Waltham is a city in the American state of Massachusetts. It is some 10 miles (16 km) west of central Boston on the Charles River. Waltham is considered part of the Greater Boston conurbation; even so, it has a unique character amongst Boston's outer suburbs. It is sometimes called "Watch City" because it was home to Waltham Watch Company. Many high-tech companies have made Waltham their home. It is also home to Bentley College and Brandeis University.
One of the oldest of American cities, Waltham was first settled by British settlers in 1634 and was incorporated in 1738. In 1813, the Boston Manufacturing Company was formed in Waltham by Francis Cabot Lowell. It was the first modern factory in the United States and history books have credited this as the beginning of America's industrial revolution. In 1854, the Waltham Watch Company was established by Aaron Dennison. The company went on to make the first watches with interchangeable parts and the first 100% American-made watch, designing advanced machinery that spread to other industries and led to America's industrial power. Waltham is also noted as the home of such famous persons as Governor Christopher Gore and General Nathaniel Banks.
Logan International Airport is the closest airport to Waltham; it is about 20 minutes east.
Waltham is accessible via Interstate 95 also called route 128, which connects to the Mass Pike (I-90). This is important if you are flying in or out of Logan airport because you are going to take I-90 West to get into Waltham and vice versa to get back into Boston. On I-90 there are two sets of toll plazas of $1.25 each, and rush hour can set you back 25-30 minutes between 4:30 and 6:30PM.
There are several trains from Boston daily. Take the Fitchburg line from North Station on the MBTA Commuter Rail to the Waltham or Brandeis/Roberts stop. The trains are a good way to get into Boston especially on the day of a sports game because they go directly to the Boston Garden. They are moderately priced.
Local MBTA buses 70 and 70A run from Central Square in Cambridge to Waltham. Several MBTA Express Buses (553, 554, 556, 558, 505) also serve Waltham. They originate several blocks from South Station in Boston and go to Waltham on weekdays only. Buses are usually reliable and inexpensive, but tend to get crowded around rush hour as well(4:30 to 6:30).
Driving around Waltham is not difficult and you can be just about anywhere in the city in 15 to 20 minutes. There are three main streets to Waltham: Main Street, Moody Street, Lexington Street. During rush hour(4:30 to 6:30) you will hit some traffic that may slow down your commute 10 to 15 minutes. Main Street is probably the worst during that time, and Moody Street can also be busy on a Friday or Saturday night. Parking is accessible with several public parking lots in high traffic areas, as well as on street parking.
Local city buses are an okay way to get around the city. They are cheap and usually reliable, but can get crowded and stuffy at times. The best place to catch the bus from is on the Common, the bus stop is across the street from the train stop.
- Charles River Museum Of Industry, 154 Moody Street, ☎ . Th-Sa 10AM-5PM. Exhibits on textile mills, American Waltham Watch Company and a power plant.
- Waltham Museum, 25 Lexington Street, ☎ , . Tu-Sa 1PM-4:30PM. An extensive collection of memorabilia including watches, clocks, automobiles and other industrial products made in Waltham. Fee.
- Bentley College Bowles Performing Art Series, 175 Forest Street, ☎ . Theatre, music,dance, and lectures. Art gallery open M-F 10AM-6PM.
- Rose Art Museum of Brandeis University, 415 South Street, ☎ . $10.
- National Archives and Records Administration, New England Region, 380 Trapelo Road, ☎ . M-W F 7AM-4:30PM, Th 7AM-9PM. New England historical records including census, naturalization, passenger arrival lists for Boston, military service, pension, and bounty land application records from 1789 to 1970s. Primarily of interest to family history researchers. Free.
- Girl Scout Museum At Cedar Hill, 265 Beaver Street, ☎ . By appointment. Exhibits and archives of Girl Scouting. Free.
- Concerts On The Waltham Common, ☎ . Summer only. Tu night concerts on the Waltham Common Tuesday evenings at 7:30PM. Free.
- Boston Rock, Prospect Hill. Daily 10AM-7PM. This is good place to take a quick little car ride, and have lunch at the top. There are picnic tables and grills scattered around the viewing area. The view of the Boston skyline is beautiful. It is also a good work out, if you want to run up the road up instead of driving.
- Veterans Memorial Rink, 295 Totten Pond Road, ☎ . Public skating hours: Su 2PM-3:50PM, Tu 10AM-11:50AM, W 10AM-11:50AM, Th 10AM-11:50AM, F 7PM-8:50PM, Sa 2PM-3:50PM. The ice rink is a fun place to go and mess around for a couple hours. You can get pick-up games going, or skate around for fun. They do not rent skates. But if you have your own gear its not expensive and it usually not very busy. $2, $1 reduced.
- Landmark Embassy Theater, 16 Pine Street Waltham, MA 02453, ☎ . Sx screens. They usually have a good mix of popular new releases and independent films. Also, they run different daily specials and discounts which is a good way to catch a cheaper movie.
- Bentley College, 175 Forest St., +1 781-891-2000, .
- Brandeis University, 415 South St., +1 781-736-3500, .
Waltham does not offer a lot of shopping.
- TJ Maxx, 846 Lexington St., ☎ . Su 11AM - 8PM, M-Sa 9:30AM - 9:30PM. This is a good store if you need some cheap clothes or shoes, but ir does not offer a huge variety of high quality items.
