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Berkshire County Travel Resources | Dining, Lodging & Attractions

Berkshire County Travel Resources | Dining, Lodging & Attractions
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Berkshire Bound

A sampling of additional destinations around Berkshire CountyFor seasonal schedules and pricing, call ahead or visit venue Web sites. For still more lodging and dining options, activities, events, and outdoor recreation areas (including state forests and wildlife-management areas), visit these Web sites: berkshires.orgberkshires.comberkshireweb.combestoftheberkshires.comiberkshires.comupperhousatonicheritage.commass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/places-to-go/massparks-regions-west-lc.htmlthetrustees.orgberkshirefoodjournal.comberkshiremenus.comberkshiredining.com

 

The Berkshires’ North County

Where to Eat in the Berkshires’ North County | Dining

Chef’s Hat Diner, Williamstown. Local favorite serving homemade breakfast and lunch fare. 413-458-5120; chefshatdiner.com

Gramercy Bistro, North Adams. International menu dominated by produce and products from Berkshire farms. 413-663-5300; gramercybistro.com

Haflinger Haus, Adams. Austrian restaurant and tavern in a gracious 6-guestroom inn. 413-743-2221; haflingerhaus.com

Hobson’s Choice, Williamstown. Casual steak and seafood restaurant with grill and tavern. 413-458-9101; hobsonsrestaurant.com

Hops & Vines, Williamstown. Beer garden and brasserie serving an American and French-inspired menu, plus pub fare. 413-884-1372; hopsandvinesma.com

Jack’s Hot Dogs, North Adams. A favorite local grill, with counter seating, since 1917. 413-664-9006; jackshotdogstand.com

Mezze Bistro & Bar, Williamstown. Woodsy location specializing in contemporary farm-to-table dining. 413-458-0123; mezzerestaurant.com

Mill on the Floss, New Ashford. Fine French country fare in an 18th-century farmhouse, since 1973. 413-458-9123; millonthefloss.com

Sweets & Beans, Williamstown. Candy, ice creams, coffee, and espresso bar. 413-884-1374; sweetsandbeansma.com

Water Street Grill, Williamstown. Restaurant and tavern specializing in steak and seafood plus pub fare. 413-458-2175; waterstgrill.com

 

Where to Stay in the Berkshires’ North County | Lodging

1896 House, Williamstown. B&B and 2 motels, with restaurant/pub on site in a renovated milking barn. 413-458-1896; 1896house.com

Clover Hill Farm, Williamstown. Animal lovers will want to book a room here and hang out with the resident horses, plus Snoopy the beagle, Susie the goat, and lots of cats, ducks, chickens, goats, and more. Oh, and you can bring your own dog—or horse. 413-458-3376; cloverhillfarm.net

Guest House at Field Farm, Williamstown. 6-guestroom Bauhaus-inspired B&B featuring modern art and décor in a landscaped setting; the conserved 316-acre property, including fields, marshes, and forest, features 4 miles of hiking trails. Guests may tour The Folly, a cottage designed by Ulrich Franzen. 413-458-3135; thetrustees.org/field-farm

House on Main Street, Williamstown, MA. 6-guestroom B&B in a renovated 18th-century house with Victorian addition, near the site of colonial Fort Hoosac. Brighidi and Angus are your feline hosts. 413-458-3031; houseonmainstreet.com

Journey’s End Lodge, Williamstown. 3-guestroom B&B in a hand-hewn Adirondack-inspired log cabin. 202-802-0880; newjourneysend.com

Orchards Hotel, Williamstown. 49 guestrooms, some with gas fireplaces and garden courtyard or mountain views. Steakhouse on site. 800-225-1517; orchardshotel.com

Porches Inn, North Adams. 6 renovated 1890s millworkers’ rowhouses (26 guestrooms and 18 suites) with modern amenities across the street from MASS MoCA. 413-664-0400; porches.com

Williams Inn, Williamstown. 125-rooms hotel, with restaurant and tavern on site. 413-458-9371; williamsinn.com

 

What to See in the Berkshires’ North County | Arts & Culture

Hopkins Observatory. On the campus of Williams College, thought to be the oldest existing observatory in the U.S. (dating to the 1830s), home to Milham Planetarium and the Mehlin Museum of Astronomy. 413-597-2482; astronomy.williams.edu

Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams. Works and installations by established and emerging artists, including 105 Sol LeWitt wall drawings; also hosts musical and dance performances and avant-garde theatre. 413-662-2111; massmoca.org

