Best student cities: Boston
The historic Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the New England Aquarium offer discounts for all university students, while admission to Harvard’s museums -- of which the Harvard Museum of Natural History is a stand-out -- is free for Harvard students and discounted for all other college kids. Even movie theatres like Regal Cinemas Fenway and AMC Loews Boston Common cut students a discount.
During the warmer months of May to September, many students head to the serene beaches of Cape Cod, Massachusetts and coastal Newport, Rhode Island. Cape Cod, located about 70 miles southeast of the city, can be reached by ferry or bus, and Newport, located the same distance south, has coaches from Boston.
A common day trip around Halloween, 31 October, is to travel the 18 miles north from Boston to Salem, Massachusetts, which was the site of a massive witch hunt and subsequent trials in the 1600s and is usually especially decked out for the holiday. For outdoor enthusiasts or literature buffs, Walden Pond is also worth a stop. Located one mile from the Concord train station, about 20 miles from Boston, it is the site of famed author Henry David Thoreau’s temporary self-exile and experiment in simple living, which was documented in his iconic work Walden. Boston also has a number of ski resorts within a few hours of the city including Mount Sunapee, Wachusett Mountain Ski Area and Blue Hills Ski Area, and some universities such as Brandeis and Boston College organise shuttles that take students to the Wrentham outlets for a day of discounted shopping.
Travelling on a budget
Boston’s metro system, called the T, is fairly convenient, though there are pockets of the city like South Boston where coverage is sparse. Most of the city’s universities offer discounted monthly or semester-long passes for students who anticipate crisscrossing the city regularly.
A favoured mode of transport among all college students is cycling, and those without wheels of their own can take advantage of Boston’s new pay-as-you-go bike sharing program, Hubway. Owning a car in the city is difficult since parking is pricey and difficult to find, but many universities have formed discount partnerships with ZipCar, a convenient car rental program aimed at those who want to get out of the city for a short break or transport their groceries from the supermarket.