The following list of activities gives some recommendations and is by no means exhaustive. Please visit www.bostonusa.com for further suggestions.
From the conference venue:
Boston is known as a walking city. From Boston University, walk east on Commonwealth Avenue. At the end of the street, you will hit Boston Public Garden and Boston Common. This is a great place to start your tour of Boston. For example, cross the Boston Public Garden and Boston Common to find the Freedom Trail or walk further to get to the Boston Harbor.
For public transport, please note the current transportation exceptions due to construction. The green line of the “T”, Boston’s metro, operates from Blandford Street towards downtown Boston (inbound). Exit at Copley for shopping, at Arlington for Boston Public Garden, at Boylston Street for the Boston Common, at Park Street for the Freedom Trail or change to the red line or blue line for further destinations. On the way back, make sure you take the green line B since branches C, D and E of the green line do not serve Blandford Street. Alternatively, branches C and D go to Kenmore, just one stop from Blandford street.
The Freedom Trail is a must-see for every Boston visitor. It starts at the Boston Common Visitor Information Center (139 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02135) and is clearly marked by a line of red brick on the ground (marked on the walking map with red dots). Following the 2.5-mile trail, you learn about Colonial Boston and visit 16 historical sites such as the Old State House, the Park Street Church and the Old South Meeting House. Along the way you will cross the Boston Common, the oldest city park in the United States, established in 1634. Schedules for guided walking tours are available at thefreedomtrail.org.
The Harbor Walk is a continuous walkway with an overall length of 38 miles, including the Boston Harbor waterfront. Take a stroll along the water and explore parks, public art, cafes and – most importantly –enjoy the views. A good starting point is the Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park. Find more information at summeronthewaterfront.org.
Museum of Science (mos.org, 1 Science Park, Boston, MA 02114). Besides permanent and temporary science exhibits, the museum also includes an indoor zoo, an IMAX theater and the Charles Hayden Planetarium.
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (mfa.org, 465 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115). At the time of the conference, the MFA will present, amongst other exhibits, its holdings of photographs by Charles Sheeler (1883-1965) and Alfred Stieglitz (1864-1946), and will let you experience the conservation treatment of a 12-foot high portrait of Marshal Xin, dating back to China’s Ming dynasty.
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (gardnermuseum.org, 25 Evans Way, Boston, MA 02115). The museum is housed in a building resembling a 15th-century Venetian palace, with a central garden courtyard and three floors of galleries showing Gardner’s collection of more than 2500 objects. Among the artists represented in the collection are Rembrandt, Michelangelo, and Raphael. Paintings are displayed alongside photographs, sculptures, textiles, silver, ceramics, rare books and architectural elements.
Attractions, Sightseeing, Universities, Sports and Shopping:
New England Aquarium (neaq.org, 1 Central Wharf, Boston, MA 02110). This aquarium is one of the big tourist attractions in Boston, and a major public education resource. The principal feature is the Giant Ocean Tank which simulates a Caribbean coral reef and its inhabitants. Further attractions include the Simons IMAX theater and the New England Aquarium Whale Watch (departs at Long Wharf, in front of the New England Aquarium) which takes visitors to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, a feeding ground for a range of large whales 30 miles east of Boston.
Boston Duck Tours (bostonducktours.com, departing daily from Museum of Science, Prudential Center, New England Aquarium). This 80-minute sightseeing tour in an amphibious landing vehicle gives you a good overview of Boston’s major attractions and even takes you on a short boat ride on the Charles River.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The MIT campus is only a 10 minute walk from the conference venue. Cross the Boston University Bridge and walk east along the Charles River and you will see the MIT buildings along the river.
Harvard University. The campus is located about 2 miles north-west of the conference venue in Cambridge. If you are up for a 40 minute walk you can cross Boston University Bridge and follow the Charles River north-west until you reach John F. Kennedy Street. Take a right and walk towards Harvard Square where you can start exploring the area.
Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park (boston.redsox.mlb.com, 4 Yawkey Way, Boston, MA 02215). The Red Sox will play at Fenway Park every night during the conference. Get a ticket or explore the bars and restaurants around the historical Fenway Park, which has been home for the Boston Red Sox since 1912 and is the oldest ballpark in the MLB.
Shopping. Visit Newbury Street (between Harvard Club of Boston and Boston Public Garden), Copley Place (100 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02116) and Prudential Center (800 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02199) for a wide range of stores and restaurants.