s autumn lazily creeps into the magnificent Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, you should take the opportunity to explore while the region is less crowded than it is in Summer and Winter. Fall is the time to enjoy nature’s explosion of autumn colors, to explore the out-of-the-way, unspoiled small towns, drink fresh-pressed apple cider, and watch ponies parade down the streets of Lenox, pulling flower-decked carts. The air is crisp at night, while the sun still warms your shoulders during the day, and altogether this is one of the best times of the year for a visit to the Berkshires.
Western Massachusetts’ Berkshire County is nestled between two small mountain ranges formed from glacial deposits— the Hoosac Range to the east and the Taconic Range to the West— which create a natural boundary separating the area from Vermont, New York and Connecticut. For thousands of years, the rolling hills and lush landscape of the Berkshires have beckoned visitors, from ancient native American tribes to, in the 17th and later centuries, farming and industrial settlers from England, Ireland, Holland and Germany.
Home to both peaceful valleys and the Commonwealth’s highest peak, Mount Greylock, the Berkshire’s rural lifestyle and contrasting natural features have attracted creative personalities— writers, including Hawthorne, Melville, Bryant and Thoreau; artists, such as Norman Rockwell and Daniel Chester French; and hundreds of other performers and craftspeople— for generations.
In the Gilded Age of the late 1800s and early 1900s Southern Berkshire County became the summer playground of the wealthy, who built grand mansions they dubbed “cottages.” As the era’s great wealth faded, so did the fortunes of the cottages. Many of these homes have now been restored and revived as lodging facilities, spas, restaurants and museums.
Known today as “America’s Premier Cultural Resort,” the region is a cultural mecca of museums, historic sites, art, dance and music venues such as Tanglewood, the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer home; MASS MoCA, the country’s largest contemporary art center; the Norman Rockwell Museum, featuring the artist’s original studio; and the renowned Williamstown Theatre Festival, to name a few.
In addition to arts and cultural venues, the Berkshires offer Summer visitors outstanding opportunities for golfing, hiking, backpacking, biking, fishing, whitewater rafting, canoeing and kayaking.
Wintertime sports include alpine and cross country skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing.
Visitors can also discover an incredible range of retail establishments year round, from antiques dealers to outlets to myriad specialty shops.
Visitors frequently say that lodging is one of their favorite parts about being of the Berkshires. The area boasts inns and B&Bs in rustic, antique-filled Colonial homes, as well as turn-of-the-century mansions with majestic fireplaces and canopy beds. Or, if you prefer, the area offers a variety of modern hotels and motels.
Timeshare is also well represented in the Berkshires. Timeshare resorts currently available within the area include:
- Country Village at Jiminy Peak
- Oak ‘n Spruce Resort
- Fairfield Berkshires at Bentley Brook
- Vacation Village in the Berkshires
- The Ponds at Foxhollow
"On the Road" is a compilation of destination ideas, resort reviews, videos and more gathered from a variety of sources that includes our readers.
The purpose of "On the Road" is to showcase some of the magnificent places in the world to visit, to give you an idea for someplace to go that you might previously not have thought of or known about. In most cases, but not all, we have provided a brief overview of a timeshare resort in the spotlighted area. Most of those resorts are either RCI Gold Crown or I.I. 5-Star quality. However, these resorts are not usually the only timeshare resorts in the area; be sure to check in your exchange catalog for a complete listing of available resorts. Check it out--- enjoy yourself, go somewhere new this year!
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