Want to create an itinerary from this post?
Chances are if you’re visiting the Boston area, everyone will tell you to take the “T” (public transit system). They’re right, of course. It’s the cheapest way to get around Boston, and nearby cities like Cambridge and Allston. But what if you’re looking for destinations a little further outside of the city, off the beaten path of the train? Don’t bother with rental cars, take the bus!
Check out these don’t-miss destinations, reachable by MBTA buses:
Harpoon Brewery via SL2 Bus/Silver Line
Not quite a train, but a little more than a bus, the Silver Line is a great way to explore Boston’s waterfront Innovation District. And no one’s innovating in beer quite like Harpoon Brewery. Take the Silver Line SL2 bus from the South Station Silver Line bus stop to Harpoon for a tour or tasting.
Hingham Center via 220 Bus
Take the Red Line train to Quincy Center Station, where you can pick up the 220 bus into Hingham. Get off at the Hingham Launch stop to enjoy a meal at Alma Nove, the hot new restaurant from Executive Chef Paul Wahlberg (yes, THOSE Wahlbergs!).
In the summer, take the bus to the Otis Street stop, opposite Ship Street, to Bathing Beach. Cool off in the water, and it’s an easy walk back into Hingham to the local shops and cafes that line the streets.
Union Square, Somerville via 86, 85, 91, or CT2 Bus
Union Square is home to the Fluff Festival, celebrating all things marshmallow fluff, which is just about the most-Massachusetts thing you could possibly do during your visit.
There are plenty of ways to get to Union Square in Somerville, but the train isn’t yet one of them. Lucky for you, each bus that passes through Union Square also takes you to some great locations around the city:
- The 86 bus will take you to Dali Restaurant, a local favorite for tapas located at 415 Washington Street in Somerville, and also around the Harvard Square area, as well as into Brookline, and near Boston College.
- The 85 bus will take you past the Taza Chocolate factory, and you don’t need a golden ticket to get a tour!
- The 91 bus is a quick trip from Central Square in Cambridge, which also features great restaurants like the hidden gem Green Street Grill, whose burger is listed among Food & Wine magazine’s Best Burgers in the U.S.
- The CT2 bus takes you all across Boston, and stops within easy walking distance of major sites MIT, the Museum of Fine Arts, and Fenway Park.
Massachusetts also features local buses that cross paths with routes on the MBTA to take you to even more exciting places like:
Rocky Neck Art Colony via Cape Ann Transit Authority
Take the commuter rail North to Gloucester, and pick up the CATA Red Line bus to the Rocky Neck Art Colony, one of the oldest working art colonies in the country.
Higgins Armory Museum via Worcester Regional Transit Authority
Take the commuter rail West to Worcester, and pick up the WRTA 30 Bus to the Higgins Armory Museum, a unique museum dedicated entirely to arms and armor.
Plimoth Plantation via Greater Attleboro Taunton Regional Transit Authority
Take the commuter rail South to Kingston, and pick up the GATRA Freedom Link or Liberty Link to Plymouth Center. Enjoy beautiful parks and shops, and visit Plymouth Rock before picking up the Mayflower Link to historic Plimoth Plantation.
No matter where you decide to go, you don’t need to limit yourself to the rail or add the cost of a rental car to your travel budget. Enjoy the scenery, relax, and let the wheels on the bus roll you all around this beautiful state!
Will you take the MBTA on your next visit to Massachusetts? What’s your favorite destination that’s MBTA accessible?
Before you embark on your next MBTA adventure, make sure to check out some of their new mobile apps! Click here for more information.
Photo credit: David Fox