The North End, or Little Italy, Boston is a feast for the senses: the sounds of diners’ conversations and the clinking of china and silverware, the smell of fresh seafood (and sometimes even molasses on a hot day), the taste of pistachio or limoncello gelato, the sight of locals doing their weekly shopping in the bodegas and specialty markets. Spend a day exploring the historic streets, dining at exceptional Italian restaurants, or taking a guided true crime tour.
Why should you visit the North End? Well, there are a few good reasons (and not all of them are food-related).
Ease of Getting There
Located just a quick 10-minute T ride from South Station, Boston’s North End is the perfect place to make memories with your whole family. Ride with C&J Bus Lines direct into South Station from one of our convenient terminals located in Dover, Portsmouth, or Newburyport. The trip is comfortable, safe, and affordable! When you buy tickets online, enjoy discounted tickets to South Station. C&J makes getting to Boston’s North End easy, so you can sit back and enjoy your trip without worrying about traffic.
Historical Photo Opportunities
The North End is brimming with historic buildings, statues, and more. The Paul Revere House is part of The Freedom Trail in Boston and was once where the patriot lived with his family. Visitors can walk throughout the home, which is fully furnished with period pieces. Also nearby is the Paul Revere Monument and the Old North Church right across the street, making a perfect photo opportunity. If you’re in search of a sweeter experience, Captain Jack’s Historic Chocolate is a unique, hands-on experience where visitors can learn all about chocolate and how it was made in the colonial era.
Tours, Tours, and More Tours
Sometimes it’s easier to let a tour guide show you around a city than to stress over creating your own itinerary. We love Boston’s Politically “Incorrect” North End Food Tours, where local Anthony Gesualdi will take you to all the best food spots while skipping gimmicky and tourist-filled locations. The tour is three hours, so bring your appetite!
More of a true crime buff? Try out the North End Crime Tour, where you’ll learn about everything from witches and pirates to anarchist riots in the North End. This is a shorter tour (only about 90 minutes) so you’ll have plenty of time for more activities afterward.
Lively Food Festivals
The North End hosts a lot of food festivals. So many, in fact, that you can attend one almost every single day throughout August. The first weekend of every August kicks off with the Saint Agrippina di Mineo Feast. There’s plenty of live music and crowd-pleasing cuisine such as fried calamari! Just one week later, attend the Madonna Della Cava Feast for live music, food vendors, and dancing throughout the night! Be sure to visit the North End during one of these unforgettable outdoor festivals.
Unique Shopping Experiences
While there are plenty of great clothing boutiques and shops offering custom-made hats and accessories, the highlight of shopping in the North End are the authentic bodegas and markets tucked away in the historic streets. As you stroll down Hanover Street, you’ll notice a sign for Bricco Panetteria hanging above a narrow alleyway. Follow the alley between two buildings and down a flight of stairs and you’ll suddenly be in an authentic Italian bakery, surrounded by loaves of fresh bread stuffed with herbs and cheese. Or you can head over to Mike’s Pastry and the Modern Pastry to see for yourself who really has the best cannoli. If Cannoli’s aren’t your thing, head a few blocks across town to Bova’s Bakery to sample some of their award-winning tiramisu. At Salumeria Italiana, you’ll find shelves stocked with Italian groceries that are impossible to find anywhere else in the U.S.
Boston’s North End never fails to bring smiles to faces and fill hungry stomachs. If we’ve convinced you that you MUST visit the North End, check out C&J’s bus schedules and buy your tickets to Boston today! Enjoy all the unbeatable amenities on our buses (like free WiFi, water, and extra legroom) while you travel into the city for your North End adventure. Start planning your trip!