Going to Boston!

Going to Boston!


Member Rating 0 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on July 8, 2011

Lexington is a small town not 30 minutes from Boston's downtown center, which is reached through the Route 2. It is near the small town to an affluent suburb of Boston, in the course of the war for independence gained a great importance for the United States. On 19 April 1775 in Lexington were the first shots fired of the Revolutionary War. This battle was won on the same day in another Boston suburb, namely Concord.

After we had reached Lexington at noon there were problems with parking on this day. We were also happens to be right in the center of town, where there is also the main attraction, the Battle Green, the place where the shooting took place. The Battle Green is nothing more than a large, well-maintained green area with a plaque that provides information on the historical events.

At the other end of the Battle Green is a statue The Minute Man, Captain Parker is shown with his sleeves rolled up waiting to go into battle. Above the Battle Green and is the statue is the huge Stars and Stripes. Also, most houses in the town have their own stars and stripes. Around the Battle Green you can see many lovely old colonial houses. In many houses there are signs that inform you of who has lived in the house and it is also noted the role played in one war.

Another attraction is the Buckman Tavern built in 1709, the Minutemen, the injured were treated. The bullet hole in one of the doors will come from an English ricochet. In the center of the town you see many people walking around dressed in the style of the colonists, as well as the Minutemen. One can there also be guided by a "contemporary", but what we did not. For the overall picture there is of course nice that from old houses and now and then someone comes along who is still dressed as 200 years ago. Across from the Battle Green Visitors Center is also located there.

In the vicinity of the Battle Green is a narrow way to the Old Cemetery, which is definitely worth seeing. Here is a gray stone lined graves and the inscriptions show that there were a few families who apparently had many members, because one always reads back the same last name. Especially in the autumn when the leaves are colourful, they form a nice contrast to the gray of the cemetery. Like all attractions in Lexington and the cemetery is signposted, so you can not miss it. On the other side of the Battle Green is a path leading to a hillock on which a bell tower, but which was not originally in Lexington, but is originally from Boston.

Finally there is the Hancock-Clarke House. You can visit this house from the inside, but what we did not. Leaving the area of the Battle Green, one goes on a normal road through town. Here there are shops, cafes, restaurants, etc. We bought a coffee shop a few hot drinks to take home. Along the road there are many benches where you can relax.

Lexington is a town that you can look at least once. If you are interested in the history of America or the old colonial houses look like, then you are exactly right. The area around the Battle Green, with the statue, however, is quickly explored, as are the other attractions, so you will not necessarily stay here long. I can recommend a visit to Lexington.

Inner Harbor Ferry

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on July 8, 2011

The Inner Harbor Ferry is not a tour boat but a ferry boat, one of Boston's public transportation. The ferry does not tour, but connects two docks together. Since it is not a tourist attraction you don’t get any explanations from the speaker. Anyone who wants a harbor cruise with explanations should take a tourist boat tour. But if you simply want to enjoy just touring around the water and want to see the city and taking the ferry is perfect.

The Inner Harbor Ferry connects the district of Charlestown with the Long Wharf. Charles Town is the district in which ends of the Freedom Trail. There you can find the U.S.S. Constitution and the Bunker Hill Monument. If you walk along the Freedom Trail, the Inner Harbor Ferry is a great way to come back to downtown. So you do not go all the way back and has simultaneously makes a nice boat tour.

The pier is located in Charlestown Navy Yard. Since it is not a tourist attraction in the true sense, it is signposted. If you are at U.S.S. Constitution Museum, you have to just go around it and you can see the register to buy tickets for the ferry.

The price for a ride on the Inner Harbor Ferry is truly unbeatable. For the 10-minute ride, you pay only $ 1.70.

The departure times vary by day of week and season. Monday to Friday, the ferry runs every fifteen minutes between the piers namely from 6.30 to 20 clock. On weekends she runs only every half hour and during the time clock 10 to 18. Exact departure times can be read at the register.

The Inner Harbor Ferry is a small ferry with an open deck. Who does not want to sit on the upper deck can, of course, remain protected from the wind in the lower area of the boat. From there, you have obviously not such a nice view, so very few passengers to stay down. On the upper deck there are some wooden benches, so you can make yourself comfortable there and enjoy the ride.

Although it is not a tourist attraction in the true sense, there are a lot of tourists but we were also travelling on a weekend, I can imagine that at weekdays it looks different and the ferry is probably really used to bring people to work in another district.

