We have just spent an enjoyable few days in Boston soaking up the culture and historical significance of this well protected harbour. There is no place convenient to anchor within the harbour so we decided to spend the big bucks and get a berth at the Constitution Marina. This marina is immediately across the Charles River from the downtown area. Boston Gardens, home to the Canucks destroying Bruins as well as the Celtics, is immediately on the other side of the Charlestown Bridge. The Freedom Trail meanders by the front of the marina and leads a few hundred metres east to the resting place of the USS Constitution, the oldest continuously commissioner ship of the US Navy, built in 1797.
After getting a look at the Constitution sitting in drydock undergoing a major refit we carried along on the Freedom Trail to Bunker Hill and climbed to the top of the memorial for a view of the Boston Harbour, downtown, Beacon Hill and Cambridge. It was from this hill that the Patriots first fought against the British in 1775 and, although they lost the battle, this was the beginning of the war of Independence. Other stops along the Freedom Trail include the sight of the Boston Massacre where citizens were shot for speaking out against the British; Paul Revere's statue and his house; the Old Granary Burial Ground where several famous people are buried including three who signed the Declaration of Independence; and a final stop outside the State Capitol adjacent to the Boston Commons. While numerous people chose to take guided tours of the Freedom Trail we found just following along on the red bricks placed into the sidewalk was easy and the well placed signs informative.
We completed our walking tour of Boston strolling through the Theater district, the financial area and then along the refurbished wharves on the waterfront. A quick stop was necessary at the Granary Tavern to quench our thirsts before carrying on through Little Italy in the North End and back across the bridge to Curare in the marina.
On our second day in Boston we met up with a boat friend we had met a couple of years back while in Trinidad, then again last year in the Caribbean and again this season in Cuba. We kept crossing paths while sailing so it just made sense to keep in touch with Richard while in his home town. He graciously collected us from the marina and drove us out past the renowned MIT campus to Harvard University. This was greatly appreciated as we would never have ventured this far on our own and it was very enjoyable to see the beautiful setting of one of the oldest universities in the country. A Russian style dinner of cold salads on the hot day was an unexpected and tasty surprise.
As our marina budget had been stretched to the limit we had to move on the next day and motored a few miles to the Boston Harbour Islands National Park to anchor for the evening. This park is a collection of 30 or more small islands that offer a variety of recreational opportunities. For us it meant there was a secure place to anchor before setting off early the next morning for Provincetown at the northern end of Cape Cod.