Boston Travel Tips - May 2015

Mother's Day, Memorial Day, & Flowers!

February in Boston - Brownstone mansion on Newbury St
Boston in May - The City is in Bloom!

Welcome to the May 2015 edition of Boston Travel Tips!

Boston is full of gorgeous flowers right now - and the warm weather means lots of activities are moving outdoors.

The biggest event this month is Memorial Day Weekend, the unofficial beginning of summer in the city. 

Whether you go to a Red Sox game, enjoy a swan boat ride in the Public Garden, or relax at one of the many restaurants and bistros offering patio dining, be sure to spend some time outside.

When packing for your trip, add a couple of sweaters plus a light jacket to layer.  When I took the photo above this this afternoon around 1pm, the temperature still hadn't quite reached 60° - although by Memorial Day, the weather may be much warmer.


What's Happening in Boston in May?

Mother's Day

Mother's Day falls on Sunday, May 12, 2013.  Whether you take part in Boston's unique Duckling Day Parade, treat your mom to a wonderful Mother's Day brunch or dinner cruise in the Harbor, or go for a Swan Boat ride in the Lagoon in the Public Garden, you'll find plenty of unique "only in Boston" ways to celebrate your mom. 

More about what to do on Mother's Day


Memorial Day in Boston

Lots of Bostonians head to the Cape or the mountains on Memorial Day Weekend - so if you're visiting, it's the perfect chance to find affordable Red Sox tickets, great seats in restaurants, and bargain (well, lower than usual) hotel prices.  Plus, there are lots of other things to do, such as free admission to the Museum of Fine Arts, plenty of walking tours, and of course, Memorial Day ceremonies.

Find out about Memorial Day Weekend events and activities

See our Memorial Day itinerary through the liveliest parts of the city


"Hidden Gardens" Tour

Don't miss this once-a-year chance to tour the hidden gardens of Beacon Hill, Boston's historic neighborhood filled with mellow Federal townhouses, stately mansions, and homes that once provided refuge as part of the Underground Railroad.  Tucked away behind high brick walls are their gardens, normally hidden from public eyes but open for you to tour only on this one day in May.

More about Boston's garden tours


Do You Love Seeing Photos of Boston?

Rooftops along Boston's Beacon StreetWe take a lot of photos - such as this view of rooftops along Beacon Street - as we walk around the city, eat in the restaurants, attend events. 

Want to see them? 

Head over to Boston Discovery Guide's Facebook page.

Be sure to Like us while you're there!


Boston Flower and Garden Show

The best way to hurry up the arrival of spring is to head over the Boston Flower and Garden Show to see all the spectacular displays.  "Seeds of Change," the theme for 2013, promises lots of exciting inspiration - plus sessions on raising the perfect garden "helpers" - chickens and bees.

More about the Boston Flower and Garden Show


Hotels on Sale

You can still take advantage of low winter rates during March.  Even Boston's top luxury hotels are offering some appealing special packages and deals - check them out here.

But you'll also find excellent rates throughout the city - find low rates at top Boston and Cambridge hotels 


More to Do During March - Shows, Film Fests, Concerts, Entertainment

  • Concerts - Lots of top performers coming to Boston this month - Dropkick Murphys, Celtic Women, Romeo Santos, Pink - and that's just for a start.  
  • Films - If you love indie and experimental films and if "avant-garde" should have been your middle name, you'll want to check out the huge Boston Underground Film Festival - 8 days of fascinating feature films, videos, and shorts at the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge.  Another very interesting series is the Boston Turkish Film Festival showing at MFA - 16 films over the course of 5 weeks.
  • Theatre, Shows, Ballet - Everything from Jersey Boys to The Sleeping Beauty to Blue Man Group
  • Circus - Yes, it's that time of the year again - the Big Apple Circus will be pitching the big tent on City Hall Plaza.  Don't miss this wonderful show - great for all ages!  And be sure to see our tip for half-price tickets.
  • Robots - If you're visiting with kids, come watch this free competition featuring talented teens (and, of course, their robots) at BU's Agganis Arena.

Find out more, plus details, about all these events on BDG's Boston March Events page »


Cruises from Boston - Starting Soon!

