Making the Most of Your Summer Trip to Boston

Boston welcomes visitors all year long but if you want to make the most out of all the city has to offer, consider visiting during the summer months when the weather’s warm enough to enjoy a number of outdoor activities. There are also food and drink festivals that occur all throughout the season and one of the best Independence Day celebrations in the United States. Should you find yourself traveling to Boston over the next few months, consider these suggestions on how to make the most out of your summer trip to Boston.

Summer Trip to Boston: Activities

The Great Outdoors

There’s more to Boston than following the Freedom Trail pathway or visiting the sights along the harbor. If you love the great outdoors, drive up north to reach the Belle Isle March Reservation where you can admire the scenic views, explore the hidden trails, and bird watch as you walk along the newly created pedestrian pathway. You can also hike on Georges Island or Little Brewster Island. The former houses Fort Warren, a Civil War-era fort with a bloody and ghostly history. Take one of its ranger tours and learn about the role it played during the Civil War. Little Brewster Island is another one of the harbor islands with plenty of scenic trails and picnic grounds. It also houses America’s oldest light station.

Summer Trip to Boston: Fort Warren Hall via Flickr by Tim Bouwer / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Fort Warren Hall via Flickr by Tim Bouwer / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Get Wet and Wild

Sailing on the Charles River is one of the most popular activities for Bostonians particularly during the summer months. Companies like Community Boating, Inc. has over 100 different types of watercraft from Centerboard Mercuries to windsurfers and offers full or seasonal membership rates that begin at $99. You can also get down and dirty, literally, by taking a tour of Island Creek Oyster Farm. Learn how to culture, catch, and harvest oysters and spend a lovely afternoon on Duxbury Bay at the same time. Price is $75 per person and tours last approximately half a day.

Summer Trip to Boston: Sail boats on the Charles River via Flickr by Marc Buehler / CC BY-NC 2.0
Sail boats on the Charles River via Flickr by Marc Buehler / CC BY-NC 2.0

Good Eating

A summer trip to Boston means enjoying the season for outdoor food events and festivals. Head on over to Cambridge and join the throngs of people queuing up for Saturday BBQ at Formaggio’s. The local restaurant fires up their outdoor grill when the weather gets warmer, smokes beef, pork, and lamb to the delight of the locals. There’s also the Boston Jerk Food Festival, which occurs sometime in June. Caribbean chefs showcase their authentic jerk-spiced foods and traditional homemade beverages. There’s also a Spice Lane where you can sample hot sauces, jams, and desserts and a rum tasting for people 21 and older. Finally, Boston also hosts the annual Fisherman’s Feast, a century old tradition held at Boston Harbor. The feast has a religious association and stems back from its origins in Sicilian culture. Activities often include live musical performances, vendors selling Italian nibbles, local arts and crafts.

Summer Trip to Boston: Food stall
Food Stall

Good Drinking

A summer trip to Boston also means sampling lots of craft beer. You can do just that at one of the many beer festivals that Boston hosts during the months of June, July, and August. Take the Hyper-Local Craft Brewfest for example. It’s one of the most anticipated craft beer festivals in New England since it features not just local producers but also those who pride themselves with using local ingredients. Participants include local brewers of beer, cider and mead, newly established breweries, other artisan beverage makers, and local food vendors. It’s also one of the few festivals where you’ll get the opportunity to sample cask-conditioned beer. Then there’s the American Craft Beer Fest. It’s the east coast’s largest craft beer festival with over 640 craft beers available to sample and buy from over 140 participating breweries around the country.

Summer Trip to Boston: Craft beer paddle via Flickr by Crystal Luxmore / CC BY-NC 2.0
Craft beer paddle via Flickr by Crystal Luxmore / CC BY-NC 2.0

Relive and Celebrate American History

New York might boast the largest fireworks display show during Fourth of July but Boston certainly has one of the most interesting and most fun Independence Day celebrations with Boston Harborfest. This weekend long festival includes a number of revolutionary war re-enactments performed near Bunker Hill as well as free concerts and a fireworks show choreographed to a live performance by the Boston Pops. Tourists can also visit several U.S. naval ships that are generally closed to the public and take an enhanced version of walking tours along the Freedom Trail.

Summer Trip to Boston: 4th July in Boston
4th July at Boston Harborfest

These are just a handful of suggestions on how to make the most out of your summer trip to Boston. For more information on cheap hotels in Boston, activities, events, and restaurants, go to Boston USA, the city’s official tourism website.

[easy2map id=491]

About Iris A


Born in the Philippines, but grew up in Texas, Iris has been traveling and writing about her experiences for well over a decade. Her work has been published on well-known travel sites like Hipmunk (#hipmunkcitylove) and D Magazine Online Travel Club. She has been all over Europe, the US, and has recently started exploring Latin America. She loves trying local cuisine and visiting UNESCO deemed World Heritage sites. Her favourite city is New York, with London, following a close 2nd. You can follow her on Twitter @sundeeiris or through her travel blog, Traveling With Iris.

Other posts by the Author

2 Responses

  1. Avatar for Iris A

    Iris A

    Thank you Julia. I’m glad to hear it. Please let me know if you’re ever in Washington, D.C.

  2. Avatar for Iris A


    Great overview and really useful as I’m heading to Boston next month. I’ll certainly be following some of your tips!


Leave a Reply