City as Text Destinations
Check out one of these Boston destinations as a part of your CAT adventure at NCHC18!
Copley Square (25 participants)
Bounded by Trinity Church and the Boston Public Library, Copley Square is one of the most central squares in the city. Explore some of Boston’s most celebrated buildings while observing the intersection between public and private spaces in this historic site.
Newbury Street & Commonwealth Mall (40 participants)
Known today for its high-end shopping, restaurants, and cafes, Newbury Street was once under water and part of Boston Harbor. Starting in 1857, the area that is now one of the trendiest and most beautiful in the city, was built out of dirt moved from other neighborhoods. Be sure to note the cross streets which fall in alphabetical order (something known to Boston insiders). The historic brownstones on Newbury Street and the parallel Commonwealth Avenue, give you a glimpse into Boston’s past.
The Public Garden and Boston Common (75 participants)
The first botanical garden in the country, Boston’s Public Garden, founded in 1857 is home to the Swan Boats, and setting of the popular children’s book Make Way for Ducklings. Across the street, the Boston Common was founded even earlier, in 1634, as the nation’s first public park whose paths still reflect the early walkways on which Bostonians traveled across the city. Today, the Common is the site of local concerts, softball games, historic monuments, and the Frog Pond that, in the summer is a spray pool and carousel for children and, in the winter, is frozen for outdoor ice skating.
Beacon Hill & Charles Street (40 participants)
One of the oldest and most expensive residential areas in Boston, Beacon Hill is filled with Federal style row houses, gas-lit streets and sidewalks made of brick. At the top of the hill is the gold-domed Massachusetts State House and the neighborhood is bordered to the south by the Boston Common. Charles Street, which sits at the “bottom” of the hill, is known for its antique shops, restaurants and cafes.
The South End (40 participants)
One of the Boston neighborhoods created by the landfill project of the 1800s, the South End is one of Boston’s most diverse neighborhoods, economically, ethnically, and historically. Its tree-lined side streets boast Victorian townhouses, wrought iron fences, and small residential parks, while the main streets host art galleries, trendy restaurants, and store-front businesses.
Faneuil Hall & Quincy Market (75 participants)
Originally designed as an indoor site for food stalls, Quincy Market was re-imagined in the 1900s as a destination for tourists and locals alike looking for food, shopping, and outdoor entertainment, including jugglers and other street performers. Sitting adjacent is the historic Faneuil Hall, an early market and meeting place that still offers visitors the chance to shop for souvenirs on the first floor and to visit the second floor assembly room where local politicians from Senator Ted Kennedy to President Barack Obama have given speeches. The space is still used for debates between Massachusetts’ political candidates.
Kenmore Square (40 participants)
A rapidly developing area, Kenmore Square lies just south of Boston University’s urban campus and just east of Fenway Park. A sometimes-jarring mix of college students, Red Sox fans, and clubgoers, the Square has an enticing, vibrant history and culture. And don’t miss—as if you could—the iconic Citgo sign that sits atop 660 Beacon Street, in the center of the square.
The North End (40 participants)
Boston’s “Little Italy” is one of the oldest parts of the city and includes the Paul Revere House, the Old North Church, and the self-guided Freedom Trail (keep an eye out for the red line along the sidewalk). The North End backs into the Rose Kennedy Greenway on one side and the waterfront on the other. Home to Italian restaurants, cafes and shops, this bustling part of the city was also home to the Great Molasses flood of 1919.
Rose Kennedy Greenway (75 participants)
One of the newest parts of Boston, the Rose Kennedy Greenway was built as part of Boston’s “Big Dig” and links the waterfront with Quincy Market and other downtown destinations. The Greenway, which is actually a series of connected parks, includes a carousel, gardens, fountains and is the location for food trucks and markets.
Seaport District (75 participants)
Once the home of harbor warehouses, fishmongers, and textile factories, this area is one of Boston’s newly developed areas. Sitting right on Boston Harbor with access to water taxis, buses, the subway, and a pedestrian walkway along the waterfront, Seaport has rapidly become a popular dining, residential, and commercial area.
Central Square (40 participants)
One T stop before the better known Harvard Square, Central Square is one of the more eclectic and diverse neighborhoods on the Cambridge side of the Charles River. Slated to be replaced by an 8-lane highway in the 1950s, the neighborhood has undergone a resurgence of technology companies, cafes, nightclubs while retaining its gritty essence.
Harvard Square (40 participants)
Harvard “square” is actually the juncture of three Cambridge streets: Massachusetts Avenue, John F. Kennedy Street and Brattle Street. Marked by the an international newsstand, a visitor information kiosk, and a small open-air performance space ("The Pit"), students, locals, and tourists alike cross from Harvard Yard to the busy eateries and shops on the adjacent streets. The Harvard “COOP,” is a favorite destination as are the Harvard Art Museums, including the recently renovated Museum of Natural History.
Chinatown (30 participants)
Boston’s Chinatown is the third largest in the country, after San Francisco and New York City. Densely populated, and bordered by the Boston Common, Theater District and Downtown Crossing. This neighborhood is an exceptional microcosm of Asian culture that includes traditional Chinese groceries and other shops.
Boston Public Library (30 participants)
One of the highlights of Copley Square, the Boston Public Library, or “BPL” to native Bostonians, is one of the largest public libraries in the country. The center courtyard invites outdoor seating in a quiet reprieve from the busy city streets. The newer section of the building, along Boylston Street, is home to local public radio station WGBH which broadcasts live each week in its studio which is visible from inside the library as well as from the street.
Downtown Crossing & Theater District (30 participants)
These two adjacent neighborhoods have been the site of changes in recent years. Once Boston’s Red Light District, the area is home to department stores, numerous historic theaters--including the Opera House, the Schubert, Colonial, and Wang Center for the Performing Arts--along with Emerson College.