- Olympia Sport, 868 Lexington St., ☎ . M-Sa 9AM - 9PM, Su 10AM - 6PM. Olympia is a good store for basic athletic equipment and athletic shoes. But it does not offer much in high quality shopping.
However there are three malls in neighboring towns: Natick, Watertown, and Burlington. They are all with in a 15 to 20 minute drive.
- Natick Collection, 1245 Worcester Street, Natick, ☎ . The Natick collection has a great variety of store, including Lacoste, Pac Sun, EB Games, and Oakley. It offers a good mixture of high-end stores to average mid-priced stores. There is also a crepe place, frozen yogurt place and food court. Also there is a Cheese Cake Factory in parking lot.
- Watertown Mall, 550 Arsenal Street, Watertown, ☎ . M-Sa 9:30AM to 9PM, Su 11AM to 6PM. A smaller mall with a few specialty stores such as a tobacco store, and a DMV. There is also an Old Country Buffet and Papa Gino's.
- Burlington Mall, 75 Middlesex Turnpike Burlington, ☎ . M-Sa 10AM - 9PM, Su noon - 6PM. A good variety of high-end stores and mid-priced stores. There is a large variety of stores to satisfy all ages.
Most of the good restaurants in Waltham are along Moody St. This includes Thai, Chinese, Indian, and American diner fare. Start at one end and walk the length before deciding on one spot.
- 99 restaurant, 110 South Street Waltham, MA 02453, ☎ . The 99 is a good family restaurant, with American style food. The price is reasonable and is a good, quick little dinner option.
- Waltham India Market food court, 315 Moody Street (In basement of supermarket). Check out the curries.
- Pizzi Farm, 549 Lincoln Street, ☎ . Deli and market, great place for sandwiches, soup and ice cream.
- Panera Bread, 1096 Lexington Street.
- Green Papaya, 475 Winter St, ☎ . Decent Thai food for New England. Good vegetarian selection. Although the spicy level is rated at 1 - 3 stars, the chef will kick it up a notch if you ask for 4 or 5 stars. Their red curry is very good.
- Little India Restaurant, 475 Moody St, ☎ . This restaurant is one of many Indian places along Moody St. Little India is probably the smallest tucked into a small front. Although, they have a second dining room in the back. They have a well spiced menu. Try the Saag Paneer.
- Naked Fish, 455 Totten Pond Road #1, ☎ . Naked Fish is a nice place to eat, and is with in 5 minute walking distance of the Doubletree and Hilton Hotels. It is primarily a seafood restaurant with a very good selection. They do also have a children's menu and it is an upper scale family dinner spot. It is middle-priced and good quality food. They do serve alcoholic cocktails with a tropic flair; the Mui-Tui is delicious.
- Charcoal Guido's, 482 Moody St., ☎ . Good pasta dishes
- Bertucci's, 475 Winter Street, ☎ . Mediocre Italian food.
Pricey- date night restaurants
- Tempo, 474 Moody Street, ☎ . M-Th 5PM-10PM, F Sa 5PM-11PM, the bar is open late every night. Tempo is a fine dining restaurant and bar. The menu is always full and changing. Also, there are daily specials and appetizers using local grown and fresh caught ingredients. Tempo also has a hopping bar scene on a Friday or Saturday night. But if you plan to eat on weekend call ahead for reservation because the place fills up quickly. Tempo is on the pricer side but is a great place to go on a date.
- La Campania, 504 Main Street Waltham, MA 02452., ☎ . M-Th 5:30-9:30PM, F Sa 5PM-10PM. La Capania offers upscale Italian food, that taste like an Italian grandmother cooked it for you. It has its own wine store, with a large selection of Italian vino and other wines. This restaurant has a quite, intimate atmosphere and is perfect for a romantic date night. This is a pricey restaurant but you get great home-cooked food and excellent wine.
- The Skellig, 240 Moody Street, ☎ .
- Doubletree Guest Suites Boston/Waltham, 550 Winter Street, toll-free: .
- Holiday Inn Express, 385 Winter Street, ☎ , toll-free: , fax: . At exit 27 off of I-95 (Rt 128). Get free Wi-Fi (bring your own computer and wireless card -- they don't have any loaners). Make sure to book a room on the first floor of the main building to get access from your room as there is only one access point in the main lobby. Room charge was $89/night plus tax. Includes a well-stocked complimentary breakfast with fruits, cereal, bagels, and cinnamon buns. A quick ten minute drive to downtown Waltham.
- Hyatt Summerfield Suites Waltham, 54 Fourth Avenue, ☎ . In the heart of the Route 128 corridor.
- Hilton Garden Inn Boston/Waltham, 420 Totten Pond Road, ☎ . 148 guest rooms, café, lobby lounge, an indoor heated pool and exercise room.
- The Westin Waltham, 70 Third Avenue, ☎ . 15 miles from downtown Boston and provides access to nearby corporate headquarters. This hotel has 346 guestrooms. Gym.
|Routes through Waltham|
|Peabody ← Lexington ←||N S||→ Weston → Canton|
|Worcester ← Weston ←||W E||→ Watertown → Boston|
|END ←||W E||→ Belmont → Medford|
|Fitchburg ← Weston ←||NW SE||→ Belmont → Boston|