Visiting Boston in October - Stay in a Hotel in Boston - Or Outside of It?

by Marie

Golden foliage in Boston Common in October

Golden foliage in Boston Common in October

Golden foliage in Boston Common in October Crimson foliage in Boston Common near tennis courts in October Brownstones and autumn color along Comm Ave in Boston's Back Bay neighborhood Photo of fall foliage on the Boston Esplanade by the Charles River

We are a family of 4 coming to Boston in October and not sure if it's best to stay in a hotel in the city, or choose an apartment outside of the city?...We're trying to figure out pros and cons - any advice? Also, what's the weather like? Thanks in advance! Marie

Susan's reply: October is usually an absolutely gorgeous month in Boston. Warm sunshine mixes with a little crispness in the air, so it's a great time of the year to explore the city on foot, day and night.

I'm probably a little biased... but I almost always recommend staying right in the city - preferably as close as possible to the historic, cultural, sports, and other attractions you might want to visit. Being right in the middle of all of Boston's attractions provides the best opportunity to get the most of your visit. You don't have to waste time commuting or driving in or out of the city, because you're right here!

By October, the Boston theater season is in full swing, the Red Sox are still playing at Fenway, and many of Boston's restaurants are featuring fall or harvest menus. It's a great time to walk along the Freedom Trail, go on a Boston Harbor cruise, and for anyone with children approaching college age, tour one of the many universities and colleges in the city and Cambridge across the river - take the 10-minute Red Line on Boston's subway across the river to Cambridge, and join one of the entertaining free tours at Harvard.

Best of all, many of Boston hotels have dropped their rates, and you can sometimes find some really excellent bargains. If you haven't already checked out my pages on finding discounts at Boston hotels, you may be pleasantly surprised. If your family is of a size where you need more than 1 room, you'll find that many Boston hotels have at least a few suites. Two that are mostly suites are the Eliot Hotel in Back Bay and the Marriott Residence Inn in Charlestown. Both are great areas in terms of interesting sights and attractions, plus the rest of the city is within a 10-20 minute walk from both.

Generally, staying outside of the city means that you'll have higher transportation costs and if you're planning to drive into the city and park, hefty parking fees. Even if you find a hotel or apartment outside of the city for a lower rate, you may pay the difference in transport/parking, not to speak of the time. My inexpensive hotels in Boston page has some tips on minimizing parking costs, so if a car is involved in your trip, you might want to check it out.

Whatever you decide, have a wonderful visit!


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