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How to Spend 1 Day in Boston

How to Spend 1 Day in Boston

One of the oldest US cities, Boston blends historical sights from the American Revolution with an arty culture, collegiate buzz, and harborside skyscrapers. Getting to know the city in a day is a big ask, but can be done with savvy planning. See our tips for getting the best from Boston in one memorable day.

Morning: Check Out the Sights

Start by taking one of Boston’s hop-on hop-off trolley tours. Stay aboard to view the major sights in one trip: seeing landmarks such as Boston Common and Faneuil Hall or hopping out at any of the many stops to explore on foot. Consider purchasing a city discount pass for complimentary access to top attractions if you want to stay and visit. For a more comprehensive introduction to Boston, opt for a full-day coach tour, instead, which usually stops at highlights such as the restored USS Constitution tall ship and Harvard Square.

Afternoon: Take the Revolutionary Road

Boston’s Freedom Trail is lined with historic 18th-century buildings that tell the story of the patriots whose protests lit the touch for the 1776 American Revolution. Book a private or group tour to see trail highlights, such as the 1770 Boston Massacre site. Then, head to the harbor to explore the Boston Tea Party Ships, from which a group of patriots dumped British tea into the sea in 1773. Alternatively, see more sights on a bike tour, or if you’re feeling more adventurous, a Boston Duck excursion—riding an amphibious vehicle around the city before splashing into the Charles River to view its skyline.

Night: Relax with a Cruise

After a day’s sightseeing, admire Boston’s skyscrapers from the water on a sunset cruise. Choose a cruise that’s right for you. Perhaps stay in a historical mood with a trip on a 1920s-style yacht, or pull out the stops on a state-of-the-art motorboat cruise that includes a buffet dinner, live cabaret, and stellar views of Boston’s illuminated towers and bridges.

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Free Cancellation:Get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance on most experiences.See Details

8 Tours and Activities

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Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with 15 Stops

Boston Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley Tour with 15 Stops

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2116
Explore the best that Boston has to offer on this hop-on hop-off tour of the city. See Boston’s top attractions—like the USS ‘Constitution’ and the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum, to name a few—on the loop. Enjoy discounted admission to attractions like the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum with the purchase of your tour. If you upgrade to the Gold or Platinum Pass, you will be given your (seasonal) Harbor Cruise ticket when you check in for the Trolley Tour. These seasonal cruises depart periodically throughout the day close to Stop 1.
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  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$49.35
From
$49.35

Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum Admission

Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum Admission

star-4.5
525
Relive the most important event leading up to the American Revolution on this self-guided tour of the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum. Take a journey back in time to the famous Boston Tea Party, an incident that changed the course of American history. It’s more than a stroll through historic artifacts, though. It’s truly one of the top-rated museums in the city of Boston. Explore authentically restored tea ships and throw the fated tea into Boston Harbor.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
From
$29.95
From
$29.95

Walking Tour: Downtown Freedom Trail plus Beacon Hill to Copley Square/Back Bay

Walking Tour: Downtown Freedom Trail plus Beacon Hill to Copley Square/Back Bay

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253
Travel back in time through the early years of American history during this guided walking tour of Boston’s famous Freedom Trail and its most iconic landmarks. Relive the events of the American Revolution as you pass Faneuil Hall, see the Old and New State Houses, and visit the setting of the infamous Boston Massacre. Then head downtown past Boston Common and the modern John Hancock Tower, finishing in Copley Square. A professional guide joins your trip to help add context.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$35.00
From
$35.00

Go City: Boston All-Inclusive Pass with 40+ Attractions and Tours

Go City: Boston All-Inclusive Pass with 40+ Attractions and Tours

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185
Seeing the best of Boston doesn’t get any easier, or more economical, than with Go City's Boston All-Inclusive Pass. This flexible sightseeing pass allows visitors to pick and choose from a wide variety of Boston’s top attractions, over 40 in all, at any pace desired over the course of one, two, three, five, or seven consecutive days. Enjoy immediate entry to attractions. Simply save the pass (available as your 'ticket' after purchase) on your mobile device and go. No voucher redemption is required. Please note: Enjoy the extra flexibility in case your travel plans need to change: All passes are valid for two years from purchase date and only become activated with your first attraction visit. After activation your pass will be valid for the remaining number of days purchased.
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  • 1 to 7 days
From
$76.00
From
$76.00

Boston City view Bicycle Tour

Boston City view Bicycle Tour

star-5
357
Discover Boston’s top attractions on this comprehensive guided bike tour around the city. See the unique character and charm of each community up close, like the beautiful brownstones in Back Bay and the South End. Visit Boston’s historic North End and pedal past Copley Square and Fenway Park. Cross the Freedom Trail, passing significant locations to United States history.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
From
$68.00
From
$68.00

Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out

Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise

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60
Take an evening cruise on Boston Harbor to watch the sunset from the water. Glide out to the Old North Church and Historic Site, the Charlestown Navy Yard, Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge, and the USS Cassin Young. As a bonus, listen to the cannon fire of the USS Constitution, which marks the sunset each night.
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  • 2 hours
From
$48.00
From
$48.00

Guided Walking Tour of the Downtown Freedom Trail in Boston

Guided Walking Tour of the Downtown Freedom Trail in Boston

star-4.5
128
Explore Boston's Freedom Trail on this informative and historic tour complete with a guide. Wander cobblestone streets, check out the architecture, and learn about the colorful past of this dynamic destination. Stops include Faneuil Hall, King's Chapel, Boston Common, and more.
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  • 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$20.00
From
$20.00

Boston Sunset Dinner Cruise with Buffet

Boston Sunset Dinner Cruise with Buffet

star-4
127
Try a unique alternative to a typical night out in downtown Boston on an exciting dinner cruise along the city’s waterfront. This expedition on Boston Harbor features an all-you-can-eat buffet meal with live entertainment and dancing. Watch the sunset, then take a stroll under the stars and enjoy the view of the illuminated Boston skyline at night or head to the dance floor for music and fun inside the ship’s nightclub. Bring that special someone or a whole group of friends for a night to remember.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
From
$104.67
From
$104.67