Sterling & Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown. Outstanding collection of European and American works, particularly 19th-century painting and sculpture, with a special focus on French Impressionism. Currently undergoing a multimillion-dollar expansion; the core collection remains open for viewing throughout the process. Visit the seasonal Stone Hill Terrace Café up the hill behind the museum to grab a sandwich or a salad while drinking in great views of the Taconic Range and the Green Mountains. 413-458-2303; clarkart.edu

Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum, Adams. Early-childhood home of the abolitionist and suffragist. 413-743-7121; susanbanthonybirthplace.com

Western Heritage Gateway State Park, North Adams. Programs and historical exhibits in this former railroad yard tell the story of the construction of the Hoosac Tunnel, one of the greatest engineering feats of the 19th century. Also home to the North Adams Museum of History and Science, exhibiting ancient Native American artifacts, immigration displays, natural-science materials, farm-life displays, and more. 413-663-6312; berkshireweb.com/mohawktrail/western.html

Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown. Broad-ranging collection, with a particular emphasis on American art of the late 18th century to the present. 413-597-2429; wcma.williams.edu

Williamstown Theatre Festival, Williamstown. Nationally renowned, award-winning professional summer stage. 413-458-3200; wtfestival.org

 

What to Do in the Berkshires’ North County | Outdoor Recreation

Bonnie Lea Farm, Williamstown. Guided trail rides over fields and streams amid splendid foliage. 413-441-6349; bonnielea.com

Hopkins Memorial Forest, Williamstown. 2,500-acre reserve, extending into New York and Vermont, managed by Williams College; 15 miles of hiking trails.

Mahican–Mohawk Trail. Follows the corridor of a historic Native American path from Deerfield west through Mohawk Trail and Savoy Mountain state forests and over the Hoosac Range. Spectacular views and scenic landscapes. 413-586-8706; mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/mohawk-trail-state-forest.html

Mount Greylock State Reservation. 11,000 acres over Adams, Williamstown, New Ashford; visitor center in Lanesborough. Melville’s “Imperial Purple Majesty.” Geologically, Mount Greylock, the highest point in southern New England (3,491 feet), is part of the Taconic Range to the west, but Berkshire natives and visitors claim it for their own. 50 miles of trails, including a portion of the Appalachian Trail; dramatic views; wild and rugged, yet accessible (hike or drive). In the “Hopper” area, see 200-year-old spruces. Eat and stay overnight at the summit at rustic Bascom Lodge, built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. 413-499-4262, mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/mt-greylock-state-reservation-generic.html; 413-743-1591, bascomlodge.net

Natural Bridge State Park, North Adams. Over Hudson Brook, the only naturally formed white marble arch in North America, carved by glacial melt water more than 13,000 years ago. Also on site are an abandoned marble quarry and white marble dam. 413-663-6392; mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/natural-bridge-state-park-generic.html

Savoy Mountain State Forest, Savoy/Florida. 1,000 acres of abandoned farmland, forest, and ponds atop the Hoosac Range; 50 miles of hiking trails. One highlight is 50-foot Tannery Falls. 413-663-8469; mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/savoy-mt-state-forest-generic.html

Sweet Brook Farm, South Williamstown. Tour this scenic alpaca farm and sugarbush in a horse-drawn sleigh or hay wagon. 413-884-4246; sweetbrookfarm.com

Whitcomb Summit, Florida. In the Hoosac Range, the highest point along the Mohawk Trail (2,173 feet). 866-743-8127; mohawktrail.com

Williamstown Rural Lands, Williamstown. Preserved forested properties and farms, crisscrossed by maintained hiking trails; also offers conservation workshops for kids and adults. 413-458-2494; wrlf.org

 

The Berkshires’ Central County

Where to Eat in the Berkshires’ Central County | Dining

Alta Wine Bar, Lenox. Inspired Mediterranean and American cuisine featuring fresh local and organic ingredients. 413-637-0003; altawinebar.com

Café Lucia, Lenox. Regional Italian specialties featuring local produce and natural and organic meats in a c. 1840s farmhouse. 413-637-2640; cafelucialenox.com

Café Reva, Pittsfield. Innovative takes on comfort food in a tiny little breakfast and lunch joint; lots of fresh ingredients, plus homemade soups. 413-442-6161; cafereva.com

Firefly, Lenox. A “New American Bistro,” featuring sophisticated cuisine plus down-to-earth comfort food amid impeccably chic décor. 413-637-2700; fireflylenox.com

Flavours of Malaysia, Pittsfield. Specializing in multiethnic Southeast Asian cuisine, cooked to order from scratch. 413-443-3188; flavoursintheberkshires.com

Maria’s European Delights, Pittsfield. Deli offering cold cuts, cheeses, sausages, fish, pierogis, condiments, and other treats from Poland, Germany, and other Central European locales. 413-442-5100

