President John F. Kennedy's memory is sacred in the minds of many Americans. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum, a glass pavilion designed by Chinese-American architect I.M. Pei, is dedicated to his memory. Visitors are transported back to the darkest days of the Cold War. A short film recounts JFK's deeds in his own words while the authentic photos and exhibits evoke the brief period in White House history that nostalgic Americans refer to as "the days of Camelot".
There are more than 100 places to eat, shop and drink at Faneuil Hall Marketplace, also known as Quincy Market. French merchant Peter Faneuil gave the hall that precedes the marketplace to his adopted home of Boston in 1742. It has been called the Cradle of Liberty because of the number of revolutionaries and abolitionists who delivered important speeches here. The hall is now a tourist center and place to shop, but public meeting facilities are still available.
Launched in 1797, U.S.S. Constitution also known as "Old Ironsides" sailed her way into the history books by taking on the British fleet in the War of 1812. She fought in 40 naval battles, and never lost. The vessel received her unusual nickname after French cannonballs bounced off her sides during an 1815 military engagement. Still seaworthy, the ship is the oldest commissioned warship in the world. Free admission and tours, conducted by U.S. Navy personnel offer a look back in time. An adjacent museum features interactive exhibits.
The Stony Brook Wildlife Sanctuary is a 34.803 hectare (86 acre) stretch of green expanse that offers visitors a chance to experience nature. Complete with nature trails and specialized gardens, the sanctuary ensures an educational and interesting day out. Come here for a picnic with family or explore the wilderness along one of the trails. One can find numerous varieties of fish, birds, muskrats and turtles. The butterfly garden showcases a variety of brilliantly colored insects. Visit the onsite nature center for more detailed information regarding the park. The park is open from dawn to dusk.
The Old South Meeting House was originally built as a church by Puritans in 1729. This building went on to play an important role in the American Revolution as a gathering point for those seeking American independence from Britain. On December 16, 1773, over 5000 colonists met here to protest a tea tax. From the meeting, these protesters went to the waterfront and tossed crates of tea into the harbor. The act later came to be known as the Boston Tea Party. An in-house shop in the museum basement has small articles of the historic events that occurred here, as well as copies of books and documents of historical importance.
The Massachusetts State House is a prestigious landmark in the state capital. This 6.7-acre (2.7-hectare) complex is home to the Massachusetts General Court as well as the Governor’s office. The highlight of its architecture is its gilded dome gleaming under the sun. The pinnacle of the dome is a pine cone, a reminder of both the importance of Boston's lumber industry during the colonial period, and the state of Maine, which was a former district of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The rich embedded past of this building makes it an essential feature on tourist itineraries.
This historic church, built in 1749 and part of the Freedom Trail, has the distinction of being the first Anglican congregation in the American colonies. Then, in 1785, it became the first Unitarian church in the country. There is still an active congregation that uses the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. The interior is considered a paragon of Georgian architectural design. The 18th-century bell from England tolls even today. The church also has an historic cemetery. Although the church doesn't charge an admission fee, offerings will be appreciated.
Built as a tribute to real-estate developer Norman B. Leventhal, Norman B. Leventhal Park is nothing less than an oasis of Boston. The park occupies the famous Post Office Square; its winding paths are lined with a canopy of trees while the ground is covered in a carpet of carefully manicured grass. The setting is perfect for a quiet evening in solitude but the park has plenty of amenities for groups as well. It has free WiFi, an endearing library, a beautiful fountain and many other hidden gems waiting to be explored. In addition, Norman B. Leventhal Park regularly hosts a variety of health and exercise programs, lawn games and many more activities. There's also a cafe on site where you can enjoy scrumptious baked goods and a cup of well-brewed coffee while appreciating the park's verdant landscapes.
Park Street Church is a stop on the Freedom Trail, down the hill from the State House. Built in 1810, the basement served as a gunpowder storage depot during the War of 1812. Abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison gave his first anti-slavery speech here, and the Granary Burying Ground, where many famous early Bostonians are buried, is just steps away. The Federalist brick-and-wood building features a steeple and granite steps. The church houses an active parish.