Boston, Massachusetts is the largest city in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the county seat of Suffolk County. At the 2010 census, approximately 645,966 people lived in the city making it the 24th largest in the United States. But, Boston is central to the Greater Boston metropolitan area, which is home to more than 4.5 million people. The city is a major hub for education, manufacturing and culture and is considered a world leader in innovation. Boston is one of eight American cities designated as an “alpha city” and is home to some of the finest medical institutions, centers for higher learning and numerous professional sports organizations.
First incorporated as a town in 1630, Boston is one of the oldest American cities and has a rich history. With nearby Plymouth Rock as the first landing point for a number of the first European settlers via the Mayflower, Boston eventually evolved as a central hub for economics and social interaction. The city became the setting for many crucial events of the American Revolution including the Boston Tea Party, the Boston Massacre, the Battle of Bunker Hill and several others. In 1822, citizens of Boston voted to incorporate the town as a city. In later years, Boston became a center for the abolitionist movement with residents strongly opposing the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850. Due to acquisition of nearby land, the city continued to grow. By the mid 20th century, Boston was in decline due to the decline to factories and the relocation of businesses elsewhere. As a response to this economic decline, the city initiated various urban renewal projects. By the 1970’s, the economy was booming again for the first time in 30 years. Learn more about Boston history:
Because Boston is bordered by the Boston Harbor and Atlantic Ocean, the city tends to have a milder climate lacking extreme heat and cold temperatures. The spring and summer months—April through June—and the early fall months are the most temperate and enjoyable with the summer heat averaging around 72 degrees. The coldest months are typically January and February with average temperatures are 29 degrees.
Mass transportation began in Boston in 1631. Known as the birthplace of public transportation, today the public transportation system has evolved from ox carts and ferry systems to more modern means of travel. The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is the 5th largest mass transit system in the United States and offers bus, commuter rail, rapid transit and light transit lines and trackless trolley routes that serve the Greater Boston Metropolitan Area. For air travel, Boston is served by Logan International Airport. Covering 2,384 acres with six runways, Logan is the largest airport in New England and the 19th busiest airport in the United States. Find more information about Boston transportation:
Cost of Living in Boston
The cost of living in Boston is around 21% higher than the national average. However, the amenities and extensive public transportation network make Boston a convenient place to live. See how far your budget will stretch in Boston:
The Boston Public School network includes 128 schools enrolling around 57,000 students. Boston is also home to the nation’s oldest public school, the Boston Latin School, along with other prestigious schools including the Boston Latin Academy and the John D. O’Bryant School of Math & Science. Students attending public school in Boston have the opportunity to attend any school in the district because of extensive access to public transportation. There are also a number of private schools to choose from.
Boston has over 30 hospitals and medical facilities, many of which are affiliated with universities—for example the medical facilities in Massachusetts General Hospital and in the Longwood Medical and Academic Area are affiliated with Harvard Medical School. Other facilities affiliated with universities include Tufts Medical Center and Boston Medical Center. Boston has several nationally ranked hospitals as well. The top three are Massachusetts General Hospital, Brigham, and Women’s Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. If you’ve made Boston your home, it’s a good idea to know the available medical resources:
Boston Real Estate
Due to the higher cost of living in Washington, D.C., real estate is pricey as well. The average cost of a home in Washington D.C. is $865,300. Because D.C. is a large commuter city, there is not an abundance of homes for sale. However, more affordable options are available in nearby suburbs and surrounding areas for those willing to commute. If you’re searching for a home in Washington, D.C., check out the available listings:
Boston hotels offer a wide range of amenities and price. Rest comfortably in one of Boston’s many luxury hotels such as the Boston Harbor Hotel, located on the Boston Harbor providing a great waterfront view while offering a traditional colonial feel with a modern twist. Or, the Ritz-Carlton offers luxury amenities while also being in close proximity of restaurants, bars and Boston Common. In addition to the Ritz-Carlton, Boston also has many other hotel chains such as Hyatt, Marriott and Hilton. If you’re visiting Boston, be sure you have a place to stay:
Although typically known as a traditional and historical city, Boston is considered “outside the box” when it comes to cuisine. While traditional fare is not hard to find, new twists on traditional ingredients are becoming more common due to the rise of a younger generation of culinary talent:
Things to Do in Boston
Boston offers fun for all ages and interests. The city is any sports-lover’s dream with professional football, basketball, baseball and hockey teams along with other professional teams in addition to college athletics and events such as the annual Boston Marathon. If history is your calling, you will enjoy the USS Constitution Museum. The USS Constitution is the world’s oldest commissioned naval vessel still afloat and doubles as a museum. If you’re more of a land-lover, the home of Boston’s own patriot, Paul Revere is a popular attraction. Along with sports, historical landmarks and museums, Boston is also a great place for nature-lovers. The Arnold Arboretum is the nation’s oldest and contains 265 acres of trees, shrubs and vines. Fine more Boston attractions: