Lives in Chicago, Illinois
Since Aug 2014
25-34 year old female
Living Abroad - Family Travel - Health, Culture, & Travel Writer - Foodie - Blogger - Mom
Jazz Clubs & Bars
Historic Walking Areas, Biking Trails
Islands, National Parks
Points of Interest & Landmarks
Although I've visited this wonderful jazz club many, many times, I still sometimes miss it when walking down the street. A narrow, unassuming entrance on a residential block takes you into an equally narrow, long interior, packed with regulars moving, drinking, and socializing to the energetic tunes of a nightly jazz band playing at the very back.
The Minuteman Trail is a converted railway which now serves as a 10-mile park for biking, skating, running, and walking. It's a beautiful way to get out of the city center, do something active, and people-watch during your visit.
Set in trendy Davis Square, the Somerville Theater was originally designed for opera, vaudeville, and film screenings in the early 1900s. Today, it's a multi-purpose venue for first-run movies, independent film festivals, dance, music, and comedy.
The SoWa Artists Guild is an association of studio artists with a collection of art galleries in Boston's South End. Every Sunday from May through November, the association hosts a giant market with four parts: an open-air lot of art stalls, a lot for food trucks, a historic space set up as an antique market, and a block of artists' studios open to the public. Throughout the year, more than 60 artist studios also open to the public the first Friday evening of each month.
Boston is lucky to be home to the Berklee College of Music, the world's largest independent school of contemporary music. This means that during the academic year, the college hosts a diverse program of daytime and evening performances each day, given both by its talented students and visiting artists.
This Portuguese-American, family-owned spot has to be one of the best brunch experiences in the city. There is always a line on weekends, but you can help yourself to free pastries and coffee (or check out hip Union Square!) while you wait. Neighborhood serves up generous portions of hearty, inventive, and flavorful food, and the family service is welcoming and efficient. Bonus: Sitting out on the colorful terrace in the summer is a pleasure.
For a real community feel, head to City Feed and Supply in Jamaica Plain. This is a combination grocery store and cafe that specializes in natural and local foods. The Centre Street location is a perfect starting point for exploring Jamaica Plain, a diverse family neighborhood.
Cambridge and Somerville, an easy walk or 'T' ride across the river from Boston, are known to be somewhat snobby about their beer. To meet customer demand, many bars have a variety of IPAs, Belgians, dark ales, and craft beers on tap, including brews from nearby Vermont and Maine. But Cambridge Brewing Company keeps things local. The microbrewery has been turning out craft brews and seasonal New England grub since 1989, and is known for its funky experimentation. Case in point: My favorite CBC try was a beer and sake hybrid. Beers rotate out seasonally, but no matter when you visit you can expect other innovate drafts, like beer with notes of roasted jalapeños, green tea, or butternut squash.
For a night of dancing, skip the club district and head to Middlesex Lounge in Cambridge. The layout is simple: a relatively small, square room. The music: a perfect mix of favorite dance tunes and funky DJ mixes – think pop and '90s, with smooth transitions between variations on favorite songs. The crowd: just plain fun.
One thing that even locals take for granted is how easy and inexpensive it is to get out on the water. Take a ferry to Boston Harbor Islands to enjoy a 20-40 minute ferry ride (depending on which island you visit), along with beautiful views of the skyline and a chance to picnic or relax on the beach.
Smack in the middle of Harvard Square and right next to 'The T' station, Out of Town News is an iconic site and may just be the most common meeting point for connecting with friends in the Square. But you also need to spend some time inside – this typical-looking news-stand sells foreign magazines and newspapers from all over the world.