Q: I am flying to Dublin soon. I discovered that I could save a lot of money on airfare by buying a separate fare on Southwest to Boston and then a second, onward fare to Dublin instead of a single fare from my home airport to Ireland. In order not to miss my flight, I’m taking the $400 I saved and spending a day and night in Boston, which I’ve never visited. How should I spend my 24-hour layover? What’s the “killer” restaurant of the moment? What sites should I see near my hotel (the Kimpton Onyx Hotel)?
A: You’re right that you can often save money by buying “split” fares, and you’re very wise not to try to make a connection on the same day of travel, in case your first leg is delayed or canceled. The Onyx is near North Station and the North End neighborhood, so you might just want to explore that area, stopping in at Paul Revere’s House, the Old North Church, Old Ironsides, and other historic sites, or perhaps catch a Celtics or Bruins game at the nearby Boston Garden if you’re a sports fan. You’re also close to Quincy Market and Faneuil Hall. Farther afield, if you’re an art lover, make the short trip to the Fenway and Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, or the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. It’s easy to get around by public transit (the “T”) or by foot. The restaurant of the moment in Boston is Menton (mentonboston.com), the latest effort by local chef made good Barbara Lynch, who has whipped up two set menus, a four-course prix fixe and a seven-course chef’s tasting menu. It’s pricey, but it looks like you’ll be saving enough on airfare to more than cover the tab.