Mill Town Tavern, Dalton. Local spot offering homemade comfort food, grinders, and pizza. 413-684-0900; milltowntavern.com

Misty Moonlight Diner, Pittsfield. Huge menu in a classic 1950s atmosphere: neon and black-and-white-check tiles. 413-499-2483

Nudel, Lenox. Highlights are fresh pastas and seasonal local produce in creative combinations, all in an intimate setting. 413-551-7183; nudelrestaurant.com

Olde Heritage Tavern, Lenox. Local gathering spot offering homemade pub grub and pizza in a tree-shaded 19th-century house. 413-637-0884; theheritagetavern.com

Patrick’s Pub, Pittsfield. Casual atmosphere, lots of old brick, plenty of Guinness on tap; pub grub plus meat and seafood entrées. Live music every other week. 413-499-1994; patricksinpittsfield.com

 

Where to Stay in the Berkshires’ Central County | Lodging

Apple Tree Inn, Lenox. 13 guestrooms in an 1885 house, plus a motel, on 22 blooming hillside acres. Tavern and restaurant on site. 413-637-1477; appletree-inn.com

Birchwood Inn, Lenox. Comfortable, homey B&B in a 1766 white-clapboard farmhouse, the oldest residence in Lenox; lovely Early American décor. (Possibly home to a ghost or two, too.) Quinn, an elderly golden retriever, and Charley, a little “bichoodle” mix, are your canine hosts. 413-637-2600; birchwood-inn.com

Blantyre, Lenox. Upscale lodgings in a turreted Victorian mansion (think leaded glass and burnished wood) and carriage house, luxuriously furnished. 413-637-3556; blantyre.com

Brook Farm Inn, Lenox. Comfortably furnished 12-guestroom Victorian B&B plus carriage house and award-winning gardens. 413-637-3013; brookfarm.com

Bucksteep Manor, Washington. B&B with red gabled house, two lodges, rustic cabins, and a carriage barn in a cleft of Washington Mountain, on 400 acres with gardens and wooded hiking trails. Tavern on site. Family, group, and destination events are a specialty. 413-623-5535; bucksteepmanor.com

Canyon Ranch, Lenox. The Northeast branch of the famous luxury health-and-fitness resort and spa, in a meticulously restored 1897 mansion. 800-742-9000; canyonranch.com/lenox

Cornell Inn, Lenox. B&B complex, including an 1888 home and carriage house (built as a stable and operating as a speakeasy during Prohibition), plus a nearby 1777 home featuring original wide-plank floorboards and handhewn woodwork. In the heart of the village, adjacent to Kennedy Park, a wooded nature preserve with hiking trails. 413-637-4800; cornellbb.com

Cranwell, Lenox. Resort, spa, and golf club in a magnificent Tudor-style mansion on 380 acres, built in 1894, with grounds landscaped by Frederick Law Olmsted. Blossom Hill, the property where the house now stands, was once the property of abolitionist Rev. Henry Ward Beecher. 413-637-1364; cranwell.com

Eastgate Inn, Lenox. 4-guestroom country B&B, surrounded by gardens and woodlands. 413-637-1963; eastgateinnbedbreakfast.com

Garden Gables Inn, Lenox. A gracious lodging with 18 guestrooms, many in the 1780 main house, with others in two adjoining cottages. Sherry is served every afternoon—a gracious and civilized tradition. 413-637-0193; gardengablesinn.com

Gateways Inn, Lenox. The Federal-style Procter mansion is now a spacious B&B with 12 guestrooms. Fine-dining restaurant featuring seasonal locally grown ingredients on site. 413-637-2532; gatewaysinn.com

Hampton Terrace, Lenox. 5-guestroom B&B in a handsome white Federal-style home dating to 1852. The distinctive front entrance features a columned demilune portico and a front door with prominent iron strap hinges, surrounded by an amber glass fanlight and sidelights. Also on the grounds are guest cottages plus a carriage house with 6 rooms. 413-637-1773; hamptonterrace.com

Kemble Inn, Lenox. 13 B&B guestrooms in a Georgian-style Gilded Age mansion. Mountain vistas from the back of the property. Family and group event hosting is a specialty. Restaurant (prix-fixe dinner and Sunday brunch) on site. 413-637-4113; kembleinn.com

RookWood Inn, Lenox. Founded as the Williams Tavern in 1825, then remodeled and restored as a Victorian lodging house with turret, it’s now a charming B&B with a spacious front porch. Afternoon sweets and hors d’oeuvres are a special treat. 413-637-9850; rookwoodinn.com

Seven Hills Inn, Lenox. Luxuriously furnished Gilded Age manor house on 27 acres near Laurel Lake, and next door to The Mount. 413-637-0060; sevenhillsinn.com

