Historians may debate where the famous “shot heard ’round the world” was actually fired, but there can be no doubt that the first armed combat of the Revolutionary War took place in the town of Lexington, 11 miles west of Boston .
By all accounts, it was a tentative and slapdash affair, in stark contrast to the American victory at Concord Bridge that would take place a few hours later. Even so, it marks the first time that the rebellious colonists fired on their own country’s troops, outnumbered and outgunned though they were.
For that reason, Lexington now stands as monument to the patriot’s courage.
Because of the nature of the Battles of Lexington and Concord—which moved back and forth between the towns as the day went on—a visit here can be a confusing mishmash of history. The best way to tour them is to follow the chronology of the battle itself, starting at the visitors centers in Lexington and seeing the Battle Green  and the historic sights there; then heading into Concord  to see the Old North Bridge; and then retracing your steps by foot or car down the Battle Road to end up again in Lexington.