Saturday, December 13, 2014

Twenty Something Travel to [Boston Habour Islands]

Happy Saturday readers! 

If you like island hopping, this post is for you!

During the summer, I spent most of my time staying in Boston. On one of the weekends, my friend and I went for a Boston Habour Islands National Park trip. Boston Islands National Park is a National Recreation Area with 12 diverse islands and peninsulas for visitors to explore. Being able to leave the city area and experience the distinct side of Boston, this trip made me realised that there are actually 1600 acres and 35 miles of undeveloped ocean shoreline on the islands. 

The Boston Habour Times

How to get there

There is only one and only way to explore Boston Habour Islands. By taking the ferry it is, unless you want to challenge yourself and swim all the way. The ferry ride costed USD 15 and took us around 15 minutes to reach our very first island-Spectacle Island.

Getting onto the Boston Habour Islands National Park ferry.
I must say the ferry ride was quite comfortable. Although visitors are encouraged to actually make reservations for the main Boston ferries, we managed to buy them because we went very early to queue for the tickets. The park ferries leave regularly from several mainland piers, so you must plan your trip beforehand. This is to prevent missing your last ferry and end up staying overnight at one of the islands. If you are interested in purchasing the ferry ride tickets, there are booths set up at Long Wharf-North in Boston. You can get onto a ferry right after purchasing the tickets because the pier is just right at Long Wharf-North!

If you intend to explore all the available islands, it is not very possible in one day. We spent almost half a day just by exploring two of their islands - Spectacle Island and Georges Island. 

External view of the high rise building in Boston.

First stop: Spectacle Island

We were told the island name is originated from the shape of the island. Does it look like a pair of spectacles?
A picture with the sign board.
We hiked to the tallest hill on Spectacle Island to have a panoramic view of both the habour and the city. You can bring your bikini to swim as well because there are shower facilities on the island itself. If not, by just admiring the beauty of the scenery and nature will keep you occupied.


Picnic is always a good idea.
The view at the top of the hill.
You probably can't tell from the pictures, it was actually scorching hot at the top of the hill. The tip is try to put on sunblock before you start the hike because I got my tan line here while doing the hike. If you are like me, you probably will not enjoy picnic at the top of the hill because it's really hot, and windy at the same time. Perhaps you couldn't imagine this island used to be a place full of dumps for 30 years. After some resurfacing and landfill operations, known as 'The Big Dig', the island regains its charm and is now accessible to the public. Despite the heat, we sat randomly on the grass, idolizing the greenery and sea view before we left for our next stop.

Second stop: Georges Island

Reaching Georges Island.
The dock.

Stepping onto Georges Island, it seemed to be more lively than Spectacle Island. There were ducks and birds all over the place and more things to tour too. Georges Island is the home of historic Fort Warren, a Civil War-era fort famous for its exquisite granite archways. The fort used to be a patrol point, training ground and prison. However, since its decommission in 1947, it is now a place for recreation. 

Battery Stevenson's gun well for 12'' disappearing gun.

Things to take note*

1. It can get very hot in the afternoon. So do bring your cap, sunblock and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun and heat if you are not an outdoor person.

2. Do check the timing of the next ferry if you are planning to hop onto the next island on time before you start exploring.

3. All the islands have a carry in, carry out trash policy. So make sure you do not throw your dumps anywhere on the island and bring a plastic bag along with you to ease trash disposal if you plan to have a picnic over there.

In short, the Spectacle Island is Spectacular and the Georges Island is Gorgeous. Go for it and tell me your thoughts about the islands in the comment box below!

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