things to do in boston, summer in boston, faneuil hall
Faneuil Hall, Boston | Photo by Start Wandering via Trover

Boston is both hip and historical, a blend of sophistication and Old World New England charm. Exceptional events, productions, and tours fill the city’s social calendar throughout the year, but summer is when the city really shines. A Boston summer is all baseball, lobsters, and a lot of time spent singing the Cheers theme song. Here a few things you’ll love on a visit to Boston during the summer:

Take a Tour of the City

Thanks to the small size of the city, Boston is known for being easy to get around on foot. This environment has allowed for many interesting walking tours and excursions to flourish. There’s the Sweet and Savory South End Food Tour, which takes you to six restaurants in three hours, and the Chinatown Markets Tour that will demystify the busy district. If you want something a little more obscure, try the Dark Side of Boston Tour to learn more about the death, disease, and crime history of the North End.

Eat at Fisherman’s Feast

The Fisherman’s Feast is a street festival that takes place in the North End district. Vendors line the streets offering Italian foods and carnival-style games. Most importantly, you can celebrate seafood while stuffing yourself with pizza, cannolis, lobster rolls, and quahogs. The Fisherman’s Feast takes place in August.

Enjoy Boston Harborfest

In Boston, the Fourth of July isn’t one day— celebrations last for the entire week. The city puts on concerts, activities, cruises, and fireworks to celebrate Independence Day. On July 2 through 6, you can enjoy free guided tours of different parts of the city, the reading of the Declaration of Independence, and a city favorite: Chowderfest. Most events are free, with others ranging from $2 to $12 for day events or $30 to $100 for cruises and pub crawls.

Visit Castle Island

In South Boston you’ll find the 1850 granite bastion called Fort Independence, which represents an opportunity for recreation and historical learning. There has been a fort in this area since 1634, and the five-pointed Fort Independence is the eighth fort to occupy Castle Island. You can take a free tour of the fort during the summer months, followed by swimming in Pleasure Bay’s enclosed lagoon.

Get in Touch with Nature 

Spring is a beautiful time to visit Boston thanks to all the flowers blooming around the city. By summertime, you have lush greens, pinks, and purples lining the city’s parks and streets. Have a picnic in Boston Common or visit the luxurious courtyard of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum to see the seasonal display of flowers. The Arnold Arboretum is another place to learn about Boston’s floral history: the Jamaica Plain arboretum opened in 1872 and has one of the oldest and largest collections of lilac bushes in the world.

The city might be small, but it packs a huge personality. Whether you’re exploring the walkable city on foot, sampling the city’s best ice cream, or enjoying world-class museums near your hotel in Boston, you’re sure to find something to love.

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