Boston, Cambridge and Waltham are teeming with resources and attractions that complement academic study.
Bentley’s proximity to Boston is a great advantage for graduate students. The city is home to more than 250,000 college students who enjoy socializing, learning and meeting others from around the world. Check out these Boston sights and activities you need to try before graduation. There are also several neighborhoods, each with its own charm, for you to discover.
Maybe the greatest benefit of pursuing graduate study near Boston is access to local companies like TJX, State Street, Reebok, EMC Corporation, Staples, Talbots, New Balance, Boston Celtics, and many more. They all hire Bentley students for internships and jobs.
The Bentley shuttle runs regularly to Harvard Square in Cambridge; from there, it’s a quick subway ride into Boston.
Bentley’s hometown, Waltham, is a hot spot for young professionals. There is a restaurant to suit every taste and budget; numerous art galleries and bookstores; shopping at funky boutiques; museums, cinemas and other cultural venues; and outdoor pursuits such as the 1.5-mile Riverwalk along the banks of the Charles. For more on the city, check out www.discoverwaltham.com.
Cambridge, the “City of Squares,” is sometimes described as the spirited, slightly mischievous side of Boston. Here you’ll find a variety of cuisines, up-and-coming musicians, specialty shops and more — all just a short shuttle ride from the Bentley campus.
Highlights include the annual Head of the Charles rowing regatta; eclectic shopping, dining and nightlife in Harvard Square; live music venues in Central Square; and the high-tech vibe that makes Kendall Square a magnet for startups and other innovative companies. For a more comprehensive look at the city and its neighborhoods, visit www.cambridge-usa.org/.
Check out some of the eclectic neighborhoods where Bostonians live, work and play.
The Back Bay is one of Boston’s premier neighborhoods, as well as the busiest retail section of the city. Historic boulevards such as Newbury Street and Commonwealth Avenue sit inside the eight-block by five-block area, on what was originally a mud basin for the Charles River.
Back Bay brings you to the Charles River Esplanade (the grassy area bordering the river), the Public Garden and Boston Common, the Boston Public Library, and the shops and restaurants of Boylston Street, the Prudential Center and Copley Square. High-end boutiques, sidewalk cafés and elegant townhouses line Newbury Street and Commonwealth Ave. It’s a great place to people watch.
The Fenway is home to Boston University; Massachusetts College of Art; Northeastern University; and Emmanuel, Simmons and Wheelock colleges. Area landmarks include Fenway Park (go Sox!), the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Museum of Fine Arts, and Symphony Hall.
Kenmore Square is the major shopping area, catering to a student clientele. Perhaps the best-known street in “the Fens” is Landsdowne Street, home to many popular clubs and entertainment venues (Bill’s Bar and Lounge, Game On!Boston, House of Blues, Jillian's and more). Just keep an eye on the sky for homerun balls hit out of the park.
This neighboorhood boasts the most students-per-square-foot of any in Boston. There is music to suit every taste at Harper’s Ferry and other venues for live performances by established and up-and-coming artists. At night, students spill into dozens of ethnic eateries, and late-night favorites such as Spike’s Junkyard Dogs and Redneck’s.
It’s hard to turn a corner in Allston without hitting a discount furniture or thrift store. Harvard Avenue boasts everything from upscale eateries to pool halls to locally owned grocery stores. Brighton is fairly quiet, especially at night. The neighborhood is primarily populated by graduate students, young professionals and families.
This historic neighborhood is the site of the Old North Church and the Paul Revere House. Located along the Boston waterfront, it was the first stop for several waves of immigrants. Italians, who arrived in the 1870s, still make their mark with incredible restaurants, pastry shops, butcheries and more crammed into narrow streets. The two main thoroughfares — Hanover Street and Salem Street — are packed with tourists and locals alike.
With a different Italian festival held every weekend throughout the summer, there rarely is a dull moment in the North End. It is considered one of the safest neighborhoods in Boston.
Teeming with Victorian brick row houses, upscale eateries and art galleries, the South End one of Boston's most popular places to live. The neighborhood welcomes a diverse mix of families, young professionals, a gay and lesbian community and a thriving artistic center. Trendy restaurants brush shoulders with coffee shops and mom-and-pop grocery stores along Tremont Street and its side streets. A steady influx of artists keeps the area filled with galleries that showcase their works.
Check out other fun neighborhoods of Boston.
From Downtown Crossing to the North End, there is never a lack of events and activities going on. Here are some highlights, all easily accessible from the Bentley shuttle into Harvard Square, in Cambridge. From there, the MBTA Red Line connects you to any part of Boston. To find what’s happening in town each day, just hop online to boston.com.
