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Plymouth, Massachusetts - Overview and Essential Travel Information


Plymouth was one of the first European settlements in North America, settled by the Pilgrims in 1620. After a perilous crossing of the Atlantic on the Mayflower and a cold first few winters, the Plymouth colony began to flourish, and was the precursor to many others soon to follow.

There is much that remains to illuminate what life was like in the 17th century, from museums, houses, landmarks, and monuments, and Plymouth is an excellent day trip from Boston. The town of Plymouth is located about an hour south of Boston, and can be reached via Massachusetts route 3, or via MBTA Commuter Rail.

Plymouth's most famous landmark is Plymouth Rock, located in a stone portico on Water Street downtown, although most people find it a disappointment; though it does represent the location of the Pilgrims' landing, it is, nevertheless, just a rock. More interesting is Burial Hill, located a mile or so from downtown, which contains the burial sites of many of the first settlers.

Plimoth Plantation is a living museum a mile south of downtown, which contains a detailed reproduction of Plymouth colony in the 1600s, complete with interpreters in period dress. They also operate the Mayflower II a reproduction of the small ship that made the crossing.

There are also numerous old houses, such as the Sparrow House, or the Harlow Old Fort House, which date from the mid-17th century. The Forefathers' Monument is also an impressive sight in the north part of town.

Besides the extensive historical attractions, there are many parks, ponds, and beaches in town. Geographically, Plymouth is a huge town, with big hills, sparkling ponds, and beautiful sand beaches (without the need to cross the bridges to Cape Cod). Recently, numerous high-end golf courses have been built as well.

Information provided by cctraveler2 at

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