Western Massachusetts Adventure

What does “adventure” mean to you? To us it meant touring some college campuses, visiting some art museums, hiking a little, eating some food. “Us” means a family comprising two parents, one dog, and two teens, one of whom will graduate high school and start college in 2022.

We were not able to enter any college buildings or take any guided campus tours. But we were able to get an impression of the campuses by walking around, and by watching “virtual tour” videos.

We visited (in order): Mount Holyoke, Smith (the women’s colleges: yes, it’s our daughter who’s will graduate high school next year, while our son will start high school at the end of this summer), Amherst , UMass Amherst, Williams, and Bennington. UMass is the outlier: it’s much bigger, it’s a state school… I may well write a separate post on UMass, where I went to grad school, and on the town of Amherst.

Of the colleges we visited, Smith made the best impression. It has a particularly lovely campus, and a very well-made video tour.

We visited two museums: MASS MoCA and the Clark Art Institute. We recommend visiting both if you’re in that northeastern corner of Massachusetts. I love MASS MoCA, with interesting art spread across huge formerly industrial space.

We did some walks. The Clark has several trails in its grounds, offering various combinations of shade and sculpture. We also took The Cascades Trail to a waterfall; Mochi particularly enjoyed that part of our long weekend. She’ll be happy to respond to any comments you have on our adventure.