Top 5: Boston Trip Edition

by Cait on January 31, 2012

Before I head out on a trip, I often find myself seeking out others blog posts when I’m going to an area that I remember them visiting or that I know they live.  To me, one of the best parts of going somewhere is not doing just the touristy things, but also making sure to check out the local haunts and the places that people who live in the area like to frequent.

That said, I’ve decided I’ll start doing this for YOU all (and I guess, selfishly, a little bit for me so that I can remember the names of my favorite places).

So without further ado, I present you with my Top 5 from this past Boston trip:

1. The Boston Commons

I love the Boston Commons.  I went to Boston College so Boston in general has a really special place in my heart – but there’s just something about the commons that I find so peaceful and relaxing.  People running, hanging out, taking photos, sitting on benches…I used to go here a lot and just sit with a book or bring my camera and take pictures.  Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall there’s always something worth checking out in the Commons.  I also highly recommend a run through it!

2. Sweet – Downtown

Let’s be honest.  Of course the cupcake place was going to make it on here!  But more than serving up delicious cupcakes (with flavors like Blueberry and Buttermilk Pancake, Mocha Mint Chip and Banana Foster to name a few), it’s just the most adorable, quintessential setting one could ever imagine.  Definitely worth a visit trip downtown for!

3. Thinking Cup on Tremont Street

There’s just something about this place that has that perfect laid back coffee shop feel.  As soon as you walk in you’re hit with images of people curled up with a book, cozied into a booth with their laptop or chatting with friends while they sip on their gorgeous lattes.  If I’m being honest, the real draw to this place for me was how beautiful the drinks were…but I found that I was much more impressed with the whole atmosphere (and the food options!) upon entering.

4. PICCO on Tremont Street

I’ve wanted to go to PICCO ever since I started reading Eat Like Me.  Literally every time Cristin would go there I would make a mental note that some day I just HAD to go there.  Well, this trip I made it happen and I couldn’t have been more pleased.

There was a bit of a wait, but it was WELL worth it – and the good thing about the location is that Tremont Street is filled with all kinds of shops and things to do, so the wait went by in no time!

I tasted the Margherita pizza and a calzone and both were out of this world.  They cook the pizzas up “Italian style” so they’re nice and crispy on the outside with a soft chew in the middle.  If you do go, I highly recommend saving room for the Ice Cream Sampler – 3 perfectly-sized scoops of any type of ice cream you’d like (you’re able to choose from flavors such as Vanilla Dark Chocolate,  Mint Chip,  Butterscoth Swirl, Passionfruit and Cinnamon).  I sampled the PB Chip, Vanilla Chip and Mocha and let’s just say I walked away wishing I had brought a pint of the PB Chip home with me!  It had the perfect amount of peanut butter taste to it and the chocolate chips created a flavor combination that I’m pretty sure you all know I love ;)

My suggestion if you go here?  Split a salad (they were quite large) to start, split a pizza or a calzone and split the ice cream sampler.  You’ll leave feeling satisfied, not stuffed, and with a few more dollars in your pocket!

5. The North End

The North End is great simply because there’s just SO much to do.  The water is right there where you can take beautiful photos of the boats going by, hop on a Boston Harbor Cruises, visit the Aquarium or eat at the great seafood restaurants like Sel de la Terre and Legal Seafoods – but you also have the option of walking just a hop, skip and a jump to the left where you’ll find yourself in Quincy Market!  The shops and eateries in Quincy Market can’t be beat and when the weather is warm, there’s always something going on outside…just be ware that it can definitely get pretty crowded!

So there you go – the perfect handful of places to stop by next time you’re in Beantown.  I could probably do a Top 50 for Boston, but for now I’ll keep it at 5.

And because I think it’s definitely also worth mentioning, brunch/lunch at Stephanie’s on Newbury Street OR The Station Diner in Newton Center are also definitely worth checking out!  The Station Diner actually serves breakfast all day and I think we all know that you can’t top that!

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{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table January 31, 2012

It looks lick such a great trip – I love the Boston area. Your coffee/art is gorgeous!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Agreed – I love it as well! And I know – I was SO impressed with how pretty they made the drinks!

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Jessica @ Sushi and Sit-Ups January 31, 2012

Love this! My fiance’s family is from Boston and he is a huge Red Sox fan. I’ve never been, so I hope we can get there sometime soon!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Oh I hope you can get there sometime too! I definitely recommend a game at Fenway Park if you make it there!

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chelcie @ chelcie's food files January 31, 2012

I love this post! I am from boston and I think every spot you mentioned is definitely worth going to! I absolutely LOVE the north end, (the bar scene is really fun there too!), but all of the restaurants in that area are amazing!