Stonover Farm. Luxury B&B in a Shingle-style Gilded Age house with distinctive stone foundation, plus a cottage and refurbished schoolhouse. 413-637-9100; stonoverfarm.com

Summer White House Inn, Lenox. 6 guestrooms (5 with canopied beds), name for First Ladies, in the former Schermerhorn “cottage,” built in 1885; opulently furnished and graced with antique furnishings and original American paintings. 413-637-4489; thesummerwhitehouse.com

Walker House, Lenox. 8 B&B guestrooms, named for the innkeepers’ favorite classical composers, in a Federal-style hip-roof home dating to 1804, on 3 acres of wooded grounds. Beanie, Hazel, and Hansel are your feline hosts. 413-637-1271; walkerhouse.com

Wheatleigh Hotel, Lenox. 19 rooms and suites in a luxe 1893 mansion, designed as a 16th-century Florentine palazzo, on 22 acres. Renowned for fine dining. 413-637-0610; wheatleigh.com

White Horse Inn, Pittsfield. 8 guestrooms in a gracious, renovated Federal-style B&B, built at the turn of the 20th century. 413-442-2512; whitehorsebb.com

 

Where to See in the Berkshires’ Central County | Arts & Culture

Albany Berkshire Ballet, Pittsfield. Best known for its Nutcracker performances each holiday season, this professional company is now launching a repertory of other classic works and contemporary dance on the Barrington Stage and in summer at Jacob’s Pillow. 413-445-5382; berkshireballet.org

Barrington Stage Company, Pittsfield. Presenting award-winning professional productions of classic and contemporary plays and world premieres in a renovated 1912 vaudeville theatre year-round. The company’s Musical Theatre Lab for young writers is headed by Tony Award recipient (and Williams College alum) Bill Finn. 413-236-8888; barringtonstageco.org

Beacon Cinema, Pittsfield. Housed in the classic 1918 Kinnell–Kresge building is a state-of-the-art six-screen theatre complex, presenting Metropolitan Opera “Live in HD” broadcasts, art films, sports broadcasts, and first-run movies. A vintage escalator delivers you to the wine bar and New Stage performance area upstairs. 413-358-4780; thebeaconcinema.com

Berkshire Museum, Pittsfield. An eclectic collection of art, history, and science. Highlights are paintings by Hudson River School artists, Alexander Calder mobiles, an Egyptian mummy, aquarium and terrarium tanks, fossils, and and Wally the life-size fiberglass stegosaurus. Feigenbaum Hall of Innovation hosts interactive exhibits on inventions, technologies, and cultural advances that originated in the Berkshires. 413-443-7171; berkshiremuseum.org

Berkshire Scenic Railway Museum, Lenox. Model trains, photo exhibit of historic Berkshire “cottages,” and 2-hour diesel train ride from restored Lenox Station to Stockbridge. 413-637-2210; berkshirescenicrailroad.org

Colonial Theatre, Pittsfield. Restored historic 1903 venue with outstanding Gilded Age architecture and state-of-the-art technical systems. Live family entertainment, comedy, and music; regional musicians perform on the smaller Garage stage. 413-997-4444; berkshiretheatregroup.org

Hancock Shaker Village, Pittsfield. Restored historic buildings, artifacts, and farmlands tell the story of the celibate religious community that lived here in “the City of Peace” from 1783 to the early 20th century and the fine crafts, trades, and industries they developed here. Of special note is the Round Stone Barn, built in 1826 as a milking parlor and hay storage area. The Village Harvest Café serves Shaker-inspired lunch and picnic fare. 413-443-0188; hancockshakervillage.org

Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Becket. Summer performances and classes featuring American and international companies on the grounds of a former mountaintop farm, purchased in 1931 by modern-dance innovator Ted Shawn. 413-243-0745; jacobspillow.org

Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Pittsfield. Gallery, performance area, classes, and studios, exhibiting works by regional artists and artisans. 413-499-9348; discoverpittsfield.com/directory/lca

Melville Trail. Self-guided driving and walking tour of 12 of the author’s favorite Berkshire County sites, including his Pittsfield home, Arrowhead. 413-442-1793; berkshirehistory.org/melville-trail

The Mount, Lenox. This restored estate above Laurel Lake, with Georgian Revival mansion, lush formal gardens, and outbuildings, was home to Gilded Age novelist Edith Wharton from 1902 to 1911. Designed by Wharton, it reflects her deep expertise in architecture, interior décor, and landscape design. 413-551-5111; edithwharton.org

Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, Lenox. Nature and education center, with 1,500 acres and 7 miles of trails through forest, meadows, wetlands, Yokun Brook, and slopes of Lenox Mountain. A sizable beaver population is a special feature. 413-637-0320; massaudubon.org/pleasantvalley

