Boston & Beyond…

Double, double toil and trouble; fire burn and cauldron bubble. – Shakespeare, Macbeth

Halloween is right around the corner and the Fall season makes for a great time to travel! Boston is a great place to visit and tourists are attracted to this city for many reasons! However, there is one thing that people sometimes forget to take advantage of while they’re in Boston, and that is making the short trip to visit Salem, Massachusetts. According to Salem.com, “Salem has a rich history that includes a key role in the spice trade with the East Indies, being the birthplace of the National Guard and the home of the infamous Salem Witchcraft Trials of 1692.” Salem was founded in 1626 and according to their slogan, they are “still making history.” So while you’re in Massachusetts, make sure you enjoy the benefits of both Boston and Salem! Also, if you’re interested in winning free prizes then don’t forget to enter our “Scared in Salem” Sweepstakes for Halloween! You could win two (two-day) “Go Boston Cards.”

Explore Boston

Enter the “Scared in Salem” Sweeps for a chance to win cool prizes!

While Hurricane Sandy continues her strike in Massachusetts, obviously Boston and Salem aren’t the prime vacation spots in anyone’s mind right now. However, when the weather clears up, you should definitely visit these parts of the state to see what they have to offer 🙂

Boston Scenery

According to BostonUSA.com, “Over 18 million people visit the city annually, making it a leading tourist destination.” The city “serves as all things to all people” by providing a variety of dining options, entertainment, shopping experiences, tours, and much more. There is even a section on the “Greater Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau” website that allows you to view events in Boston by the season. For example, if you read the “Fall in love” section you will find out what to wear and what the weather will be like during the Fall season. This section also informs you that Boston’s parks put on an incredible show that compliments the historic architecture and that strolling along the Freedom Trail can double as a foliage tour. Two other options for activities in the Fall are to visit Boston’s Faneuil Hall Marketplace and to check out the beautiful courtyard at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. For a cool view of Boston in the Fall, check out this video:

 Salem Sightseeing

Salem.com states that “Today, Salem is a vibrant urban community with a bustling downtown full of an eclectic mix of shops and restaurants.” Also, there are plenty of free things to do in Salem…and that’s always a plus! Here is a list of 10 free things to do in Salem:

  • Four Self-Guided Walking Tours (Brochures for the African American History Trail, the Nathaniel Bowditch Trail: A Walking Tour of the Great Age of Sail, and the McIntire Historic District Walking Trail are available at the visitor centers. Each walking trail takes about one hour and will show you hidden points of historical interest and fascination.)
  • Three Historic Cemeteries (Salem has wonderful, historic cemeteries, including the Old Burying Point Cemetery on Charter Street, Howard Street Cemetary, and the Broad Street Cemetary. The Old Burying Point is the oldest cemetery in Salem, and in it it you can see the graves of, among others, a Witch Trials judge, a Mayflower passenger, and architect Samuel McIntire. Cemetaries are open from dawn until dusk, and exploration is encouraged.)
  • Two Free Films (The National Park Service Regional Visitor Center (2 New Liberty Street) shows the film Where Past is Present, and the Salem Maritime National Historic Site (193 Derby Street) shows the film To the Farthest Ports of the Rich East. Both films are certain to tell you something about Salem that you never expected)
  • One Beautiful Street (Take the time to wander down the beautiful Chestnut Street, which was the first planned street in America. Read all of the house plaques to learn the about the people who built and lived in the exquisite Federalist mansions.)
  • A Garden Grows (Visit the Ropes Mansion Gardens, 318 Essex Street, and explore a stunning Colonial Revival garden that was created in 1912. Part of the collections of the Peabody Essex Museum, the garden is open to the public and throughout the growing season, offering a splendid sampling of local horticulture.)
  • Salem Common ( Originally used as a grazing area for Salem residents’ livestock and a training area for the Salem militia, today Salem Common is a favorite spot for jogging, reading, concerts, and wedding ceremonies. A new playground was installed in 2010, giving families a perfect place to unwind and enjoy some fresh air.)
  • Walk the Wharf (Derby Wharf, part of the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, extends one half-mile into Salem Harbor, providing walkers and joggers with a beautiful view of Salem, Salem Harbor, and Marblehead.  At the end of Derby Wharf sits the historic Derby Light Station, which has been a working navigational tool since 1871)
  • The End of the Line (A public park since 1858, Salem Willows has been a performance venue for Duke Ellington, and the home of America’s first ice cream cone. Today Salem Willows Park is a retreat with two beaches, a fishing pier, food stands, kiddie-land rides and two arcades. A stroll around the park, and the many free concerts held throughout the year won’t cost you a cent, but you may want to plan on buying some of Hobbs’ famous popcorn, a Chop Suey Sandwich, and putting a few quarters in the skeeball machines.)
  • A Moment to Reflect (Dedicated in 1992 to mark the tercentenary of the Salem Witch Trials of 1692, the Witch Trials Memorial (Liberty Street between Charter and Derby Streets) is a somber, symbolic place to reflect on the events of 1692.)
  • Connecting it all (Many of these sites, along with Salem’s excellent museums and attractions, are linked together by the Heritage Trail, which is a red line painted on the sidewalk. Use the Heritage Trail to help you navigate your way through Salem and American history! The Heritage Trail is printed on the map in the annual Salem City Guide.)

For more information on what to do in Salem, you can also check out the Official Salem MA Guide.

Salem, MA

The beautiful Chestnut Street in Salem, MA

Go Boston Card

The “Go Boston Card” is a spectacular item that we are GIVING away. Actually…we’re giving TWO away! How great is that? This card allows you to get access to more than 58 attractions! Some of the top attractions are:

In order for this to work, you will receive a physical card that will serve as your pass to all of the included Boston attractions. Then, you simply need to present your card at any of the included attractions between 9:00am-5:30pm and you will get same day entry. The Go Boston Card even features some attractions in Salem, such as the Salem Witch Museum.  For a complete list of places that you can visit while using the Go Boston Card, see here: Included Attractions. Also, check out this video of a Go City Card to get a further understanding of how your card will work:


Like I said before, the weather isn’t perfect right now. But, when it clears up, you should definitely keep Boston and Salem in mind when planning your next trip!! There is something to do for everyone and you can learn some really cool things about both cities.

Don’t forget to use the My Explore Hertz NeverLost Mobile Companion as your guide if you need anything!

Hope you make it out to Massachusetts soon!!

Melissa Woodring 🙂

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One comment on “Boston & Beyond…

  1. Kermit
    August 25, 2014 at 9:18 pm #

    Hey there! I’m at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone 4!
    Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts!
    Keep up the fantastic work!

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