Boston is a gorgeous city full of rich history, cobblestone streets, unique attractions and incredible food. Here is a list of 10 things to do in Boston that are perfect for families with kids of all ages.
The Freedom Trail is a 2.5 mile long trail that can take you up to a day of walking, depending on how often you stop. Along the trail you will find 16 landmarks, such as The Massachusetts State House, Paul Revere’s House and King’s Chapel and Burying Ground. Following the Freedom Trail is easy: simply follow the marker on the red bricks. Begin at the Freedom Trail Visitor Center at Boston Common. There, you can purchase a password for the GPS-enabled audio tour (available on iPhone and Android and can be used offline). Alternatively, you can get all the information on the sites online and print out your own guide. Either way, the Freedom Trail is a good place to get to know Boston’s history.
As mentioned above, Boston Common is the first stop on the Freedom Trail. It is a stunning park, the oldest in America. It stretches a vast 50 acres and includes lush vegetation with dazzling flowers in the spring and summer. This is a perfect stop when the kids want to let loose and run around. Don’t miss the numerous sculptures and monuments for a little dose of history. Kids will especially love the popular Swan Boats, which operate April-September. Also, be sure to stop by the bronze statues of ducklings, inspired by the popular book Make Way for Ducklings.
Known as Boston’s Little Italy, North End is a quaint neighborhood with cobblestone streets and old buildings. Lunchtime is a perfect opportunity to visit the neighborhood. Peruse its unique shops for souvenirs. Sample some authentic Italian Cuisine in one of the numerous Italian restaurants. From fine dining to a quick pizza shop, the North End has it all, depending on your budget. If you visit during the summer months don’t miss the famous Italian processions along the streets and the festive atmosphere.
Paul Revere House
The Paul Revere House, located at 19 North Square, is downtown Boston’s oldest building. It dates from the 17th century. It is also where the famous Paul Revere lived with his large family. Thirty minutes are sufficient for a self-guided tour of the house, so even young children will be entertained by the period furnishings (some of which belonged to the Revere Family) and the 18th-century kitchen. Older children will enjoy reading the descriptive labels which explain how people lived during the time of the American revolution. The gift shop is a great way to grab a few items, such as the famous Midnight Ride poem and children’s book about Paul Revere’s life.
Faneuil Hall Marketplace
This lively attraction is one of the most popular hangouts in Boston, filled with street performers, lots of shopping and food. Speaking of food, do not miss the Quincy Market Food Colonnade, an indoor food market that has every food you can possibly imagine and then some. 35 Colonnade eateries and 18 restaurants offer scrumptious food for every palate. But while you’re in Boston why not try the popular Clam Chowder, lobster rolls, Boston Baked Beans and for dessert – the famous Boston Cream Pie.
No trip to Boston is complete without a visit to the picturesque historical neighborhood of Beacon Hill. Colonial brick row houses, narrow cobblestone streets and brick sidewalks give this neighborhood a distinct quaint feel. It is no wonder this neighborhood is one of the most expensive and sought-after in Boston. Be sure to stop by Acorn Street – purportedly the most frequently photographed street in the U.S., as well as the beautiful (and private) Louisburg Square. If you’re into antiques stop by Charles Street for antique shops and boutiques.
If you’re in Boston during baseball season be sure to catch a Red Sox game at the legendary Fenway Park, the oldest park in Major League Baseball. Not a baseball fan? Fenway Park also hosts other sports events, as well as concerts.
Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum
Step back in time to 1773 and learn about the event that lead to the American Revolution in a tour aboard the ships that dumped tea into the water. A costumed guide will lead you on an 18th Century fully-restored sailing vessel, as well as the museum, where you will see artifacts from the period, such as the only surviving tea chest from the Boston Tea Party. End the tour in Abigail’s Tea Room, where you can sample up to five different types of historic teas.
Boston Children’s Museum
This massive museum (the second oldest in America) spans three floors and is a delight for kids up to age twelve. The museum’s focus is on science, culture, environmental awareness, health and fitness and the arts. It also boasts a collection of more than 50,000 artifacts – from dolls and dollhouse, to natural history to Americana. Some of the museum’s groundbreaking exhibits are Countdown to Kindergarten, where kids can practice kindergarten skills and The Japanese House – a fully-equipped Japanese house reconstructed in Boston by Japanese carpenters and which was gift from Kyoto, its sister city.
Langham Chocolate Bar at the Langham hotel
To end this post on a sweet note, our final recommendation is the Langham Chocolate Bar at the Langham hotel. An all-you-can-eat buffet of desserts, based on, you guessed it, chocolate, this would make the perfect end to a vacation the kids will remember for years to come.
We hope you have found something for your family in these 10 things to do in Boston with kids. If you would like to add to this list, leave us a message. If you are traveling further afield, you may also like these 10 things to do in New York City for kids.
About the author: Maytal Wichman is a freelance writer and has written for several blogs, including The Mama Maven. She has been living in the New York City area for eighteen years and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature as well as a Law Degree, but blogging is her true passion. Maytal is a stay-at-home mom to three kids (ages 11, 9 and 6) and loves finding great products for her family.