at a leisurely pace and see all of its Revolutionary landmarks.
The 2.5-mile trail is not a loop--it begins at Boston Common and ends in Charlestown at the Bunker Hill Monument. Admission to sites along the trail is free with three exceptions: the Paul Revere House, the Old South Meeting House and the Old State House.
If you can't get to Boston or don't want to wear out your sneakers... You can still come along on a virtual tour of The Freedom Trail with me! Along the way, you'll see famous landmarks of American history including Faneuil Hall and the Old North Church.
If you go... The Freedom Trail Information Booth, (617) 536-4100, is located on Boston Common at Tremont Street. Here, you can pick up a map and brochure describing the trail sites. While you can theoretically pick up the trail at any point along the route, starting at Boston Common ensures you'll see all 16 historic sites along the one-way trail. National Park Service rangers conduct guided tours of The Freedom Trail mid-April through early September. Call (617) 242-5642 for a schedule.
Getting there... To reach the beginning of the Freedom Trail and the Boston Common Visitor Center by subway, take the Red or Green Line to Park Street Station. Exit the station, and turn 180 degrees. The Center will be 100 yards in front of you. If you are arriving in Boston by car, the best parking spot is the Boston Common underground parking garage on Charles Street.
The Freedom Trail Foundation
Phone: (617) 227-8800
Web site: http://www.thefreedomtrail.org