Boston Travel Guide
Fair & Trade


Reserved and booky they may be, but Bostonians do Independence Day for a week and St Patrick's Day can hangover even longer.

Kick off the Chinese New Year in January or February with firecrackers and scampering dragons. If you've ever had a taste for green beer you can drink your fill on St Patrick's Day in mid-March. South Boston holds the city's biggest St Paddy's parade, though Cambridge has made a point of allowing the gay and lesbian groups that SoBo excludes from marching. The city streets resound with the muffled slaps of thousands of running shoes during April's Boston Marathon.

Harborfest is Boston's weeklong version of the Fourth of July, with a free Boston Pops concert on the Esplanade and fireworks over the harbour. Save some room for July's Chowderfest, when you can sample dozens of fish and clam chowders from some of Boston's best restaurants. Head over to Cambridge for the Christmas Revels, which feature music, dancing and theatre from a different folkloric tradition each December.

Boston Wine Festival
Regional wineries exhibit their wines during the last week in January. Each night, a winery provides dinner and the perfect wine to go with it. All dinners are prepared by one of Boston’s chefs. Located at the Harbor Hotel, 70 Rowes Wharf.Call (617) 439-7000 for more information.
Jazz Festival
Listen to world famous jazz musicians during mid-January. Located at the Charles Hotel, 1 Bennet St., in Cambridge, Call (617) 876-7777 for more information.
Boston Wine Expo
As the nation’s largest consumer wine event, the Boston Wine Expo uncorks an unparalleled wine and food experience. The Grand Tasting showcases more than 440 wineries from 13 countries pouring some 1,800 wines. Highlights include a Grand Cru Wine Lounge, seminars, celebrity chef demonstrations and two Vintner Dinners. Call (877) 946-3976 for more information.
Cookbook Dinearound
Join Chefs and food critics from all over the country when Boston restaurants bring out their best in this gourmet event. Sample some of Boston’s best food and watch the pros prepare their famous dishes. Beginning the third Friday of every January. Located around the Le Meridien Hotel. Call (888) SEE-BOSTON for more information.

Boston Wine Expo
If you enjoy wine, the Boston Wine Expo is a must. It is the largest public wine exposition in the country with over 400 wineries and 1,800 wines to sample. Check out cooking demonstrations by top chefs. Located at The Boston World Trade Center, 164 Northern Ave., beginning the 1st Saturday of every February. Call (617) 385-5000 for more information.
Boston Cooks!
For the latest in cookware and kitchen design, visit Boston Cooks! You can also sample dishes of some of the country’s best chefs. Located the Boston World Trade Center, 164 Northern Ave., starting the 2nd Friday of every February. Call (617) 385-5000 for more information.
Valentines Day Concert
Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a concert featuring symphony artists and local talent. Located at the Boston Museum of Fine Art, 465 Huntingdon Ave., early in February. Call (617) 267-9300 for more information.

St. Patrick’s Day
on March 17, come out to watch one of the largest St. Patrick’s Day parades. The parade starts on Broadway at the MBTA Station, City Hall Plaza. Call (617) 635-4500 for more information.
International Boston Seafood Show
Delight in fresh fish and explore new seafood products at the annual exposition of seafood vendors. Located at the Hynes Convention Center, 900 Boylston St., in the middle of March. Call (207) 842-5599 for more information.
New England Spring Flower Show
View some of the most beautiful local flowers and gardens at the Bayside Expo and Conference Center. Sponsored by the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, this event takes place in the middle of March. Call (617) 536-9280 for more information.

Boston Marathon
Join other runners in the annual Patriots’ Day race, starting at noon from Copley Square, Boylston and Dartmouth Sts. Sponsored by The Boston Athletic Association, this event takes place during the middle of April. Call (617) 536-4100 for more information.
Art in Bloom
Local garden clubs and area florists show off thier flowers at this annual convention. View hundreds of flower arrangements and garden galleries. Hosted by The Boston Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntingdon Ave., on the last Friday in April. Call (617) 267-9300 for more information.
Easter Egg Hunt
Bring the family and enjoy the fun at the annual Easter Egg Hunt. Sponsored by the city, this event is usually held on a Saturday in the middle of April. Located in Buttonwood Park, Rockdale Ave. and Route 6, in New Bedford. Call (508) 991-6295 for more information.

