Discovering Boston in 5 Days: History, Culture, and Breathtaking Scenery


Day 1: Plymouth Plantation and Quincy Market

Day 2: Freedom Trail, New England Aquarium, USS Constitution

Day 3: Harvard University and Boston Museum of Fine Arts

Day 4: Cape Cod

Day 5: Boston Tea Party Ship and Museum

Day 1: Plymouth Plantation and Quincy Market

What an exciting start to our trip! Plimoth Plantation was our first stop, and the children were excited to see the history they studied during the year come to life. They visited a Wampanoag village where many of their questions seemed to be testing the knowledge of the Wampanoag villagers. As experts on the subject, our students seemed quite pleased with the depth of their own knowledge. 🙂
Sitting in a birchbark canoe, exploring the fort in Plimoth settlement, and learning a traditional colonial dance were just some of the highlights of our visit here.
Next stop, Quincy Market. We had a great time walking through this eclectic and energetic part of Boston. Choosing from a variety of dinner options, the children filled their bellies and afterwards, were ready to do some walking. We stopped to watch street performers, and even did a bit of shopping. Stay tuned parents! Your children are coming home with some fun souvenirs.
Once we checked into our hotel, the children quickly settled into organizing their belongings, showering, and brushing their teeth. They are now tucked safely and comfortably in their beds. Tomorrow, we will walk the Freedom Trail and visit the aquarium for another fun filled day!

Day 2: Freedom Trail, New England Aquarium, USS Constitution

Despite the rainy weather, we had a jam packed day beginning with a trek on the Freedom Trail. Thankfully, our hotel provided us with a hearty breakfast buffet of eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes, and French toast! 

The Freedom Trail took us back over 200 years to historical landmarks that brought to life the events of the American Revolution. From Paul Revere’s home to the site of the Boston Massacre to the Old South Meeting House, the students made connections and asked thoughtful questions. It was a great deal of walking, but the trail allowed us to see so much of this incredibly historical city. 

Of course, the highlight of the day was the New England Aquarium. The shark and ray touch tank was an adventure not to be missed. It was a bit slimy but quite exhilarating to feel and see these beautiful creatures up close. An amazing feature of this aquarium is the enormous cylindrical tank in the center that spans all four floors and holds 200,000 gallons of sea water. Inside, there are hundreds of different sea life, the most memorable being Myrtle the giant green sea turtle. Be sure to ask your children about the penguins, the seals, and all of the beautiful, colorful, unusual aquatic animals they saw. Truly a unique experience!

Next, we made a quick visit to the USS Constitution, the oldest (220 years old) active naval ship in America. This ship is located at the Charlestown Navy Yard, and our guide was an active duty naval officer. The students had an opportunity to walk through the ship and explore its hull and cannons. They had quite a lot of fun climbing up and down the steep steps and investigating all of the nooks and crannies of the ship. 

After dinner, the final adventure for the day was the Haunted Walk of Boston. We met our guide in the Boston Common and took a tour around the Central Burying Ground Cemetery. Here, we listened to stories of Edgar Allen Poe’s life, as well as historical accounts of mysterious events and tragic ends. Spooky and thrilling!

We had a busy busy day today, and our children were fast asleep as their heads hit the pillow. Tomorrow, we will visit the esteemed Harvard campus as it is never too early to dream big. We will also go to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts to immerse ourselves in the cultural arts.




