Jamaica Plain is undoubtedly one neighborhood in Boston that is underutilized by BC students. Traveling to this part of the greater Boston area from Chestnut Hill is extremely difficult if all you have is the T, but the MBTA bus system makes the trip convenient for any BC student.
Public Transportation Demystified
Shockingly enough, the Comm Ave bus is not the only one that makes stops at Reservoir. Several MBTA buses make regular stops here, including the 51, which makes its final stop at Forest Hills in Jamaica Plain. Instead of the hour long T ride that would take you into the city and back out again, the bus takes less than thirty minutes and actually follows a set schedule. From the last stop, only six minutes of walking stand between you and the Arnold Arboretum.
The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
The Arnold Arboretum is the oldest public arboretum in North America. It is the ideal place for students to get their fix of the fall foliage without leaving Boston. The grounds offer several different walking paths and a visitor’s center if you want to learn a little something on your excursion. Make sure you bring your camera and charge your phone: the Instragrammable moments to be had here will make anyone feel like they work for National Geographic.
After walking through the arboretum, you will find yourself less than ten minutes from the center of Jamaica Plain. Centre Street is home to most of the action, including a variety restaurants and shops to satisfy any college student on a budget.
City Feed and Supply
You may have experienced the delectable offerings of this quaint grocery/café on Boylston Street, but this newer location is not only larger, it offers a larger menu and more grocery items for shoppers. Offering sustainably harvested food that is local and organic, City Feed and Supply aims to have a positive influence on the community by being as socially and environmentally responsible as possible.
This restaurant offers a variety of craft beers and artisan wines for the over 21-crowd, as well as local and sustainably harvested meat, seafood, produce, beer and wine. Every Wednesday, they offer a $25, three-course vegan menu. They also offer vegan options for appetizers and entrees daily.
Boomerangs Thrift Stores
Owned and operated by AIDS Action Committee of MA, this thrift store exists solely to support those affected by and tackle the root cause of HIV/AIDS.
If you are in search of a unique piece of clothing or jewelry that bears no resemblance to the hundreds of preppy outfits BC student’s sport on a daily basis, this shop will not disappoint. Everything in this store is handmade by artist, many of whom are local, which will save you the embarrassment that comes with crossing paths with someone wearing the same outfit as you.
At the end of your trip to Jamaica Plain, make sure you stop by Fiore's Bakery just a short walk from Centre Street. Get a good cup of coffee and a freshly made vegan baked good for the bus ride home after a successful day of bursting the BC bubble.
Photos by Amanda Ikard