Whether your idea of romance consists of cheering together at a Red Sox game, hiking the Mohawk Trail hand in hand, perusing shops at Boston’s Copley Place Mall, or going whale watching off the coast of Cape Cod, there are plenty of getaway options to choose from in Massachusetts.
If you’re looking for a city retreat, head to Greater Boston. Enjoy fine dining, live performances at Colonial Theater, the city’s numerous museums and the historic sites along Boston’s Freedom Trail. For beaches, consider the North Shore’s Cape Ann, the Cape Cod peninsula, Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard or the South Shore. North of Boston you’ll find historic Salem and the picturesque Merrimack Valley, while Central Massachusetts is home to Old Sturbridge Village, lakes and wineries. Head to the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts to mountains, ski resorts, the Tanglewood music venue and outlet shopping, or visit the Pioneer Valley’s collegiate area to stop by Emily Dickinson’s house or sample the eclectic collection of shops and eateries in Northampton.
In Massachusetts, you can choose from modern hotels, rustic farmhouses, historic inns, cozy bed and breakfasts, private lake or mountainside cabins and basic yet scenic campgrounds. Many properties offer special romantic weekend deals that include a wine basket, candlelight dinner for two, massages or seasonal extras like sleigh rides.
Stonover Farm in the Berkshires, The Dan’l Webster Inn and Spa in historic Sandwich and A Cambridge House bed and breakfast are just three Massachusetts properties known for a romantic atmosphere.
Spring activities include bird watching in state parks, attending flower festivals such as the Nantucket Daffodil Festival in April, picking peaches and going on a picnic for two. In summer, couples can enjoy activities like waterskiing on the Connecticut River, canoeing through Cape Cod’s marshes, sailing on the Atlantic, attending country fairs and hiking in state parks.
Autumn brings New England’s famous fall foliage as well as romantic hayrides, apple picking excursions and the Eastern States Exposition. Couples can enjoy snow shoeing, downhill and cross-country skiing and sleigh rides during winter or simply cozy up in an outdoor hot tub at a mountainside retreat.
For destinations in the Greater Boston area, the North Shore, Cape Cod and the Merrimack Valley, air travelers should fly into Boston Logan Airport (BOS). The South Shore’s closest transport hub is Providence, Rhode Island, while Central Massachusetts and the Pioneer Valley are closer to Bradley International in Hartford, Connecticut and the Berkshire region is closer to Albany International in New York.
Domestic airports are also located in Hyannis, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and Provincetown.
The Greater Boston area is served by a large commuter rail network run by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA). Amtrak has a number of train stations throughout Massachusetts including in Boston, Springfield, Pittsfield and Amherst. For bus travel, check routes and fares on Peter Pan and Greyhound.
Ways to Save
Avoid busy periods such as holiday weekends and school breaks. If you can, consider making your “weekend” getaway Thursday and Friday night or Saturday and Sunday night to take advantage of lower rates on weeknights. Visiting during off-season is another way to get discounted rates on rooms, dining and even entertainment. For example, try Cape Cod during winter or retreat to a ski resort in summer. Some hotels, bed and breakfasts and inns offer last-minute weekend deals, especially during the winter off-season (excluding ski destinations) and the spring and fall shoulder seasons. In warmer months, camping is an excellent way to cut down on costs.
Sources and Further Information:
Visit Massachusetts: Romantic Getaways
Mass Vacation: Romantic Vacations
Visit Massachusetts: Massachusetts Airports
Amtrak: Northeast Train Stations
Berkshires: Official Travel Planner
Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce
Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism
MBTA: Commuter Rail Maps and Schedules