Shakespeare & Company, Lenox. Summer theatre company presenting a selection of the Bard’s tragedies and comedies, plus works by contemporary playwrights, staged readings, and professional training. A special highlight on the grounds is the Elizabethan-style Renaissance Garden, featuring flowering plants taken from Shakespeare’s imagery. 413-637-3353; shakespeare.org

Tanglewood Music Festival, Lenox/Stockbridge. Founded in 1937 on the grounds of the Tappan family estate; summer concert series and seasonal home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, with guest instrumentalists, vocalists, and conductors, plus an academy for advanced music students. A summer tradition for locals and visitors, with picnicking on the Great Lawn. The Tanglewood Jazz Festival wraps up the season on Labor Day weekend. 888-266-1200; bso.org

Ventfort Hall, Lenox. Restored Jacobean Revival–style mansion, built in 1893, now a museum devoted to the Gilded Age, hosting historical exhibits and special programs. 413-637-3206; gildedage.org

Wahconah Park, Pittsfield. In the city whose 1791 baseball bylaw predates any other written reference to the sport that has turned up thus far, this venerable park (built in 1892) boasts one of the few remaining wooden grandstands in the U.S. Today it’s the home of the Pittsfield Suns, a franchise of the Futures Collegiate Baseball League.

 

What to Do in the Berkshires’ Central County | Outdoor Recreation

Aspinwall Adult Equestrian Center, Lenox. Venture out on horseback across Kennedy Park and Lenox Mountain, with breathtaking views of the Berkshires. 413-637-9090; berkshirehorseback.net

Bousquet Mountain, Pittsfield. Home ski area of U.S. Olympians Heidi Voelker and Kim and Krista Schmidinger. Pub and bar with fireplace on site. Summer/fall facilities include water slides, zipline, climbing wall, mini-golf, and adventure park with ropes and bridges. 413-442-8316; bousquets.com

Hebert Arboretum, Pittsfield. Living 50-species “tree library” within Springfield Park, home to diverse habitats (meadows, marshes, woodlands, ponds and streams) and 135 wildflower species, plus landscaped butterfly and hummingbird gardens and a lilac walk. 413-443-5348; hebertarboretum.org

Jiminy Peak, Hancock/Lanesborough. On Potter Mountain in the Taconic Range, at 2,380 feet, the largest ski resort in southern New England, founded in 1948. Summer/fall facilities include aerial ropes courses, mountain coaster, mountain biking, zipline, and giant swing. Lodging, tavern, restaurant, brewery, snack, and takeout dining venues on site. Special haunted-Halloween program, “13 Nights at Jiminy,” complete with local Revolutionary-era legend. 413-738-5500; jiminypeak.com

Onota Lake, Pittfield. 617 acres; swimming, paddling, sailing, fishing (home to an exceptional variety of species, including brown trout, Northern pike, large- and smallmouth bass, perch, and carp, among others); picnic in Burbank Park on the eastern shore. 413-499-9344; onotalake.com

Pittsfield State Forest, Hancock/Pittsfield. 30 miles of trails, including a portion of the Taconic Crest Trail. 65 acres of wild azaleas bloom in June. Berry Mountain offers gorgeous vistas and overlooks Berry Pond, one of the highest natural bodies of water in the state. 413-442-8992; mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/pittsfield-state-forest-generic.html

Pontoosuc Lake, Pittsfield/Lanesborough. 480 acres; a favorite Melville fishing spot. Species include tiger musky, Northern pike, rainbow and brown trout, largemouth and rock bass, and more. lanesborough-ma.gov

Windsor State Forest, Windsor. Crisscrossed by 10 miles of trails and dirt roads; on this abandoned farmland sits an abandoned sleepaway camp, said to be haunted. On Windsor Jambs Brook feeding into the Westfield River, 80-foot granite walls rise above a 25-foot-wide gorge; highlight is a spectacular cascading waterfall. 413-684-0948; mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/windsor-state-forest-generic.html

 

The Berkshires’ South County

Where to Eat in the Berkshires’ South County | Dining

Aegean Breeze, Great Barrington. American and authentic Greek fare (including casseroles), a favorite with locals and visitors alike. 413-528-4001; aegean-breeze.com

Allium Restaurant & Bar, Great Barrington. Contemporary cuisine made with fresh and seasonal local ingredients. 413-528-2118; alliumberkshires.com

Baba Louie’s Pizza, Great Barrington. Offering an interesting variety of fine and fresh ingredients on artisanal sourdough crust. Also a branch in Pittsfield (413-499-2400). 413-528-8100; babalouiespizza.com