During our time in Boston, we drove a total of three times with the ferry. After we found out that you can park in Charlestown much cheaper than downtown, where we set up the car and drove to the ferry to Long Wharf. From there we made our way to the Freedom Trail and went from this to the end. When we were back at the car, but it was still early, so we spontaneously once the ferry went over, went to the aquarium, and after visiting the Aquarium and the ferry back to the car drove. Three trips for a total of 3.60 EUR per person and each time it was nice to go over the water, instead of using the subway or bus.

Now for the ferry ride. After we bought the tickets, they were checked for our tickets when we went a board. We made ourselves comfortable on the upper deck and off we went. It leaves the whole inner harbor and thus sees the skyline of Boston. The distance to shore is just right, so you can really give a nice overview. We had close to 20 degrees and sunny as we sat down, because it can cold with the wind on the open deck. The boat travels at a good pace, so you can take photos while driving.

The ferry ride was really fun. The view from the upper deck is superb and the ferry staff was very nice. If you put no value on a guided boat tour, then this kind of Boston from the water is certainly the best to explore - but above all the best.

The Inner Harbor Ferry is a really good and inexpensive alternative to the tourist harbor cruises. Whom the information the tour guides are not so important and wants to just enjoy the skyline from the water, the ferry is perfect. From the upper deck you have a great view and it times we went on the ferry it was never really busy.
Inner Harbor Ferry

Boston, MA

Holiday Inn Berkshires

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on July 8, 2011

The Holiday Inn North Adams Berkshiresin belongs to the famous hotel chain Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts. With 86 rooms to a total of 6 floors, it’s a big hotel. The Holiday Inn Berkshires offers guest rooms and meeting rooms for conferences, a pool, a sauna, a Jacuzzi and a fitness center. It is categorized with three stars.

The Holiday Inn Berkshires is, as already mentioned, in the town of North Adams. North Adams is in turn located in the northwest corner of Massachusetts near the borders of the states of Vermont and New York. From Boston, we drove about three hours. Route 2, which leads to North Adams, is surrounded by a truly beautiful landscape, which invites you to stopover. Just the trip to North Adams was very nice. The location right on the edge of the Berkshires, so then probably the name that is not too bad, because especially in autumn when leaves turn all are to see the mountains very beautiful.
The hotel itself is situated right in the city center, however, making it very accessible. We arrived at North Adams shortly after dark and the city felt a bit empty and lifeless. I have to say that North Adams for many years was a remarkable little factory town of 18,000 inhabitants and not necessarily the destination of the New England vacationer. This changed in 1999 with the opening of the Mass MoCA (Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Arts), where you can watch artists at work. This museum will be great, but as we on a Monday evening came after the club closed and the museum does not open on Tuesdays, we could not look.

Beside the hotel there is a large parking lot where you can leave your car for free. There is an entrance next to the parking lot, so you do not run around the building, but may come from the side. Beautiful it is, of course, through the main gate, where the sliding doors open by themselves then.
The hotel's location is very good overall, because there are supermarkets within walking distance, a pharmacy open 24 hours, has several restaurants, pubs and shops. In addition, the post office is just around the corner. In the evening the city is not very inviting, what may have been because that on that Monday evening, hardly anyone was out and the streets seemed deserted.

Anyone who relies on his cell phone, which is however not necessarily be pleased that interfere with the reception of the mountains. Several of us in all of North Adams had no reception.

The Holiday Inn Berkshires looks from the outside ike many other hotels in the chain: big, chunky familiar with the writing. The product photo shows it all very well, so I do not use other descriptions of the exterior. Upon entering the hotel you stand right in the lobby. This is very spacious and inviting. The reception is situated right opposite the main entrance and therefore can not be overlooked. From the lobby leads into the lounge, the bar area and restaurant, more on that later.

In the basement - when I've remembered it correctly - is then the so-called wellness area with indoor pool, whirlpool, sauna and fitness room. However, we have not made use of it, so I can not comment further on this. Our room we reached the elevator. All rooms are Non smoking rooms, which I find very enjoyable. The hotel hallways were carpeted, and looked no different than any other hotel corridors. Overall, the hotel was directly a positive, high-quality impression on us and it seemed to be clean.

This time we had three rooms with two queen beds. But these were relatively wide, so you - if you like it cozy - and find in it's second place would. With our magnetic card we opened our room and found ourselves once in a small hallway. Was collected by a half wall in the front area where the dressing room, a large mirror, which are located in the U.S. apparently mandatory ironing board and access to the bathroom. I have found this separation to be very pleasant, because if you go to the toilet at night, the light beam falls on opening the bathroom door is not directly on the bed, so the other is not necessarily awake.

