Things You Should Not Miss
Walk down the three mile Freedom Trail on a 90 minute Park Ranger Tour
at Boston National Historic Park. Along this route, you'll
visit many of the famous sites from the history of Boston that you're
familiar with from the history books, including the Bunker Hill
Monument, Paul Revere's House, Faneuil Hall, Old North Church and Old
South Meetings House, and the oldest commissioned warship in the world,
the USS Constitution. You can do this tour on your own, but
the park ranger guided walks are always a good way to get
interpretation of the historic sites from an expert on the
topic. These tours, however, are limited to thirty people
per, and fill up quickly in the summer. They are filled on a
first come, first serve, basis, first tour in summer at 10 a.m.
2. For a change of historic pace, visit the Boston National Recreation Area. It is a Ferry Ride and visit to the natural history, as well as nautical history of the area, and gets you out of the city for awhile and onto the water.
What is There NowHistory of the Revolution, Its Cause and Bluster
Boston National Historic Park - Two visitor centers and the Freedom Trail. The downtown center next to the Old State House is a good starting off point for your Boston history visit. The other visitor center is located across the river at the Bunker Hill site and orients you to the Charlestown locations, including the Navy yard. There is a new museum at Bunker Hill, which opened in June 2007. It houses new exhibits on the battle, the monument, and Charlestown history.
Boston African American National Historic Site - The Black Heritage Trail, on self-guided or park ranger tours, which includes fourteen sites.
Minute Man National Historic Park - The Minute Man park visitor center has a multi-media program that tells the story from Paul Revere to the battles. Outside the center, you can jump on the five mile Battle Road Trail, that allows you to follow the theme of the April 19, 1775 first main battle of the revolution. Some site are also accessible by car. Along this trail, there is the Hartwell Tavern, The Wayside: Home of Authors, the Paul Revere Capture Site, , and the North Bridge of Concord. There is also a visitor center located at North Bridge. Ranger guided tours are available at many locations; check the park schedule for times and location.
Boston Harbor Island National Recreation Area - A bit different, but still historical. The Boston Harbor experience allows you to take a ferry ride, visit a Civil War era fort, and take a guided tour of the islands. There are 34 islands within the park. Additional fees are charged for the Boston Light Tour and Ranger Harbor Tours.
Other National Historic Sites in the Boston Area
Boston is not only a historic center for all things colonial. There are a variety of National Historic sites in the city itself and the nearby towns on other topics as well. John F. Kennedy National Historic Site focuses on the charismatic president and his life. Frederick Law Olmstead Historic Site is near the Kennedy site for all those with a land planning and park bent, plus Longfellow National Historic Site is a bit further west for those who love a good verse or two. South of the city is Adams National Historic Site, if you care to delve into another president. And north of the city sit two interesting national historic parks; the Saugus Iron Works and Salem Maritime National Historic Site.
Boston is a big town that caters to business, tourists, and a whole lot more. A variety of lodging opportunities abound in the city. Check the local tourist board, or hotel/motel site for the choice that's right for you.
Boston LinksBoston National Historic Park
Boston African American National Historic Site
Minute Man National Historic Park
Boston Harbor Island National Recreation Area
Nearby AttractionsMassachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism
Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau
Boston Then and Now
|Faneuil Hall - Site
(pictured above) of the meeting organized by Samuel Adams, the
Committee of Correspondence, which was the forerunner to the
Continental Congress. This meeting was only one of many to
protest British Rule held in the building called the "Crade of Liberty"
for its role in the decision toward U.S. independence.
Bunker Hill - Site in north Boston where the Battle of Bunker Hill occurred in June 17, 1775, made famous by the quote, "Don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes!" This battle, a British victory, was nonetheless a surprise to British commanders as to the tenacity of the colonists in their effort to withstall assaults and inflict casualties. A 221 foot monument now stands on site to commemorate the battle.
Paul Revere's House - The oldest building in downtown Beantown, named for the Puritan practice of baking enough beans on Saturday to be eaten for two days since it was not proper to cook on Sunday, was built around 1670.
Boston National Historic Park - This park explains the story of the American Revolution, including how it started, as well as the Navy's role in its victory. Start this tour on the Freedom Trail, either on your own or with a guide. There are also tours of other sites on the trail, including the USS Cassin Young, and the USS Constitution.
Boston African American National Historic Site - Located on Beacon Hill, this park is comprised of two dozen sites that comprise the largest are of pre-Civil War black-owned buildings where the fight to abolish slavery had many of its roots. There are fourteen sites along the Black Heritage Trail, including the Robert Gould Shaw Memorial, the African Meeting House, and the Museum of African-American History.
Minute Man National Historic Park - Not in Boston itself, but twenty-two miles away. However, no visit to Boston on an American Revolution history vacation would be complete without a visit to the Lexington and Concord battlefield sites located there.
Boston Harbor Island National Recreation Area - Over one thousand acres on thirty-four islands within a ferry ride of downtown Boston. Ferries depart from five Boston locations; Long Wharf, EDIC Pier, Pemberton Point, Ingham Shipyard, and Fore River Shipyard.