Day 3: Harvard University and Boston Museum of Fine Arts

We could not have asked for better weather today. The sun was shining bright and strong, and at times, the shade offered a nice reprieve. After a good night’s sleep and a well fed belly, we were off to our first stop, Harvard University!
Our visit to Harvard came the day before the university’s graduation ceremony. Therefore, the mood on campus was one of excitement, elation, and expectation. It was a sight for our students to see graduates walking through campus in their crisp robes accompanied by parents dressed in their finest. Jackson, our tour guide, is a senior who will also graduate tomorrow. He shared fun stories of Harvard’s rivalry with Yale as well as the rich history that has made Harvard one of the top universities today. Our students embraced the idea that they too could someday make this same journey and asked many questions ranging from how one gets into Harvard to the many sports the university offers to graduation requirements.
After a picnic lunch in the park, they had a chance to shop at the Coop which houses a gift shop of all things Harvard! In a funny twist of events, the students were appalled at how expensive everything was and vowed not to spend their precious money here. Fortunately, parents, you can now add this saved money to your children’s college funds as Harvard’s tuition plus room and board is at a whopping $70,000 a year!
Our visit to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts in the afternoon brought a different experience to the trip thus far. This is a museum with a diverse array of artwork and history to explore. The students saw beautiful and bold paintings by artists such as Monet, Van Gogh, and Rembrandt. They examined paintings depicting Revolutionary America as well as artifacts from this time period. They walked through various exhibits displaying Egyptian relics and musical instruments from around the world spanning hundreds of years. The students truly enjoyed their time at the museum, and it is clear that their work during the school year has given them a keen eye for studying artwork.
On a separate, but related note, our students received great praise from both the staff and other patrons of the museum for their respectful behavior and their level of engagement with the artwork!
Tonight, we returned to the hotel around 8 to give the students a chance to relax and take their time to unwind. We will get started early tomorrow as we have a bit of a drive to Cape Cod. There will be a visit to the beach and a boat ride out to sea to go whale watching. We are crossing our fingers for a sighting!

Day 4: Cape Cod

Today was our trip to Cape Cod where we played on the beach and hoped to see at least one whale or maybe a glimpse of its tail. To put it in a single sentence, this day exceeded all of our expectations. There is nothing I can write to express the excitement and awe experienced by our children today. Therefore, the post for Day 4 will be written by the students themselves.

Today was beach day. It will be my favorite day of the week. Whales and dolphins are at the jetting!

This morning, we went to Cape Cod and played a little on the beach. Then, we went on a cruise boat. We traveled 1h to get to the Gulf of Boston where we watched whales feeding. The tour guide explain to us the pattern the whales used to eat fish. We also saw dolphins there. It was the best!

Today, we went to Cape Cod area of Massachusetts. We first stopped at the bay to explore and play a bit but not for long. Then we went to a whale watching boat to see whatever came up from the water. After speeding 30 miles per hour on our boat, we saw a fin, then two, then three and so on. There were Humpback whales, seals and dolphins. Then after seeing them for hours we turned back, sped up, and went back. Then we went to the bay again and played and stayed for longer than the other time. Then we head back to the bus and drove back to the hotel.

C’était génial et on a vu plein d’animaux comme des dauphins, des baleines et même des otaries. J’ai acheté plein de souvenirs car c’était vraiment génial!

Today was sick!!! We went to the beach in Cape Cod and it was amazing. I can still feel the sand between my toes and the smooth waves knocking me to the ground. I would do anything to relive that brother-free moment.🌊



Day 5: Boston Tea Party Ship and Museum

Our final day in Boston started with our students packing up their belongings and making sure that nothing was left behind. They took their time to check, double check, and triple check that they had not forgotten anything.  Upon final room inspections, we were happy to see that the children did an excellent job! At breakfast, they also took some time to write their families a postcard so please look forward to receiving a personal letter the old fashioned way, in the mail, next week.
As we headed out, we were rewarded once again with beautiful weather and warm temperatures. Our last stop in Boston would be a visit to the Boston Tea Party ship and museum, and what an experience this was!  From the start of the tour, we were brought back in time to December 16th, 1773, the infamous date of this historical event.  Each student and teacher was assigned an actual character that played a role in the Boston Tea Party rebellion.  We became part of the reenactment and even threw crates of tea off the side of the boat!  It was a wonderful way to experience history, and the children certainly had fun being part of the show.
Following our visit, we took one final walk through Boston and returned to Quincy Market for lunch.  Later, we said our goodbyes to our amazing tour guide, Annie.  She was patient, warm, and entertaining with the students, and flexible and knowledgeable when helping the teachers.  We were lucky to have Annie for the week, as well as our friendly and kind bus driver, Tom.
The week spent in Boston gave our students experiences and memories that will not be soon forgotten.  In addition to the visits to historical landmarks and museums, and the extraordinary moment we had watching the pod of whales, each of our students will go home with their own cherished memories of their time with their classmates where new friendships were formed and old friendships were reimagined or rediscovered.  As their teachers, we are so incredibly proud of our students.  The week away from home and their parents was not always easy, but they showed courage, responsibility, curiosity, kindness, perseverance, compassion, and self-control.  They displayed a sense of camaraderie that can only happen when pushed outside their comfort zones, and we thank you for allowing your children to have this experience and for your trust in us in guiding them through it.  Enjoy the weekend and until next year. . .
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