The actual room was very spacious. Despite the two beds we had a lot of space. This room was once larger than our previous, although that was not already small. The decor was tastefully decorated in warm earth tones. The carpet had no obvious spots, but was very clean. Ever made the room very neat and clean appearance. Opposite the beds was a cupboard in its upper part was the TV. The TV is easy to see out of two beds and in addition to the normal channels via HBO. In addition, there is still room in a small table with two comfortable chairs. On coffee and you have to phone in the room, of course, not without. Throughout the hotel you can receive free Wi-Fi. In the rooms there are also doses, if one wants to connect his laptop with a cable.
As in our first hotel, could not open the windows. Fresh air is also supplied here with air conditioning. In contrast to the first hotel but this hotel had a pleasant warmth, which was also, so we had to not turn on the fan. From the window overlooking the city, but partly also to the Berkshires. I would say there are better, but even worse views. And since we left the next morning anyway back to us that was not so important.

The curtains darkened the room from adequate, the bathroom so you can find at night, without lights on, but you also will not awake with the sunrise. That was very pleasant, as I when it is too bright, always too soon will awake.

At the Holiday Inn Berkshires, breakfast is not included. One can - against payment - but still get some. This will launch into the breakfast room, which can be found directly behind the lounge and adjacent to the bar.

The large, cheerful room, with tables of different sizes. We got - we were six - the biggest table. Breakfast is ordered the à la carte, so there is no buffet. I opted for scrambled eggs with toast and black tea. Everything tasted good and the portion was a reasonable size. In addition to egg dishes, omelettes and cereals can also order pancakes. But they were very big and powerful. Price amounted breakfast, depending on what you ordered, to about 10 dollars, or about 7 EUR whereas you can say nothing. But it must of course set off on the overnight price.

The Holiday Inn Berkshires, you can check in from 15 clock and you have to check out up to 11 clock. Our rooms were paid for in advance, so we had to give only the magnetic cards. We have also been adopted as friendly and welcomes back to my question, they told us where to find the post office. So here too, all good!

In retrospect, it was really good that we got a hotel more in Williamstown, but landed at the Holiday Inn Berkshires in North Adams, it was at this hotel but one of the best of our trip. The rooms were for a 3-star hotel, very spacious. They were tastefully decorated, comfortable and clean. The bathroom was somewhat small, but also provides everything you need and was also clean. The breakfast was not included and is therefore still on top of the rate, but remained under priced and the taste was good. It is a pity that the hotel is more expensive because of the peak travel time than usual for what is offered but the price is still OK, so here I forgive nor less than 5 stars and a recommendation.
Holiday Inn Berkshires
North Adams, Massachusetts, 01247

U.S.S. Constitution

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on July 8, 2011

The U.S.S. Constitution is a ship but not just any ship, but the oldest floating warship. The U.S.S. Constitution is a frigate, whose hull was made from very hard oak. When the ship first set sail in 1797, it was with its 54 cannons, the most advanced warship of its time. At that time it left the Navy Yard in Charlestown to the Mediterranean to protect merchants against North African pirates. The U.S.S. Constitution went from 42 sea battles out with a win and because she was so robust that the bullets just bounced off their boards, in 1812 she received the nickname "Old Ironsides". Today the restored and refurbished USS Constitution is a Museum ship and represents the U.S. Navy. But the ship is still used for state receptions and formal occasions. Once a year on 4 July the U.S.S. Constitution runs decorated festively through the port.

Currently the U.S.S. Constitution is again elaborately restored which will continue for until 2011. But the work will certainly not take place during the opening times.

The U.S.S. Constitution is in the Navy Yard in the port of Boston's Charlestown neighbourhood. This is reached for example by car. Parking is plentiful in the vicinity, and if not quite as expensive as in Downtown Boston. Or you can travel from downtown with the Inner Harbor Ferry which docks less than 5 minutes away. Anyone who wanders the Freedom Trail will pass the USS Constitution, because it is one of the stations. Because the ship is registered in each district, one can not really miss it.

We reached the U.S.S. Constitution clock in the morning around 11, because we had parked nearby. At that time the audience was very small and therefore we decided to visit the ship immediately and not wait until we were coming upon the Freedom Trail. This turned out to be a good idea, because shortly after us the queue was getting longer, so here it is certainly one to two hours to queue. We were just at time and took us only five minutes to wait.

Why it takes so long is because that every visitor must go through a security checkpoint. Bags and jackets must like at the airport put in a crate. Also you need to empty your pockets and take off your belt. Then one goes through the control. For us this went without any problems.

After the security check we went back outside and saw only once a row of chairs, where visitors were waiting. These visitors were interested in a guided tour - which apparently cost nothing, at least I have not seen any box office - and waited to be picked up.