Even though the first cruises out of Boston's Black Falcon Cruise Terminal don't depart for another month or so, our cruise-related articles have been VERY popular for the past few weeks, as now is a great time to book.  Leaving for a cruise from Boston's CruisePort is so easy and convenient that these cruises draw a huge demand.  Take a look at what's available, and you'll see why:

  • Cruises to Bermuda - The most popular cruise departing from Boston
  • Cruises to the Caribbean - These are turn-around cruises...meaning you'll get a lot of extra value to make up for the extra days relaxing at sea, plus you'll get to see some fascinating places not usually included in the regular tours
  • Cruises to Europe - This is a truly special cruise that takes you along the path that early Vikings might have taken...many fascinating out-of-the-way ports, plus top European cities
  • Fall foliage Cruises - Quaint villages, vibrant cities, and the world's most brilliant foliage make these cruises along the New England and Eastern Canadian coasts perennial favorites



March is the last 2 full months of excitement with the Bruins and Celtics at TD Garden.  The Bruins in particular have been hot - plenty of spectulation flying about another Stanley Cup this year.  Come see what all the excitement's about:

Bruins home schedule at TD Garden

Celtics home schedule at TD Garden

And, with the Red Sox back at Fenway next month, now's the time to check your dates and start getting tickets:

Red Sox home schedule at Fenway Park


March School Vacation Week in Boston - Kids Activities

Visiting Boston with your kids during school vacation week in March?  Here are our most popular tours for kids and teens:

If you're coming to Boston to visit college campuses, be sure to check out campus tour discount rates at hotels


More Ways to Save in Boston during March

Go Boston Discount Pass for big savings on top attractions and toursFor attractions, cruises, and tours, the best way to save is to have a Boston discount pass - with it, you get free admission plus you also save time, because most places will let you go to the front of the line.  At the most popular attractions such as the New England Aquarium, these time savings can really add up!

If you're interested in visiting just one attraction while you're here, the discount passes won't save you money, but you can go straight to the head of the line when you buy tickets online.  Here are links for a couple of the most popular attractions:

Tours can also save you money, especially if you would otherwise need to rent a car for destinations outside the city, plus during the winter, they give you the bonus of keeping you warm and dry while you sightsee.  Check out our recommendations for the best tours for winter months.

Jersey Boys at Colonial Theatre in BostonFor theater, shows, and even some cruises, an easy way to save up to 50% or more is to take advantage of half-price tickets offered by Goldstar Events. 

Tickets usually become available 2-3 weeks before the event and often have only a limited number of seats available, so the best strategy is to sign up to get alerts about available tickets before your trip.  Why pay full price?  Here are a few deeply discounted tickets to Boston shows and events that I'm seeing right now:


Looking Ahead to April - Boston Marathon, Patriots Day, Red Sox

Although the Boston Marathon is the biggest event in April in Boston, there's a lot more happening this month - Patriots Day, opening day for the Red Sox (please do not mention last season), and generally, the arrival of spring in the city.

If you're planning to come to Boston for the Marathon and have not made hotel reservations yet, you need to do that NOW!  People pour into the city from all over the world for this event, and hotels fill up much earlier than you might imagine, especially near the finish line in Copley Square, and around Boston Common, departure point for the shuttle buses taking runners out to Hopkinton where the race begins. 

Here are some helpful links to information on BDG if you're planning an April visit:


Boston Travel Planning Information

Boston Travel Guide - 10 easy tips for planning the perfect trip to Boston

Boston Discount Cards - The easiest way to cut your Boston travel costs - get a card, and then get free admission to Boston's top attractions, cruises, tours, and more  

Boston Events, Holidays, Celebrations - Find the best and biggest events for each month of the year


Please Share Boston Tourist Tips!

If you like this issue of Boston Tourist Tips, Boston Discovery Guide's monthly newsletter, please forward it along to your friends, relatives, colleagues, and neighbors!

Bookmark and Share

If a friend forwarded Boston Tourist Tips to you, you can make sure you'll get it again by subscribing for free at Boston Tourist Tips

Have a wonderful month !



Like this Page? Please Share!


More about planning your trip to Boston

Boston Hotels Boston Restaurants - A City Guide from Boston Discovery Guide Boston Neighborhood Map Boston Tours


Boston Tourist Tips brings you all the latest updates and suggestions to help you plan your trip to Boston.  You'll find out what's new in Boston and on, what's happening in the city this month, and what's coming in the next couple of months, plus links to related information on BDG.