Readers Say

What readers would do with 24 hours in Boston

Hint: Many readers would head to the North End.

Laura Mangone, Esmeralda Muhaj, and Adela Achim share a laugh outside Caffe Paradiso on Hanover Street in the North End in 2020. Craig F. Walker / The Boston Globe

When we asked readers what they would do during a 24-hour stay in Boston, more than 1,000 readers responded and they had plenty to say.

“Eat my way through the North End,” wrote Joe Clemente. It seems many readers agreed, as the North End was mentioned frequently for its Italian restaurants and pastry shops.

But there are plenty of other areas of the city readers wouldn’t want to miss during a quick trip.

“Hop on the ferry and head out to the Boston Harbor Islands!” wrote Beth from South Boston. “There is no better place in the city for a picnic or a hike. You might even get to see a mommy duck teach her babies how to swim!”


The following are reader recommendations for must-see restaurants and attractions while visiting Boston — including a map of all locations below.

Sonsie in Boston, which offers tables facing Newbury Street and floor-to-ceiling windows that open during the warm months. – The Boston Globe/Wendy Maeda

Where to eat and drink

  • Beantown Pub
  • Bistro Du Midi
  • Bleacher Bar
  • Bova’s Bakery
  • Caffe Paradiso
  • Cheers
  • Chinatown restaurants
  • Coogan’s
  • Davio’s
  • Dillion’s
  • Dunkin’
  • Eataly
  • Flour
  • Galleria Umberto
  • Giacomo’s
  • Grill 23 & Bar
  • Harpoon Brewery
  • J.P. Lick’s
  • Legal Sea Foods
  • Lookout Rooftop and Bar
  • Matcha Cafe Maiko
  • Mike and Patty’s
  • Mike’s Pastry
  • Modern Pastry
  • Neptune Oyster
  • North End for dinner
  • Quincy Market
  • Regina’s Pizza
  • Rosa Mexicano
  • Sam Lagrassa
  • Samuel Adams Brewery
  • Santarpio’s Pizza
  • Seaport restaurants
  • Sonsie
  • South Street Diner
  • Sullivan’s Castle Island
  • Tia’s
  • Union Oyster House
  • Yard House
  • Yvonne’s
Lane Turner/Globe Staff
The Boston Public Garden Foot Bridge.

Outdoor adventures

  • Arnold Arboretum
  • Beacon Hill
  • Boston Common
  • Boston Duck Tours
  • Boston Harbor City Cruises
  • Boston Harbor Islands
  • Boston Public Library courtyard
  • Boston Water Taxi
  • Castle Island
  • Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park
  • Emerald Necklace
  • Faneuil Hall Marketplace
  • Fan Pier Park
  • Fenway Park tour
  • Freedom Trail
  • Granary Burying Ground
  • Greenway Carousel
  • Hatch Shell
  • King’s Chapel Burying Ground
  • Public Garden
  • Newbury Street
  • North End
  • USS Constitution
  • Red Sox game at Fenway Park
  • Rose Kennedy Greenway
  • Sail on the Charles River
  • Spectacle Island
  • Swan Boats
  • The Esplanade
The Paul Revere House in the North End. – Matt Juul for

Indoor adventures

  • Arlington Street Church tour
  • Bell in Hand Tavern
  • Boston Children’s Museum
  • Boston Harbor Hotel
  • Boston Public Library
  • Boston Public Market
  • Brattle Book Shop
  • Bruins game at TD Garden
  • Celtics game at TD Garden
  • Copley Place
  • Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
  • John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum
  • Mapparium at The Mary Baker Eddy Library
  • Marriott Long Wharf
  • Museum of African American History
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
  • Museum of Science
  • Newbury Comics
  • New England Aquarium
  • Nuggets
  • Old City Hall
  • Old North Church
  • Omni Parker House
  • Paul Revere House
  • Symphony Hall
  • Ride the T
  • The Institute of Contemporary Art

Some readers offered a full itinerary.

“Brunch on Newbury Street, walk through Public Garden, visit Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, walk along the seaport, afternoon cruise in the Harbor, and finish with seafood dinner,” wrote Elizabeth from Medford.

“I spent a day in Boston and walked the Freedom trail and saw the Boston Red Sox beat the Yankees at Fenway,” wrote Jay Bernadt from Nebraska.

“So many things to do in the most beautiful city,” wrote Ned Tabikha. “Love Boston.”

Responses lightly edited for clarity.


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