Paradise City Northampton, May, 2024• Destination Northampton

Deep in the heart of the Connecticut River Valley, surrounded by the gently rolling foothills of the Green Mountains and the Berkshires, lies Northampton, the hometown of the Paradise City Arts Festival. Come spring, the farms sport even rows of early corn, our world-famous asparagus grows like grass, gardens are in full bloom, and the bustling “#1 Small Arts Town in America” becomes the Memorial Day Weekend home to hundreds of the country’s most celebrated artists and makers.

New England’s most uncommon destination is definitely Northampton. It surprises you with its sophistication, diversity and eclectic flavor, its small-town ambiance and big-city features. Take a stroll along its “walking Main Street” and side streets, with one-of-a-kind boutiques, galleries, restaurants, antique stores, cocktail bars, and performance spaces. Each of Northampton’s small independent businesses brings a unique vision to this city of 30,000, from high-style clothing to sophisticated crafts, from a choice of six different sushi restaurants to the friendly neighborhood tattoo parlor.

Get a taste of the Valley in restaurants all around Hampshire County – a place where “fresh” means what you’re eating might have been grown nearby on some of the best agricultural land in the world. The area is also rich in wineries, microbrews, organic farms, some of the best coffee you’ve ever tasted and much, much more.

Stay an extra day and see an outstanding exhibition at one of the Five College art museums. Take a hot-air balloon ride over the patterned fields and rolling hills. White-water raft on the Deerfield River or hike to the top of Mount Sugarloaf for the spectacular view of the Connecticut River that has inspired artists for nearly two hundred years. Ride miles of bike paths through farmlands, woodlands and along the river. Hike the Holyoke Range, picnic and play in Northampton’s beautiful city parks.

As the weather warms up, Northampton opens up its sidewalks and streets again to outdoor dining! It’s happening all around the city, as local restaurants design creative fresh-air spaces to sip a glass of wine, munch on coffee and croissants, or relish a lovely alfresco dinner as the sun goes down.

For more information about the Valley, its regional arts and history and lodging suggestions, check out:
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