No state is home to more symbolic sites, none more steeped in the American patriotic tradition. Here's a suggested itinerary for seeing the best of Massachusetts in five days:
Time Required: 5 days
- Spend a half-day getting to know Boston either by walking the Freedom Trail or taking a Duck Tour. Have lunch at Quincy Market and spend the afternoon at one of the city's spectacular museums.
- On day two, spend the morning touring the Harvard University campus in Cambridge.
- Return to downtown Boston for lunch at Cheers Boston. The former Bull & Finch Pub was the inspiration for the television show Cheers.
- After lunch, take a swan boat ride in the Boston Public Garden. In the afternoon, visit another of the city's museums, shop for antiques on Beacon Hill or tour historic Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox and the "Green Monster."
- In season, depart on day three from Boston via passenger ferry for a day in Provincetown on Cape Cod. Visit the Pilgrim Monument, which marks the site of the Pilgrims' first landing in the New World.
- Stroll the town's main thoroughfare, Commercial Street, and sample its shops, galleries and restaurants before returning to Boston by ferry at the end of the day.
- Rent a car and drive north to Concord on day four and spend the day reliving the Revolution at Minute Man National Historical Park. Also visit Walden Pond, former well known home of Henry David Thoreau.
- On day five, spend the morning taking in some of the spooky sights in Salem. The Salem Witch Museum provides the best overall orientation to the drama surrounding the 1692 witch hysteria.
- In the afternoon, drive north along the coast and visit Rocky Neck, America's first art colony, in Gloucester.
- Accommodations right in Boston tend to be on the pricey side. You may wish to look for less expensive options in city suburbs. Compare rates at Boston hotels with About.com's travel partner, Kayak.com or find special rates at Boston hotels when you book direct at Expedia.
- Boston is a walking city! Wear comfortable shoes, and be sure to bring boots along on winter visits.
- Request your free Massachusetts Getaway Guide by calling toll free, 800-227-MASS from the U.S. or Canada, 617-973-8500 local and international.