Boston Travel Diary

Monday, 27 June 2016

It's now been weeks since I left Boston but I've seriously been putting off writing about it. I fell in love with Boston as a city. So much so that I know deep down that one day I will return to the city to live there. Boston was everything I expected it to be and so much more. So it's quite difficult for me to write about it because I want to do my best by it, if that makes sense. But here we go. I'm going to be sharing all that I got up to in my 72 hours in Boston. When in Boston I was staying with my good friend Leda from Little Girl, Bigger World. We met last October at a bloggers event and it's really strange to say that I've visited her on the other side of the Atlantic after knowing her for such a short space of time. But that being said I'm forever grateful for the wonderful people that the blogging community has and is continuing to bring into my life. 

And enough of my rambling, lets get on with how I spent my first day in the city!

My plane arrived around 3:30 but it was closer to 4 by the time that I had cleared US customs (surprisingly more pleasant than Canadian customs). We went straight to the New England Aquarium as thankfully Leda's mom drove us. Despite getting there about an hour before closing I still think we got a pretty good look at everything there. Using a voucher from Leda's local library we were both admitted for $20 which is considerably cheaper than paying full price. I would seriously recommend looking out for some sort of offer/deal if you are visiting! The highlight of the aquarium was Myrtle the turtle! Isn't she majestic?

There's something about aquariums that I find so soothing. After spending two years working in an aquatic pet shop there's something so familiar about wandering around in the dark and looking around at all the fish. There are also several touch tanks around the aquarium and against my will I ended up touching several things I did not want to (thanks Leda).

As we left the aquarium I realised that I had completely forgotten about lunch as I'd had a 1pm flight but arrived at the airport at 11am. I was starving! So we walked over to Quincey Market which is like an indoor food market with lots of vendours. I settled on some vegetable fried rice which was a huge portion, cheap, tasty and did the trick. Leda for a smoothie which also looked delicious and we just sat and chatted about my plans for the trip and my hatred of American toilets (seriously they're different).

Leda's mom wanted some cannoli (and we did too) so we headed to the North End which is Boston's Little Italy area. There are two pastry shops here that apparently battle it out. We went to Modern. Leda says they're better because they don't prefill their cannoli meaning they don't get soggy. Makes sense to me! The cannoli really were delicious and I wish I could find something like this in the UK. For dinner we went to the Shake Shack in Newton much later on. I've never really understood the appeal of Shake Shack because I always thought the chips look really gross but honestly they were so good. I went for the classic shack burger and it really want delicious. Although steer clear of their iced tea it wasn't very good! 

We started off day 2 by taking a tour of the Boston Freedom Trail. Yes you can walk this alone for free but honestly the information that you get from the knowledgable tour guide is worth the money. I knew very little about American history before starting so learnt a lot. We went with the Freedom Trail Foundation and I would really recommend this! We did the tour backwards so that we finished in the Boston Commons as all the things we planned on seeing were in that area of town. 

We walked through the commons and into the Boston Public Gardens. Which were so incredibly beautiful. We went on the swan boat at the pond and it was so lovely and picturesque. Genuinely one of my favourite things about Boston. By this time were pretty hungry and tired (we didn't walk far during the tour but it was very, very hot) so we walked down the main shopping street in Boston before we stopped at Trident Booksellers for some lunch. I had a proscuitto, fig, brie and lettuce sandwich which was absolutely delicious and a really generous portion. Then for a sweet fix we got ice cream from Emack & Bolio's.

We spent the rest of the afternoon wandering around the Boston Public Library which was not only a gorgeous building but a welcomed break from the heat of the city. Being a total book nerd I absolutely love libraries but this library put all the ones I've visited in Scotland to shame. Absolutely gorgeous. I would love to live in the city and be able to come here with my laptop and sit surrounded by the marble and write. Hmmm. Maybe one day. The photos are a little lower quality here as I didn't want to disrupt the library with my camera so they're just from my phone.

I can't actually remember where I took this photo but it's pretty so I'm just shoving it in here. Leda's mom had made us a little Italian spread for dinner which we ate whilst drunk on G&T on Leda's porch. Don't ever let that girl pour you a drink. For real, I was steaming after one. 

On my last day in Boston we got the subway to Cambridge where we explored MIT and Harvard. Or at least tried to. The MIT campus was under construction so we couldn't actually see as much as we liked. And graduation was on at Harvard so we couldn't get into the grounds. That being said, it was a really nice part of town and it was still nice to walk around. We did visit the MIT museum. Being a science fanatic I expected to love it but honestly it was totally rubbish. It was really, really boring and you'd have to be like, super nerd to find it interesting. The best bit was the ping pong ball piano and robotuna. Not really worth it!

We did stop for lunch at a place that Leda absolutely raved about. As soon as I said I loved Chinese food she said we had to go here and it did not disappoint! It's called Dumpling House and they have a few over the Boston area. I had the sesame chicken and it was so delicious. We did order some shrimp and leek buns to share but honestly they were pretty gross and we should have gone for pork. Oh well, just means I need to go back! 

We finished off my last night in Boston by grabbing some ice cream from JP Licks. Definitely my favourite out of the two ice creams stores that I visited. In such a short space of time I managed to see so much of Boston but I also feel like there's so much more to see when I return. Out of all the places I visited on my trip, Boston was most definitely my favourite. It had totally captured my heart and I know I will return one day.

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