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5717
Massachusetts

Boston: Birthplace of American Liberty

Explore Boston, a city of great social and cultural heritage, as you visit its landmarks and learn about revolutionary events alongside scholarly experts and friendly locals.
Rating (5)
Program No. 5717RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,749
Massachusetts

Boston: Birthplace of American Liberty

Explore Boston, a city of great social and cultural heritage, as you visit its landmarks and learn about revolutionary events alongside scholarly experts and friendly locals.
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,749
Program No. 5717 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Sep 5 - Sep 10, 2021
Starting at
1,899
Sep 19 - Sep 24, 2021
Starting at
1,899
Oct 3 - Oct 8, 2021
Starting at
1,899
May 15 - May 20, 2022
Starting at
1,749
Jun 5 - Jun 10, 2022
Starting at
1,749
Sep 11 - Sep 16, 2022
Starting at
1,899
Oct 16 - Oct 21, 2022
Starting at
1,899
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Sep 5 - Sep 10, 2021
Starting at
2,659
Sep 19 - Sep 24, 2021
Starting at
2,659
Oct 3 - Oct 8, 2021
Starting at
2,659
May 15 - May 20, 2022
Starting at
2,519
Jun 5 - Jun 10, 2022
Starting at
2,519
Sep 11 - Sep 16, 2022
Starting at
2,659
Oct 16 - Oct 21, 2022
Starting at
2,659

At a Glance

Discover one of America’s most historic cities by retracing the steps of Samuel Adams, John Hancock and Paul Revere. Learn how American independence was born in Massachusetts as you walk along the Freedom Trail. Led by expert instructors, explore the city’s historic sites such as Faneuil Hall and Bunker Hill, beacons of Boston’s revolutionary past.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to 2.5 miles per day; some cobblestones and hills.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Explore with experts the Boston Massacre site, the Granary Burying Ground, the Old South Meeting House and the Old State House.
  • Visit Paul Revere’s home in Boston’s historic North End neighborhood, and climb the bell tower at the Old North Church.
  • Relive the first days of the Revolution at Old North Bridge, along the path from Lexington to Concord.

General Notes

Public transportation and ferries used.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Charles Bahne
Charles Bahne is a Boston historian and author of "The Complete Guide to Boston’s Freedom Trail and Chronicles of Old Boston." Charlie graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a major in Urban Studies and Planning, focusing on urban history. He then worked in some of the city’s historic sites and museums, and became a seasonal Park Ranger with Boston National Historical Park. He left the National Park Service in 1985 to publish his Freedom Trail book, which has now sold more than 500,000 copies. Since 1997, Charlie has also taught many Road Scholar programs about Boston and its role in the American Revolution.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Charles Bahne
Charles Bahne View biography
Charles Bahne is a Boston historian and author of "The Complete Guide to Boston’s Freedom Trail and Chronicles of Old Boston." Charlie graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a major in Urban Studies and Planning, focusing on urban history. He then worked in some of the city’s historic sites and museums, and became a seasonal Park Ranger with Boston National Historical Park. He left the National Park Service in 1985 to publish his Freedom Trail book, which has now sold more than 500,000 copies. Since 1997, Charlie has also taught many Road Scholar programs about Boston and its role in the American Revolution.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Masquerade: The Life and Times of Deborah Sampson
by Alfred F. Young
True story of a young woman who enlisted and served in the Continental Army.
1776
by David McCullough
The story of one momentous year, from the evacuation of Boston through the disastrous New York campaign. The illustrated edition includes reproductions of significant historical documents.
Decisive Day: The Battle for Bunker Hill
by Richard M. Ketchum
A readable narrative of the first major battle of the American Revolution.
Lexington and Concord: The Beginning of the War of the American Revolution
by Arthur Bernon Tourtellot
A detailed yet readable history of the events of April 19, 1775.
The Minutemen and their World
by Robert A. Gross
A fascinating study of the farmers and townsmen of Concord in the years before they gathered at North Bridge.
Founding Myths: Stories That Hide Our Patriotic Past
by Ray Raphael
Examines some legends of the American Revolution that have become “accepted fact” in our history books, and digs out the story of what really happened.
The First American Revolution: Before Lexington and Concord
by Ray Raphael
Tells the little-known story of how residents of rural Massachusetts effectively overthrew the royal government, without force, seven months before the first shots were fired.
Paul Revere’s Ride
by David Hackett Fischer
A modern history of events that led up to the famous ride, and of the fighting that occurred later that day.
Defiance of the Patriots: The Boston Tea Party & the Making of America
by Benjamin L. Carp
A good discussion of the issues and events that culminated in the destruction of the tea in 1773.
The Muse of the Revolution: The Secret Pen of Mercy Otis Warren and the Founding of a Nation
by Nancy Rubin Stuart
The story of a remarkable woman sister of one leading patriot and wife of another who played a surprising role in shaping political thinking during the Revolution, then wrote an early history of those events.
A New Age Now Begins: A People's History of the American Revolution
by Page Smith
The best detailed history of the American Revolution; part of the author's eight-volume history of the United States.
As If an Enemy's Country: The British Occupation of Boston and the Origins of Revolution
by Richard Archer
Describes events that led up to the Boston Massacre, and the Massacre itself.
The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763–1789
by Robert Middlekauff
From "The Oxford History of the United States" series, a good one-volume study of the Revolution from both a political and military perspective.
Paul Revere and the World He Lived In
by Esther Forbes
Although it was published 70 years ago, this outstanding book is still the best available overview of what happened in Boston in the 1760s and 1770s. Not just a biography of Paul Revere, it describes life and politics during this tumultuous period. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize.
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6 days
5 nights
13 meals
5 B 4 L 4 D
DAY
1
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Boston, MA
D
Hyatt Regency Boston

