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Harvard University
Holiday Travel Guide

Harvard University which includes heritage architecture and a city

Walk in the footsteps of presidents and Nobel laureates at one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the United States.

For a truly educational experience pay a visit to Harvard University, the oldest institute of higher learning in the U.S. Universities don’t come much more prestigious, or prettier, than Harvard. Founded in 1636, it’s one of the “Ivy League” schools. This term refers to a group of eight elite northeastern US universities known for their high academic standards. It was first coined in the 1930s and referred to football competition between older universities, with ivy-covered buildings.

Harvard University is just outside of Boston proper, on 380 acres (154 hectares). Set aside at least two hours to experience the atmosphere, architecture, museums and shops.

The university was named after its first benefactor, John Harvard, who bequeathed half of his estate and his 320-volume scholarly library to one of the colleges. The staff were so pleased with the donation that the university was renamed in his honor.

There are many entrances to the university. Check out the ornate, Georgian Revival-style Johnston Gate, and then head for the Harvard Information Center in the Holyoke Centre Arcade. Learn about the history of Harvard, stock up on maps and gather brochures on the university’s architecture. Historical tours depart several times daily from the information center. These student-led tours run for about an hour. Or, take your time with a self-guided tour, made easy with a tour pamphlet which is available for a small cost.

The iconic Harvard Yard serves as the 25-acre (10-hectare) heart of the university. This is where you’ll find some of the campus’s most significant architecture, including the Wren Building, Sever Hall and University Hall. Don’t miss the Widener Library, a Beaux Arts masterpiece completed in 1915. It’s easy to lose yourself in the library’s 57 miles (92 kilometers) of shelving, which houses 3 million volumes.

Harvard features some notable museums, including the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, the Harvard Museum of Natural History, as well as the Harvard Art Museums (comprising the Fogg, Busch-Reisinger, and Arthur M. Sackler museums). And when school’s over for the day, join students and faculty in the many bars and cafés around Harvard Square.

Harvard University is in Cambridge, a city four miles (seven kilometers) from Boston. Take the subway, a bus, or your car from the city. On-campus parking is available for a fee. The Harvard Information Center is open Monday through Saturday.

Top Trending Hotels Near Harvard University

Irving House At Harvard
Irving House At Harvard
3 out of 5
24 Irving Street, Cambridge, MA
The price is €121 per night from 5 Jul to 5 Jul
Located in Mid-Cambridge, this bed & breakfast is within a 15-minute walk of Harvard University and Harvard Square. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) ...
4.2/5Very Good! (940 reviews)
"We liked the fact that this B&B had free parking although it was a bit tight. The reception area was welcoming as was the person when we checked in. The room was clean. We liked that you can get a post card from reception and they will post it anywhere world wide."

Reviewed on 19 Jun 2021

Irving House At Harvard
The Charles Hotel
The Charles Hotel
4 out of 5
One Bennett Street, Cambridge, MA
The price is €195 per night from 19 Jul to 19 Jul
Located in West Cambridge, this spa hotel is 0.2 mi (0.4 km) from Harvard University, and within 3 mi (5 km) of Fenway Park and Hynes Convention Center. Boston ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (994 reviews)
"Easy navigating arrival and stay!"

Reviewed on 15 Jun 2021

The Charles Hotel
Sheraton Commander Hotel
Sheraton Commander Hotel
3.5 out of 5
16 Garden St, Cambridge, MA
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is €163 per night from 25 Jun to 25 Jun
Located in Neighborhood Nine, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Harvard University and Harvard Square. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and ...
4.3/5Excellent! (123 reviews)
"It is a really nice hotel."

Reviewed on 19 Jun 2021

Sheraton Commander Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Harvard University

Harvard University

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Top Hotel Deals

Irving House At Harvard
Irving House At Harvard
3 out of 5
24 Irving Street, Cambridge, MA
The price is €121 per night from 5 Jul to 5 Jul
Irving House At Harvard
The Charles Hotel
The Charles Hotel
4 out of 5
One Bennett Street, Cambridge, MA
The price is €195 per night from 19 Jul to 19 Jul
The Charles Hotel
Sheraton Commander Hotel
Sheraton Commander Hotel
3.5 out of 5
16 Garden St, Cambridge, MA
The price is €163 per night from 25 Jun to 25 Jun
Sheraton Commander Hotel
Harvard Square Hotel
Harvard Square Hotel
2 out of 5
110 Mount Auburn Street, Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA
Harvard Square Hotel
Hotel Veritas
Hotel Veritas
3.5 out of 5
1 Remington St, Cambridge, MA
The price is €163 per night from 22 Jun to 22 Jun
Hotel Veritas
Top Floor Harvard Square 1BR W/gym, Elevator, by Blueground
Top Floor Harvard Square 1BR W/gym, Elevator, by Blueground
60 Brattle St, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, Cambridge, MA
Top Floor Harvard Square 1BR W/gym, Elevator, by Blueground
Top Floor Harvard Square 2BR W/gym, Elevator, by Blueground
Top Floor Harvard Square 2BR W/gym, Elevator, by Blueground
60 Brattle St, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, Cambridge, MA
Top Floor Harvard Square 2BR W/gym, Elevator, by Blueground
Beautiful Sunny apt Right Across Harvard Yard
Beautiful Sunny apt Right Across Harvard Yard
1168 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA
Beautiful Sunny apt Right Across Harvard Yard
Hyatt Regency Boston/Cambridge
Hyatt Regency Boston/Cambridge
4 out of 5
575 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA
The price is €123 per night from 23 Jun to 23 Jun
Hyatt Regency Boston/Cambridge
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.