An ideal weekend getaway in the Berkshires

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guides

The idyllic weekend retreat has new pleasures this month.


Adventures in the trees at Ramblewild. / Photo by Ramblewild

It’s not a secret the Berkshires are an ideal weekend getaway for Bostonians. But do you think you’ve done it all, from Mount Greylock to Tanglewood? Think again. This fall offers new reasons to fall in love with the region all over again.

First of all: the great outdoors. Bike enthusiasts can hop on the new Ashuwillticook Rail Trail, which now runs along an old train line from Pittsfield to North Adams, and stretches for 22 peaceful miles of forests, wetlands and wildlife. For a more extreme diversion, head to the new Ramblewildan aerial adventure park in Lanesborough where you can watch the fall foliage soar on an exhilarating array of ziplines (for a truly unforgettable experience, book a new private guided rock climbing session).

If art and culture are more your pace, you’ve come to the right place. Mass MoCA at North Adams features evocative exhibits this fall, including Amy Hauft’s “700,000:1, Terra + Luna + Sol.” The immersive and out-of-the-ordinary installation comprises two huge spheres, giving visitors the sensation of being simultaneously in heaven and on earth. Another must-have is the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, where, in addition to the artist’s greatest works, you’ll find 10 galleries with ever-changing exhibitions.

The cultural journey does not stop there. On September 15, the region starts ArtWeek Berkshires, a 10-day festival featuring over 100 events, from open studios and poetry readings to live musical performances. Also not to be missed are Back Porch Music’s concerts under the stars at Hancock Shaker Village, where you can sit back, relax and listen to live music with a picnic. Award-winning bluegrass musician Jake Blount displays his talents here on September 2.

If the mountain air makes you hungry, there’s no shortage of cool restaurants in the area. Hearty southern Italian dishes (including plenty of fresh pasta) are on the menu at the new friends in West Stockbridge, where you will find an expansive outdoor patio for those warmer evenings. Where do you stop Hot Plate Brewing Co. in Pittsfield, slated to open in early fall, and toast to crafting the perfect weekend getaway.

A look inside the new Life House hotel in Lenox. / Photo courtesy of Life House

Getting There

Avoid traffic jams and hop aboard Amtrak’s daily service from Boston to Pittsfield. The scenic ride takes you through the heart of the Berkshires in just under four hours.

Stay here

Opened in 2022, House of Life at Lenox is a mountain writer’s retreat reimagined with wood furniture, ’70s-style upholstery, a library lounge and cocktail bar (typewriter not included). Another great option is the charming, newly renovated Appletree’s Inn at Lenox. The 1885 Victorian main house sits atop a hill and offers splendid views of the lush 22-acre property, which includes two restaurants, live entertainment four nights a week, and a new in-ground pool with mountain views.


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