It’s already been more than a week since we arrived (and two weekends) so I thought I should stop being lazy and post on the blog instead of relying only on Instragram for updates. My aunt and cousin came with us for a week-long vacation, which meant that besides settling into our apartment and figuring the neighborhood out we also did some touristy stuff.
We arrived here Friday the 30th in the PM and as soon as we dumped our suitcases we went out to the supermarket. We walked to Trader Joe’s thinking it would be near-ish but it turned out to be more than a half hour walk each way… plus it got dark while we were shopping. Not the best idea after a long flight. I think we were all asleep by nine.
Saturday morning though we woke up early thanks to the wonders of jet lag and hopped on the T to Boston. We arrived at Park St (on the red line) and started on the Freedom Trail. First stop was checking out the State House…
Then we went onto Faneuil Hall / Quincy market. We wandered around for a while and then went on with the trail. Right next to Faneuil Hall there was some kind of farmer’s market (not sure if it’s a real farmer’s market, I’ve read on Yelp that it might be some kind of grocery outlet?). Either way, the prices were ridiculous, so we bought some grapes and raspberries to munch on, and continued on towards the North End / Italian neighborhood. Right before that, we found a shallow fountain where kids were playing… so of course we took our shoes off and joined right in. That day was super hot and humid so anything refreshing was very welcome.
On our way towards the Paul Revere house we walked by famous Mike’s Pastry (though there was such a long line we decided to pass on any cupcakes / cannoli) and the oldest house in Boston. By the time we got to the Paul Revere house it was past lunchtime and we were tired from all the walking and the heat so walked back to Quincy market and had lunch there. Nothing remarkable though, we each ordered what we wanted at one of the booths.
Once we had rested for a bit, we decided to walk some more and went towards Beacon Hill. I loved that neighborhood! It was Labor Day weekend (and moving weekend for a lot of people), and it was fun seeing all the stuff people had left at the curb in case anyone else wanted it. We walked towards the Charles riverside, where we saw some people on a gondola (and thought it was hilarious / weird). We really wanted to see the ducklings, so the next stop was the park & frog pond area again – the frog pond was awesome because, again, you could put your feet in it and it was super refreshing. There were lots of people there so it was fun to sit back and relax while enjoying the afternoon. There was also this man blowing bubbles – I mean GIGANTIC bubbles – and making kids go crazy. It was pretty great.
After popping a few bubbles ourselves, we strolled over to the public garden (and the ducklings), where we stumbled upon five or six wedding parties having their pictures taken. It was fun looking at all the bride’s dresses and deciding which one we liked best, hah. Our last stop before heading back home was Newbury street. It really seems like you’re in an English neighborhood while you’re there! I think my phone must’ve died around that time, and since I knew we’d be walking a lot I didn’t want to lug the nice-but-heavy camera all day with me.
On Sunday, we decided to go outlet shopping. My aunt and cousin really wanted to buy clothes and such, and since they were only here for a few days, it seemed like the best day for it. We rented a car and drove to Freeport, Maine – though others have suggested the Wrentham or Kittery outlets as well. Our best purchase? 100 Lindor truffles! Well, 200 if you count theirs. We decided to eat only one a day and so far, we’re sticking with it. We’ll see how long that lasts…
On the way back, we took route 1 instead of the highway and had a chance to drive by through all the coastal towns. You could tell they were all very popular Labor Day Weekend spots – they were packed. Also, lots and lots of thrift stores and antique stores that you could see from the road. Sadly they were all closed already, but Andoni and I area planning on going back. Especially since we saw the Crate & Barrel Outlet Store at the Kittery Outlets, as well.
By the time Monday (Sept 2nd) rolled around Andoni and I had some stuff to take care of – and we had been invited to a potluck, so my aunt and cousin did their own thing. They also left for NYC for a few days and came back on Friday night, leaving us Saturday morning (Sept 7th) for more touristy stuff with them. Since they had to leave around 2PM to catch their flight, we stuck around Cambridge and walked around Harvard. We also walked past a J. P. Licks (which turned out to be a Boston ice cream institution), and since we had seen someone with a delicious looking ice cream there the afternoon before, we decided to order one right before lunch. At the time it seemed like a great idea, though we didn’t know their servings were huge, even when we ordered a small one.
We also found a great consignment store while wandering around our apartment, Raspberry Beret. My aunt bought two dresses and a purse there and told me to check it often and send her pics of anything I think she might like, lol. They also have frequent buyer cards, so for every $20 you spend they give you a stamp and when you reach $100 they give you $10 off of your next purchase.
The last stop before my aunt and cousin left was Cambridge Common for our after-ice-cream lunch. It’s right next to our apartment and we really liked it, we’ll definitely be eating there again. Especially since we each had a burger but they had a few other burgers on the menu that sounded delicious, so we want to try them all. Now that they’re gone, we’re trying to fall into a normal-life rhythm, but still trying to take advantage of what the area has to offer since we’re only going to be here for a few months. Stay tuned!