Boston Journals

Boston Bests

Best of IgoUgo

A travel journal to Boston by Foxboro Marmot

Encore Bed and Breakfast Photo, Boston, Massachusetts More Photos
Quote: Guide Sid lives in a Boston suburb and occasionally serves as a volunteer tour guide in Boston. He shares some of his Boston Bests here.

Boston Bests

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Quote:
Boston has something for everyone - except, I suppose, for the wilderness types among us! Fine restaurants ranging from traditional seafood to adventurous cuisine, interesting shopping on Newbury Street and in Copley Place, and a sense of history permeating a vibrant, living city. And, in response to the most frequently asked question, yes, the original Cheers bar is here. It's the Bull and Finch Pub, on Beacon Street between Charles and Arlington Streets opposite the Public Garden. A point of confusion: the owner is working on a new Cheers bar in the Quincy Market which will duplicate the television set as much as possible, even down to details including catwalks and lighting rigs above the bar....Read More

Encore Bed and Breakfast

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel

Encore Bed and Breakfast Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
Bravo for the Encore, a new B&B in Boston's vibrant South End. This impeccably clean establishment combines a fine location with three spacious rooms furnished in a distinctive contemporary style. Encore occupies the top floors of an 1860 Victorian brick bowfront townhouse on a leafy side street, around the corner from busier Tremont Street. The B&B underwent extensive renovation and redesign earlier this year under the masterful touch of the owners: Reinhold Mahler, an award-winning architect, and David Miller, an award-winning set designer. A theatre motif starts at the front door. Above, where a fanlight usually sits, is a stained glass inset featuring the masks of come...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 26, 2001

Encore Bed and Breakfast
116 West Newton Street
Boston, Massachusetts
(617) 247-3425

Warren Tavern Restaurant

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Restaurant | "Warren Tavern"

Quote:
The best place for lunch in Boston if you are looking for colonial atmosphere is near the end of the Freedom Trail at Charlestown's Warren Tavern. There are plenty of places to eat along the trail - the stalls at Quincy Market, nearby restaurants like the Union Oyster House (ex-pres. Clinton ate here when he blew through town recently) and bundles of small Italian spots in the North End - but the Warren Tavern is just enough off the main trail that it isn't completely filled with out-of-towners. In fact, it does a pretty good business with 'Townies', the preferred name for residents of Boston's Charlestown section. It's a good place to listen in on conversations around you to pick up the classic Bos...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 30, 2001

Warren Tavern Restaurant
2 Pleasant St
Charlestown, Massachusetts 02129
+1 617 241 8142

Bay Tower Room

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Restaurant

Quote:
The best place in Boston for dinner with a view has to be the Bay Tower Room, on 60 State Street's 33rd floor. Floor to ceiling windows look out over the harbor, the airport and right outside - seeming oversized because it's so close - the clock faces of the Custom House Tower. Reservations are a must. You want to control your visit so you arrive a half-hour before sunset. The room is terraced, so each table enjoys a nice view, but ask specifically for a table next to the window. Start with a drink in the lounge, taking time to see the islands, harbor activity and planes coming into and taking off from Logan Airport as day gradually changes to night. As darkness takes over, the view shift...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 13, 2001

Bay Tower Room
60 State Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02109
(617) 723-1666

Boston Harbor Cruises

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Boston Harbor Islands"

Quote:
"So Sid," I hear you say, "We like the city, but enough with the concrete and asphalt. My soul cries for more grass and trees while my feng shui advisor insists on more water. What can we do?" Fear not. Sid comes through for you! Walk down to the Boston Harbor Cruises ticket booth on Long Wharf and buy a ticket ($10, $7 for children under 12, $25 family rate for two adults and two children) to George's Island. Forty-five minutes after boarding you've watched the city recede behind you, cruised around ships and sailboats, threaded between islands and are disembarking at George's Island, the central point of the Boston Harbor Islands national park area. Stay here awhile and explor...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 23, 2001

