Union Oyster House
No sooner did we arrive that we went to the station, purchased out T weekly pass and headed into the city. First stop, Union Oyster House. That is always a must when we visit Boston. I do not think I ever sat in the restaurant and this time was no exception. Ted and I got our “usual” seat at the bar and ordered our usual dozen oysters on the half shell. Is there really any other better way to eat them? I think not 🙂 Between 2 men behind the bar, they shuck over 1700 per day on a weekday. That’s a lot of oysters! The bar seats maybe 8 -10 people. You are bound to strike up a conversation with someone who is sitting inches away. A Samuel Adams (they make a special brew just for Union Oyster House) and a dozen oysters. We are off to a good start!
Massachusetts State House
After lunch, we moved on the the Massachusetts State House. They were starting a tour in 2 minutes when we arrived (last one of the day), so we jumped at the opportunity. Our guide was a young man who was a political science major. He had a real passion for the history of the United States and Massachusetts and it came through in his delivery of all the information he shared with us. The tour starts on the main level in Doric Hall. There they have a magnificent portrait of Abraham Lincoln painted by Albion Bicknell around 1900. A short distance away in the same hall is an 1826 sculpture of George Washington by Sir Francis Chantrey. Amazing pieces of art and history.
We learned that Massachusetts is one of three states in the nation where the Governor does not live in an official governors’ residence. The existing Governor, Charlie Baker, has 10 different offices throughout the building but he has to catch the T at the end of the night just like his staff (well maybe not the T-but he does have to leave).
We learned what the state motto means that is on the Massachusetts state seal in Latin, “Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem”. Loosely translated into English it means, “By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty”.
We were taken to the flag room (oldest flag in the room from 1620, Town of Plymouth), through many of the hallways which displayed beautiful paintings and more sculptures, but the best was the House of Representatives of Massachusetts. Very impressive room filled with history. The desks are all original. To the top right of each, there is a round well. Originally they were used as an ink well, then ashtrays, now cup holders. Cool tid-bit of info. If you are going to Boston, put this stop on your list.
Sox vs Yankees
We cannot visit Boston without going to a Red Sox game and having a beer at the Cask n Flagon. Period. It has become “our tradition”. No matter the crowds, the weather (cold) or where we sit in the stadium. Going to a Sox game is exhilarating and cult like all at the same time. The fans are loyalists. They eat, breath and drink the Sox. It is a day’s celebration (even on a work day). Fenway is always full to capacity. You can’t help but have a good time. We did not win 😦 but we watched the most amazing National Anthem sung by Red Lion HS Choir (PA) . I always shed a tear when I hear that song. This time was no different. We cheered on the Sox, we sang Take Me Out To The Ballgame during the Seventh Inning Stretch, ate junk food and drank beer. A perfect night in Boston.
U.S.S Constitution “Old Ironside”
What better way then to work off the “Boston calories”, then to walk the Freedom Trail. This 2.5 mile walk takes you to 16 locations significant to the history of Boston and the United States. You follow a brick path and each location is marked along the way. This trip we visited the Bunker Hill Monument and the U.S.S Constitution. The Bunker Hill Monument was erected to commemorate the Battle of Bunker Hill. If you are in the “mood”, you can walk to the top of the monument. A mere 294 steps to the top. We were NOT in the mood 🙂
The U.S.S Constitution is breathtaking. A magnificent wooden-hulled, three-masted frigate of the United States Navy named by President George Washington. It was launched in 1797. She is the worlds oldest commissioned navel vessel afloat. The tour is given by Naval Officers. They tell you about the history of her launching, survival during war and then allow you to wander around the vessel on your own. The museum is just as interesting and enlightening. A great stop on the Freedom Trail.
New England Aquarium
What do you do on a rainy day in Boson? Go to the New England Aquarium and the IMAX Theater. The aquarium is huge. The tank that is in the center is 23 ft deep by 40 ft wide. It holds over 100 species of marine life. Just beautiful. There are tanks on every level filled with marine life from different continents and regions of the U.S. Super cool. Especially if you have little ones. Hands down, the penguins are the most popular attraction. So cute. I love those little creatures.
Cape Cod “The Cape”-Provincetown
Timing is everything, especially with the weather! With a beautiful day in our future, we decided to take the bike and drive down to Provincetown on The Cape. Such a nice ride. Provincetown is an adorable little artsy town with shops, restaurants and great scenic views of the water. It is a great day trip to walk around, ride a bike or go whale watching. Better yet, get a “lobstah” roll and a cocktail. Thats how we ended our day in Provincetown 🙂
Hingham -A walk and a burger
Ted lived in Hingham for 6 years back in his 20’s (long, long ago) so we decided to do a day visit. To start the day we went on a great walk through a great park, Worlds End. It was a crisp day so we knocked out a 3 mile walk that gives you the most amazing views of the Boston skyline. Feeling super refreshed and hungry, we headed off to lunch.
We made our way to Wahlburgers (yes, there is a theme here-we exercise and reward ourselves) A seat at the bar, a beer and the best (and I mean best) burger I have ever eaten. Perfect way to send off our trip through Massachusetts.
Loves Massachusetts, but as you know, we are onward and upward (literally)!
Heading to Maine…………
Where we stayed in MA- Normandy Farms est. 1759.
Ted and I found this little jewel (not so little) of a campground in MA called Normandy Farms. Established in 1759 by Francis Daniels. It is a beautiful camp ground nestled in between Boston and Cape Cod. It has over 500 sites on property and activities for all ages. If you are an RV or camping enthusiast, this is the place to stay when you are in this area. It is a great central location with many amenities on site.