Neighbouring Cambridge is home to Harvard University, America’s oldest, where you can visit the Harvard Art Museums and the Harvard Museum of Natural History. Browse its many bookshops and relax in a coffee shop. I enjoyed a gospel brunch at the original House of Blues in Harvard Square before it closed in 2003 for a bigger venue near Boston’s Fenway Park, but there’s lots of music on the streets of Cambridge.
An hour south of Boston is Plymouth, where Plymouth Rock marks where the Pilgrims landed and where replica ship Mayflower II is now anchored, and living history museum Plimoth Plantation. Further south lies Cape Cod, with its pretty clapboard homes and unspoilt beaches.
Historic Salem, to the north, retains its old-world charm with sites including the fascinating Salem Witch Museum. And to the west are the towns of Lexington and Concord plus Old Sturbridge Village, re-creating 19th century New England.