Salem Massachusetts

Located 45 minutes north of the Boston area and southwest of Gloucester, Salem Massachusetts is an animated coastal city off the Atlantic ocean that sits in the heart of Massachusetts' North Shore. When most people hear about Salem Massachusetts their thoughts wander to witches and spells. It is true that the Salem Witch Trials of 1692 happened in the city and since then there are many things in Salem Massachusetts that commemorate the bizarre and still mysterious time. Other than tales of witchcraft and eerie occurrences Salem has quite a culturally distinctive population, and its expansive maritime history chronicles back over four centuries.

The best place to start a tour of attractions in Salem Massachusetts is in the heart of the city on New Liberty Street. This is where the visitor center is found and from here a lot of attractions in Salem Massachusetts are scattered along The Heritage Trail. This takes visitors through historical sections of the city and ends, conveniently at the Witch House on the corners of Summer and Essex Streets. Make sure you get there when the sun's still up! Other historic districts include Derby Street, Lafayette Street and Washington Square Historic District.

Guided walking tours are offered from May through October if a more informative trek is what you prefer. Or you can take a narrated trolley tour of the city and catch up on all the history along the way. While in the center of town don't miss Salem's well-known McIntire Historic District. A great place to take it down a notch and just hang out is Salem Commons. This park area is much like Boston Common only on a smaller scale.

None very surprisingly there are a lot of attractions in Salem Massachusetts pertaining to the infamous witch trials. For all things witchy visit the Salem Witch Museum, Salem Witch Trials Memorial, Salem's Museum of Myths and Monsters, the Spell Bound Museum, Witch Dungeon Museum, and the Witch History Museum. Now that should be enough to leave you feeling bewitched! Non-Wiccan attractions in Salem Massachusetts (and there are a lot) include Burying Point which is the oldest burying ground in the area, the House of Seven Gables encompassing 357 years worth of fascinating American and maritime history and Hamilton Hall built between 1805 and 1807 which acted as the social core for Salem's merchant families.

If shopping is what you're after the Salem Marketplace offers a charming brick market area with specialty shops, night time entertainment and some great outdoor dining. If the Salem Marketplace doesn't quite scratch the shopping itch take a trip to the Museum Place, Salem's only enclosed shopping mall. For a little daytime sojourn why not test out the waters on the Lobstering & Lighthouse Cruise? This fun water-bound adventure features a 1.5 hour, narrated harbor cruise that visits Salem's historic lighthouses and islands. Included in the narration are tales of Salem's Wiccan past and maritime lore.

Salem restaurants offer a fairly big mix of American and ethnic dishes including Chinese, Greek, Indian, Irish, Japanese, Mexican and Thai just to name a few. If in the mood for a casual pub meal, In a Pig's Eye, voted Salem's Best Pub, is located near the House of Seven Gables and is one of the city's oldest pubs featuring a Friday afternoon Blues Jam. Or if visiting during the summer visit Grapevine courtyard on Congress Street and dine alfresco under the stars at this popular Salem restaurant. Another great Salem restaurant is the Rockmore Floating restaurant found at the Salem Harbor. A variety of fresh seafood is served along with great American classics aboard a unique floating ship. The restaurant is open each year from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Dining on the very waters that have been the backbone of the city for so many years is a perfect way to celebrate being in Salem.

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