Faneuil Hall, the Prudential Center, Charles Street, Newbury Street...Boston's got a lot of well known areas that attract tourists and residents alike, and rightfully so. These places aren't so popular for nothing.
While it's great to hit up these spots every now and again, sometimes it's nice to enjoy things that are bit more off the beaten track. Areas that aren't constantly flooded with humans, selfie sticks and camera flashes. Spots that most don't even know exist. Here are 11 of those secret places.
The secret garden on top of a Cambridge parking garage.
In the middle of Kendall Square, on top of the Cambridge Center Parking garage, sits an unlikely oasis. Find the Broadway entrance of the garage donning the sign "Roof Garden" and make your way to the top floor for some seriously stunning views of Cambridge and Boston and lounge amongst a wonderfully quaint garden.
A miniature village in the Forest Hills Cemetery.
As you walk through the beautifully rustic cemetery, you might stumble upon what looks to be a village suitable for a community of dolls. What was added to the cemetery in 2006 as an art exhibit, now makes for an ironically playful surprise to the cemetery's unexpecting visitors.
An afternoon tea party in the Boston Public Library.
The Boston Public Library may be no secret, but the afternoon tea parties that are hosted there certainly are. From Monday to Saturday between 11:30 and 3:30 pm, you can put your fancy pants on to sip tea and eat petit fours at the Library's Courtyard.
The secret steakhouse in the back of JM Curley.
An ancient crypt at the Bottom of the Old North Church
During the mid 17-1800s, the Anglican church buried its parish members in the basement of its building and the proof can be seen during a private tour of the Old North Church. Creepy.
A giant stained-glass globe you can walk through.
The Mary Baker Eddy Library on Mass Ave holds an incredibly cool attraction that surprisingly few people know about. A three story, stained glass globe, AKA the Mapparium, provides a 3D perspective of the world. Complete with music and LED lights, a trip to the giant globe is well worth it.
The shoe store in the most peculiar location.
What looks like a beat up vending machine in the back of an unassuming convenience store is actually the door to Bodega, an uber trendy footwear boutique. Did you ever think you'd enter a market for something to quench your thirst and leave with a new pair of shoes? Didn't think so.
A book in the Boston Athenaeum library bound in human skin.
If you make your way through the Boston Athenaeum, you might come across a book with an...odd...texture. That's probably because the book is bound in human skin. Gross, I know. The book contains the memoirs of 1817 criminal, James Allen.
A very skinny house tucked away in the north end.
At 44 Hull Street in the North End sits an absurdly narrow house. Known as a "spite house," the skinny home was built, well, out of spite. Legend says two brothers had a squabble about their land inheritance, and one went away to war, the other built this tiny house to obstruct the other bro's views. No chill.
A secret North End Alleyway.
Nestled away along Battery Street in the North End of Boston, Peter Baldassari maintains a Catholic Shrine in a secret alleyway named All Saints Way. If you peek through the iron gates, you will see portraits of Roman Catholic Saints cascading along the brick wall.
The city under water.
Head to Fort Point Channel when the tide goes out and you might just see something that resembles a miniature city. Boston artist, Nate Swain, implanted scraps of block and brick to mimic a small city into the sand that is only revealed when the tide goes out.
A bench that cannot be sat on.
In 2006, a Massachusetts College of Art & Design associate professor named Matthew Hincman built this interestingly useless bench, and, without the park's approval, installed it alongside Jamaica Pond. When the bench was discovered, it was quickly removed by the city...until Hincman garnered approval from the Boston Art Commission to have it re-installed.