Trip Report: Day 1 and 2
I am a history teacher from Ohio who was traveling solo to Boston for pleasure but also as part of a travel class for graduate credit. I left Pittsburgh Airport early Sunday morning. My first impression of Boston was how close the airport is to the water. It felt like we were just feet over the water as we were landing.
Picked up my luggage and found the shuttle bus to the T. I bought a 7 day link pass at the T for $15.00 and took the blue line to the government center stop, then picked up the green E to Heath. On the blue line there were a man and his young son in lederhosen speaking to another young couple in German. I knew this was going to be an interesting trip. It’s not everyday that a small town Ohio girl gets to see a hot guy in lederhosen, lol.
I was a bit surprised at first on the Green line. It seemed dirty and scary compared to the DC metro. Later I learned that it is the oldest subway line in the US which made more sense, and I realized that the other lines seem much newer and cleaner. In general, the subway system was easy to use and fast.
I got off the Green at Prudential and walked through the mall to the Sheraton (I posted a review for the Sheraton separately). After I checked in I got back on the metro to Park Street. I walked through the Boston Common to Beacon Hill. I spent several hours walking the streets including Louisburg Square and Charles. They had an art walk on that day and several musicians-definitely a cool experience.
I contemplated eating at Figs, but decided to go down the street to the Upper Crust and grab pizza and a salad. I asked for it to go and walked down the street to the Public Garden. It was really cool to sit in the grass near the ducklings and watch the Swan boats in the lagoon. The pizza was good (but not the best I’ve ever had), but I forgot to get napkins-so I licked my fingers, wiped them on the bag and was glad no one there knew me.
I walked through the garden, over the bridge and west onto Commonwealth Avenue mall. This is another beautiful place with great houses and architecture. I enjoyed the Vendome memorial (a tribute to fallen firefighters). I also scoped out some of Marlborough Street. At some point I moved south to Newbury Street. This is a great place to simply soak up the ritzy Boston atmosphere. I spent some time in Filene’s Basement and had a vanilla apricot bubble tea at Tealuxe.
I ended up back at the Prudential to pick up my Duck Tour, which was awesome and I highly recommend it. I ended the evening at PF Changs in the Prudential mall, which was good, but not great.
Today was the day for the Freedom Trail. Up early, I walked from the Sheraton to the Massachusetts State House. My highlights of the Freedom Trail: I enjoyed the museum in the Old State house. As a history teacher I thought it was pretty cool that they still have the cane used to beat Charles Sumner (I know, the geek is strong in me!). I also enjoyed the Old North Church mostly because of a great speaker there.
I disliked Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market. This is a very touristy area and while I don’t mind doing touristy things, it was packed to the gills with people. There were some pretty cool street performers. I decided to be touristy and eat lunch at Cheers on the patio. I often think that waiters prefer not to have solo diners because there will be a smaller tip. I waited for quite a long time and no one came to my table (and I was really thirsty after walking for so long). I consider myself to be fairly patient as I teach 9th grade students with learning disabilities, so I decided to wait a little longer to see if the tables near me would be served. After serving several tables that had been seated after me I decided to get up and leave. No one said a word. Oh well, there loss was my gain as I walked to the North End for lunch.
Oh, the North End. I had fabulous pasta and a great glass of wine at Cantina Italiana with a fantastic waiter. This was the life! I grabbed a cannoli, a lobster claw and a chocolate covered cheesecake from Modern Pastry. I knew I wouldn’t eat them all, but I figured I was on vacation and that I wanted to try a little of everything. I ate the cannoli in a little park between Cross Street and Surface road and I was in pastry heaven. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping and I was eating pastry paradise in Boston. It couldn’t have been a better day.
I then walked down to the Long Wharf and checked out the gorgeous view of the Moakley building and the cool boats. I grabbed the T at the Aquarium and took it back to the hotel to stow my pastries. I ended up eating dinner at Steve’s Greek restaurant on Newbury on a nice window side street with a decent glass of red Greek wine. What a fantastic day!