5 of the Best Things to See and Do in Salem, Massachusetts
By AAA Travel Editor Patricia Miller | April 19, 2023
If you are looking for things to do in Boston that are off the beaten path, take a look at our list of things to see and places to go in Salem, Massachusetts on your next trip.
235 Essex St.
Pose for a selfie with a statue of TV witch Samantha Stephens from the show “Bewitched,” which aired 1964-72. Perched perkily on a crescent moon with her broomstick, Sam is cast in bronze and lives in Lappin Park. It’s as if her misbehaving mother Endora had cast a spell and frozen her for eternity, although she can no longer twitch her nose to make magic.
Courtesy of Destination Salem
The House of the Seven Gables
115 Derby St.At first glance, you may not think that the drab gray house with seven peaks could have inspired the fascinating stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne, author of the 1851 Gothic novel “The House of the Seven Gables,” but step inside this AAA GEM® attraction for a 45-minute tour given by costumed guides and you’ll be convinced otherwise. Period furnishings, seaside gardens and a secret stairway add to the mysterious aura of the storied house and provide insight into the lifestyle of its residents in 17th- and 18th-century Salem.Read More
Peabody Essex Museum
Peabody Essex Museum
161 Essex St.This stunning art museum, a AAA GEM® attraction, is home to a remarkable collection of more than 1.8 million art objects, including an extensive maritime art collection that attests to Salem’s shipping history. Its 30 galleries boast a wealth of African, American, Asian and Native American art as well as portraits, furniture and costumes. Attempt to see it all, but don’t miss the Yin Yu Tang merchant's house from the late Qing Dynasty; it was brought over from China and reconstructed on site.Read More
Where to Eat in Salem
Salem, MassachusettsNo toadstools or witches brew here, but seafood? That’s a different story. If chowing down on ocean fare puts a smile on your face, head to Turner's Seafood at Lyceum Hall, a casual eatery with its very own fish market. Been there, done that? Don’t miss Finz Seafood & Grill, where you can see the marina from just about any table. Oysters and clams from the raw bar are so fresh you’ll want to slap them.
Salem Witch Museum
19 1/2 Washington Sq. N.
If you can only go to one witch-themed attraction in Salem, choose the Salem Witch Museum. Using mannequins dressed in 17th-century attire, it offers a slightly creepy yet historically accurate presentation about the beginnings of witchcraft accusations and how they developed into the tragic, groundless deaths of 20 innocent citizens.Read More
Where to Shop in Salem
Salem, MassachusettsRoam the brick-covered streets of the Essex Street Pedestrian Mall, lined with one-of-a-kind boutiques. OMEN: Psychic Parlor and Witchcraft Emporium will fulfill your desire for witchy wares like pointed black hats, crystals, magic potions and candles that you can use for healing or house blessings. Pop into Pamplemousse (it’s French for grapefruit) and pick up delightful kitchen gadgets, funky gifts, gourmet foods and fine wine. Just off Essex Street is Modern Millie, an adorable boutique overflowing with candy-colored original and reproduction vintage clothing, including dresses similar to those that Samantha Stephens wore.