At the heart of Boston is a cow pasture that made U.S. history. Early colonists used Boston Common for grazing cattle until 1640, when it became America's first public green space. The Puritans cast a long shadow over the Common, erecting a public gallows for hanging accused witches and hapless Quakers. Today, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company and Lyric Opera perform tragic deaths on the Common strictly for entertainment. Kids play epic games of tag across the Common's 50 acres of history, from the Puritans' spooky Central Burying Ground to the lawn where Dr. Martin Luther King led 1960s civil rights protests. Bostonians have skated across frozen Frog Pond each winter for centuries, and couples have sweated out first dates in pedal-powered Swan Boats on the Public Gardens Lagoon since 1877. Tricorn-hatted docents from the Common Visitors Center lead visitors along the Freedom Trail, in the footsteps of revolutionaries who plotted the Boston Tea Party at Old South Meeting House and were buried in Granary Burying Grounds. Sleek downtown buildings rub shoulders with colonial brick landmarks on School Street, where a mosaic marks the site of America's first school around 1635. Charles Dickens was a regular at downtown's historic Omni Parker House—but he probably would have enjoyed a drink in the Clink, the new Liberty Hotel bar inside the former Charles Street Jail.
Getting Around Boston
The easist way to get around Boston is the subway. Massachusetts Bay Transportation Agency (MBTA; http://www.mbta.com/) operates the Silver Line SL1 to and from Logan Airport for the best direct connection to and from the Red Line at South Station. This is the best option for transportation to Cambridge, Downtown Boston, MIT and Harvard. Service from Logan on the Silver Line SL1 runs from 5:30 a.m.-12:30 a.m. every day. MBTA operates 5 subway lines which operate Monday-Saturday 5 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.; Sundays 6 a.m. to midnight. Fare on all lines is $2.50 regardless of distance. Passes are available: $11/Day or $18/Week; Children under 12 are free. Boston features a bicycle sharing program, The Hubway (http://www.thehubway.com/), which offers a 24-hour pass for $5 and a 3-day pass for $12.
- Boston Logan International Airport-BOS
Things to Do and See Near Boston Common
- John F. Kennedy Library
- Fenway Park
- Museum of Fine Arts
- New England Aquarium
- Museum of Science
- Faneuil Hall
- Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
- USS Constitution
- Boston Common
- Cathedral of the Holy Cross