Dinner at the Otises
Tour the Harrison Gray Otis house, an 18th century house, owned by one of Boston’s early mayors. After the tour, enjoy a multi-course dinner from that period. Dinner served to a maximum of 20 guests. Tickets are $55.00. Located at 141 Cambridge St. Call (617) 227-3956 for more information.
Farmers’ Markets
Come out and enjoy the local produce. Located at two locations in Boston. The City Hall Plaza market opens on May 20, and the market at Copley Square, Boylston and Dartmouth Sts., opens on May 28. Call (617) 635-4500 (City Hall) and (617) 626-1700 (Copley Square) for more information. Workshop offers insight into securing literary agents, self-publishing and book promotion. Also staged in October and at other intervals, this workshop featuring Publishing Game author/publisher Fern Reiss includes continental breakfast. Call (617) 630-0945 for more information. Workshop
Held in May and September, this workshop, featuring’s Fern Reiss, provides insights in achieving fame for your expertise and media attention for your business enterprise. Call (617) 630-0945 for more information.
Tuesday Night Skate
Skate the night away with Boston’s inline skaters. Start at the Hatch Memorial Shell, Storrow Drive and skate through the city streets. Every Tuesday evening, beginning at 7 PM. Your helmet and wrist guards are required. Bright clothing is recommended. Call (617) 727-8855 for more information.

Free Friday Flicks at the Hatch Shell
Watch a classsic movie, on Friday nights, for free at the Hatch Memorial Shell, Storrow Drive. Call (617) 727-8855 the day before, to find out what’s playing or for more information.
Party in the Plaza
Enjoy a number of events and free concerts during Harborfest. Located at the City Hall Plaza’s North Stage, on the last weekend in June. Call (617) 635-3400 for more information.
Children’s Day at the Harborfest
Children between 4 and 11 will be entertained with history and marine science displays, games and a face-painting party all celebrating Harborfest. Located at the City Hall Plaza, on the last weekend in June. Call (617) 635-4500 for more information.
Midsummer Revels
Free to the public, this outdoor Summer Solstice celebration at the Children’s Museum has a Grand Parade followed by a 90-minute stage show filled with music, dance and songs from around the world. The evening ends with lighting of a Midsummer Beacon along Boston’s waterfront. Call (617) 972-8300 for more information.
American Liver Foundation Walk for Research
There’s free parking and no registration fee for a 3.1-mile walk along the scenic Charles River, with pledges supporting millions of children and adults affected by liver disease. Refreshments, entertainment, music, face painting, clowns and more are at Artesani Park in late June, off Soldiers Field Road in Brighton. Call (617) 527-5600 for more information.

Come out and watch the best chefs in Boston compete for the title of “Boston’s Best Chowder”. Taste the recipes and decide for yourself. Tickets are $5. to $7. Located at City Hall Plaza, 11 AM - 6 PM, July 1. Call (617) 635-4500 for more information.
Bastille Day in Boston
Celebrate this French national holiday with a street party featuring puppet shows, hatters and other street vendors. Sponsored by the French Library (53 Marlborough St., between Berkeley and Dartmouth Sts.). Call (617) 912-0400 for more information.
Swingin’ Under the Stars
Bring the kids and dance to live swing music, outdoors, with music provided by genuine swing bands. Instructors will be available to teach those who want to learn. Located on South Market St., on the steps of the Faneuil Hall Marketplace, 6PM - 10 PM, every Wednesday, starting in the middle of July. Call (617) 523-1300 for more information.
Multicultural Arts Expo
Boston’s Reggie Lewis Track Center on Tremont Street is the site for this multicultural arts extravaganza where crafters, performers and business owners band together to provide an array of ethnic artwork and performances. Call (617) 442-9912 for more information.

Chinatown Festival
Explore Asian culture featuring exhibitions of a variety of arts and foods and martial arts displays. Located in Chinatown (between South Station and the Boston Common), 10 AM - 6 PM, during the first week of August. Call (617) 635-3485 for more information.
August Moon Festival
Celebrate, in Chinatown, the 1368 overthrow of the Yuan dynasty. Enjoy authentic mooncakes with hiden messages. Located at the Gateway Arch on Harrison Ave., on the 3rd Sunday of August. Call (617) 635-3485 for more information.
Latin Nights
Dance to the Latin beat featuring live bands and dance instructors. Located at the Faneuil Hall Marketplace, on South Market St. Every Thursday night from 6PM - 10 PM, starting the first week in August. Call (617) 523-1300 for more information.

