Winter Holidays with Kids in Boston: 5 Mostly Free Outdoor Activities
December 20, 2013

by Audrey Trieschman 

AMC's Kids Outdoors Boston and Mommy Poppins Boston are pleased to collaborate on a series of guest blog posts about things to do for families visiting Boston. Mommy Poppins Boston is the ultimate guide to what and where to do, see, read, splash, play, eat, learn, and enjoy in Boston.

It’s the winter holiday season in Boston, and there are so many things to do that all families really need to put on their wish list is, well, just a little more time to do them all... And while it wouldn’t be the holidays without the Nutcracker, A Christmas Carol, the Christmas Revels and the like, we’ve rounded up 5 of our favorite Boston-area holiday-time activities for outdoor-loving families that won’t put a dent in your wallet.

1. See an amazing holiday light display. Two free choices:

  • Blink! at Faneuil Hall: A state-of-the-art, LED light and sound show in which over 350,000 LED lights are choreographed to the music of the Holiday Pops. Five shows a night. Free
  • Winter Lights on the Greenway: A series of lighting displays and innovative art installations intended to bring warmth and cheer to the Greenway during the darkest part of the year. Trees are lit from the North End to Chinatown, and you'll find a number of creative lighting installations throughout. Free

2. Visit a holiday craft fair. One outdoor option is the Downtown Crossing Holiday Market, offering a wide selection of wares from local artisans (we love the honey booth!) Free admission

3. Ring in the New Year at First Night: Boston rings in 2014 with its annual First Night celebration, the country’s oldest and largest New Year’s Eve arts festival. Family highlights are the Grand Procession and Family Fireworks. Visit the website for a complete schedule, and buy your buttons in advance. Outdoor activities are free. Buttons for indoor activities: $10.

4. Take a walk through Boston’s history: Use one of three walking tours of Boston as a guide. Free

5. Go ice skating in the city: From the Frog Pond on the Boston Common to the newest rink in town, at the Boston Harbor Hotel, outdoor skating rinks offer a fun, affordable way to get outside and get active. Free - $

Looking for more things to do with kids in Boston? Check out Mommy Poppins Boston’s Events Calendar (updated on a daily basis), its Holiday Fun Guide, or 100 Things to Do in Boston with Kids, a bucket list of sorts that offers Boston families plenty of ideas for staying busy.

Audrey Trieschman is a veteran city editor who brings over a decade of experience in seeking out and reporting on the best events and activities for families in the greater Boston area.

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