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6 Fun Things to Do at Lesley

We asked Lesley juniors and seniors for their top picks on what to do around campus in Boston and Cambridge. Here's our must-do list for new undergrads to help you make the most of your time here.

1. Eat

Boston is a foodie’s paradise. There are dozens of delicious places to eat in the area, but a favorite among our undergrads is Tasty Burger in Harvard Square, open until 2:00 am most nights and 4:00 am on the weekend. Another top pick is Felipe's, an authentic burrito joint that has a popular roof deck with great views of the city. And if you have a sweet tooth, you'll enjoy Milk Bar's 'cereal milk soft serve'—ice cream that tastes just like the milk at the bottom of your cereal bowl.

Boston is also home to several food trucks where you can try dishes from around the world on the cheap.

Our very own University Hall in Porter Square is a hub for the Japanese community. There, you'll find several authentic Japanese restaurants including Yume Ga Arukara ("Because I have a dream"), an udon noodle shop named one of the "hot ten" new restaurants in America in 2018 by Bon Appetit Magazine. And, just up the road a bit, you'll find Yume Wo Katare ("Speak your dreams"), a famous ramen shop in Japan and popular in this area, too. Be prepared to stand up and share your own dreams with other patrons.

2. Work Out

Our fitness center in Doble Hall is great for cardio and strength training and our tennis/basketball court is great if you want to soak in the sun while working out. We also have on-campus fitness classes like yoga and introduction to boxing. There's also a Planet Fitness gym next door to University Hall.

If you like to get your exercise outside and around the city, head over to the Charles River Reservation (MBTA Red Line, Charles Street/MGH Station) where you can walk, run, bike, or even Rollerblade. Or, jump on the Minuteman Bikeway, an 11-mile bike path that you can pick up in Cambridge (MBTA Red Line, Alewife Station) and take through Arlington, Lexington, and to the end in Bedford.

3. Go to the Movies

Catch independent and arthouse features at Kendall Square Cinema and Brattle Theater, or indie and first-run films at Somerville Theatre in Davis Square. Brattle Theater is a quick walk away, and Somerville Theatre and Kendall Square Cinema are both easy to get to with the MBTA Red Line (subway). The Capitol Theatre on Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington is also popular among our students—for the ice cream and the throwbacks—and you can get there easily by bus. For blockbusters, AMC Loews Boston Common 19 is a 10-minute subway ride away. Our Student Activities Office has movies on campus throughout the year, sometimes outside. 

"The cities of Cambridge and Boston are as much of your campus as Lesley is. Restaurants, shopping venues, concert venues, and museums are just a walk, bus, or train ride away. There is so much to do with the friends you'll make."
Christina Appignani ’22, Creative Writing Major

4. See Live Entertainment

There’s no shortage of live music in this area. Local hot spots include The Middle East & ZuZu, The Sinclair in Harvard Square, Lizard Lounge at Cambridge Common (near Doble campus) and Toad in Porter Square. For headlining acts, check out the House of Blues, Boston, Fenway Park and the TD Garden, all easily accessible by subway.

If you're in the mood for something other than live music, head to Porter Square Books for an author reading or see a comedy show at The Comedy Studio in Union Square, or at ImprovBoston in Central Square. Catch a local play at Central Square Theater Company or at the American Repertory Theatre and Oberon in Harvard Square. Or head to the Boston Opera House for Broadway shows and ballets. Lesley often has discounted tickets for shows, games, and concerts so you can experience the entertainment of Boston on a student's budget.

5. Go to Museums and Exhibits

There are several local museums that offer student discounts, including the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (always free if you're named Isabella), the Harvard Museum of Natural History, and the New England Aquarium. You can also head to the Institute of Contemporary Art or the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

6. Shopping

Between classes, you'll have ample opportunities to window shop, browse, and stock your dorm or studio. For book lovers, Harvard Bookstore is just a 5-minute walk away. Founded in 1932, it's one of the premier independently owned bookstores in the country. If you are a fan of comic books or manga, stop by Newbury Comics in Harvard Square. Alongside Porter Square Books (another indie bookstore that's easy to walk to), you can spend hours browsing the shelves and meeting authors (everyone from Alison Bechdel to Stephen King to Rachel Maddow).

If you're looking to revamp your wardrobe at an affordable price, you can visit The Garment District in Kendall Square, just a 10-minute bus ride away. It's a popular thrift store that's famous for its incredible selection of clothes Halloween costumes. Primark at Downtown Crossing in Boston (a short subway ride away) is also a popular place for students to find affordable clothing and new fashions. For essentials, dorm decor, and clothing, Target in Porter Square is located right behind the Porter T station.