From relaxing on your private balcony to experiencing the local music scene, there is no shortage of fun things to do for residents of Rivers Ledge Apartments in Niskayuna, NY. However, if you feel the urge for a little adventure, then a day trip to Western Massachusetts is just what you need. This region is full of culture, charm, and stunning natural beauty, and it’s only about 90 minutes away from your luxury waterfront apartment. Here are our top picks on what to do in Western Massachusetts.
Explore the City of North Adams, MA
Located 1 hour and 20 minutes from Rivers Ledge, North Adams is the smallest city in all of Massachusetts, but the vibrant community is well worth checking out. From a contemporary art museum to North America’s only natural white marble arch, we’ve highlighted some of the city’s must-visit attractions.
Discover a Contemporary Art Destination
Nestled in the heart of North Adams, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) is one of the world’s premier centers for modern art. Approximately 120,000 people visit MASS MoCA each year to see the large-scale and complex art installations, as well as enjoy live performances ranging from music to dance, avant-garde theater, and beyond. They are open year round and offer a full calendar of events on their website.
Sip a Creative Brew at Bright Ideas
Looking to try some craft beer while you’re in town? Head over to MASS MoCA’s campus and stop by Bright Ideas Brewing, an innovative microbrewery that features craft beer made with locally malted grains and hops. Bright Ideas was founded in 2016 with a goal to serve delicious beer to both museum visitors and locals alike. Their tap menu is always evolving, but you can expect to see brews like Aztec Winter (Imperial Stout), New England Roots IPA (New England IPA), and Northern Brights w/Nectaron (New Zealand Pale Ale).
Tour a Picturesque Park & Marble Quarry
Natural Bridge State Park in North Adams is a 48-acre park that’s home to a true geologic wonder – the only naturally formed white marble arch in North America. Geologists note that the park’s natural bridge is made of 550 million year-old bedrock marble that was carved into its current shape due to glacial erosion over 13,000 years ago.
This park is open seasonally for tours, hiking, and fishing, and while you’re there, you can also walk through an abandoned marble quarry and see North America’s only man-made white marble dam.
Go on a Waterfall Hike Near Downtown North Adams
The Cascades Trail is a hidden gem waterfall hike located just a couple minutes outside of downtown North Adams and recommended for people of all skill levels. Starting from the end of Marion Avenue, this 2.2-mile out-and-back trail follows a river to a beautiful cascading waterfall. Once you arrive, you can soak up the views from below, or tackle the challenging climb to the top of the falls. In total, the hike should only take about 1 hour and 30 minutes, so you can easily fit it into your day trip to the area.
Shop for Hidden Treasures at Berkshire Emporium
Although downtown North Adams is filled with coffee shops, restaurants, and other places to explore, one business shoppers will want to visit is the Berkshire Emporium & Antiques on historic Main Street. Since opening in 2004, this shop has become a popular spot for nostalgic curiosities, handmade specialties, home furnishings, and so much more. If you love hunting for hidden treasures, then you’ll have a wonderful time browsing merchandise throughout their two floors and 20,000 sq ft of space.
Travel to the City of Pittsfield, MA
Pittsfield is a thriving city located just 90 minutes from Rivers Ledge where you can spend hours soaking up the community’s arts and culture scene, visiting historic sites, and more. Get details about some top attractions below.
Get Inspired at The Berkshire Museum
Home to a diverse collection of over 40,000 objects that are featured in exhibitions, programming, content, and special events, The Berkshire Museum inspires and educates everyone from children to students, families, and lifelong learners. Throughout the museum, you can check out interdisciplinary exhibitions focusing on fine art, historical artifacts, and scientific specimens. Or, you can head below the lobby level to the Aquarium, which is filled with fish, reptiles, amphibians, and insects.
Find Winter & Summer Fun at Bousquet Mountain
Skiing and snowboarding is a blast at the Bousquet Mountain Ski Area, which is also the oldest existing ski area in the Berkshires. There are trails for all skill levels, a terrain park, snow tubing lanes, and plenty of food and beverages available at the LIFT Bistropub and The Kitchen. The mountain is open during the summer months too for hiking, and visitors can access the Mahanna Cobble Trail and the Yokun Ridge Trail from Bousquet.
Dive Into the History of Herman Melville
Acclaimed author Herman Melville lived in Pittsfield during some of the most productive years of his career, and his house is nicknamed Arrowhead. Arrowhead remained privately owned until 1975 when the Berkshire County Historical Society acquired the house to use as their headquarters and operate as a museum. The grounds and nature trail are open year round for activities like walking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing, and the house is open for guided private tours. See their website for the latest updates about availability and hours.
Experience a Living History Museum
Did you know that Pittsfield is the site of a former Shaker commune that formed back in the 1780s? It’s true! And today, the Hancock Shaker Village is a living history museum that brings the Shaker story to life through exhibitions and galleries, a working farm with livestock and gardens, hands-on activities and costumed interpreters, and of course, historic architecture all around the property. The Hancock Shaker Village is closed during the winter months, but reopens in mid-April.
Bonus Stop: Take a Trip to Jiminy Peak
Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort in Hancock, MA, is a self-contained ski resort that’s only 1 hour and 10 minutes from Rivers Ledge. They are a winter hotspot for day trips and overnight stays, with on-site lodging, shops and dining options, and over 45 ski trails covering 167+ acres. Or, if you’re interested in a summer trip instead, you can have fun with friends and family at Jiminy Peak’s Mountain Adventure Park & Aerial Adventure Park, which include a Mountain Coaster, an Alpine Super Slide, ziplines, hiking trails, and more.
Schedule a Tour at Rivers Ledge Apartments
Western Massachusetts is just one of many day trip destinations located near Rivers Ledge Apartments. If you’d like to become part of our luxury apartment community and have access to all these regional adventures, then contact us today and schedule a tour. We have a variety of spacious one- and two-bedroom apartments equipped with modern amenities and comforts.