John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library

#5 in Best Things To Do in Boston
John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library picture
Jasperdo/Flickr

Key Info

Columbia Point

Price & Hours

$14 for adults; $10 for kids 13-17; free for c...
9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily

Details

Museums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.5scorecard
  • 5.0Value
  • 2.5Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

A must for any history buffs or fans of our nation's 35th president, this excellent library and museum details the life and times of President John F. Kennedy. Exhibits include his presidential papers; masses of Kennedy memorabilia, including re-creations of his desk in the Oval Office and of the television studio in which he debated Richard M. Nixon in the 1960 election; and even his 26-foot sailboat. In addition, there's also a permanent display on the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis; a re-creation of the office Robert Kennedy occupied as attorney general from 1961 to 1964; and exhibits detailing the space program, gifts from heads of state and more. The building itself is quite striking and was designed by architect I. M. Pei.

Recent visitors said that while the museum is off the beaten path (it sits on Columbia Point in the city's Dorchester neighborhood), it is well worth the trek thanks to the exhibits and staff.

The library is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $14 for adults and $10 for children ages 13 to 17; entry is free for kids 12 and younger. Visitors with the Go Boston Card enjoy free admission. The closest "T" stop is JFK/UMASS on the red line. From the station, you can take the museum's free shuttle bus. The bus runs every 15 minutes from the bus shelter on the ground level of the T station. For more information, visit the museum's website.

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Type
Time to Spend
#1 Faneuil Hall Marketplace

Four buildings – Faneuil Hall, Quincy Market, North Market and South Market – constitute Faneuil Hall Marketplace, with the oldest being Faneuil Hall. Built in 1742 and now located on the Freedom Trail, Faneuil Hall has had a long and important history in Massachusetts politics. Samuel Adams once stood here to push for resistance against the British, and abolitionists and suffragists have stood on their soapboxes here. In fact, this is where Jonathan Mayhew famously challenged the Sugar Act of 1764 by proclaiming, "no taxation without representation." Since Mayhew's declaration, the marketplace has expanded to include more than 100 shops and restaurants. 

Some former visitors caution that the items sold at Faneuil Hall Marketplace are a bit overpriced. However, if you're looking to kill some time or snap some great photos, consider strolling through the market's halls. You'll also find various cuisines served in Quincy Market if you're in need of a quick bite. Keep in mind that this market gets crowded quickly (especially on weekends and in the summer), so it's best to visit during a weekday if you don't want to encounter hordes of people. 

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