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15 Best Things to Do in Massachusetts



Massachusetts is the site of the first Thanksgiving back in 1621. But these days, you’d know it’s more than just a Thanksgiving destination. Explore Massachusetts and embark on an adventure that will make you appreciate art, agritourism, history, outdoor, sports, and sightseeing.

Here’s your guide to the best things to do in Massachusetts:

1. Explore the Freedom Trail

Massachusetts State House Freedom Trail Massachusetts
Source: Massachusetts State House | WBUR/Jesse Costa

Every step in the Freedom Trail is important because each step will lead you closer to the most iconic destinations. But what does that mean? Well, this 2.5-mile destination connects 16 nationally significant sites, each one historic and authentic.

Walkthrough the modern city while learning about its history. The sites included in the Freedom Trail are:

  • Boston Common
  • Massachusetts State House
  • Park Street Church
  • Old Corner Bookstore
  • Granary Burying Ground
  • King’s Chapel & King’s Chapel Burying Ground
  • Boston Latin School Site/Benjamin Franklin Statue
  • Old State House
  • Boston Massacre Site
  • Old South Meeting House
  • Faneuil Hall
  • Paul Revere House
  • Old North Church
  • Copp’s Hill Burying Ground
  • USS Constitution
  • Bunker Hill Monument

Not only that, but you can also join a guided tour if you would want to visit all these sites.

2. Make Way for Ducklings at Boston Public Garden

Make Way for Ducklings Boston Public Garden Massachusetts
Source: Make Way for Ducklings in Boston | Flickr/Lorianne DiSabato

The Boston Public Garden was the first botanical garden in America and is known to be decorative and flowery since its inception. It has a Victorian touch to it and is designed with mesmerizing and vibrant floral patterns combined with exotic imported trees.

Visit this spot and see one of Boston’s greatest attractions. For instance, the ‘Make Way for Ducklings’ installation will definitely appeal to everyone familiar with Robert McCloskey’s classic children’s book about… you guessed it – the duck family.

3. See the Epic Aquinnah Cliffs

Aquinnah Cliffs Martha's Vineyward
Source: Aquinnah Cliffs | Martha’s Vineyard/Max Bossman

The Aquinnah Cliffs (or Gay Head) is one of Martha’s Vineyard’s most visited spots due to its dramatic clay cliffs not generally seen in ordinary beaches. You’ll see a mix of red and orange clay and sand that creates a rainbow effect.

The cliffs were carved by glaciers millions of years ago, and you’ll be left equally speechless and astounded by the beauty of nature.

4. Visit the New England Aquarium

New England Aquarium
Source: New England Aquarium | Chelynn Sheehan

Do you know why this place has over 1.3 million visitors per year? Well, it’s mostly because it is a major public education resource. The exhibits feature more than 8,000 aquatic creatures, and you can even do whale watching, and learn from the Simons IMAX Theatre.

Put this in your itinerary because learning about ocean exploration and marine conservation is one of the best things to do in Massachusetts.

5. Go Back in Time at the Plimoth Plantation

See history become real in a place where you can relive the settlement days of Plymouth Colony. The best part is, this living history museum is also a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate.

Check out the Wampanoag Homesite, 17th-Century English Village, and the Plimoth Bread Company, among many other spots.

6. Go Inside the Bunker Hill Monument

Bunker Hill Monument Massachusetts
Source: Bunker Hill Monument | National Park Service

The Bunker Hill Monument is a historic site that’s built to commemorate the Battle of Bunker Hill – a major battle between the British and Patriot forces during the American Revolutionary War. Visiting this place is one of the best things to do in Massachusetts. But if you want to see it fully, you can secure a pass from the museum so you can climb the monument.

The admission is free of charge, but you better be quick because it’s on a first-come-first-serve basis.

7. Do Some Shopping at Quincy Market

Are you ready to do some shopping? Well, you better make that major shopping because the Quincy Market is home to hundreds of shops!

Stroll around the 3 historic market buildings and delight in this paradise! Plus, it gets better. Shopping isn’t going to be your only agenda here. There are a lot of good eats and fantastic performers that will enhance your Quincy Market experience as well.

8. Spook Yourself at Salem Witch Museum

Salem Witch Museum Massachusetts
Source: Salem Witch Museum | Flickr/Rebecca Dru

You may not be familiar with the Salem witch trials of 1692. If that’s the case, visit the Salem Witch Museum and get an immersive look into the events during the dark times. There are thirteen stage sets, lighting, and narration sure to intrigue you of the Salem witch hunt.

Address: 19 1/2 Washington Square North, Salem, Massachusetts 01970

9. Explore the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University

Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
Source: Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University

There’s no better display of botanical research, education, and horticulture than the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. Why? The 281-acre Arboretum features an impressive living collection of trees, shrubs, and woody vines.

Simply admire the beauty of this place, or examine the plant diversity if you are a Harvard student or faculty, visiting scientist, or an Arboretum scholar.

10. Visit the Institute of Contemporary Art

Witness thematic exhibitions, as well as fascinating museum shows in the Institute of Contemporary Art. This place is known for its dynamic visual arts program as well as its interesting architecture.

11. Go on a Whale Watch Tour

Whale Watch Tour
Source: Whale Watch Tour | New England

Enjoy the whale watch experience of a lifetime by joining a high-speed adventure that will take you to Stellwagen Bank Marine Sanctuary, which is a feeding ground for whales and other sea creatures.

Clearly, you should not miss the humpbacks, finbacks, and pilot whales. There are also dolphins and sea birds around which will enhance the whole experience.

12. Visit The Concord Cheese Shop

The Concord Cheese Shop
Source: The Concord Cheese Shop

If you’re looking for the best cheese selections in Boston, then, look no more. The Concord Cheese Shop is recognized as a quintessential merchant of the big cheese round. Unsurprisingly, this famous place’s salads, wines, and baguettes are also nothing short of delicious. Locals know that this place is always worthy of a visitor’s notice.

Address: 29 Walden St, Concord, MA 01742

13. Be Amazed at the Museum of Science

Be a learner in the world of science and technology, and explore New England’s most highly attended cultural institution. The Museum of Science regularly conducts temporary exhibits, hosts Planetarium shows, and IMAX films, as well as live presentations.

Regular Museum Hours:
Sat – Thurs: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Fri: 9:00 am – 9:00 pm

14. Visit Fenway Park as a VIP

Fenway Park
Source: Fenway Park | Getty Images/Billie Weiss

Enjoy a one-of-a-kind experience at America’s most beloved ballpark and come see Fenway as a guest or an avid Red Sox fan. There is a Fenway Park experience that will take you and your companion to two Red Sox games, first-class accommodations, and a VIP tour before Saturday’s game.

Furthermore, you can even do a pre-game meet & greet with a current Red Sox player during that day. Last but not the least, you’ll get a premium Red Sox merchandise, as well as event photos so you can keep the memories forever.

15. Grab Some Food While Overlooking the Dudley Pond

Dudley Chateau
Source: Dudley Chateau

Dudley Chateau is a gathering place for sports and food enthusiasts. Have your morning breakfast or lunch while enjoying the view of people fishing, going on excursions, or paddling their canoes or kayaks in Dudley Pond.

Or you can just play a game of darts and watch a live game on their HD TVs. Either way, you’re sure to have a good time here.

So, what do you think is the first activity you should try?

A writer big on nature, travel, and dogs. If you can't find Errot with her furry pal, then she's probably out exploring.