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8 Cambridge tourist sites not M.I.T.- and Harvard-related

They do exist!

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Students are pouring back into the Boston area, including to Cambridge’s Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard.

While there are plenty of sites to take in at and around those two schools, the surrounding city holds a fair amount of wonderment on its own.

Here’s a map of eight Cambridge spots worth seeking out that have absolutely nothing (or at least almost nothing) to do with M.I.T. or Harvard.

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1. Mount Auburn Cemetery

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580 Mt Auburn St
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 547-7105
Visit Website

This cemetery includes the remains of more than 900 people who served during the Civil War. The big sphinx statue, in fact, is a memorial to those who died in the war.

The larger Mount Auburn is one of the most influential cemeteries in the U.S. in terms of its design and the very fact of its then-rural roots.

2. Minuteman Commuter Bikeway

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Minuteman Commuter Bikeway
Cambridge, MA 02140

This 10-mile path follows the first footsteps of the Revolution, and runs through Cambridge, Arlington, and Lexington, out to Bedford.

Pick it up near the Alewife T stop if you’re looking for public transit. Or, if you’re looking for a little exercise while in Cambridge, hop on pretty much anywhere.

3. Cambridge Common

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Waterhouse St & Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 349-4639
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The 16-acre park includes three cannon that George Washington’s troops seized after the British evacuated the Boston area in 1776.

There are other Revolutionary-related markers in the Common as well, including the tree beneath which Washington supposedly took command of the Continental Army.

This public park is not to be confused with the private watering hole nearby (though we highly recommend that, too).

Three vintage cannons arrayed in a public park.

4. Old Burial Ground

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Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02140
(617) 349-4683
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The first grave here dates from 1653, and, because it was the only burying ground in Cambridge for about 200 years, it contains more than 1,200 resting places.

5. Julia Child landmarks

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103 Irving St
Cambridge, MA 02138

Culinary pioneer Julia Child lived for decades in the house at 103 Irving Street, just east of Harvard (it’s a private home, so please don’t ring the doorbell).

She shopped for ingredients at Savenor’s nearby at 92 Kirkland Street and received the Legion of Honor from the French government at the Meridien Hotel at 20 Sidney Street, also in Cambridge.

6. Cambridge Public Library—Main branch

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449 Broadway
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 349-4040
Visit Website

The original Romanesque building dates from the late 1880s, and a massive modern expansion opened adjacent to it in 2009.

That addition was one of the first U.S. buildings to incorporate double-skin curtain walls—old meets new, and just down the street from Harvard’s main campus!

EandJsFilmCrew/Flickr

7. Fort Washington Park

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95 Waverly St
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 349-6200
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This park sports not only clear vestiges of the oldest surviving fortification from the Revolutionary War, but five life-size, painted-steel silhouettes, including of four Continental Army troops.

8. Longfellow House-Washington's Headquarters National Historic Site

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105 Brattle St
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 876-4491
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The house served as headquarters for George Washington during the Siege of Boston from July 1775 to April 1776.

It was later the home of poetry giant Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

It is open for regular guided tours until October 29.

1. Mount Auburn Cemetery

580 Mt Auburn St, Cambridge, MA 02138

This cemetery includes the remains of more than 900 people who served during the Civil War. The big sphinx statue, in fact, is a memorial to those who died in the war.

The larger Mount Auburn is one of the most influential cemeteries in the U.S. in terms of its design and the very fact of its then-rural roots.

580 Mt Auburn St
Cambridge, MA 02138

2. Minuteman Commuter Bikeway

Minuteman Commuter Bikeway, Cambridge, MA 02140

This 10-mile path follows the first footsteps of the Revolution, and runs through Cambridge, Arlington, and Lexington, out to Bedford.

Pick it up near the Alewife T stop if you’re looking for public transit. Or, if you’re looking for a little exercise while in Cambridge, hop on pretty much anywhere.

Minuteman Commuter Bikeway
Cambridge, MA 02140

3. Cambridge Common

Waterhouse St & Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138
Three vintage cannons arrayed in a public park.

The 16-acre park includes three cannon that George Washington’s troops seized after the British evacuated the Boston area in 1776.

There are other Revolutionary-related markers in the Common as well, including the tree beneath which Washington supposedly took command of the Continental Army.

This public park is not to be confused with the private watering hole nearby (though we highly recommend that, too).

Waterhouse St & Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138

4. Old Burial Ground

Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02140

The first grave here dates from 1653, and, because it was the only burying ground in Cambridge for about 200 years, it contains more than 1,200 resting places.

Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02140

5. Julia Child landmarks

103 Irving St, Cambridge, MA 02138

Culinary pioneer Julia Child lived for decades in the house at 103 Irving Street, just east of Harvard (it’s a private home, so please don’t ring the doorbell).

She shopped for ingredients at Savenor’s nearby at 92 Kirkland Street and received the Legion of Honor from the French government at the Meridien Hotel at 20 Sidney Street, also in Cambridge.

103 Irving St
Cambridge, MA 02138

6. Cambridge Public Library—Main branch

449 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02138
EandJsFilmCrew/Flickr

The original Romanesque building dates from the late 1880s, and a massive modern expansion opened adjacent to it in 2009.

That addition was one of the first U.S. buildings to incorporate double-skin curtain walls—old meets new, and just down the street from Harvard’s main campus!

449 Broadway
Cambridge, MA 02138

7. Fort Washington Park

95 Waverly St, Cambridge, MA 02139

This park sports not only clear vestiges of the oldest surviving fortification from the Revolutionary War, but five life-size, painted-steel silhouettes, including of four Continental Army troops.

95 Waverly St
Cambridge, MA 02139

8. Longfellow House-Washington's Headquarters National Historic Site

105 Brattle St, Cambridge, MA 02138

The house served as headquarters for George Washington during the Siege of Boston from July 1775 to April 1776.

It was later the home of poetry giant Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

It is open for regular guided tours until October 29.

105 Brattle St
Cambridge, MA 02138