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How to Spend 1 Day in Salem

How to Spend 1 Day in Salem

The history of Salem is woven into the fabric of the United States, when Massachusetts was still a British colony. Today visitors find a city with history-packed walking tours sharing stories of its Native American roots, colonial past, and infamous Salem Witch Trials. Here’s what you need to know to get the most out of your day in Salem. 

Morning: The History of Salem

The best way to start your day in Salem is to get the lay of the land—and learn about Salem's storied past—with a history tour covering the town's most important sights. Expect to explore the McIntire Historic District and see standouts such as the Old Town Hall, colonial burial ground, and 18th-century Ropes Mansion. Wrap up your morning with to-go coffee and a stroll to Salem Common, the city's 17th-century public green, and Burying Point, Salem's oldest cemetery. For a quirky twist, end your morning with a witch-themed photo shoot, and capture a perfect souvenir. 

Afternoon: Witches and Waterfront Dining

After lunch, enjoy Salem's cultural institutions. Standouts include the Salem Wax Museum and Witch Village. For a great value, look out for 2-for-1 entry deals, which are typically available with advance purchase. After the Witch Village, walk down Wharf Street—enjoy views of the water, and find several restaurants where you can fill up on fresh, local seafood. If you're inspired by the water views, end your afternoon with a sailing adventure on Salem Sound. Private sailboat charters typically have flexible departures, so it's easy to fit a sail into your busy afternoon.

Night: Spooky Walk and Dinner on the Town

Head to Washington Street to find a fantastic dinner at one of Salem's favorite restaurants. After your meal, sip an aperitif at a local pub or brewery, and head out for a spooky night on the town with an evening walking tour. Since most night tours last just a couple of hours, it's the perfect way to end your day in Salem and experience the historic downtown streets under the cover of night. Look out for a lantern-led tour, or a ghost tour, for a truly spooky option. 

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3 Tours and Activities

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The Salem Night Tour
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The Salem Night Tour

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2153
When night falls across Salem, it's the perfect time to explore the city’s spooky and sinister past on a haunted history tour. On this top-rated walk through one of America's most haunted places, follow a licensed guide along lamplit streets while listening to legends and true tales of witchcraft, murder, mayhem, and more. Visit sites related to the infamous 17th-century Salem Witch Trials, and hear about the ghostly spirits said to still rattle through the town’s historic homes and graveyards.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
From
$26.00
From
$26.00

Salem Night-Time Guided Ghost Walking Tour

Salem Night-Time Guided Ghost Walking Tour

star-4
97
The history of Salem, the notorious site of some of the historical witchcraft trials, is shrouded in misconceptions. Unravel the mystery of the town's past on this ghost tour that takes you to all of the main haunted attractions in Salem while offering insight into the town's history through research and eyewitness accounts.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
From
$29.99
From
$29.99

2.5-Hour Salem History & Sightseeing Guided Walking Tour

2.5-Hour Salem History & Sightseeing Guided Walking Tour

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535
Dive deep into the centuries long history of Salem, Massachusetts. See important landmarks, including the Witch House, Hamilton Hall and historic Chestnut Street. Learn about Salem’s people and their contributions to the national story from Puritans to Patriots. This tour includes but is not just the history of the Salem Witch Trials. More than that, listen to riveting accounts, anecdotes and interesting facts about a storied New England seaport. A history woven from its beginnings as Naumkeag, a summer settlement of Native People, to Salem as the center of the North American spice trade. This tour is perfect for someone looking for a broader view of local history on a walking tour.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$40.00
From
$40.00