With its dark, polished wood and the tall masts of the USS Constitution makes it very impressive and may well be described as a beautiful ship. On board the ship then acts not much different than other museum ships I've visited. The fact that the crowd was getting bigger maked it impossible to stand a long time on one place and I felt sometimes a bit rushed.

Too bad I found that it was impossible to go below deck. This was probably reserved for the guided tours. But since we wanted to continue, we didn’t go for a guided tour, but contented ourselves with the upper deck. More than 15 minutes we have on the ship spent, and since the tour lasts only 20 or 30 minutes, I think we haven’t missed so much.

Overall, I liked visiting the U.S.S. Constitution, even if it is not necessarily a highlight that you should not miss. It is a beautiful imposing ship from which you can get not so much to see, because you may enter the lower deck only with a guide. The large crowd also clouds the whole picture a little. But since everything is free, I will not complain much. Four stars.
USS Constitution
Pier 1 Charlestown Navy Yard
Boston, Massachusetts, 2129
(617) 242-5642

New England Aquarium

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on July 8, 2011

The New England Aquarium is located right on the harbor next to the Marriott Long Wharf hotel. More precisely it's located at the Boston Waterfront. Here are also docks for tour boats or whale-watching tours. There is a parking garage nearby, but I recommend against it strongly, because parking is very expensive. For one day you pay $ 30 easily. I would recommend to park the car somewhere in an outer suburb and just walked a bit and save that 30 dollars! We have parked in Charlestown and took the ferry to the aquarium because the Pier is right near the entrance. Once you find yourself at the Long Wharf or Central Wharf, then you can't really miss the New England Aquarium.

After paying the entrance we enter the New England Aquarium and you get a stamp on the hand, so you can leave the Aquarium and re-enter it whenever you want during that day. After the entrance you have the opportunity to get a picture taking with the underwater world at the background. We didn’t do this because these pictures are always overpriced. Also at the entrance are the rest rooms located and there are lockers if you don’t want to wear your jackets and bags around.

Through a glass door then you enter the actual aquarium, located directly are the penguins. Here there is an artificial landscape rocks surrounded by water. Here are 80 penguins. The light here is insulated, the penguin island is illuminated, so you can watch the animals around the pen very well. The aquarium also offers opportunities to interact with the animals. For example, one can press a few buttons to get to listen to a few noises that the penguin makes and try to guess what that sound was produced by Penguin. That was very interesting because it partly but surprised how loud noise a little penguin can give. You can also view a penguin feeding, but at the time when we were there we were just too late. The aquarium is home to three species of penguins. The African penguin, the penguin Dwarf (the smallest penguin species) and the crested penguins.

The penguin enclosure surrounds the large water tank from the ground floor to the top floor. While going up or down - there are ramps, which are also suitable for disabled - can watch the animals swimming. Reproduced here is a Caribbean coral reef. While you can look to the side of the ramps, there are on the top floor of the possibility to look into the water. There is always an employee of the aquarium to answer questions from visitors. In addition to many species of fish in this tank are worth seeing, especially the green sea turtle and tiger sharks.
Who likes to rub shoulders with the animals this can be done in the Edge of the Sea touch tank. Here you can under the supervision of employees touch the various aquarium animals, such as touch crabs, lobsters and starfish. I personally think nothing of it, especially since it was very crowded and the animals have not had the opportunity to escape the many hands. On a positive note however you had to disinfect your hands, so that no bacteria gets into the water.

The Gulf of Maine is a series of basins, which deals with the creatures in the Gulf of Maine, so the area between Cape Cod and in Canada. You can watch the sea creatures that are active in the colder waters. These include, for example, lobster, cod, halibut, large starfish, etc.
Another attraction is the exhibition of Seadragon, which is the pipefish, which are related to the pipefish. Because they are well camouflaged, sometimes you need a little patience to discover them.

Overall, the New England Aquarium is not just big, we spent about a half hour in it. While there is much to see and you could spent more time here, but it was so crowded that you sometimes had to queue to see in a basin, which, of course dampens the fun a little. Nevertheless, the New England Aquarium is a very lovingly crafted and worth seeing the aquarium.

In the New England Aquarium you are allowed to bring his own food and drinks and also to eat there. There is also a café, which we have not visited.

The New England Aquarium in Boston is definitely worth a visit if you like aquariums like. It is no different from other great aquariums I've visited, but it is beautifully decorated and offers a wide variety of species. Still, it was quite small. Also, the large number of visitors has diminished the fun a little, as you often had to wait until you could look into a basin. Overall four stars.
New England Aquarium
Central Wharf
Boston, Massachusetts, 02110
(617) 973-5200


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