Boston – the capital of Massachusetts, the world’s educational mecca and the home of Fenway Park and the Red Sox. Yes, Boston is known for its sports fans and horrific accents, but it is also known for its great American history and incredible universities. I’ve lived in the Greater Boston area my entire life and can say without a doubt that there are some hidden gems you must visit if you ever find a parking lot in Harvard Yard (wink, wink eye).
1. Top of the hub
Located on the 52sd floor of the Prudential Tower. Believe me when I say there is no more magnificent view than here. Restaurant prices are quite high, so even a cocktail at the bar would suffice. The restaurant offers an incredible view with floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the many facets of Boston’s neighborhoods. The Top of the Hub is a 145-seat white tablecloth restaurant with a 190-seat lounge. The lounge hosts live jazz music, which is very popular during Sunday brunch. Personally, I love the Hub Chopped Salad and the Grilled Filet Mignon. But of course you have to finish your meal with their Boston Cream Pie.
Located: 800, rue Boylston 52sd Floor, Boston – 02199
Opening hours: Monday to Wednesday 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 a.m., Thursday to Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 a.m. and Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. For more information, visit Tob of The Hub.
2. The Science Museum – Mugar Omni Theater
Tourists and Bostonians alike visit the Science Museum for many reasons. It is home to many experiences, interactive studies, children’s areas, engaging exhibits, a gift shop and a planetarium. But the only reason I always go there (having done so many field trips) is for the Omni Theater. It is the largest film format in the world projected on a five-story IMAX screen. Audiences are brought to far-off worlds and underwater to the darkest depths of the sea. It has a cutting-edge digital audio system and truly redefines what it means to go to the movies. Think of it as a truly living planet Earth.
Located: 1 Science Park, Boston – 02114
Opening hours: daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, visit the Mugar Omni Theater.
3. SoWa Market
Currently open for its 10e season, the SoWa Open Market is open Sundays throughout the summer and fall in Boston’s historic South End. The market is home to 35 food trucks, an organic farmers market and an arts market. The best Boston makers and designers are accepted to sell in the market, resulting in only the best in art and cooking. Not many people know about this three-block market full of culture and retail. Last year I bought a darling set of homemade candles. They had the most delicious scent – now I have to go back and have more!
Located: 460 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA
Opening hours: Every Sunday from May to October from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, visit the SoWa market.
4. Frog Pond / Boston Common
The Boston Commons is a beautiful landscape of parks, trees and water. Many college students go out to throw Frisbees or have a picnic during the warmer months. Others cross it on their daily commute to work. The reason I keep coming back to the House of Commons is to skate on Frog Pond. In November and December, they play Christmas music, as twinkling lights twinkle among the trees and Beacon Hill is dressed in wreaths and bows. Although it is more romantic during the holidays, you can enjoy the area all year round. It is one of the oldest and most valuable public parks in America. In spring and fall, the pond turns into a reflecting pool and in summer into a sprinkler pool and children’s merry-go-round. There is also a play area for the kids and the Frog Pond Café is open all year round!
Located: The Boston Commons, Boston, MA
Opening hours: Public park – Carousel opening hours from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., reflective pool by Saturday, April 13e, The Café Mid-May, The Spray Pool Thursday, June 27e – Labor Day. For more information, visit the Boston Common Frog Pond.
5. Mike’s Pastry
If you’re from Boston, I know at this point on the list you’re yelling at me – Hello! Why haven’t you mentioned the North End yet ?! The North End is one of Boston’s most historic neighborhoods. Known for its Italian cuisine and culture, tourists flock to this area in all seasons. While I could write an entire article on the North End, I will stick to the gem that you will all thank me for mentioning one day. Mike’s Pastry will challenge all pastries. The store’s heritage has brought spirit and inspiration to the streets of the North End for many years. I can’t help but try all types of cannoli as soon as I walk in. They also serve traditional Italian pastries like biscotti, cakes, cookies, pies, squares, torrones, gelati and marzipan. Delizioso!
Located: 300 Hanover Street, Boston – 02113
Opening hours: Sunday to Tuesday 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Wed- Thu 8:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. Fri – Sat 8:00 a.m. – 11:30 p.m. For more information visit Mike’s Pastry.