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Cait January 31, 2012

I’m so glad you agree!! I almost said something about the bar scene in the North End actually and I forgot! Glad you commented on it :) I’m not much of a bar person but I meant to include it for the readers. And agreed on the restaurants – SO SO good.

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Claire @ Live and Love to Eat January 31, 2012

That coffee is beautiful! Looks like a fun city!

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Cait January 31, 2012

It definitely is! I highly recommend a visit :)

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Liz @ Tip Top Shape January 31, 2012

That coffee shoppe sounds wonderful!! Definitely will be looking back at this post if I ever go to Boston :D

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Cait January 31, 2012

Definitely do!!

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Katie January 31, 2012

You just completed my imaginary Boston-trip-planning process. Thank you very much.

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Cait January 31, 2012

Hahaha – you are VERY welcome. I actually did it just for you (obviously!)

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Cat @Breakfast to Bed January 31, 2012

you look so beautiful in these pictures. your inner happiness glows on the outside,

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Cait January 31, 2012

Aw, thank you Cat! I certainly was happy on the inside so I’m glad it came through :)

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Kaitlin @4loveofcarrots January 31, 2012

I am so glad you posted this! I am going to Boston next weekend with my boyfriend for a birthday/valentine’s day trip and I am making him take me to PICCO, Thinking cup and Northend for sure!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Oh yay!! What perfect timing! Definitely try to stop by Sweet for some red velvet cupcakes as well! :) Have so much fun!

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Lauren @ What Lauren Likes January 31, 2012

Love Boston! Great pics :)

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Cait January 31, 2012

Thanks Lauren! :)

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Shannon ~ My Place In The Race January 31, 2012

That coffee is too cool! And the sweet treats look amazing! :P

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Cait January 31, 2012

Agreed – I was SO impressed by the coffee at this place! I highly recommend it if you ever find yourself in Boston :)

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Eva January 31, 2012

Omg, first time commenter, but I heart your blog! And your pictures. And well.. YOU! You are so gorgeous Cait! And so.. Balanced. Really amazing! :)
What a great idea, who did you visit in Boston? Some of your friends from college? And who did you go there with? Looks like an amazing trip!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Aw thank you Eva – you’re too sweet! My sister lives in Boston and I have a bunch of friends there so I always visit as many people as I can when I get up there :) I’m so glad that you love the blog!

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Laura @ LauraLivesLife January 31, 2012

Love this! I’ve always wanted to visit Boston, but now I want to LIVE there!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Ahaha – I love it! I definitely support both (a trip OR living there!)

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kathleen @ the daily crumb January 31, 2012

thanks for this list! i’m going to boston for two nights next weekend as part of a boston/nyc weekend getaway with my girlfriends. will definitely bookmark these suggestions!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Oh good – that makes me so happy! Let me know how you like some of the places if you try them! :)

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Simply Life January 31, 2012

I live in Boston and haven’t had coffee there OR been to sweet! I’m glad you posted this!

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Cait January 31, 2012

Oh good! I’m so glad to hear it! Definitely check out both (they’re right next to each other downtown!) and let me know what you think! :)

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Katie @ Talk Less, Say More January 31, 2012

You leave me dying to get back to Boston. I went to Berklee and haven’t been back for a few years now and man, do I miss it there. And I think you missed a stop into Mike’s Pastry in the NorthEnd….that was my go-to in college. :)

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Cait February 1, 2012

I didn’t make it to Mike’s this trip but I’ve been before and it’s definitely SO delicious!

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Alyssa February 1, 2012

I didn’t know you went to BC! I’m a student there now and love it. This list is great, love the blog!

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Cait February 1, 2012

Oh I’m so glad to hear that! I love ‘meeting’ other BC students :) I LOVED my time there and am always wishing I could go back! Glad you like the blog!!

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Emily February 2, 2012

I’ve never been to Boston! Your posts make me want to visit so much!!!

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Cait February 2, 2012

Oooh you definitely should! It’s a GREAT GREAT city!

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Life's a Bowl February 2, 2012

I went to BU [just graduated in May!] and absolutely loveddd shopping/ dining on Newbury St. and shopping at the Haymarket Farmers Market in the North End :D And the Public Gardens will always have a special place in my heart because that’s where he proposed!

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Cait February 2, 2012

Oh I had no idea! How exciting!! :) And that’s such a cute story about the Public Gardens! What a great place for a proposal!!

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Susan H. @ The Food Allergy Chronicles February 3, 2012

I now want to go to Boston! My parents lived just outside Boston for a couple years…I loved going to visit! Haven’t been in years…luckily I have a couple friends that live in the area! I would definitely check out Picco…I love Margarita Pizzas, salads and ice cream! My kinda meal!

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