Welcome to Northampton, the best of both worlds, a sophisticated rural lifestyle with all the cultural, artistic, academic, and business amenities of a big city.
Northampton features one of the most vibrant downtown centers in New England offering a unique blend of independent retail shops, eclectic restaurants and cafes, art galleries, museums, clubs, and theaters earning its name as “Number One Best Small Arts Town in America” by author John Villani and one of the “Top 25 Arts Destinations” in the nation by AmericanStyle magazine.
It is no surprise that the Boston Globe said, “This small city offers more restaurants and shops, certainly more galleries, theaters and performance venues than most urban centers dozens of times its size. Add two rivers, mountain views, landscaped parks and meadow walks, and you begin to see why people call it paradise.”
Northampton has retained much of its historic character in downtown Northampton, its residential neighborhoods, and the smaller commercial village centers of Florence and Leeds. Historic Northampton offers a Visitors’ Guide to Paradise: Historical Walking Tours of Northampton, Massachusetts. The self-guided tour book offers six distinct walking tours of the City. Learn more about Northampton’s 350-year history or visit the Northampton historic information website.
Northampton is home to Smith College which offers beautiful gardens, walks around Paradise Pond, the Lyman Conservatory, and the Smith College Museum of Art. Smith College is located in the heart of a lively college community that also includes the University of Massachusetts, Amherst College, Hampshire College, and Mount Holyoke College. The five colleges are host to a wide array of educational, cultural, arts, theater, and music events as well as museums.