Right here Boston
Art, Date Idea, Food, History, Kid Friendly, Sports & Active Life
As Massachusetts reopens under a 4-Phase plan, activities & experiences around Boston are slowly returning under what is being dubbed the “new normal.” Everyday things to do that were once taken for granted—e.g. kayaking, patio dining, farmers markets—are now Boston’s biggest attractions. For a list of what can open in Massachusetts and when, see this link. In the meantime, here are 10 mostly-outdoor activities you can do in Boston right now…
1) Dine outside
After almost three months under a stay-at-home advisory, Massachusetts restaurants can offer sit-down service again (outdoors only for now). See this link for a running list of rooftops & patios that are NOW OPEN in the Boston area. Boston's first beer garden under the new normal, Harpoon, is now open in the Seaport. And parts of Hanover Street in the North End are being turned into a "cafe zone" for al fresco dining. In Waltham, Moody Street is closed to all vehicular traffic as restaurants begin to serve their customers with outdoor dining.
2) Hit up a farmers market
Farmers markets are back for 2020 -- here is a running list on what's open and where. This year, open-air markets are reopening with new guidelines in place to protect shoppers & vendors from the spread of COVID-19. Booths will be more spaced out, hand sanitizing stations will be available, social distancing will be enforced, and masks will be required.
3) Go to a local beach
You don’t have to venture too far outside of Boston to have a beach day. After all, Boston is a port city. Here are 7 beaches within a 10-mile radius of Downtown Boston:
• M & L Street Beaches (2.6 miles from DWTN Boston)
• Pleasure Bay Beach (2.9 miles from DWTN Boston)
• Carson Beach (3.3 miles from DWTN Boston)
• Constitution Beach (5.7 miles from DWTN Boston)
• Wollaston Beach (7.9 miles from DWTN Boston)
• Revere Beach (8.5 miles from DWTN Boston) *
• Yirrell Beach (9.6 miles from DWTN Boston)
* The pictured bridge in the bottom left of the main photo is the Christina and John Markey Memorial Pedestrian Bridge, which connects the Wonderland MBTA stop with Revere Beach. There is also a new restaurant right there called Dryft, which is now open for outdoor dining.
4) Go shopping
Under phase 2 of Massachusetts' reopening plan, retail stores are now allowed to operate at 25% capacity. Read Boston Magazine's recent shopping experience to know what to expect.
5) Catch a movie at a drive-in theater
With restrictions lifted on drive-in movie theaters, Showcase Pop-Up Drive-In at Patriot Place is now open. BYOM (bring your own mask) in case you have to open your window or exit your vehicle for restroom breaks. Also, Saugus' famous Kowloon restaurant is rumored to be converting their parking into a drive-in movie theater soon.
6) Go kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding on the Charles River
Kayaking on the Charles is back...at least at Community Boating Inc. on the Esplanade. Masks must be worn at the dock at all times. 2-hour kayak and stand-up paddleboard rentals must be booked in advance. All kayaks, paddles, and life jackets are sanitized between customers.
Also, The Boston Sailing Center is now open for sailing along Boston's historic waterfront and beyond.
7) Go for a bike ride, walk, or run
Now is as good of a time than ever to explore Boston’s epic Emerald Necklace -- a 1,100-acre chain of parks linked by parkways and waterways connecting Boston Common, Public Garden, Commonwealth Avenue Mall, The Fens, Forsyth Park, The Riverway, Olmsted Park, Jamaica Pond, Jamaicaway, Arborway, Arnold Arboretum, and Franklin Park. Fun fact: The linear system of parks was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park in NYC.
Beyond that, the Boston area is home to literally hundreds of beautiful parks where you can go for a walk, run, or bike ride. Pictured above is North Bank Bridge, which connects Cambridge’s North Point Park with Paul Revere Park in nearby Charlestown.
8) Picnic in the park and/or check out some street art
Parks are open as of May 25, 2020 per Massachusetts' reopening plan. Support local restaurants by ordering takeout and enjoying it at a neighborhood park. Just stay six feet apart from other parties that are not within your household.
While you're out, take in some of Boston's best works of public art -- see WBUR's "The 50 Best Works Of Public Art In Greater Boston, Ranked" article from 2016 to get started.
9) Support local, Black-owned businesses
As millions around the world rally against racial injustice and police brutality, the New York Times has called this period in history “the biggest collective demonstration of civil unrest around state violence in our generation’s memory.” Here are 7 ways you can support the Black community in Boston right now, including a list of Black-owned restaurants and stores that are open for business. See this link for a running list of upcoming Black Lives Matter demonstrations in the Boston area.
10) Attend a virtual event
Not quite ready to venture out and about? You can find a running list of virtual events on The Boston Calendar here. On Saturday, June 13th, Boston Pride will host their annual Pride Festival virtually -- details here.
Stay safe & stay healthy.