Being an integral part of American colonial and revolutionary history, Boston is unsurprisingly also famous for its 4th of July festivities. You can hang out along the Charles River to watch the fireworks, but you can also partake in some of the many celebrations around town. Here are some ideas of what to do on Independence Day this summer:
The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular is probably the most famous activity in Boston on July 4th. Based at the Hatch Shell, the show starts at 8pm, with Jennifer Hudson performing too (although the fireworks themselves aren’t set off until 10:35). If you don’t want to be right in the chaos, many local bars will be broadcasting the show live. There will also be a concert on July 3rd at 8:20pm.
Boston Harborfest, a maritime-based heritage festival for Independence Day, has 200 events over several days (July 4th events here), including parades at City Hall, Blue Angels fly-overs, museum and walking tours, cruises and brunches. Admission prices vary. It’s often considered to be the largest patriotic celebration in the country.
Harborfest also gives visitors the opportunity to see the ‘tall ships’ as they arrive in the Boston port, explore historical homes and mansions, go on scavenger hunts, tour Fort Independence, participate in an authentic New England ‘clambake,’ watch gun drills, go rum-tasting, and even re-enact the Boston Tea Party by throwing tea in the harbor and firing cannons!
There are also rooftop parties (like at Top of the Hub) and smaller celebrations downtown. Ask your hotel or restaurant for deals or venues that might be setting up nearby. Remember that many places can be quite busy for the holiday – happy July 4th!