Barrington Brewery, Great Barrington. Freshly prepared pub fare and dinner specials featuring local ingredients, plus excellent, decadent house-made desserts and a selection of ales and stouts brewed on site. 413-528-8282; barringtonbrewery.net

Bell & Anchor, Great Barrington. Inventive menus, warm décor in a New England farmhouse. 413-528-5050

Berkshire Mountain Bakery, Housatonic. European-style venue producing artisanal breads and cookies with traditional techniques. Take-away only. 413-274-3412; berkshiremountainbakery.com

Bizalion’s Fine Food, Great Barrington. Authentic French café serving rich breakfasts and lunchtime sandwiches and salads—plus fondues. Also selling a large selection of charcuterie and cheeses, wines, baked goods and pastries, gourmet gifts, coffees and teas, condiments, pastas, and more. bizalions.com

Brick House, Housatonic. Local spot offering pub fare, pizza, and craft beers from around the world. 413-274-0020; brickhousema.com

Castle Street Café, Great Barrington. Casually elegant, serving sophisticated plates made with local ingredients; extensive bar menu, too. Live jazz on weekend nights. 413-528-5244; castlestreetcafe.com

Fiori, Great Barrington. Renowned for its flavorful Northern Italian cuisine; pastas, breads and pastries, cheeses, and sauces are all made in house. 413-528-0351; fiorirestaurant.com

John Andrews, South Egremont. Elegantly prepared local farm-to-table cuisine. 413-528-3469; jarestaurant.com

Martin’s Restaurant, Great Barrington. Favorite local spot for breakfast (all day) and lunchtime comfort food. 413-528-5455; martinsgreatbarrington.com

Old Inn on the Green, New Marlborough. For authentic 18th-century atmosphere, you can’t beat this 200-year-old former stagecoach stop, serving expertly prepared fare in candlelit dining rooms with fireplaces. There’s a taproom, too. Overnight guests have a choice of 11 rooms at the inn and nearby Thayer House. 413-229-7924; oldinn.com

Old Mill, South Egremont. Serving seasonal fare and traditional favorites in an 18th-century gristmill that still retains its wide-plank flooring, chestnut beams, iron sconces, and wood-burning forge. 413-528-1421; oldmillberkshires.com

Rouge, West Stockbridge. “La couleur d’amour”: Authentic French cuisine and a welcoming atmosphere. Don’t miss the fantastic recipes on the Web site. 413-232-4111; rougerestaurant.com

Route 7 Grill, Great Barrington. “Fire, Smoke and Spirits”: Beef, pork, and chicken BBQ, a favorite with local and visitors alike. 413-528-3235; route7grill.com

Rubiner’s Cheesemongers & Grocers, Great Barrington. One of the East Coast’s best cheese emporiums, with both local and imported varieties, some rather rare on these shores. Rubi’s is the coffee and sandwich shop in back; also serves delectable dinners on weekend nights. 413-528-0488; rubiners.com

Shaker Mill Tavern, West Stockbridge. Carefully prepared Mediterranean dishes and pub fare in a wood-paneled 200-year-old establishment. 413-232-8565; shakermilltavern.com

Southfield Store, Southfield. Café housed in a vintage emporium. 413-229-7924; southfieldstore.com

Stagecoach Tavern, Sheffield. Hearty farm-to-table fare served in a warm setting (lots of wood paneling, brick walls, and overhead beams) dating back to Colonial times. 413-229-8585; stagecoachtavern.net

20 Railroad Street, Great Barrington. Local-favorite pub with a reputation for excellent tavern fare, plus inventive appetizers and a big selection of craft beers. 413-528-9345

 

Where to Stay in the Berkshires’ South County | Lodging

Applegate Inn, Lee. 8-room B&B in a 1920s Georgian-style columned mansion with beautifully landscaped grounds, highlighted by lush lawns, flower and vegetable gardens, towering pines, and aged apple trees, the remnants of an old orchard. The adjacent carriage house has 2 suites and a cottage. 413-243-4451; applegateinn.com

Briarcliff Motel, Great Barrington. Renovated 1960s-era roadside place decorated in hip Mad Men style, across the road from Monument Mountain. 413-528-3000; thebriarcliffmotel.com

Chambéry Inn, Lee. 9-room B&B with an Old World feel (think fireplaces and canopied beds, 13-foot ceilings, 8-foot windows) in a converted parochial school, originally built in 1885 (financed by a member of the socially prominent Sedgwick family who had converted to Catholicism) for the Sisters of St. Joseph, whose order originated in Chambéry, France. 413-243-2221; chamberyinn.com

