Even more than the Red Sox and the Tea Party, Boston is known for its bold and boisterous character. It comes through in its locals, who'll welcome you with a clink of ale in the Irish bars or an enthralling history tale in the taverns of old Beacon Hill. Booking a bed and breakfast in Boston's enchanting neighborhoods is a ticket to all that and more.
Amazing areas to find your Boston guest house
From the brownstone row houses of the Back Bay to the world-class colleges of Cambridge, the Atlantic ports to the meandering Charles River, Boston covers a great swath of New England. Delve into this neighborhood guide to get a feel for some of the awesome places you can seek out a B&B this year…
Beacon Hill – of course
A maze of cobblestone alleys where star-spangled flags flutter overhead, Beacon Hill is the perfect setting for an enchanting bed and breakfast in Boston, MA. It's also steeped in rich historical tales. Step outside your door and there's the 18th-century Massachusetts State House. Delve into a pub and viola – you're suddenly in the set of Cheers.
Although it's officially a different city, Cambridge is just a hop and a skip over the Charles River from the Back Bay of Boston. You'll need your thinking cap on if you book a B&B in these parts, though. The home of MIT, the whole place is bursting with thought-provoking exhibits and galleries – think glimmering gemstones in the Harvard Museum of Natural History, and haunting Mesoamerican totems in the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology.
If you really want to live with the locals, the gritty neighborhood of Dorchester is a top pick. It's one of the largest areas of the city, with wiggling avenues and quiet residential quarters lit by glowing gas lamps. Ashmont is a great place to look, hosting both rollicking Irish pubs and grand mansions alike.
Boston B&Bs in North End
Sloppy meatball marinara, fat-crust pizza pies, and sloshing Tuscan red wines are the order of the day in North End. Welcome to Boston's taste-bud-tingling Little Italy. It's one for the foodies, what with all those earthy mama's kitchens. And it's got a smattering of brick-fronted guest houses, tucked into neat 1800s terraces between the trattorias.
The features of great B&Bs in Boston
If you're new to the world of Bostonian bed and breakfasts, then you might be surprised to find a few things in these sorts of stays that separate them from your run-of-the-mill vacation rental. From handy hints to luxurious suites, there's all types to enjoy…
A local's welcome – and the tips that go with it
Wondering where the best Gaelic pub is in the Back Bay? Want tips on what lobster shacks make the tastiest New England rolls? There's really no substitute for in-the-know hints from an expert. Cue B&Bs in Boston, where the owners are ready to help with all the above.
A touch of luxury
Bed and breakfasts in Boston are a ticket to living like a local between the brownstone houses and Victorian mansions. But there's nothing to say they can't be luxury. Pamper yourself by picking the most opulent of the bunch, which offer organic morning meals, steaming hot tubs, big yards, and even bespoke tours of the historic sites.
A meal to wake up to
Just as their name implies, bed and breakfasts in Boston, MA, offer a spot of chow in the morning. That's great news if you're planning big adventures along the Freedom Trail and jaunts to the Tea Party exhibits. With stacks of handmade pancakes and home-cooked blueberry muffins, fried eggs and New England kippers to enjoy, you're sure to have the energy for it.
Getting a bargain Boston B&B
Don't overpay for your home away from home. There are ways you can save extra for the baseball games and the great museums of Cambridge. Just check out the tips below, which can knock off oodles from the cost of a guest house or B&B.
Always book early for peak seasons and dates
Prices usually spike when the Red Sox are doing battle at Fenway Park. Summertime sees rates go skywards, too, when most sightseers are treading the Freedom Trail. The upshot? Consider booking your Boston jaunt in months like April, May, or October to keep things on the budget side, and avoid any major baseball events that might be on the calendar.
Go for neighborhoods further from Beacon Hill
Everyone wants to be immersed in the Ye Olde Worlde streets of Boston's handsome Beacon Hill, with Revolutionary-era sights and cobbled squares on the doorstep. But that sort of location often doesn't come cheap. Much better are outer areas like Dorchester and Mission Hill.