I just got back from a lovely overnight in Boston with my 9-year-old son Max. It was the first time I’ve chosen to travel with just one child. Wow, what a nice experience to have the ease and connection created by taking just one of my four children. The quick getaway, dare I say “staycation,” was a great way to get quality time without spending a lot of money. Since we frequently visit Boston, we skipped the normal tourist stuff and discovered some new activities. You’ll notice that most of these activities are free!
1. Rose Kennedy Greenway: A beautiful by-product of the Big Dig is this walkway right in the heart of downtown Boston. Only it’s second summer since completion, the plants have matured and people have started to gather to enjoy this urban park. With sculptures, water fountains, gardens and a summer time carousel, this provides family entertainment and a safe walkway connecting the harbor with the Financial District, the North End and Fanueil Hall.
2. Boston Harbor Walk: Another benefit of the Big Dig is the money that poured into developing the area around Boston Harbor. The Harbor Walk is now just coming to fruition, allowing the waterfront to be more accessible and certainly more appealing. This walkway connects the Aquarium area to the Institute of Contemporary Art. During the summer there is live music and movies that play in front of the Boston Harbor Hotel.
3. Pedicab: My son and I were a little sick and didn’t have our usually amount of energy.Instead of giving up on touring we took a Pedicab — Boston’s version of a rickshaw. A nice college student, who was able to talk hockey with my son, while pedaling us through the North End. We even got to hop out at a fabulous market, Salumeria while he waited. In addition to the general rides they offer, Pedicabs also offer city tours.
Mrs. Mallard and her ducklings
4. Boston Commons (an animal adventure!): We had our own experience with Mrs. Mallard and her ducklings. Growing up in Boston, my kids have always heard the story Make Way for the Ducklings. This visit, my son walked down towards the water and out pops mother duck and her ducklings. It was so cute and the highlight of his trip. Next we found a little squirrel enjoying a Boston favorite – Ice Cream (Cold Stones, no less). Hay, even squirrels need a treat!
The Boston Common squirrel needed a treat too
5. Charles Street: This charming street is chalked full of great shops and old Boston charm. We always love Pixie Stix, a “tween” boutique, The Red Wagon for kids clothes, Black Ink for fun games and knic knacs, Beacon Hill Chocolates for gourmet chocolates and beautiful gift boxes, De’Luca’s Market for cheese and picnic supplies.
Given that it’s summer and my kids need to keep up their writing, I thought I would ask my son to write about our trip. I’ll save you from the details, but the concluding sentence read, “Although all those things were fun, my most favorite thing was just being able to hang out with my mom.” Awwww.
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