Devonfield Inn, Lee. Elegantly yet comfortably furnished 9-room B&B plus cottage on an English-style country house dating to the Gilded Age, with 32 acres, including a lovely meadow shaded by birches. 413-243-3298; devonfield.com

English Hideaway Inn, Housatonic. New carriage house houses 3 guestrooms on the grounds of a 1780 farmhouse. An unusual feature of the main building is an authentic Rumford living-room fireplace, one of the earliest in New England, while the keeping room retains its original beams and wide-board chestnut flooring. The estate was a stop on the Underground Railroad; two of the cottage’s bedrooms retain secret compartments for hiding escaping slaves. Gardens and 200-year-old trees grace the inn’s grounds, overlooking Tom Ball Mountain. 413-274-6149; englishhideawayinn.com

Federal House Inn, South Lee. A distinctive wide portico with 2-story white columns fronts this stately red-brick home, built in 1824, now a 9-guestroom B&B. 413-243-1824; federalhouseinn.com

Historic Merrell Inn, South Lee. 11-guestroom B&B in a gracious 200-year-old brick lodging, a former stagecoach stop, impeccably furnished. 413-243-1794; merrell-inn.com

Inn at Stockbridge, Stockbridge. 8-guestroom B&B in a 1906 Georgian-style columned mansion, plus suites in a barn-style lodging and a nearby cottage, on 12 acres. 888-466-7865; stockbridgeinn.com

Jonathan Foote 1778 House, Lee. 5-guestroom B&B in an 18th-century post-and-beam farmhouse—also a stagecoach stop and a tavern from time to time—with many original features, including wide-plank floorboards, 12-over-12 windows, antique hardware, four fireplaces, and a 7-foot hearth with beehive oven. 413-243-4545; 1778house.com

Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, Stockbridge. Workshops, outdoor activities, and classes. Offers overnight and weekend retreats with meals and accommodations, as well as day programs, for wellness, fitness, and spirituality. 413-448-3400; kripalu.org

Morgan House Inn, Lee. 11-guestroom lodging in a classic 19th-century stagecoach stop. Restaurant and tavern on site. 413-243-3661; morganhouseinn.com

New Boston Inn, Sandisfield. Historic 7-guestroom B&B built in 1750. Tavern and restaurant on site serving classic New England fare. 413-258-4477; newbostoninn.com

Red Lion Inn, Stockbridge. Big, historic lodging place and stagecoach stop dating from the 1770s (rebuilt after a fire in 1896), one of the few hostelries operating continuously since the 18th century. You can’t miss the distinctive columned veranda, complete with an army of rockers. Art and antiques grace long interior hallways; a vintage birdcage elevator is an unusual feature. (The inn also owns several guesthouses in town, including the former village firehouse and a former studio on the grounds of Chesterwood.) Home to the flagship Country Curtains store. Formal dining room on site; also the casual Widow Bingham’s Tavern, serving traditional favorites and classic fare. And for nightlife and pub grub, you can’t beat The Lion’s Den. 413-298-5545; redlioninn.com

Shaker Mill Inn, West Stockbridge. Nine spacious B&B guestrooms and suites in a historic bright-red converted barn; a unique feature is the rock garden in front of the house. 877-385-2484; shakermillinn.com

Windflower Inn, Great Barrington. 13 guestrooms in an antiques-filled 1850 B&B Fantastic breakfasts made with local ingredients. 413-528-2720; windflowerinn.com

 

What to See in the Berkshires’ South County | Arts & Culture

 Aston Magna Music Festival. Summer concert series featuring Baroque works performed on period instruments and historically accurate reproductions.

Berkshire Theatre Festival, Stockbridge. Founded in 1928 on the Stanford White–designed Fitzpatrick Main Stage, this summer series presents classic works and world premieres; campus includes the smaller Unicorn Theatre, presenting new and emerging artists, and the outdoor Neil Ellenoff Stage for family entertainment. 413-298-5576; berkshiretheatregroup.org

Chesterwood, Stockbridge. Summer country home, studio, and gardens of Daniel Chester French, the renowned American sculptor of works including the Minute Man in Concord and the seated Abraham Lincoln at the memorial in Washington. 413-298-3579; chesterwood.org

Guthrie Center, Great Barrington. At Old Trinity Church, it’s the place where the events of “Alice’s Restaurant” transpired. Today it’s a center for spiritual and political discourse and a performance space for roots musicians in the tradition of Woody and Arlo Guthrie. 413-528-1955; guthriecenter.org

