Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Does Cambridge Historical Tours do tours in Boston?
  • YES! We have several. We offer Freedom Trail tours, Boston Ghost Tours, and all kinds of customizable tours to lead you through the North End, Beacon Hill, Back Bay, or wherever your heart desires. If it’s not listed, it doesn’t mean we don’t cover it. Just send us a note or give us a call and let us know what you’re looking for.

  • Where do I park in Harvard Square?
  • We recommend that you take the T as often as possible, as the Square has the reputation of no parking. That said, there are tons of meters up Massachusetts Ave, on Mount Auburn Street, at Bow and Arrow streets, and on many of the side streets around Harvard Square, including DeWolf, Garden, Appian Way, Brattle, Linden, Plympton, and Quincy streets. For parking garages, the Harvard Square Parking Garage is closest, or University Place works for the best deal in the Square, if you don’t mind a slightly longer walk. For more, visit:

    http://en.parkopedia.com/parking/harvard_square_cambridge_ma/

  • How is this tour different?
  • We offer Executive Private Tours and Educational Group tours. Our tours are catered to the audience, and no two of our tours is ever the same, as a result. Our guides are almost all veteran performers and tour guides who have gone through extensive and rigorous training to guarantee they are both accurater and can answer any and every follow up question. We use humor and time-tested narratives to engage our audiences after we get a read on them. For kids, we use lots of high energy, ask tons of questions, and keep the tour moving at a clip. For academics and history nerds, we go in depth on the politics, economics, and ethics of a situation. But no matter what, we deliver fun. Our top priority is that you have a great time, and get exactly the experience you’re looking for. We are Boston’s premier tour company, and you will notice the difference in tour quality after just one experience with us.

  • Do you always wear costumes?
  • No, in fact we only do about 50% of our tours in costume, it just makes for much more compelling marketing material and visuals when we do. We can provide you with guides in Colonial or Victorian-Era outfits, but unless you request them, we’ll come dressed business casual. Our tours should be so interesting that even when we do wear an historical outfit, you’ll forget about it, losing yourself in the stories.

  • Do you have any tours running daily or publicly?
  • Currently, the only tours we have running publicly are our Ghost Tours. Even those are seasonal, and run June-November in Boston, and September-November in Cambridge. We think our special family rate of $115 for a 70-minute tour is a killer deal, and you can book one at any time online, or by calling us directly.

  • Who should go on our tours?
  • We designed our tours to please locals, charm tourists, educate foreigners and schoolgroups, and give the customer what they want. So EVERYONE is not only welcome, but will feel like the tours were catered to them. While we do have a strong focus on Corporate sensibilities, we also use performers as our guides, who are used to entertaining bored children, angsty teens, and skeptical jocks. Again, just let us know who’s in your crowd, and we’ll tailor the tour to you. Our tours are mostly walking tours, and MOSTLY wheelchair accessible, but folks who feel that a mile walk over 90 minutes is strenuous should probably check out local companies that offer driving tours.

  • What are the sites on your tour?
  • Each of our tours follows a unique path through history. For a glimpse into some of the sites we visit, head over to our Sites Page!

  • How much do the tours cost?
  • Our tours vary in cost, but the price structure starts at $100 per hour for customized tours with a $150 booking minimum, regardless of time. We tend to price as follows for private and group tours:

    $115 for a 70-minute tour for groups and families of 1-4 guests

    $150 for a 90-minute tour for groups of 5-15

    For longer tours, we start at $100/hr for smaller groups, or $10/hr per person (so, a group of 20 would be $200/hr) for larger groups. We do have some flexibility within that price range, and offer special $250 rates to tour operators with large buses for Step-On guides.

    Student groups can be arranged at a rate of $8 per student, $10 per adult, with 1 free chaperone for every 15 students.

    Public Ghost Tour rates are $20 for Adults, $15 for Students/Seniors/Military, and $12 for kids aged 8-18.

  • Do you provide Private, Step-on, or Group Tours?
  • Absolutely! It’s kind of our bread and butter. We are proud to offer private and group tours all over Boston for corporate events and conventions, families, field trips, and tour groups of all sizes. We can also customize a tour to the interests of your particular group, paying special attention to specific periods, places, or events. Contact us or call 617-520-4030 for more information.

  • How many people can you accommodate?
  • We usually draw the line around 300 people, as we begin to run out of our best guides after 10-15 groups. That said, our record was 1200, so we’re always willing to try and work with you to get you what you need. Ideal group size is 30-35 maximum, at which point we automatically send you a second (or third, or fourth) guide with no additional charge. If you’d like smaller, more intimate groups, we offer extra guides starting at $100/hr per guide.

  • Do your tours go inside any buildings?
  • The short answer is “not really.” We generally cannot get folks inside of functional BioTech labs on the Innovations Tour, and Harvard will not let ANYONE into Widener Library without a Harvard ID. Those are the two most asked-about buildings.

    That said, MIT allows us inside most of their facilities, so we do enter those, many companies have displays in their lobbies, and when they’re open, Harvard’s Memorial Hall and Memorial Church may be entered on a tour. The Natural History Museum is ENTIRELY indoors, and several Boston sites allow indoor exploration (the MA State House, Omni Parker House, Mapparium, etc.). So the more complicated answer is “Yes, whenever we can, but it’s not always within our control, so we make no promises.”

  • Where do the tours begin?
  • In Kendall Square, we typically begin in the Marriott Plaza on Main Street near the Kendall Square T Station and the COOP.

    In Harvard Square, we begin right outside the Harvard Square COOP at 1400 Mass Ave.

    In Boston we can start in the plaza in front of Faneuil Hall or at 139 Tremont street (near the Visitor’s Center on Boston Common).

    Do keep in mind that these are merely suggestions! Depending on where you are staying and which route you’d like to take we are happy to meet you at your hotel, convention center, or another more convenient spot.

  • How long is the tour?
  • Most of our tours can be 70-90 minutes without an adjustment in price. Depends on your group’s attention span. We consider 90 minutes to be a good starting place, though we are happy to do shorter or longer walks depending on your interest.

  • Are you affiliated with Harvard?
  • We are not affiliated with Harvard University in any way, and our guides are not generally current Harvard students. We are all professional tour guides, who take what we do very seriously, even though the experience we create is laid-back and fun. We do love Harvard, however. Incredible things have happened there.