Back Bay, Day 3 in Boston

We got off to a roaring start just before noon this morning.  I think this time change thing is getting worse instead of better for me.  We started in the Back Bay area at the Boston Public Garden.  This is the oldest botanical garden in the US.  Have you noticed the theme here?  Everything in Boston is the oldest or the biggest and certainly the best!  You’ve got to love it.  Here is the garden’s most famous statue of George Washington on a horse from 1869.


Even though it was a cloudy day, the temperature was perfect and the gardens were beautiful.


The central feature of the garden is an irregularly shaped pond.  In the summer months they run foot-pedal-powered Swan Boats around the perimeter.  They were quite amusing.


There is also the world’s smallest suspension bridge, designed 1867 to cross the pond at its narrowest point.


Our next stop was the Boston Public Library.  It was an amazing building with lots of beautiful artwork.  Before checking out the interior, we stopped for a break in the Renaissance-style courtyard which is an exact copy of one in Rome around which the original library was built.  We relaxed with a coffee/soda while watching the little birds and the fountain.

public library fountain

I think they were used to being fed…

library bird

Once inside the library, there were two magnificent lions guarding the staircase in the main entrance hall.  Here is one of them.

library lion

The corridor at the top of the stairs lead to Bates Hall, the main reference reading room, 218 feet long with a ceiling that’s 50 feet high.  It was really cool and full of people!

library Bates Hall

On the second floor there is a room with murals by Edwin Abbey depicting his interpretation of the Holy Grail legend.  On the third floor are murals by John Singer Sargent on the Triumph of Religion.  Here is one of the Sargent panels.

library sargent mural

On our way out of the library we got a call from our friend Terry who was having some trouble getting our new/used car registered at DMV in Juneau (imagine that).  Buying a car in Massachusetts is not turning out to be the best idea I ever had.  Hopefully we’ll be able to straighten everything out when we go to pick up the car tomorrow.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

Next, we stopped for an outdoor lunch at a fancy Italian eatery on Newbury Street which is Boston’s version of LA’s Rodeo Drive.  After lunch we walked over to the Prudential Building where I discovered I had left my credit card at the restaurant.  It was turning out to be quite a day.  We called the restaurant and had them hold the card while we went up to the 50th floor Skywalk Observatory for a birds eye view of the city.  Here is a view across the Charles River towards Cambridge with lots of little sailboats in the river.

skywalk charles river

This is the Downtown/Beacon Hill area.

skywalk Copley

And, last but not least, Back Bay.

skywalk Back Bay

After we’d done the full 360 at the Skywalk, we went back and picked up my credit card on our way to the hotel for an afternoon siesta.

In the evening, we took the ‘T’ to Harvard Square and had pizza for dinner.  The Harvard area was a really busy, vibrant place and we both wished we had gone earlier in the day, when it was still light out, to see the sights.  Depending on our time management tomorrow, we might go back and take a closer look.

Boston has been a great city to visit and I’d definitely like to come back some day.  For what it’s worth, I highly recommend it.

One thought on “Back Bay, Day 3 in Boston”

  1. So glad you have a blog to follow again! We did a one-day tour thing in Boston when we were on the sabbatical–mostly because we didn’t want to drive around those crazy streets in our motorhome! Sounds like you are getting to see more cool things than we were able to in our short visit. Looking forward to seeing you next month–you’ve got some driving to do!!

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