Downtown Salem is conveniently located within walking distance of an MBTA (Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority) commuter rail station, which links Salem to Boston and its suburbs. Bus service is also available in Salem, with connections to Haymarket, Downtown Crossing, and on the weekend to Wonderland, all of which are MBTA "T" or subway stations.

There is also seasonal ferry service between Boston and Salem, from May 1 to October 31, Memorial Day Weekend, July 4, and Labor Day Wekeend. The Salem Ferry departs from Long Wharf in Boston, and from Blaney Street in Salem which is within walking distance to many popular attractions, shopping, accommodations, and restaurants.

Because it's one of the nation's oldest cities, Salem still has a compact central core where a car is more a hindrance than a necessity.  Most places of interest can be reached on foot, and Salem's shady brick sidewalks and pedestrian-only blocks make walking to its shops, restaurants, museums, and historic buildings a pleasure.