Ideas for Vacation Time Outside Boston

Feb 21st, 2009, 09:09 AM
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Ideas for Vacation Time Outside Boston

We'll (DH and 10yo DD) be in Boston in mid-May for a meeting. We have some time before (3-4 days) and one day after the meeting for travel in the area, but can't decide where to go or what to do.

DH and I lived in Boston a long time ago, for 3 years, so we're familiar with the area. We visited Boston 3 years ago (same meeting), and made a longer, circuituous trip that went from Cape Ann (visiting friends), Salem, Newton (visiting friends, and seeing Lexington/Concord), Plymouth (Plimoth Plantation), Newport, RI and ended in in NYC. DD and I would like to visit Plimoth Plantation again. As it's DH's meeting, if we ended up traveling north before the meeting, maybe DD and I could make a day trip down to Plymouth during the meeting days.

Mid-May is a difficult time of year. DH and I have always preferred Maine, and are considering the Kennebunkport area, which we visited a number of times oh-so-long-ago. We loved Bailey Island, too, but I think DD would think it's just too dull. But how much is there to do in Maine in mid-May, and what if the weather's bad? We just never really loved Cape Cod; it just didn't click with us, so we're not considering that.

Any itinerary suggestions? Thanks in advance!
Lexma90 is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 09:17 AM
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The weather will be tricky for mid-May, so perhaps have a plan A and plan B depending on weather?

Have you considered New Hampshire (white Mtns, or Portsmouth along the coast) or Western Mass/Berkshires area? Not sure what your interests are...
yk is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 09:30 AM
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Oops - should have mentioned that. We like good food (especially lobster), history, DD loved the old houses in Newport. Some activity, but we're really active at home, so don't need all that on vacation. We live in the Rockies, and I know what May is like there - mud season - so I'm less inclined to visit the White Mountains at that time of year.
Lexma90 is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 09:42 AM
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How far are you willing to drive?

One of your days in town you can visit Concord/Lexington area, if you haven't been.
yk is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 09:45 AM
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We visited Concord/Lexington on our last trip, so we're less inclined to go there again this trip.
Lexma90 is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 10:27 AM
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Portland, Maine is a surprisingly fun city - you can drive a bit and see lighthouses, there is a small art museum, and quite a few funky little shops. Some decent seafood as well. My 17 year old dtr and I ran away from home one weekend about a year ago and had a great time there. If you can stretch the 3-4 days by addiing a few more, you could even continue up the coast to Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park.

If you have been to Plimouth Plantation and liked it, a similar daytrip - little longer drive - would be to go to Old Sturbridge Village.

I know you have been to Newport, RI, but Providence is also a nice little city.

You have done a lot of the things within driving distance of Boston that I would recommend - so I am trying to be a little creative.
gail is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 11:25 AM
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You could come to Lowell. The first planned industrial city in the US. The mill tours have lots of stuff to interest kids including the Mill Girl Exhibits. You can also take canal tours, visit some funky museums, eat fantastic Cambodian food, have a nice walk along the river, etc. It's a quick 45 minute train trip from North Station or an easy drive.

Sturbridge Village is a good suggestion. Not sure when the Brimfield Antiques show is in the spring, but it might be May and it's out that way.

If you head to Rhode Island again, Roger Williams is a big zoo/amusement park combo. North of Boston Newburyport is a nice little walking town with some good restaurants and you could check out the Wildlife Reservation on Plum Island. Or go a couple of towns north and enjoy the extremely honky-tonk atmosphere of Salisbury, MA and Hampton Beach, NH. Further up Rooute 1 in NH is Rye Beach and Odiorne State Park which has a science center and lots of tidepools.

Enjoy your trip.
shaz60 is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 01:07 PM
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Thanks for the great ideas - I'm going to look into a lot of those suggestions. my daughter does like nature kinds of stuff, so Plum Island and Odiorne State Park may be of particular interest. And I'd thought about Portland, as well, so that's now on the list.

And thanks for being creative - between living in the area (long before the kids) and visiting relatively frequently, we've done a lot of the more familiar things several times. I know I need to take DD on the freedom walk, as she says she doesn't remember much of it, but I've done it so many times...
Lexma90 is offline  
Feb 21st, 2009, 04:13 PM
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Have you been up to Strawberry Banke in Portsmouth, NH? You might find that interesting. Or go to the whaling museum in New Bedford, MA or the Battleship Massachusetts in Fall River. If it rains go to one of the casinos in Connecticut, they need the money.
emalloy is offline  

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