A Local’s Guide to Boston #1: Things to See

Serina Herron-Smith, MA SID'24

October 24, 2023

Serina Herron-Smith, MA SID'24Brandeis’ Heller community is wonderful, diverse, and overflowing with potential. Heller brings together some of the brightest minds from the world, and we get the honor of sitting next to them in class and sharing our lived experiences.

As a born and raised Bostonian attending Heller, it’s with joy and pride that I'll spend the next few blog posts sharing all things Boston with you all : things to see, places to eat, and fun to be had!

Up first this week: Things to see!

Come along with me while we (virtually? mentally?) take a walk through Boston and the surrounding neighborhoods. I’ll show you my top three!

Place: The Institute for Contemporary Art, Boston

Location: 25 Harbor Shore Drive, Boston MA (The Seaport District)

Why should you visit: Even though this museum is a bit out of the way (you take the commuter rail to North Station, and then hop on the red line… and then the silver line…etc) and the MBTA is notoriously… a work in progress, the museum and the surrounding area are a must-see when you come to Boston. 

First of all, it’s home to some of the best exhibits around (in my personal opinion). You’ll be able to take in some truly breathtaking contemporary art, and on the second floor, you’ll see beautiful views of Boston Harbor. And don’t stop there! After the museum, take a nice walk through the seaport district. During the winter months they hold a holiday market, but it’s beautiful year-round! It also has shopping in case any of you are curious. Levis, Everlane, Mejuri, Porter Square Books.. There’s something for everyone.


Place: The Boston Public Library

Location: 700 Boylston Street, Boston MA (Copley Square)

Why you should visit: Okay, okay, okay. I get it. You’re all saying, Serina? Really? A Library? Yes! The central Boston Public Library branch is located in Copley Square (so, so close to Newbury street.. Again, shopping) and is HISTORIC. It was founded in 1848 and is a designated historic landmark. There is a new section of the library, but the old part is breathtaking. Stonework, marble, cathedral ceilings, and architecture that’s definitely a lost art. Make sure to check out the study room. Known for its expansive ceilings, and gorgeous, green antique lamps (very instagram worthy). Before you leave, take a rest in the courtyard, and if you have time, order some tea at The Courtyard Tea Room.

And just so you don’t forget, this IS a library, so peruse the books! And wherever you live, visit your local library and purchase a library card! “Having fun isn’t hard when you’ve got a library card!” (If you don’t know this reference you’re entirely too young!!) And support your local librarians! 


Place: Faneuil Hall MarketPlace

Location: Boston MA (Near Government Center)

Why you should visit: There is… unfortunately a recurring theme here with shopping but I swear it’s unintentional. Faneuil Hall is indeed a marketplace, so come with a full wallet and an empty stomach! You can both shop and dine here which is always a good time. Some might say New England clam chowder is the best clam chowder, so try it for yourself and decide. And for the vegans (or those who are lactose intolerant), I recommend FoMu. So many delicious flavors and it's entirely plant based! With over 25 food shops there’s something for everyone so take your pick! Or don't! Eat it all, this is a safe space! You can take your food and enjoy it in the hall itself or take it to go and watch some local street artists perform right outside!

Stay tuned for the next post! There’s so so so much good food in Boston and the surrounding area, contrary to popular belief! And I’ll show you where to start first! See you soon!