Chocolate Tours offers The Great Boston Cupcake
Crawl on Saturday mornings.
far as Iím concerned, tourist destinations can keep
their typical canned talks and tours. Iím a fan of the
unexpected and quirky when I travel. I want to hear tales
of odd characters, visit kitschy places and get all the
best gossip. Show me the places where rock and roll took
root, take me on a cupcake crawl, let me drink spirits
with spirits and Iím a happy camper.
tours are some of the best ways to really connect with a
locale ó and if you do some research ahead of time, you
can cover ground with guides who will give you the
juiciest details and off-the-record facts about a place
and its history. As a plus, most are affordable and many
have discounts for seniors, children and military.
Northeast has plenty of walking tours that will take you,
well, off the beaten path. Right here in Hartford, the
Shoeleather History Project conducts "Radical Walking
Tours" of the capital area. The first route starts
and ends at the Old State House and covers Emma Goldman,
James Connolly, Big Bill Haywood, John Brown, suffragist
Josephine Bennett, artist Alton Toby and others.
second tour, which starts on Charter Oak Avenue and ends
on Hyssop Avenue, introduces the solidarity priest and the
radical rabbi, a doctor who was a Puerto Rican
revolutionary, struggles of women factory workers, along
with Mark Twain, baseball and more. There is a suggested
donation of $10 for each tour. Check
shoeleatherhistoryproject.com for dates and times.
England Curiositiesí haunted history walking tours,
including Haunted Pubs of Portsmouth and the Wicked
Haunted Waterfront Tour in Portsmouth, N.H., have been
featured in Better Homes and Gardens magazine, and on the
History Channel and Travel Channel.
arenít your typical walking tours," says Roxie
Zwicker, the companyís owner. "Participants are
going to hear the legends, the ghost stories and the
history thatís not in the history books about
Haunted Pubs tour serves up a glass of Portsmouthís
tavern and brewery history and ghostly tales, while the
Wicked Haunted Waterfront Tour re-creates the cityís
rough and gritty seaport of Colonial times. Tour prices
range from $15 to $20 and must be booked in advance. For
more information, visit newenglandcuriosities.com.
Chocolate Tours offers the Great Boston Cupcake Crawl
Saturday mornings at 11. The two-and-a-half hour walking
tour highlights some of Bostonís most famous
neighborhoods and landmarks, along with the history of
cupcakes, how theyíre created, and what the specialties
are of each tour destination (youíll get samples as you
go). The tour is $55 and advance tickets are required. For
more information, visit BostonChocolateTours.com.
Junket in New York City offers "Rock Ní Roll
Walking Tours." Guided by a music industry vet, the
rock-themed treks through the East and West Village
including tales about The Ramones, New York Dolls, Velvet
Underground, the Beatles, Bob Dylan and others. You will
visit such legendary landmark locales as the Fillmore
East, CBGB, Maxís Kansas City, Strawberry Fields, Andy
Warholís Factory and Electric Lady Studios. Tours are
$29. For information, schedules and tickets, visit
Wicked Walking Tours in Portland, Maine, feature
guides/performance artists who turn factual dark history
dating from the 1600s into theater and stand-up comedy.
Tours are $18 and tickets must be purchased in advance.
For more information, visit wickedwalkingtours.com.
too many cemeteries end up featured on RoadsideAmerica.com,
an online guide to offbeat tourist attractions. Hope
Cemetery, in Barre, Vt., is an exception. Along with being
the final resting place of some 10,000 souls, itís also
a quirky sculpture garden of unusual memorials ó
including a half-sized replica of a race car, a giant
soccer ball, a couple in pajamas sitting up in bed, a man
in the arms of a woman who might not be his wife and a
bi-plane. All are carved from Barre gray granite. (Barre
calls itself the "Granite Capital of the
World.") Take a tour of the nearby Rock of Ages
quarry, where much of the granite is mined from, and pick
up a map for a self-guided walking cemetery cellphone
tour. You can also call Hope to arrange a group cemetery
walking tour. For Hope Cemetery, call 802-476-6245. For
Rock of Ages Granite Quarry, visit rockofages.com.