9 Things to Do on a Budget in Boston

With writers such as Edgar Allen Poe and Louisa May Alcott hailing from Boston, you would think that I would have no problem finding an intelligent quip or quote about Boston to start this article. Instead I will present you with this one:

I have just returned from Boston. It is the only thing to do if you find yourself up there.

                 Fred Allen to Groucho Marx 

Although this made me chuckle, it is simply not true. There are plenty of things to do in Boston! And if you are a little skeptical then let me convince you with my list of nine things.

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1. Eat a Boston Cream Pie. 

Don’t leave Boston without putting one of these creamy, delicious pies in your mouth. My gracious hosts in Boston bought one for me and I didn’t even manage to take a photo because it was gone within two minutes.

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2. Grab an Ice coffee and a donut from Dunkin Donuts. 

Good luck trying to find a square block in Boston that doesn’t house a Dunkin Donuts. These shops are everywhere on the east coast and their donuts are cheap and tasty. Get your basic white-girl on and order yourself a pumpkin iced coffee and a pumpkin donut. My favourite treat from Dunkin Donuts were the sweet iced teas. Yum. The large one is about the size of your head (yay america!).

3. Ride around on the T. 

The T is Boston’s underground subway/trolley car network. It’s an experience in itself as every train looks like it’s from the early days of transportation. There are also some pretty crazy characters on the T and you’re guaranteed to hear someone with one of those awesome Boston accents (“It’s not gonna be much longah”). Bonus points if you ride the T after a Red Sox game.

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4. Walk around Somerville and eat at Kelly’s diner.

This part of town used to be the shadiest spot in all of Boston thanks to it’s association with some of the most famous gang members of all time. In fact the movie “The Town” was based on Somerville and was even filmed there too. Whilst Somerville had shed its shadiest elements (the gangsters are in jail), it still has heaps of character. I actually stayed in Somerville for two nights and stumbled upon Kelly’s Diner. This diner is straight out of the 50’s and serves the best breakfast and bottomless coffee, all served by Kelly herself. A definite tick off the ole’ bucket list.

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5. Stop by Quincy Market and eat some fries at Saus.

Quincy market serves up all the food you have probably come to Boston to eat. Lobster rolls, clam chowder and oysters served every different way. It definitely made a non-seafood eater like me feel like I was in the wrong place. After strolling through Quincy market head around the corner to a little joint called Saus. it won the “best fries” in Boston and has like 12 sauce options (thus the name).

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6. Walk the freedom trail, get distracted and then eat more Dunkin Donuts.

Let me confess that I walked the freedom trail for about ten minutes and then got bored. I know it’s historic and important but there is a reason why it’s mostly golden oldies traversing the red brick road. If you are more of an adult than myself and like to learn about American history, then of course give it a go. However you do have my support if you get distracted and go eat some donuts.

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7. Break your budget on Newbury st.

Newbury street is the cutest little shopping street in all of Boston (and maybe even America). The street runs parallel to the popular Boylston street and offers an alternative to stuffy, claustrophobia-inducing shopping malls. Nearly every shop is housed in a classic brownstone and the street is lined with pretty trees. The Urban Outfitters on the end busted a huge hole in my budget but I walked away with the cutest burgundy cardigan you ever did see. If you really can’t bust your budget, there are lots of ice cream shops on Newbury St. Eat away your monetary blues!


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8. Ride the swan boats in Boston Commons.

After spending all your money in the shops at Newbury street, you might be looking for a cheap and cheerful activity to kill some time. Riding the swan boats in the Boston commons is a classic Boston experience. It also makes you feel like a manic pixie dream girl in an indie movie montage (think 500 days of summer or Ruby Sparks) so thats a plus!

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9. And the one thing I wish I did.. See a Red Sox game.

I hate watching sports and nothing puts me to sleep faster than watching a people run around after balls. However, going to see a Red Sox game is a whole different ball game (see what I did there). I would have loved to see the Sox’s play and there was even a game when I was there but I a) couldn’t afford it and b) didn’t have anyone to go with. So this one is still firmly on the bucket list.

Have you been to Boston? What did you think of it? Is there anything that should be on this list? I would love to hear so please send me an email at dirtypawsblog@gmail.com or comment below.





6 thoughts on “9 Things to Do on a Budget in Boston

  1. Oh boston, I love it. I live only 2 hours away from it but def don’t spend enough time in the city. We do love our dunkin in New England and like to pack them in everywhere. I miss dunkin donuts like crazy. Red Sox game are intense!

  2. Boston is great! My sister lived there in college so I used to visit her when I could. She lived by Fenway and would take me all over the place.

  3. Great list! I just went to Boston for the first time this past June for my brother’s college graduation. It was a much smaller city than I expected – I loved how easy it was to walk or take that T anywhere! Did you make it to Little Italy? The Cambridge side is also pretty nice to explore. But my favorite was a visit to the Sam Adams Brewery followed by lunch at Doyle’s – so much fun!

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