Thursday, July 12, 2018

Boston Fly Drive: Three Awesome Day Trips from Boston for Mums on the Run!

In my last post about our Boston Fly Drive I told you about how WOW air made our transatlantic journey from Dublin to Boston effortless, catch up on that post here. This week I’ll tell about three of the awesome day trips we took from Boston, with all of the details so you can do it too!

1.   Cape Cod & Martha’s Vineyard

Martha’s Vineyard was a 2 hour drive from our Airbnb; it’s a very easy drive mainly on the interstate. As we arrived at Cape Cod it was raining so we decided to head straight for the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard (click the link, their history is fascinating)

Rainy Cape Cod ~ Just out of shot, Sue fervently googling house prices here..

We got the Island Queen passenger ferry from Falmouth Harbour to Oak Bluffs costing $22/€17.88 each return for the 35 minute journey. Parking costs $15/€12.19 per day, you can choose either one of the two manned car parks about 200m away from the dock. The chap manning the car park will ask you 'Would you like to pahhhk ya caaaah?' and if you're anything like Sue & I you'll add that to your repertoire with immediate effect. There’s a full snack and drink service on board the Island Queen at reasonable prices. 

After a quick look in the quirky shops in Oak Bluffs we decided to take a tour bus of the island. The school bus tour costing $33/€26.81 each lasted 2 ½ hours and visited all 6 towns although quite quickly! We didn’t manage to get one decent photo as we whizzed past landmarks but we had great craic along the way.

Our tour bus driver had to get back for his cameo on 2Fast2Furious 

Before we caught the ferry back to Falmouth we had a delicious fish lunch at Linda Jean’s Restaurant back in Oak Bluffs with traditional American sides like homemade slaw & cornbread followed by coffee and cheesecake. Sue loved the local craft beer Bad Martha, lunch and drinks came to just $25/€20.31 each.

'I would bathe in that Mac'n'Cheese, no lie' - Sue at Linda Jean's after 2 Bad Martha's
All of the houses on the Vineyard are picture perfect. These lil' ones in Oak Bluffs are stunning, tightly packed and like something straight from Stepford - Our driver told us if you're living there and fall foul of the council they uproot your house and move it several miles down the coast... Harsh. 

You have to imagine the sounds of wildlife and literally nothing else here. Bliss. 

2.   Fall Foliage Tour in the Berkshires

My tip for finding the best tour route to take is to research pages like look at the tours on offer and read the reviews, you’ll soon learn what route they take and where they stop for lunch/views etc. Doing the tour yourself will save a fortune and you’ll have the freedom to stop along the way too.

Fall in New England, pictured: Me, Oisín in my belly & a helpful demonstrator of
just how laid back the porch of The Red Lion is, thanks, Pal. 

The Berkshires was the best place for us to visit for fall foliage at the time of year we were visiting, thanks to a tip off from a friendly gal in Salem. We zipped across the interstate and found ourselves in Stockbridge (think Star's Hollow) in just over 2 hours. The Red Lion Inn was our first port of call; we enjoyed a refreshing drink while sitting on oversized rocking chairs on their front porch. Now this is the laid back New England we came to see.

We can't recommend having a car for this drive enough. We saw little towns, some entirely empty, that we never would have, stopped on endless roads to step out and breathe deeply - (then leap back in because Corrina freaked me out singing Weile Weile Waile!! - Sue)

We took a circular drive up through the local forests to see the autumn foliage, unfortunately due to a wet summer it wasn’t yet in full colour. When we arrived back on main street Stockbridge we picked up some lovely trinkets in local gift shops. By far the best club sandwich I’ve ever eaten was in Main Street Cafe, served with a side salad you’d feed a small family with just one portion. I still dream about that sandwich!

The best turkey club sambo in the history of the WORLD! (The kitsch diner was FAB too)

3.   New York

I was an early start to get to Logan for our 8am Delta flight to LaGuardia but that didn’t matter to us as we were headed for the bright lights of Broadway. I’d left it late to book the flights so we paid $148/€120.25 each for the return flight but I paid half that on a previous trip. Parking for the day at Logan cost us $35/€28.44. As we were passing through TSA screening in Logan the agent that inspected our passports told us to put them away and not to take them out again unless specifically asked as Irish passports are highly sought after in the US. (It was the first we’d heard of it!)

We landed slap, bang in the middle of a FDNYC Appreciation Day - we were NOT complaining

I chose LaGuardia in NYC as it’s the shortest drive into Manhattan. ExecuCar were amazing, they kindly provided us with a chauffeur driven town car. We were greeted as soon as we stepped off our flight and whisked into Manhattan. The service was impeccable, our drivers on both journeys were brilliant providing us with local information and ensuring our trip was as stress free as possible. If you're paying NYC a flying visit we'd highly recommend getting a town car to save time. 

After visiting both Top of the Rock and the Empire State on previous visits to NYC I couldn’t decide which one to bring Sue to so I asked for advice in our Mums on the Run Facebook group. It was unanimously decided that TOTR was the best as you can get the Empire in your photos. I booked tickets online before we went saving us hours of queuing. Tickets cost $37/€30.06 each.  

No trip to NYC is complete for Sue without a trip to Sephora on 5th Ave, I spent over an hour watching her eyes shine like diamonds at all the make-up marvels she found (and bought). We took in the sights of NYC from an open top hop on hop off tour bus costing $35/€28.44 each. It took just under 3 hours for a full circuit of the route.

I timed our dinner just right to ensure we got to see the sunset over New York and then the twinkling lights from The View revolving restaurant 48 floors above Times Square. We opted for a buffet dinner as it’s a fraction of the cost of a la carte. We paid just $52.50/€42.66 each for dinner and drinks. Our ExecuCar arrived just on time to bring us down Broadway to see the lights on the way back to LaGuardia. Luckily Sue had no problems at all bringing her many (many) Sephora bags through security and on board as hand luggage!
Image result for corrina cherrysue

And that's three awesome, absolutely doable, day trips from Boston! Would you consider any or all? Is there somewhere else we could have tried? Let us know!

*** Disclaimer: 

As advised above we received 
complimentary return 
transfers to Manhattan from LaGuardia from ExecuCar. 

As usual all thoughts are my own, 
I was not asked to write this review. 
As ever neither free services nor 
payment would ever sway my opinion.*** 


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