Sunday Afternoon on Castle Island

31 Jul

Castle Island, South Boston

On the flight coming in from Baltimore we crossed over a few of the 32 islands surrounding Boston Harbor and I saw a fort, reminding me of the time as a child that with my family, I visited George’s Island, a giant colonial fortification. For some reason it popped into my head again, and my chance my mom mentioned the same island on the ride home from the airport. So it was decided that this weekend we would take a little day trip out there and visit it. There was some confusion between us, however, when we realized that I was thinking of a different island from my dad. He was thinking of visiting Castle Island, which is no longer actually an island thanks to engineering feats of the last couple of centuries. So our trip today went to the colonial fort near the JFK/UMass Boston Red Line stop.

It was a beautiful afternoon and we lucked out with a parking space right next to the water, the beach filled with people trying to cool off in South Boston. A free tour is offered about once every 15 minutes, and we waited for the next one setting off on the 45 minute-1 hour visit of the decommissioned fort. It’s kept going almost entirely by volunteers and donations, and many of the original pieces are still visible. From atop the fort you get a good view of the city and are given the history surrounding the location and the city of Boston. So close to East Boston, you can also see the planes landing low as they enter Logan International Airport.

Looking out towards East Boston


Once the tour was concluded we walked around the perimeter of the fort and joined the many other Bostonians and tourists who were taking advantage of the peaceful Sunday afternoon to cool off by the water. It’s a different feeling to do touristic things in your own city, and taking a picture doesn’t feel nearly as guilty as when you’re not from the area. It’s an issue of pride, more than curiosity. On Wednesday I’ll be heading to Cape Cod for the first time in years to catch up with an old friend and take advantage of the beach, once again becoming a local tourist.

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