New England Conservatory
Enjoy free concerts hosted by the New England Conservatory. Located at Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsborough St., starting the first week of September. Call (617) 536-2412 for more information.
Boston Film Festival
View this exhibition of new films where many popular movies have premiered. Located at Loews Copley Place, 100 Huntington Ave., during the first two weeks of September. Call (617) 266-2533 for more information.
Fall Foliage
Join several million people as they observe the change of seasons. From the middle of September through the middle of October, drive through New England and enjoy the colors of autumn. Farm stands, self-pick groves, country fairs and festivals are abound this time of the year. Call (800) 227-MASS for more information.
An Evening With Champions
Since 1970, An Evening With Champions has raised more than $2.1 million for cancer research and care through the Jimmy Fund. Skating champions, past and present including Olympic medalists, join fundraiser hosts on the ice at Harvard’s Bright Hockey Center. Call (617) 493-8172 for more information.

Vegetarian Food Festival
Enjoy this exhibition of food and cooking for the vegetarian lifestyle. Hosted by The Reggie Lewis Athletic Center in the middle of October. Located at 1350 Tremont Street. Call (617) 541-3535 for more information.
Halloween on the Harbor
Join the party on deserted George’s Island. Enjoy Halloween activities and a costume contest. Boston Harbor Cruises leave from Long Wharf, every 15 minutes between 11 AM and 12:30 PM., on the last two weekends in October. Call (617) 227-4321 for more information. Workshop offers insight into securing literary agents, self-publishing and book promotion. Also staged in May and at other intervals, this workshop featuring Publishing Game author/publisher Fern Reiss includes continental breakfast. Call (617) 630-0945 for more information.
Mayor’s Cup Cross-Country Races
Join the U.S. Track & Field Association’s East Region championship in the one-day cross-country run in Franklin Park. Hosted by The Boston Athletic Association, which sponsors the Boston Marathon. Located in Franklin Park, 1 Franklin Park Rd., on the last weekend in October. Call (617) 236-1652 for more information.

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
Take a tour through the heiress’s turn of the 20th century, million dollar home. See a mixture of periods and styles in the furniture Isabella selected. There is also an art museum. Located at 280 The Fenway. Open Tuedays through Sundays, 11 AM - 5 PM. Call (617) 566-1401 for more information.
New England Aquarium
Check out a multi-level coral reef display inside an ocean tank or take a whale watch boat excursion at one of the nation’s most amazing aquariums. Located at the Central Wharf and open daily 9 AM - 5 PM. The boat excursions are available through the end of November. Call (617) 937-5200 for more information.
Dance all night at the city’s largest dance club. Call ahead to find out which famous DJs and guests will be appearing. Located at the Avalon, 15 Landsdowne Street. Doors open at 10 PM. Admission is $15. Call (617) 262-2424 for more information.

Boston Tea Party Re-enactment
Dress up in a Colonial outfit and see a re-enactment of the December 16, 1773 protest of taxation without representation. Hosted by The Old South Meeting House. Admission is free if you come in costume; otherwise it is $1. Call (617) 482 6439 for more information.
Chanukah Celebration
Join in the celebration of the festival of lights. Located Downtown Crossing. Call (617) 266-1492 for more information.
First Night
Celebrate New year’s Eve, in Boston, at First Night. There is partying in the streets and something for everyone at this fun filled party. Call (617) 542-1399 for more information.
Matzo Ball
From a humble start in a Boston bar, Boston's Matzo Ball bashes at the Boston Avalon have expanded to more than a dozen cities from Washington, D.C. to San Francisco and Seattle as a holiday party for Jewish singles on the night before Christmas. Call (617) 262-2424 for more information.

Public Holidays
third Mon in Jan - Martin Luther King Jr's Birthday
third Mon in Feb - Presidents' Day
first Mon in Sep - Labor Day
1 Jan - New Year's Day
4 Jul - Independence Day
25 Dec - Christmas Day
fourth Thu in Nov - Thanksgiving Day
last Mon in May - Memorial Day
11 Nov - Veterans Day
second Mon in Oct - Columbus Day

When to Go

Late May through June and September are the best times to visit. Everything's open, prices are moderate, days are warm and nights are cool. The busiest, most expensive times are high summer (July and August) and foliage season (late September to mid-October). During these popular times, many lodgings have restrictions about minimum stays, children, service charges, deposit refunds and payment; be sure to ask. The winters are often snowy and quite cold.

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