Friday, June 5, 2009

Duck Tour Is for the Birds

I'm taking on a different topic in this post. Sports can take a back seat for a couple of days. Recently Holly and I decided to take a duck tour through the hub. Boston does have a lot of great things to offer. It is sometimes difficult to see these things with the bad weather, bad drivers, bad traffic, corrupt government, high cost of living, and generally unhappy people(I know, I'm one to talk). Boston does, however, unmatched historical significance, different and distinct neighborhoods, a spectacular skyline, unique architecture, and oh yeah 6 pro sports championships in 7 years.

Duck Tours can be fun on a nice day. It's an 80 minute tour that takes you through one of the most aesthetically pleasing cities in the country. You learn to appreciate Boston's skyline after seeing places like LA, Buffalo, and Detroit. The World War II amphibious vehicle travels along Boylston, Newbury, and Tremont Streets by land, and the Charles River between the Museum of Science and the Longfellow bridge. Quick drives through Charlestown, Government Center, the West End, and the Back Bay are also made. Boston is a city of firsts as we all know. Boston has the oldest public botanical garden, the first subway system in the country, the oldest university in the country, the nation's oldest restaurant(Union Oyster House), the first commissioned naval vessel in the world, the first American public school, and the first public park in the US.

Unfortunately the Duck Tour focuses more on bad jokes and saying the word duck in every sentence, than giving facts on our great city. I would liked to have learned something I didn't know before, like why Boston is called the Hub. Colonel Duct Tape was our guide. He hands out a lot of duck stickers, makes numerous bad jokes about ducks, and yells at pedstrians on Boylston and Newbury streets. He's a good tour guide, but I wish they allowed him to focus on why people are on the tour: to see Boston. It would have been nice of them to reference the other neighborhoods in the city too: Brighton, Alston, West Roxbury, Roxbury, Dorchester etc.It's not cheap either. $70 for 2 tix on the internet. In short, Leave the Duck Tours to the out-of-towners.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Matt,

    I gotta say I had a completely different experience when I took the Duck Tours. I loved it!! Being a life long Bostonian I learned a ton of random facts about the city that I had never know. But I do agree that the tour person or the "conducktor" as they refer to them on the duck tours, can make or break your experience.

    PS. Boston is actually not called the Hub-the State House was originally referred to as the Hub back in the day by Oliver Wendall Holmes. I can not remember exactly why but eventually Bostonians took the nickname of the state house and applied it the city as a whole. Just one of the random facts I picked up working at the state house back in college :-)