One of my favorite things about living in Boston is how accessible it is and how much there is to do. Whether you’re a history buff, love trying new restaurants, or just love exploring new-to-you areas, there’s truly something in the city for everyone. I grew up just 45-minutes south of the city then lived just outside the city in Medford after graduating college before moving downtown two years ago, so I’ve done a lot throughout the city, gone to a lot of the museums, have eaten at a lot of the restaurants but there’s still so much to explore.
A few weeks ago I was talking to Chris about how we always have a plan. If we’re going out with friends, we know what we’re doing and where we’ll be eating and when it’s the two of us on the weekends, we either have designated plans in the city or we head to the suburbs to spend time with family. We don’t spend a lot of time just exploring. So now that the craziness of summer is over, we’ve been making it a point to cross some of the activities we’ve been dying to do and places we’ve been wanting to eat off of our list. We’ve done the Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum (Chris’ first time, my second), had drinks at Coppa, finally visited the SOWA Open Market (and have gone back every weekend since!), had dinner at The Butcher Shop (and was not impressed by it), and a ton more. There are still a few bucket list items I want to cross off my list before the cold winter weather is here and we hibernate in the comfort of our apartment. Keep scrolling to see what they are!
My Boston Bucket List
Visit the Boston Athenæum
This museum-library hybrid is located downtown and has been on my list for a while now! Across it’s five floors, the library houses collections that are strong in Boston and New England history, English and American Literature, and the fine and decorative arts. Founded in 1807, the Boston Athenæum is one of the oldest independent libraries in the United States.
Explore the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
The Arnold Arboretum is technically in Cambridge, but I couldn’t not include it in this list. This outdoor museum focuses on trees and plants and is situated on 281 acres. Every photo I see of the expansive area is gorgeous and includes streams and rivers, wildlife, and more. I also love that they have guided tours and virtual walks, too, if you want to learn more about the terrain and greenery.
Wine at Nathálie
Located in the Fenway area, Nathálie is a small wine bar focused on small production, natural, and female-produced wines and the atmosphere looks so cozy! Nathálie also has a small menu of snacks, appetizers, and desserts – my fave.
Coffee + Treats at Café Susu
I’ve heard so many great things about Café Susu, which is part of Suit Supply on Newbury Street. With fun wallpaper, an extensive coffee, tea, and matcha menu, plus pastries and cocktails, I have a feeling this will be a new favorite for coffee and treats, getting work done, or enjoying a cocktail while Chris shops at Suit Supply.
Explore Bay Village
Located between the South End and Back Bay, Bay Village is a small little neighborhood with tons of character and the buildings remind me of Beacon Hill (but without the hills!). I’ve walked through quickly once, but I need to go back and walk through the streets and grab breakfast at Mike & Patty’s.
Dinner at The Banks Fish House
A newer restaurant, The Banks Fish House is located in Back Bay right along Bay Village and the menu looks so good. Typically Chris and I stear clear of seafood restaurants since he has a shellfish and crustation allergy, but The Banks has a lot of fish dishes that he can eat so now I’m counting down the minutes until we can visit this cool new spot.
Staycation at The Newbury
Previously the Taj, The Newbury Boston just opened this past summer, and wowowow the photos I’ve seen are absolutely stunning. While it is a pricier hotel, I’m still dying to go! Plus, the on-site Italian restaurant, Contessa, has stunning views of the Public Garden and the menu looks amazing.
Visit the Brattle Book Shop
A bookshop that has an indoor AND outdoor space? Sign me up! Located on Brattle Street (hence the name), Brattle Book Shop is conveniently located in the Downtown Crossing area and is one of those spots that I am shocked I still haven’t been to. I do love reading after all. Need to get here ASAP.
Coffee + Flowers at April 23 Cafe
Another new coffee shop located on Newbury Street, April 23 is a coffee shop meets floral studio and it looks so cute. I mean, what more could you want!?
Get Waterfront Views of Boston and Cambridge
Alright so this one is a little touristy but I’m dying to take one of the architect boat tours with Charles River Boat. Starting in Boston Harbor, the tour goes through the Charles River Locks and into the Charles River basin and is narrated by a guide from Boston By Foot and co-sponsored by BSA Space.
Dinner at Mida
We’ve pretty much made it through our entire list of restaurants we’re dying to visit here in the South End but we still haven’t visited Mida, and coincidentally – it’s the closest to our apartment. The entire menu looks delicious, I want to order every single pasta dish, and the ambiance looks fabulous.