Six Things To Do in Salem, Massachusetts

Six things to do that aren't{!!!} witch related.


Salem is most popular in October, when the Halloween mood is settling in. I've been to Salem twice during the Halloween season {you can read about my experience here + here!}. While, I do love to see Salem in all of it's Halloween glory, I have wanted to visit Salem in the "off-season" for a while. 

Why did I want to go in the off-season? Well, I wanted to be in Salem when there weren't a ton of people. Things get a little crazy when there is too much going on. Also, large crowds get overwhelming for me, so sometimes I like to go to things when they're a little less hectic.

I took the Commuter Rail {my favorite way to travel to local places on the weekends!} from North Station to Salem. It's about 30 minutes from point A to point B. Downtown Salem is a short walk from the station, which is a plus for me. I walked around a bit before I got my bearings straight and realized where I wanted to go. It had been a couple of years since I had visited so I was turned around at one point.

Not only is Salem known for it's history of witches / witch trials, it is also well known for scenes from one of everyone's favorite Halloween movies, Hocus Pocus. I, however, did not explore any of what Salem is known for {except for a couple of spots that also happened to be in Hocus Pocus}. So, if you're not into going to Salem to see witches, check out these 6 things:

F I R S T  S T O P: Town Hall

bri rinehart; photography; salem; town hall
bri rinehart; photography; salem; town hall

The Town Hall is pretty cool. You can walk through the lower level to view the public art on display. The Town Hall was featured in Hocus Pocus.


S E C O N D  S T O P: Ropes Mansion

bri rinehart; photography; salem; ropes mansion
ropes mansion; bri rinehart; garden; photography, salem

If you haven't been to Ropes Mansion, I highly recommend going the next time you're in Salem. Self-guided tours are free every Saturday + Sunday. This house was kept in the Ropes family for 4 generations. The children were either unmarried or widowed, so they gave the house to the city for upkeep and to use as a museum.

Fun fact: the outside of the house was used in Hocus Pocus.


T H I R D  S T O P: Chestnut Street

The homes on Chestnut Street are gorgeous. Each home has a plaque with information about who the home was built for or who lived there, the year and their occupation. I was too busy staring in amazement at the homes to get a picture of the street, so you'll have to trust me when I say you need to go here.


F O U R T H  S T O P: Derby Wharf Lighthouse

bri rinehart; photography; salem; derby wharf lighthouse
bri rinehart; photography; derby wharf lighthouse; salem

If you're out venturing near the water, stop by the Derby Wharf Lighthouse. It's not the biggest lighthouse, but it's a nice walk. 


F I F T H  S T O P: House of the Seven Gables

bri rinehart; photography; salem; house of the seven gables

If you've ever read the House of the Seven Gables and wanted to see the house in real life, you can! Unfortunately, by the time I got to the house, there was a private party going on, so I couldn't go in. I believe there is a fee to get in. 


S I X T H  S T O P: Little places along the way

bri rinehart; photography; salem; john ward house
bri rinehart; photography; salem; building

My blog post would be a million words long if I posted every little thing I did in Salem for the afternoon. Besides these spots that I mentioned, going on witch tours and other Salem related spook tours, there are a variety of spots to stumble upon and look at. 

I wanted to go to Salem Willows Arcade + Park, but didn't end up making it out that way - I guess I'll have to make another trip!