Activity note: Hotel check-in from 4:00 p.m. If you arrive early, you may leave your luggage at the front desk.

Afternoon: Program Registration: After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar table to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing your up-to-date schedule that reflects any last-minute changes, and other important information. Please remember to bring your name tag sent with this packet to the program. If your arrival is delayed, please ask for your packet when you check in. Orientation: The Group Leader will greet everyone with a warm welcome and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule and any changes, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures including contact numbers for key staff, and answer any questions you may have. Our resident instructor who will be with us throughout the program will also serve as our Group Leader. Unless noted otherwise, we will be using the MBTA (public transportation) that includes a ferry from Charlestown to Boston and the subway. Scheduled free time is reserved for your personal independent exploration. Please be aware that program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: Enjoy a meal at a local restaurant while you begin getting to know your fellow Road Scholars.

Evening: Continue getting to know everyone, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

DAY
2
Revolution Roots, Boston Intro, Bunker Hill, Old Ironsides
Boston, MA
B,L,D
Hyatt Regency Boston

Activity note: Use of MBTA public transportation system including ferry to/from Boston and subway. Not all stations have elevators and may require walking up/down flights of stairs. Getting on/off a motor coach, walking up to 2 miles throughout the day including up/down hills and cobblestones; standing at various sites.

Breakfast: Full American breakfast buffet with a selection of hot and cold items, coffee, juice, and tea, at the hotel.

Morning: We’ll be joined at the hotel by our expert instructor for a presentation on roots of the American Revolution. We’ll then board a motor coach for an introductory ride around the city.

Lunch: At a restaurant in Charlestown near the waterfront.

Afternoon: After lunch, our coach will bring us to Bunker Hill, and along the way we will hear about the USS Constitution — Old Ironsides. At Bunker Hill we will visit the museum, and then a local expert will lead us on a walk of Breed's Hill, site of the Battle of Bunker Hill. The famous order — “Don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes” — may never have been uttered, at least in that form, but it lives on as a legacy of the Battle of Bunker Hill that began on the afternoon of June 17, 1775. The colonists lost the first real battle of the American Revolution, but their valiant defense inspired the patriots. The site is marked by a massive granite monument visible from many parts of the city. Afterwards, we will visit the Charlestown Navy Yard to see "Old Ironsides" - the USS Constitution. We will return to downtown Boston on the ferry.

Dinner: Enjoy a delicious dinner at a local Boston restaurant.

Evening: At leisure to walk through the picturesque Boston Public Gardens or relax to prepare for a full day tomorrow.

