things to do in salem, things to do in salem on a stopover, layover in boston ma

Salem is about 30-ish minutes from Boston Logan airport (BOS), so you might find yourself on a long layover with time to kill. Or maybe you’re on a road trip through New England with a few hours to spare in the Witch City. What are some quick things you could do in a couple of hours? Today on the blog I wanted to cover just that.

Hop onto the Salem Trolley

If you want a fast overview of many popular and historic Salem attractions, grab a spot on the Trolley. It takes you to many well known places in the witch city with a tour guide narrating for you the entire way. This is probably the easiest and most efficient option.

If you have time to wander after the Trolley, make sure to make note of attractions you’re interested in coming back to while you’re on board. This way when you’re done with the ride, you can go right to those places.

Related: The Salem Trolley — Salem MA attractions reviews

Pick a few attractions that are close to one another

If you really need to cut down on time and don’t have the ability to go from one side of Salem to the other, pick attractions that are close to one another. A few examples of this might include:

  • The Witch House, the Bewitched statue and Count Orlok’s Nightmare Gallery
  • The Witch House, The Ropes Mansion and the McIntire District
  • The House of the Seven Gables, Ye Old Pepper Companie, The Friendship of Salem (she is currently away on restoration as of the publish date of this blog)
  • The House of the Seven Gables, the Schooner Fame (if you have time for a trip out onto the water), The Custom House
  • The Salem Witch Museum, The Salem Common, The Roger Conant statue, the Hawthorne Hotel, Crow Haven Corner
  • Salem Witch Village and the Old Burying Point, the Punto Urban Art Museum, Proctor’s Ledge memorial, Artists’ Row

For more options and ideas, click here.

Food and drink

This one is obvious, but if you have time in Salem for lunch or dinner, grab something that is unique to the witch city! You might head up to the Roof atop the Hotel Salem or consider a window booth at Rockafellas for good people watching while you dine. Kawaka is one of Salem’s newest as is Stella’s restaurant and wine bar. If you’re around while Goodnight Fatty is serving delicious cookies, I would high suggest a visit. For a huge list of your dining options in Salem, click here.

Go on a walking tour

Salem has many walking tour options, so grab tickets to one that suits your fancy and enjoy the city on foot! You could also combine this option with food/drink and go on a trip with Salem Food Tours or Sips and Bites of Salem. Walking tours are a good way to sight see and also get some walking in before you have to get back to the airport or back in the car! For an overview of your options, click here.

Related: Spellbound Tours — Salem, MA attractions reviews

Grab some Salem reading

If you want to grab some reading material for when you’re back on the road or in the air, check out the list of suggestions I came up with in collaboration with Wicked Good Books. The titles are divided into two sections, Salem based and spooky titles.

Go for some spirits

Salem is home to Far From the Tree Cider, Notch Brewery and Deacon Giles Distillery. If the Salem Spirits Trolley is running while you’re in town, that might also be a good option. Of course, always exercise caution when drinking, especially if you’re on a road trip and will be driving.

Add in some spooky vibes

It’s Salem…duh. Go for a tarot reading or shop for local witchy supplies. Leave the witch city with some insight into the future or some unique goods to bring home with you.

Related: A tarot reading with Yulia Applewood at Hex — Salem MA Attractions Reviews ; Shopping for witchy supplies in Salem, MA


If you’re more of a rest and relax type of person, you’re in luck as well. Salem is home to many businesses that will help you with just that. My favorite is the Salty Buddha…maybe dropping into a yoga class is what you need in your life to reset from the chaos of travel.

Related: 10 ways to recharge yourself in Salem, MA


Salem is home to hundreds of unique businesses that all offer local goods, handmade gifts and unique finds. If you see it here in Salem, it’s likely not something you can get on Amazon later. Browse all of the amazing options and be sure to wander through the city’s street fairs if you’re visiting while one is happening!! I have found so many awesome things during the street fairs.

Related: How to visit Salem, MA with no regrets

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things to do in salem, things to do on a stopover in Salem MA, layover in Boston MA