Boston Harbor Cruises
One Long Wharf
Boston, Massachusetts 02110
+1 617 227 4321

Freedom Trail

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Attraction | "The Freedom Trail"

Quote:
The Freedom Trail is a three-mile route connecting 16 points of historical interest marked by a row of red bricks or a painted red line on the sidewalk. After Quincy Market it's the most visited attraction in the city. Unfortunately it's not a loop, so when you get to the end you're a couple of miles from where you started! The walk is easy. It's up to you how fast or how slow to go. Some do it in a half-day, walking past sites without more than a glance while others feel compelled to go inside every building on the route and take two days. However, not all sites are created equal. Plan on the better part of a day. Take your time. See what interests you and have lunch somewhere along the...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 13, 2001

Freedom Trail
15 State Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02109
(617) 242-5642

Boston By Foot

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Attraction | "Boston By Foot Walking Tours"

Boston By Foot Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
First, in the interest of full disclosure, I'm a guide for Boston by Foot (BBF) but I don't consider it a conflict of interest to recommend the tours. BBF is a non-profit educational organization and all tours are given by volunteers. I became a guide after going on a few walks: I enjoyed them, wanted to learn more, and now I'm leading visitors around the city. Since tours are given by volunteers, doing one tour every week or two, they're not a chore or a job for us - we generally have as much fun leading a walk as our guests do! The two walks I suggest are "Heart of the Freedom Trail" and "Victorian Back Bay." The Freedom Trail is a three mile route through the city, starting on Boston Comm...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 30, 2001

Boston By Foot
77 North Washington St
Boston, Massachusetts 02114
+1 617 367 2345; +1

Boston Public Library

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Attraction

Quote:
If people ask about the best FREE place to go in Boston, there are two choices. I send history buffs to Old Ironsides and the museum at the Charlestown Navy Yard, but for more culturally minded folks... I send 'em to the library. That's right. If you have a limited budget and can coordinate your schedule with one of the Art and Architecture tours given at the Boston Public Library's Copley Square library - go! The tour schedule is erratic, currently Monday at 2:30, Tuesday and Thursday at 6 pm, Friday and Saturday at 11 am. There are Sunday tours at 2 pm roughly October through May. In 1885 Charles Follen McKim modelled this "palace for the people," on an Italian Renaissance pall...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 8, 2002

Boston Public Library
700 Boylston St
Boston, Massachusetts 02117
+1 617 536 5400

John F. Kennedy Library and Museum

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Attraction | "Kennedy Library and Museum"

Quote:
Museum visitors start with an introductory 18 minute film of Kennedy's life up to the 1960 presidential campaign. Hey, wait a minute... how long was the famous gap in Nixon's Watergate tapes? Coincidence or subtle political commentary? Hmmm.... Sorry. Been watching too much X-Files. After the film, visitors pass through exhibits covering the campaign and the President's 1000 days in office. There's a lot of video, but the best is from the Kennedy-Nixon debates. While Kennedy comes across as a dynamic presence, notice how Nixon comes across as suspect, particularly in reaction shots as Kennedy is speaking. Nixon faces forward while his eyes slide over to steal sidelong glance...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 8, 2002

John F. Kennedy Library and Museum
Columbia Point
Boston, Massachusetts 02125
(617) 929-4500

Hancock Tower

Attraction | "John Hancock Tower - update"

Quote:
Many guide books and even entries on Igougo mention the observatory atop Boston's John Hancock Tower. Unfortunately, the tower has been closed to visitors since 9/11/01 and will not reopen.

Rumor around town is that top executives at Hancock have long coveted the space for their own use and didn't believe that enough sightseeing dollars were coming in to continue its use as a tourist attraction. Vague "security concerns" in the wake of 9/11 allowed Hancock to shut the observatory down and convert the space into an executive dining and reception area. There are no plans to reopen the observatory to the public. That leaves the nearby Prudential Center as the highest viewpoint in Boston.

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on July 24, 2003

Hancock Tower
200 Clarendon Street
Boston, Massachusetts