DAY
3
Paul Revere, Mariners House, Old North Church
Boston, MA
B,L,D
Hyatt Regency Boston

Activity note: Use of MBTA public transportation system including subway. Not all stations have elevators and may require walking up/down flights of stairs.Walking up to 2 miles throughout the day including up/down hills and over cobblestones; standing at various sites.

Breakfast: Breakfast is in the hotel.

Morning: Meet your Group Leader in the lobby and head over to the subway, which is known as the "T" in Boston. Take the "T" to the Haymarket stop, and then we’ll walk from the waterfront to North Square, where Paul Revere's house has stood since 1680. We’ll begin next door at the Mariners House where a Revere historian will give an illustrated talk, then explore the Revere House. While it appears small to us today, in its time it was considered a very fine townhouse. Paul Revere lived here with his wife, five children, and his mother! About 90 percent of what we see today is original.

Lunch: In the dining hall of the Mariners House, where men and women who work at sea can come and stay when they are anchored in Boston.

Afternoon: Next, we’ll go on a walking field trip through the North End neighborhood and have a behind-the-scenes visit to historic Old North Church — “One if by land, Two if by sea.” Back at the Mariners House, Captain Jim Sorrentino will talk to us about the history of the Mariners House and the Mariners Association.

Dinner: Eat dinner at a local restaurant.

Evening: The remainder of the evening is at leisure.

DAY
4
Freedom Trail, Free Time
Boston, MA
B,L
Hyatt Regency Boston

Activity note: Today you will be walking along the Freedom Trail. This includes walking on pavement and cobblestone. The freedom trail is a mixture of walking and standing for a total of approx. 90 minutes, up to 2 miles.

Breakfast: Breakfast is in the hotel.

Morning: To begin the day, we’ll have a presentation on the beginning of the Revolutionary War, setting the stage for our next field trip. Then we’ll walk the fabled Freedom Trail. There are 16 official sites along the 2.5 miles marked with a line of red brick or red paint. We will go part way, from Boston Common to the Old Granary Burying Ground, Old South Meeting House, the Old State House Museum, and Faneuil Hall.

Lunch: Lunch is at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Free Time. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Lexington & Concord Field Trips
Boston, MA
B,L,D
Hyatt Regency Boston

Activity note: Getting on/off motor coach several times throughout the day; walking up to 2 miles.

Breakfast: Breakfast is in the hotel.

Morning: Our lecture this morning focuses on the siege of Boston. We’ll then head out on our motor coach for a full day field trip to explore two of America’s most iconic sites where some of the key events in the Revolutionary War took place. We’ll have onboard commentary as we travel out of Charlestown through Somerville and Cambridge en route to Lexington's Battle Green, where the first shots of the Revolutionary War were fired.

Lunch: Lunch is in Lexington Center.

Afternoon: Our next stop is Minute Man National Historical Park in Concord where we’ll have a multi-media presentation. What happened at Lexington and Concord? British troops set out from Boston in the early hours of April 19, 1775, to seize revolutionary leaders as well as arms and ammunition stored in Lexington and Concord. Spies learned of the plan and spread the word. Paul Revere and others set out on horseback to rouse the countryside. When the British advance guard arrived on Lexington Green at dawn, they were met by members of local militias known as Minutemen. A shot rang out that was immortalized as “the shot heard ’round the world.” The British had more than three times the numbers of the colonials, shot seven of them, and marched on to Concord. But there they met more militiamen at the Old North Bridge and were repulsed, retreating back to Boston with numerous casualties along the way. The British general Percy wrote to London of the rebels, “Whoever looks upon them as an irregular mob will be much mistaken.” Driving on through the Concord countryside, we’ll pass the houses of Hawthorne, Emerson, and the Alcotts, ending at the North Bridge. At the conclusion of our field trip, we’ll return to the hotel.

Dinner: Have a plated farewell dinner with your newest friends at a restaurant in Boston.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Meet Deborah Sampson, Program Concludes
Boston, MA
B

Activity note: Hotel check-out from 12:00 p.m.

Breakfast: Breakfast is in the hotel.

Morning: We’ll gather in the hotel to “meet” Deborah Sampson, a colonial soldier portrayed by a re-enactor. This will conclude our program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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