Historic Berkshires: An 18th-Century Trail. Driving tour of six early homes in the region, now open to the public: Ashley House in Sheffield (thetrustees.org/places-to-visit/berkshires/ashley-house.html), home of Colonial landowner and Revolutionary patriot Colonel John Ashley, and Mum Bett, a slave in the household who sued Ashley for her freedom in 1781 and won; Dan Raymond House in Sheffield, home of a Tory sympathizer-turned-patriot; Captain Wheeler House and farm buildings in Great Barrington; Bidwell House Museum, a former parsonage on 192 acres with hiking trails; Mission House and Native American museum in Stockbridge, home to John Sergeant, missionary to the Mohicans; and Arrowhead in Pittsfield, Herman Melville’s home. berkshire18thcenturytrail.org

Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, Great Barrington. Year-round live dance performances, concerts, plays, films, “Live in HD” opera, and educational programs in a restored 1905 vaudeville theatre and movie palace. 413-528-0100; mahaiwe.org

Naumkeag, Stockbridge. Gilded Age splendor lives at this historic Shingle-style estate, designed by McKim, Mead & White, for attorney and diplomat Joseph Choate. The gardens, designed by Fletcher Steele and Mabel Choate, Joseph’s daughter, are a masterpiece of modern landscape design, and a rare surviving example of Steele’s work that is open to the public. The property’s famous “Blue Steps” (fountain pools, flanked by four flights of stairs and a grove of white birches), designed by Steele, were restored this year in honor of their 75th anniversary. Other notable garden areas include the Linden Allée, the Chinese Pagoda, and the Peony Terrace, among many more. 413-298-3239

Normal Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge. Home and studio of this most beloved of American artists and illustrators, with a large collection of original works. 413-298-4100; nrm.org

Upper Housatonic Valley African American Heritage Trail. 48 sites across 29 towns in Western Massachusetts and Connecticut, including Ashley House in Sheffield, home of Mum Bett, who sued her owner for her freedom in 1781 and won her case; W. E. B. Du Bois’ boyhood homesite in Great Barrington; the Rev. Samuel Harrison House in Pittsfield, home of the chaplain to the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment; and 23 other sites in 12 towns honoring the men of the 54th. 413-528-3391; uhvafamtrail.org

 

What to Do in the Berkshires’ South County | Outdoor Recreation

Bartholomew’s Cobble, Sheffield. 5 miles of trails through fields, forest, and marshes, passing caves and beaver ponds, across twin knolls, once part of the estate of Colonel John Ashley (also a Trustees property). From Hurlburt’s Hill, at 1,000 feet, views north up the Housatonic Valley are breathtaking. Natural-history museum on site. 413-229-8600; thetrustees.org/places-to-visit/berkshires/bartholomews-cobble.html

Beartown State Forest, Great Barrington/Monterey. A 12,000-acre gem, encompassing an extensive trail network and two areas of old-growth forest. Swimming, boating, and fishing at 35-acre Benedict Pond, adjacent to the Appalachian Trail. 413-528-0904; mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/beartown-state-forest.html

Berkshire Botanical Garden, Stockbridge. 15 acres of public displays, among the oldest in the U.S. Offering workshops, classes, and lectures, plus annual events, including a Harvest Festival (October 5–6 this year) and a Holiday Fair. 413-298-3926; berkshirebotanical.org

Catamount, South Egremont. The town of Hillsdale, New York, shares this Taconic Range ski mountain (Mount Fray), in operation since 1939. Tavern and two cafés on site. 413-528-1262; catamountski.com

Housatonic RiverWalk, Great Barrington. Greenway and National Recreation Trail along the water, with many native plants. The W. E. B. DuBois River Garden Park is a special feature. 413-528-3391; gbriverwalk.org

Monument Mountain, Great Barrington. From Squaw Peak, at 1,642 feet, the views of the surrounding hills and valley are awe-inspiring. Trails include the remains of ancient Native American footpaths and Colonial carriage roads along stone pasture walls. Subject of a poem by William Cullen Bryant and site of a picnic and cave shelter where a conversation between Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville cemented their friendship and resulted in new inspiration to finish Moby-Dick. 413-298-3239

Mount Washington State Forest, Mount Washington. 30 miles of trails over rugged terrain on a mountain plateau. Within the forest is Bash Bish Falls State Park, home of Massachusetts’ highest single-drop waterfall. 413-528-0330

Ski Butternut, Great Barrington. 110 skiable acres on East Mountain, founded in 1963. 413-528-2000; skibutternut.com

Stockbridge Bowl, Stockbridge. Also called Lake Mahkeenac, it’s open to paddling, sailing, fishing, swimming, and boating; adjacent to Bullard Woods and Gould Meadows. Among the Berkshire “cottages” above the lake are Kripalu (a retreat and yoga center) and Seranak (not open to the public), former home of BSO director Serge Koussevitzky, and now part of Tanglewood. thesba.org

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