Fifteen Places To Visit In MA This Summer

Fifteen Places To Visit In MA This Summer

Make some Massachusetts memories.

With less than a month left in the semester you're probably trying to ignore the stress of the last four weeks of classes in favor of making plans for the summer. Not planning on taking an exotic vacation? Don't worry about it. You can still have an unforgettable summer while staying within the state. Check out these 15 places and activities in Mass that are just a quick car ride away.

1. Walk the Freedom Trail ~Boston, MA

Want to spend the day in Boston and learn something too? Try walking the Freedom Trail. This 2.5 mile long route brings you to 16 significant historical sites in Boston like the Old North Church, the site of the Boston Massacre and Paul Revere's House. You can book a tour with 18th-century costumed guides, or take a map and do the route at your own pace.

2. Ride the Roller Coasters at Six Flags New England ~ Agawam, MA

Grab some friends and head out to Western Mass to visit Six Flags New England. Spend the day riding exciting roller coasters like "BATMAN: The Dark Knight" and get minor whiplash on rides like "Flashback".

3. Check Out Some Dinosaur Footprints ~ Holyoke, MA

While you're in Western Mass., drive over to Holyoke where you'll see some of what's left of the early Jurassic Period, Dinosaur Footprints. The site is located on the side of a busy road, down a muddy path in the woods -- but it's totally worth it. You'll be able to see tons of dinosaur tracks preserved in sandstone. If you have some extra time, head a little farther into the woods until you reach the water for a beautiful view of the river.

4. Appreciate the Art at the MFA ~ Boston, MA

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston holds a collection of almost 500,000 works of Art. Spend the day getting lost among paintings, textiles, sculptures and more. And with new exhibitions coming in throughout the year, make sure to check out their website to see what's heading to the museum next.

5. Watch the Sunset at Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge ~ Concord, MA

The Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge is a hidden gem in Concord. Walk the refuge trail along the marshes, river, brook and pond while keeping your eyes peeled for a variety of birds and other wildlife. The wide open space and lush plant life makes for one of the most beautiful places to watch the sunset in Massachusetts.

6. Museum of Science ~ Boston, MA

Spend a day in Boston making your way through all of the exhibits at the Museum of Science. Explore space at the Charles Hayden Planetarium, watch an informational movie in the IMAX theater and learn more about our world and ourselves at the many permanent exhibits the museum has to offer.

7. Soak up the Sun at Crane Beach ~Ipswich, MA

This beautiful beach is more than just sun and sand. Crane Beach in Ipswich is made for recreation and conservation with 5.5 miles of trails across dunes and the Essex River Estuary, as well as being an important nesting site for the threatened piping plovers. It's the perfect place to appreciate nature and spend a day relaxing in the sand.

8. Canoe down the Concord River ~ Concord, MA

Rent kayaks or a canoe with some friends at the South Bridge Boat House and paddle down the Concord River into Minute Man National Park. Just make sure not to crash into the Old North Bridge-- believe me, it's harder than it sounds.

9. Catch a Red Sox Game at Fenway Park ~ Boston, MA

You can't live in Massachusetts without going to a Red Sox game at historic Fenway Park at least once. It's Major League Baseball's oldest park, and nothing beats a summer night spent here singing "Sweet Caroline", seeing home runs go over the Green Monster, and eating a Fenway Frank.

10. Go to the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular ~ Boston, MA

Every fourth of July, thousands of people gather at the Hatch Shell for one of greatest music and fireworks displays in the country. The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular begins as crowds gather to save a spot where they watch the concert and celebrate our nation's founding. The night ends in the Pop's playing of the "1812 Overture" as a massive fireworks display lights up the Esplanade.

11. Go Shopping (or just people watch) at Faneuil Hall ~ Boston, MA

Faneuil Hall Marketplace in downtown Boston is home to over 70 retailers and delicious restaurants and pubs at the Quincy Market Colonnade. Street performers and musicians fill the cobblestone streets with music and excitement, creating the perfect atmosphere for shopping and fun with friends.

12. Get Lost in Primark ~ Boston, MA

Speaking of shopping -- head over to Downtown Crossing and get lost in four floors of clothes, shoes, accessories and home decor at Primark. This U.K. based clothing store opened it's first two locations in the United States this past year. The prices are low and there are tons of options, so everyone in your group will leave happy with a bag in hand.

13. See the City on a Duck Tour ~ Boston, MA

If you've never been on a Duck Tour, this summer is the time to go. You'll board a WWII Style amphibious landing vehicle with an expert tour guide/driver. Once on board your guide will give you interesting fun facts about Boston while driving you through the city, spotting landmarks like the State House, Bunker Hill, The Garden, The Pru and more all culminating in a cruise on the Charles River.

14. Visit the Boston Public Garden ~ Boston, MA

Although it's not the biggest park in the world, Boston Public Garden makes up for its small size in beauty. Look for the statues of the ducklings from the beloved children's book, Make Way for Ducklings and take a ride on one of the many Swan Boats that peddle around the Garden's lagoon.

15. Spend the Day at Kimball's ~ Westford, MA

Looking for something to do with your whole family? Stop by Kimball Farm in Westford for mini golf, bumper boats, a driving range, an arcade, delicious ice cream and more.

