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Mother27

No appealing (to me) boston excursions.

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Hello! We're cruising on the Radiance in September on the Canada/New England route. I've picked what look like awesome excursions for Portland, St. John, and Halifax, but I didn't see anything I liked for the Boston stop. What are our options if we just want to do something on our own? I'm not sure if the ship actually docks in Boston or if we would need to tender to shore. Can someone enlighten me? If we do tender, can we catch the tender even if we don't have an excursion booked?

 

Thanks in advance!

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Posted (edited)

You dock at the Black Falcon pier in Boston. Last year we did the  Ghosts and Gravestones tour and loved it. We've also enjoyed the Duck Boats.  You can also head over to the Quincey Market. Plenty to do in Boston. I have two NE / Canada reviews in my signature.😎

Edited by Jamman54

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You might want to post on the Canada/New England ports of call board for more ideas.

 

What are you looking to do?

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There should be plenty to do in Boston, even if you don't take an excursion from the ship. It's a major city with plenty of historical significance. You might look at some popular travel sites for ideas.  

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You don't need an excursion. The ship docks in the Seaport, which has tons of new shops and restaurants. And you can hop on the Silver Line (underground bus) there and connect to the rest of the subway system and see the city on your own. If all else fails, just find the red line on the sidewalk and follow the Freedom Trail and it will take you to all the sights. Enjoy my city! 

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Posted (edited)

Hi

Boston has some great museums- Gardner, Museum of Art

We liked our Lexington/Concord tour and the history of the “shot heard ‘round the world “ + 

 

Please let us know what you end up picking 

Edited by ginabab

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2 minutes ago, cyclist_guy1 said:

at the very least i'd go eat lobster.  😀

yes this for sure!

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1 hour ago, eastoftheboston said:

You don't need an excursion. The ship docks in the Seaport, which has tons of new shops and restaurants. And you can hop on the Silver Line (underground bus) there and connect to the rest of the subway system and see the city on your own. If all else fails, just find the red line on the sidewalk and follow the Freedom Trail and it will take you to all the sights. Enjoy my city! 

Thank you! That's what I was thinking we'd do . . . hit the shops and find the Freedom Trail. - I just wasn't sure about the docking situation. I'm sure we'll enjoy your city. :)

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I always like to check on the Hop On Hop off busses in cities I visit. It’s a nice way to see several things at once. I have done the HOHO bus in Boston, and it was very enjoyable, especially stopping at Cheers Bar. You have the choice of getting off at stops you want to spend some time at.

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Some more suggestions - New England Aquarium, USS Constitution, Faneuil Hall (save your appetite as the center building is be best food hall ever), Museum of Science (one of my favorite places when I used to live in Boston), Freedom Trail, Bunker Hill.  All of these places are either within walking distance of each other or a quick T stop or two away.  The T is the subway system that is very easy to navigate, only five colors (lines).

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Like others said, Boston has a lot to do! We spent 5 days there a few years ago, so not on a cruise, but we saw a ton of things. You could easily hit a few major spots on a day there. If you like history, they have awesome Freedom Trail walks that are great. We ended up booking one through Groupon and it was awesome. We walked to almost all the points (just didn't walk to the USS Constitution). For us, we ended up walking the entire route back too. LOL! It was a lot of fun. But you can also hit many of the major points of interest just by walking around. Check out Trip Advisor too, lots of great ideas there.

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The Boston Public Library has a nice order-at-the-counter cafe in the (new) Johnson building.

Go see the John Singer Sargent murals on the 3rd floor in the (old) McKim building and if you like maps the map room is amazing.  Library also has free WiFi.

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If you can identify what you want to see, folks can provide details and suggestions.  Downtown is old narrow one way streets not suitable for tour buses.  The Hoho trolleys are smaller, but even they can often only just get near a site, not right in front of it.  

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On 1/9/2020 at 1:24 PM, Mother27 said:

Hello! We're cruising on the Radiance in September on the Canada/New England route. I've picked what look like awesome excursions for Portland, St. John, and Halifax, but I didn't see anything I liked for the Boston stop. What are our options if we just want to do something on our own? I'm not sure if the ship actually docks in Boston or if we would need to tender to shore. Can someone enlighten me? If we do tender, can we catch the tender even if we don't have an excursion booked?

 

Thanks in advance!

I highly recommend Free Tours by Foot.  Yes, the tours really are free.

We have lived about an hour north of Boston for over 35 years.  Three years ago we had friends visiting from Australia so we booked the North End tour.  It was fabulous!  Even we learned a lot.  We gave our guide a gratuity because he was that good.

We've since booked Free Tours by Foot in other cities and we've enjoyed them all.

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There is plenty to do in Boston. It's probably one of the biggest tourist cities in New England. It does lean heavily towards history and museums, although it's also a big university and huge sports city. Museums are everything from fine arts, to science, historic building. There is a lot to see and do walking on your own Like Boston Common and the Public Garden. My favorite is the Tea Party Museum, my husband is the New England Aquarium. 

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For our Empress New England/Canada cruise in July my 14 year old son has our excursion (on our own) picked out. We are going to take the T (Silver line to Red line)  to explore the Granary Burial Ground (Paul  Revere, Samuel Adams) and the Central Burial Ground. On our last trip to Boston we did the hop on, hop off bus (USS Constitution, Bunker Hill and Faneuil Hall) and passed these burying grounds. Hence the fascination with visiting them this trip.

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Another suggestion: the JFK Presidential Library and Museum. Very well done, easy to spend hours there. Not far from the port by cab or Uber. 

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We originally were going to do the hop on hop off, but it was sold out.  So, I booked the graveyards and ghosts tour through RCI thinking, okay, it's transportation to and from downtown, but we really enjoyed it.  We made several stops at cemeteries and at Boston Common.  Our tour guide was the "ghost" of a writer (I think epitaths) and he was very good.  We saw gravemarkers of famous people, heard stories about others and were able to walk around several locations.  Our last stop was Faneuil Hall marketplace where we had lunch and walked around.  The last stop, you could either stay onboard and go back to the ship immediately or stay and take another bus back which was just for people who had paid for the excursions.  The tour was really good and then on our bus ride back to the ship, our driver told us more info about Boston.  Both our excursion drivers in Boston and Portland were transplants but they knew a lot about their adopted hometowns.

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2 hours ago, BND said:

We originally were going to do the hop on hop off, but it was sold out.  So, I booked the graveyards and ghosts tour through RCI thinking, okay, it's transportation to and from downtown, but we really enjoyed it.  We made several stops at cemeteries and at Boston Common.  Our tour guide was the "ghost" of a writer (I think epitaths) and he was very good.  We saw gravemarkers of famous people, heard stories about others and were able to walk around several locations.  Our last stop was Faneuil Hall marketplace where we had lunch and walked around.  The last stop, you could either stay onboard and go back to the ship immediately or stay and take another bus back which was just for people who had paid for the excursions.  The tour was really good and then on our bus ride back to the ship, our driver told us more info about Boston.  Both our excursion drivers in Boston and Portland were transplants but they knew a lot about their adopted hometowns.

Thanks!

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Just another thought...we are stopping in Boston on May 29.  I am planning on booking the Boston Whale Watching Cruise thru Viator.  It's received very good reviews and just something different than the normal museums and history.  I used to live in the Boston area so I think we'll give this a try.

Helen

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Please book that tour direct, not thru Viator.    Booking thru third parties only adds problems if there are weather or other issues.

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