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BOSTON    May, 2014

Seven retired women teachers arrived at our yacht in Boston Bay Marina but unfortunately it wasn't quite ready for guests. To put a smile back on our faces, the staff gave us use of a houseboat as well. Two floating accommodations for the price of one.
We lucked out!

We bought the Go Boston card which gave us free admission to 53 attractions. Given that we had limited time, we visited as many attractions as we could.
This included the New England Aquarium which has a five-storey tank running up the centre.

The USS Constitution (Old Ironsides) whose exploits were brought to life by enthusiastic on-duty marines.
A highlight was the Harvard Natural History Museum with its 3000 unbelievably realistic glass models of plants. Even under close scrutiny, you'd swear that they were real.
The Museum of Fine Arts has a considerable collection of Americana paintings and sculptures and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is a palace with a picturesque courtyard and priceless artifacts.

We walked from plaque to plaque along the 2.5 mile Freedom Trail, starting at the Boston Common, wandering through cemeteries with the likes of Paul Revere's gravestone, visiting old churches and historical halls. We even witnessed a romantic marriage proposal at one of the plaques.

We wandered the narrow, gas-lit streets and brick sidewalks of the Beacon Hill neighbourhood, admiring the row houses with their unique door knockers (and the Maserati and Porches of the owners).

We travelled by Beantown Trolley snapping photos of beautiful sculptures and the interesting mix of old and new architecture which is the city.

No trip to Boston is complete without mentioning the food. Home-made pasta, seafood, pub food and Latin food. We tried it all.

Boston is an incredible city for enthusiasts of history, art, architecture and food. Five days just might not have been enough.

TIPS for this type of trip:

1. The city centre area of Boston is not laid out in any logical order (they claim it followed old cow paths), so driving can be a challenge. Public transit is very efficient and easy to use but park your car away from the city to save money.

2. In Boston, get a public transit CHARLIE CARD rather than a CHARLIE TICKET if you will be using both subways and buses. The CARD includes transfers. Both can be reloaded at the machines in subway stations and on the buses.

3. Both the Go Boston and the Boston City Pass have advantages. Check them out before you travel.