Thanksgiving is celebrated as a feast for the senses, and the sights, sounds, and smells of this time of year do not disappoint. In addition to the many dishes at the annual holiday meal, you’ll find just as many activities to enjoy too — especially in a city like Boston. From parades and the Holiday Market at Snowport to ice skating and Black Friday sales, you can bet there is something for everyone during this season. Of course, we’d be remiss not to mention an amazing offering from City Cruises as well (more on that in a bit) because whether you’re gathering family or friends — or family and friends — a trip around the Boston Harbor onboard a luxurious yacht and seeing its numerous iconic sights is such a memorable way to savor the holiday according to Travel Noire. Boston rounds out their top five cities to visit for Thanksgiving this year with Faneuil Marketplace and City Cruises Thanksgiving Day Afternoon Lunch Cruise on Boston Harbor as a must-do for the holiday.


Set a Course for Adventure in Boston This Thanksgiving with City Cruises


Thanksgiving scenes are usually set around a table in a cozy home designed in a festive motif, but what they often leave out is the television blaring in the background, animated people watching football, and hosts feeling frazzled to get everything prepared by the time everyone is ready to sit down and eat. So if we’re being honest, spending quality time together — sans distractions — is never really a successful endeavor. But if you opt for a new experience like a Boston Thanksgiving Lunch Cruise on Odyssey, you’ll have a chance to enjoy a stress-free day while taking in stunning Boston views. Not only that, but guests on this cruise can also indulge in dining and dancing too. During your 2.5-hour excursion, you can take in celebrated local landmarks like the Seaport, the North End, and the Zakim Bridge with a bird’s eye view from our climate-controlled interior or open-air roof decks. With a decadent, chef-prepared buffet that features all the trimmings, your other senses will be satisfied too. Plus, there’s a fully stocked bar of creative cocktails, wine, and beer, as well as games and upbeat music from the DJ onboard to keep spirits merry and bright. This one-of-a-kind celebration will be an event you and your crew will cherish and reminisce about for years to come. Even better? Additional upgrades are available to customize your experience; we guarantee a table for your party size; infants under two travel free; and we’ll always do our best to accommodate dietary restrictions.


Outdoor Fall Activities in Boston Over the Thanksgiving Weekend

Anyone who loves late fall sports has a range of activities to choose from as the weather cools down. One favorite of all ages is ice skating. It offers plenty of fun in the rink whether you’re a beginner or an experienced skater, and Boston Common’s Frog Pond is a favorite spot for enthusiasts in the city. Open from November to March, it’s a fun way to experience Boston and its natural surroundings in the heart of the Hub while getting a bit of exercise at the same time—an ideal way to work off some of that massive holiday meal.


Start Your 2024 Holiday Shopping

black friday shoppingFor shoppers, a city like Boston is a dream come true. Stores abound on quaint streets and strolling around to check out the goods is a perfect way to walk off some of your post-Thanksgiving feast. With Black Friday sales taking place the day after, it’s also a great time to score some amazing bargains and take advantage of sales and reduced prices so you can get something for everyone on your holiday gift list. One popular place to discover a trove of treasures is Newbury Street, which features everything from apparel and accessories to home décor and beauty and wellness products. Small boutiques and larger national chains can be found here, all ready to entice buyers with deals on lots of items in demand.


Get in the Boston Holiday Spirit

While we have seasonal shopping on our minds, there’s no time like the present to mention the European-style Winter Holiday Market at Snowport, which returns to the city in mid-November and offers so much to its visitors. Shopping includes more than 120 small businesses selling wares such art, crafts, and jewelry (among other things), while food and beverages range from hot chocolate and craft beer to freshly made waffles. In addition, there are fun-filled activities and events as well, including games, a tree market, and iceless curling. A tree lighting ceremony takes place too in early December, which is one among several that will be happening around the city, including the Boston Common Tree Lighting Ceremony that occurs during the final weeks of November.