Five Things to Do Before You Graduate
Swan Boats: This Boston tradition dates back to the 1870s. Enjoy a peaceful cruise around the Public Garden lagoon, in season. Only $2.75!
Red Sox: The curse is reversed! Catch the fun in person, but do NOT wear a Yankees hat. You’ve been warned.
Arnold Arboretum: The country’s oldest arboretum features tons of trails and a spectacular array of flowering trees, blossoms and wildflowers. A perfect way to spend a spring day.
Boston Marathon: A fabulous event featuring elite athletes from around the world and a crowd that is passionate about its city.
Chinatown and the North End: There are tons of places to eat on any kind of budget. Insiders recommend China Pearl in Chinatown; in the North End, it’s Dolce Vita. Prices vary by restaurant and meal time.
- Freedom Trail: Walk into history with costumed historic characters who lead you past the Boston Common, Granary Burying Grounds, King’s Chapel, Old State House, Boston Massacre Site, Faneuil Hall and more.
- Boston Duck Tours: Join the “quacky” crowds on a fun-filled tour of Boston by land and by sea.
- Beantown Trolley: The big red trolley takes you all over town, with 19 stops near more than 100 sites.
- Fenway Park: Soak up the rich history, sit atop the Green Monster, and stroll the grounds of the park, which hasn’t changed much since it opened in 1912.
- Whale Watch: Spend an unforgettable three hours on a high-speed catamaran in pursuit of the amazing humpback whale. If you’ve got a weak stomach, skip it!
- Charles River Boat Tours: Enjoy the spectacular Boston and Cambridge skylines during this 60-minute cruise of the beautiful Charles River.
- Boston Movie Tours: Take the Theater-on-Wheels Movie Tour or Boston Movie Mile Walking Tour, visiting film locations in and around Boston.
Bostonians are very passionate about their sports teams. We love winning but we especially hate losing. Lucky for us, our teams are at the top of their game these days. We believe!
- Boston Red Sox: Keep an eye out for tickets to see the 2007 World Series champs because games are nearly always sold out.
- New England Patriots
- Boston Celtics
- Boston Bruins
- New England Revolution
- Head of the Charles Regatta: Held every fall on the Charles River, this rowing race is a great tradition and a fun way to spend the day on the shore.
- Boston Marathon: Held every spring on Patriots Day, when there are no scheduled classes at Bentley. No excuses for missing this one!
Arts and Culture
OK, so museums may not be at the top of your “must see” list. But you’ll be missing out if you don’t visit at least one of these treasures during your years here. What you learn could become great conversation with a future boss or investor!
- Museum of Fine Arts: Whether you’re an avid Monet fan or just need someplace cool to go on a date, the MFA has an amazing collection of art and artifacts, from ancient Greece and Rome to modern-day Boston.
- Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum: One of Boston’s gems, the museum is filled with paintings, sculpture, tapestries, furniture, and decorative arts spanning 30 centuries.
- Museum of Science: Not just for kids, the museum has an awesome IMAX theater, planetarium with laser shows, and 3-D cinema. Of course, you can also get your fill of animal and science exhibits, too.
- JFK Presidential Library and Museum: The museum portrays the life, leadership, and legacy of President John F. Kennedy. To this day, the Kennedy Family remains the “royal family” of Massachusetts.
- The Museum of Afro-American History: New England’s premier location for learning about local African-American history. The Boston campus has two national historic sites and a 1.6-mile Black Heritage Trail walking tour from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
- Boston Sports Museum: Housed in the TD Garden, it holds some of Boston’s best sports memorabilia. Visit exhibits dedicated to Boston hockey legend Bobby Orr, mementos from the original Boston Garden, and more.
- Newbury Street: Do you love designer brands and hip boutiques? Then check out Newbury Street, Boston’s best place to take in the top fashions. It’s eight blocks of trendy shops, dining, and beauty services. If you’re a window shopper only, no problem. Head to the Boston Public Garden at the end of the street, find a peaceful spot to sit, and count up all the money you saved.
- The Shops at Prudential Center: Dubbed “The Pru” by locals, the center is home to more than 75 shops and restaurants. Clothiers include Saks Fifth Avenue, Lacoste and Free People. If your wallet isn’t empty by day’s end, grab a bite at California Pizza Kitchen or the Cheesecake Factory.
- Downtown Crossing: The Crossing has lots to offer, with more than 200 retailers. Specialty stores such as Bromfield Camera and Brattle Book Shop stand side-by-side with larger retailers such as Macy’s and Borders. You’ll even find pushcart vendors selling colorful wares and enticing food. Check them out!