So get ready to have the best summer of your life without even needing to leave the state.

Cover Image Credit: Boston Duck Tours

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The 10 Best Things About Rhode Island

Who said RI is not Awesome!

With Rhode Island being such a small state people wonder what is so great about it. There are so many attractions that lead people to "Little Rhody" from the Newport Mansions to the RISD Art Museum. RI's beautiful beaches are also a plus for the locals who live here year round. But what is the best things about Rhode Island? With so many great things to choose from here is what I thought was the best things Rhode Island has to offer.

1. Del's Lemonade

With its numerous flavors and iconic cup imagery Del's is a Rhode Island staple. My personal favorite is mixing watermelon and lemon together!

2. Caserta's Pizzeria

Located on Providence's historic Federal Hill. If you are looking for a good slice of pizza Caserta's is the place to go.

3. Providence

It is basically the smaller version of Boston! No really, and that is where the city gets all its charms from.

4. Scarborough Beach

Forget Newport, this is the prime place to catch some waves. Personally, I think the water is better and Narragansett tends to be a litttle less touristy.

5. PPAC (Providence Performing Arts Center)

When you are too poor to catch a Broadway show so you go see the national tour instead. PPAC has become an awesome venue in recent years with lots of different plays, musicals and dance troupes coming to perform.

6. The Cliff Walk

Preferably after the tourist season because then you can actually walk on it. The Cliff Walk offers some breathtaking views and a little adventure.

7. Waterfire

There are a lot of Waterfire's during the summer and early fall so you can always catch one. Plus, it is free and provides great pictures.

8. Party Pizza

Some make think it is a disgrace to pizza everywhere, but it is still good. Nobody really understands why party pizza exists, but we never question it. Especially, after you stuff five pieces into your mouth.

9. Crook Point Bascule Bridge

It has become somewhat of a local monument for the locals. My friend and I always do a bit of site seeing around here.

10. Allie's Donuts

Home of the Donut Cake! Allie's makes probably the best donuts around here and that is not an understatement.

And there you have it! While, I think these are 10 best things about Rhode Island there is obviously so much more. If anything RI's quirky local eateries, beautiful landscape, as well as up and coming attractions are what make it special. Rhode Island has so many things to offer it is hard to choose. Personally, I think the food is the best, but my New York/New Jersey friends beg to differ.

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5 Activities To Enjoy In Florida During December

Great reasons to take a break from the cold to enjoy some warmth and sunshine where it's always summer.


It's December in Florida. Houses are decked out in Holiday decorations; palm trees are wrapped with lights. Christmas music is playing in every store, songs about a white Christmas, the cold and snow, and I look outside at the sunshine, the still green grass, and the 70-degree weather.

I grew up in Chicago, so I equate the Holidays and December with cold and snow and sitting in the warmth of the house under a blanket with a hot beverage in hand. In Florida, the only way you know it's December is because of the decorations and Christmas music playing everywhere. Over the news, I hear about snow, and I experience it when I visit my family, but here in Florida, it's a different world that's still warm and filled with sunshine. If you ever get the chance to visit Florida at this time of year, here are some things you can expect.

1. Parks are enjoyable this time of year.

In the heat of the summer in Florida, it is hard to be able to appreciate the parks. Florida has many beautiful green parks with lakes, trails, and wildlife. There are many activities you can enjoy in the parks like fishing, biking, hiking, bird watching, picnicking, sports, boating, kayaking, etc.

2. Wild manatee viewing.

On The occasional cold days in Florida, around 60 degrees or below, manatees come in land and gather in streams rivers to stay warm. There are places to view manatees and even snorkel or kayak with them in Crystal River. There is also a manatee viewing center in Apollo Beach near the power plant where you can see dozens of manatees. I enjoyed visiting the viewing center at the power plant and spent over an hour watching the manatees and learning about them. I loved every minute of it and even got to see manatee calves with their mothers.

3. Walkthrough holiday light shows.

Up north where the weather is below freezing, most light shows are enjoyed in the comfort of your car, and while that's nice, it's also nice being able to walk through the park at your leisure while looking at the lights. Throughout Florida, many towns set up lights in their parks. Largo central park has an impressive light display and Ferris wheel. People can stroll through the park every night of December to enjoy them. Theme parks like Busch Gardens also put up lights. There are many to see, and it can all be enjoyed in the Florida warmth.

4. Swimming in December.

Yes, in Florida it is still possible to swim in December. The beach might be a little colder than comfortable, but it is still swimmable with a wetsuit or if you don't mind being a bit cold. If pools are heated, they can be enjoyed year-round in Florida, I went swimming outside the other day, and it was very relaxing.

5. Soak up some much-needed sun and vitamin D.

In Florida, the sun still shines brightly through the winter, and you can still enjoy it throughout the day. Get tan or recover some of your lost vitamin D. And while warm, it's rarely too hot to enjoy in the winter, often the temperature is just right.

These are just a few of the things you can enjoy in December in Florida. I look forward to enjoying the parks often and spending hours outside, kayaking, and biking. Hopefully, I can buy my own bike soon! If you ever need a break from the winter cold, consider escaping it in Florida where it's still summer year-round. Happy December and don't get too cold!

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