Everyone Loves a Thanksgiving Parade

The weeks before Thanksgiving are a special time in Boston. First, the weekend before it marks the annual America’s Hometown Thanksgiving Celebration in Plymouth. Held at the historic Plymouth Harbor and waterfront, authentic Americana is on full display and celebrated with history-brought-to-life reenactments on the area streets along with a parade designed to educate and entertain all who attend. Additionally, there’s the Veterans Day Parade in early November that was organized to honor the sacrifice and service of everyone who serves (and has previously served) in the United States armed forces. It runs from the Boston Public Library to Boston Common.


Boston Thanksgiving


Plan Your 2024 Boston Thanksgiving with City Cruises Today!

There’s so much to do in Boston to celebrate Thanksgiving, that it’s difficult to know where to begin. We suggest packing in as many activities as you can and topping it all off with a City Cruises experience. Enjoy this holiday season and make memories that last a lifetime!

FAQs – Boston Thanksgiving Fun in 2024

What are the best activities for Thanksgiving in Boston?
Thanksgiving in Boston is rich with history and tradition, reflecting the city’s role in American history. Key activities include exploring the Freedom Trail to get a sense of the colonial history, visiting Plimoth Patuxet Museums (formerly Plimoth Plantation) for a historical reenactment of the first Thanksgiving, and enjoying the holiday decorations and lights at Faneuil Hall Marketplace. Boston also offers wonderful opportunities for dining out, with many restaurants serving special Thanksgiving meals.

Why is Thanksgiving in Boston special?
Thanksgiving in Boston is special due to its proximity to Plymouth, the site of the first Thanksgiving feast. The city’s historical significance, combined with its festive atmosphere, makes it a meaningful place to celebrate the holiday. Boston’s blend of old and new creates a unique backdrop for traditional Thanksgiving celebrations, including charity events, historic tours, and festive dining.

Can I dine out for Thanksgiving dinner in Boston?
Yes, dining out for Thanksgiving dinner is a popular choice in Boston, with many restaurants offering special menus that range from traditional turkey dinners to innovative, chef-driven interpretations of classic Thanksgiving dishes. Advance reservations are highly recommended as places fill up quickly.

Are there Thanksgiving volunteer opportunities in Boston?
Yes, Boston offers numerous volunteer opportunities during Thanksgiving, including serving meals at shelters and participating in food drives. Organizations like the Greater Boston Food Bank, Boston Rescue Mission, and Pine Street Inn welcome volunteers and donations to help provide Thanksgiving meals to those in need.

What types of Thanksgiving cruises are available in Boston?
While Boston’s harbor and river cruises may not specifically market Thanksgiving-themed cruises, there are often special dinner cruises available around the holiday that provide a festive dining experience with views of the Boston skyline and historic waterfront. These cruises can include gourmet meals, entertainment, and sometimes even historical narratives about the city.

Why take a Thanksgiving cruise in Boston?
A Thanksgiving cruise in Boston offers a unique way to experience the holiday, combining the beauty of Boston’s waterfront and skyline with the convenience of a prepared festive meal. It’s a memorable alternative to traditional dining, allowing guests to relax and enjoy the holiday with family and friends without the hassle of cooking and cleaning.

What should I wear on a Thanksgiving cruise in Boston?
Dress codes can vary by cruise type, but smart casual attire is generally recommended for dinner cruises. Given the chilly November weather in Boston, wearing warm layers is also advisable, especially if you plan to spend time on the outdoor decks admiring the view.

What makes a Thanksgiving cruise in Boston special in 2024?
A Thanksgiving cruise in Boston is special for its combination of scenic water views, historical ambiance, and the luxury of a prepared holiday meal. It provides a peaceful and picturesque setting away from the busy city, offering a unique and enjoyable Thanksgiving experience.

Are Thanksgiving cruises in Boston suitable for families?
Yes, Thanksgiving cruises in Boston are suitable for families, offering a family-friendly environment with dining options and views that can be enjoyed by guests of all ages. It’s a wonderful way for families to come together and celebrate the holiday in a unique and festive setting.

Do Boston Thanksgiving cruises offer entertainment?
While specific offerings can vary, many Thanksgiving cruises in Boston include entertainment options such as live music or DJ sets to enhance the festive atmosphere. Check with the cruise operator for details on what entertainment will be provided during your Thanksgiving cruise.

Original post date: October 12, 2023