The Harbor Islands are one part of Boston that doesn’t get advertised enough, and they make another great outdoor escape when the city feels too crowded for kids. Ferries will take you to George’s Island and Spectacle Island, with trips a few times a day. There are trails around each island open and waiting for kids to explore. Bring a picnic on a nice day and enjoy a spectacular view of the city skyline. Be sure to check out the Harbor Islands’ website for their free ferry days.
Cost: $10.00 for children’s ferry ticket, $17.00 for adults, or family four-pack for $43.00
Located in Somerville, Taza Chocolate is a local delicacy. You’ve seen their famous circular chocolate bars in specialty shops around the city, and now is your chance to watch them make their specialty chocolate up close. Its stone-ground preparation means the process is as minimal as possible, ensuring the best possible flavors within the cacao beans. Tours are offered every day, just be sure to make a reservation online first.
Cost: $8 per person, children under 3 free
Thanks to the Highland Street Foundation, anyone can visit a variety of museums every Friday in the summer, ranging from the Boston Children’s Museum to Plymoth Plantation to Tanglewood. This is a great option for families as museum tickets can be up to $25 per person today, not including lunch and the obligatory souvenir you’ll be obliged to pick up. Each Friday in the summer, eight different museums in Massachusetts offer free admission, and the line-up changes weekly.
What’s better than flatbread pizza and bowling? Not much. Enter Sacco’s Bowl-Haven in Somerville where you can order food and have it brought right to your lane. For health-conscience parents, rest assured – while flatbread isn’t the healthiest meal, Sacco’s is dedicated to using locally-grown, sustainable ingredients. Their menu varies from classic cheese and herbs to Kalua pork pie, and all pizzas are fired in a wood-burning oven.
Cost: Food $15-20; One hour of bowling $25
While it’s generally known that pizza is technically an American invention, Italian families from all over Italy have brought their recipes to the North End. But this area is also the oldest in Boston, and is filled with historical sites like Old North Church and Paul Revere’s House. Boston Pizza Tours makes it easy to combine these subjects. Over the two-hour walking tour, you’ll learn all about the North End and sample three (large) slices of pie from pizza joints in the area. I recommend skipping breakfast for this one.
Cost: $39 per ticket