10 Things You Must Do in Boston This Christmas

Boston at Christmas
Boston at Christmas | © Marcio Silva / Alamy Stock Photo
Dave Afshar

If a winter wonderland is what you’re after, few places in the U.S. can match the charm and beauty of Boston during the Christmas season. The snowy landscape and Victorian architecture have a way of blending together to create a wintertime atmosphere that looks like it was plucked straight from a Charles Dickens novel. We take a look at some of the best things to do in Boston before the snow melts.

Visit the Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park

One of the best photo opportunities in the city, this gorgeous park situated on the Boston waterfront is lit up by 50,000 blue lights every year from late November. If the cold weather starts to get to you, then make sure to stop in at one of the many bars or restaurants located along the waterfront.

Visit Quincy Market

One of the city’s most popular tourist destinations, Quincy Market hosts a series of special events during the holiday season. Go in the afternoon for the tree lighting, historical tours, and Blink!, a holiday-themed light and sound show.

Quincy Market decorated for Christmas

Take the kids to the Stone Zoo

Located in the suburb of Stoneham, about a 20-minute drive from Boston, the Stone Zoo has winter exhibits featuring snow leopards, wolves, cougars, jaguars, black bears, and more. The zoo closes at 4:00 pm, so try to get an early start.

Go ice skating at City Hall Plaza

Open until 11:00 pm on Friday and Saturday (9:00 pm on weeknights), this custom-designed skating path is perfect for couples, families or anyone looking to keep their ice-skating skills from going rusty. Check out the nearby holiday market for food, drinks, and shopping.

Check out the tree lighting in the Common

This huge park in downtown Boston is a perfect destination for couples, families, and anyone looking for some good clean holiday fun. After the snowfall, this is one of the most beautiful spots in the city to take a stroll and sip hot cocoa.

The Boston Commons during the festive season

Get lit on the Holiday Lights Trolley

This BYOB trolley ride takes passengers on a tour of the most impressive lighting displays throughout the city. Did we mention it was BYOB? Find out more about schedules and tickets here.

See the Boston Pops

During the holiday season, the legendary Boston Pops Orchestra becomes the Holiday Pops for a performance complete with the standard Christmas classics and visit from Santa Claus. Find out more about schedules and ticketing here.

Take a walk around Back Bay

Hands down the most enviable neighborhood in Boston, Back Bay only gets more picturesque after the snowfall. For a scenic stroll through the city, start in the Boston Common and make your way to Back Bay and the neighboring Beacon Hill.

Back Bay neighbourhood in the snow

See The Nutcracker at the Boston Opera House

The Boston Ballet performs this all-ages classic, ultimate Christmas play every year at one of the best venues in the Northeast. In the weeks before and after Christmas, there is a show almost every night, so finding tickets should not be a problem if your schedule is flexible.

See The Slutcracker

Not quite as family-friendly, this adult interpretation of the above classic features dry-humping clowns, a mischievous aunt, and, of course, the Dildo Prince. The show debuted to a sold-out crowd in Somerville 10 years ago, and it continues to sell out year after year. After you lock in a babysitter, find tickets here.

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