When you arrive in the Berkshires, it may already feel familiar, as though you’ve seen scenes from the 30 towns in Massachusetts and Connecticut that make up the region. And you probably have. Norman Rockwell—the artist and illustrator whose paintings, calendars and illustrations of small-town America and American culture are now ubiquitous—called this place home. And, like many artists, Rockwell captured scenes occurring around him. Start your trip by touring the Norman Rockwell Museum, which also features rotating exhibits of American illustrations. The artist’s studio is also open for tours in the warmer months.
*Photo by lightphoto, Getty Images
In fall, the area’s sugar maples dye the region orange. Go for a drive on Mohawk Trail and wind through the mountains during peak foliage. In winter and early spring, strap on your hiking boots and head to the Mohawk Trail State Forest. Tramp through trails, which you can access for free from November through April, as you explore the forest’s 6,000 acres of meadows, streams, impressive gorges and mountain ridges. If skiing is more your speed, glide down Jiminy Peak. The 2,380-foot mountain features more than 160 skiable acres and 45 trails. As spring progresses, venture to the famous Appalachian Trail as it comes back to life after the chilly New England winter. For panoramic views of the area, make your destination Mount Greylock, a 3,491-foot mountain and the highest point in Massachusetts.
For a dose of culture, hear the Boston Symphony Orchestra perform in its summer home at Tanglewood. Art lovers can visit the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, which features European and American art, while bookworms may enjoy touring the farmhouse where Herman Melville penned Moby Dick in Pittsfield. In Lenox, visit the Mount, the 42-room Georgian Revival home of 20th-century author Edith Wharton. Walk through formal gardens, or tour the multiple buildings at this National Historic Landmark. Then spend the afternoon antiquing in Lenox’s charming downtown.
Make your home base Vacation Village in the Berkshires with RCI. This property is conveniently located in Hancock, Massachusetts, where you’ll have phenomenal views of the Jiminy Peak ski area. In addition to the attractions around the Berkshires, guests can swim in either the outdoor or or indoor pool, hike, bike, fish or horseback ride—all in and around the property.
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*Photo at top of page by DenisTangneyJr, Getty Images.
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