For much of its history, North Adams has been known as a mill town. Today, it’s the perfect blend of old and new, as a fresh vibrance has revitalized the area. Whether you want to reach new heights on the Appalachian Trail or embrace all forms of art at MASS MoCA, it’s clear the soul of the Berkshires is alive and well here.
Need help planning your North Adams trip? We’re happy to be your guide. From good eats to geological marvels, check out our favorite recommendations.
Norad Mill has it all. For the beverage connoisseur, there’s blackberry wine and espresso. For the audiophiles, there are vintage records. For aspiring creatives, there are hand-dyed yarns. One of the oldest surviving buildings in North Adams, Norad Mill now accommodates over 40 local businesses. Stop by to browse, shop, or see stunning views of Mount Greylock, which the tall windows overlook.
Bright Ideas Brewing
Located on the MASS MoCA campus, Bright Ideas Brewing boasts an impressive menu, from lagers to stouts to ales and IPAs. Voted “Best Brewery in the Berkshires” five years in a row, these local beverage makers give visitors the option to sit and drink or take cans on the go. Throughout the year, enjoy trivia, stand-up comedy, and a recurring midweek session from their resident DJs. The best part about Bright Ideas Brewing (in our humble opinion)? They’re dog-friendly! Bring your pup inside the taproom or on the outdoor patio.
One of the most elaborate homes in North Adams, Blackinton Mansion has a storied past. Originally an ancestral dwelling, it belonged to Sanford Blackinton, a millionaire and mill owner who provided woolen goods to the Union during the Civil War. Donated to the city after his death, it became the town’s public library and historical meeting place. Stop in to grab a copy of your favorite book or walk by to view the architecture adorned with red brick and brownstone trim.
Once a cotton-spinning mill, Greylock WORKS has reenergized the Berkshire community. It now hosts an assortment of spots for the self-proclaimed “foodie,” from a craft distillery to a culinary lab to a cidery. It also serves as a co-work community with private studios, perfect for local small businesses to reach their maximum potential. For those in town for a short visit, you can also stop by for conferences, maker markets, and cultural gatherings in the Weave Shed and Engine House.
Hoosac Valley Train Rides
Enjoy the sights of northern Berkshire County aboard vintage railroad coaches—a classic 1955 Budd RDC, to be exact. The one-hour Hoosac Valley Train Ride operates between Adams and North Adams, offering a unique view of the area that complements the community’s cultural attractions. We particularly love their seasonal events like the Tinseliner and Fall Foliage journeys.
Windsor Lake is the perfect place to satisfy anyone’s wanderlust. The lake itself is a 24-acre reservoir stocked with trout for fishing enthusiasts. Not the hook-and-reel type? Try the Historic Valley Campground inside the park. Any avid outdoors person can pitch a tent or pull through their RV. Plus, campers can access a private beach, playground, and picnic area. On warm summer nights, visitors can be carried away by songs during Windsor Lake’s concert series while others kayak or canoe past. The winter months are just as action-packed, with options to cross-country ski or snowshoe on the lakeside trails.
Natural Bridge State Park
New England is home to untamed surprises at every turn, but Natural Bridge State Park features a one-of-a-kind wonder. After a quick woodland walk, visitors will find the only natural white marble arch in North America. Made of 550 million-year-old bedrock and formed from glacial erosion over 13,000 years ago, the bridge spans the Hudson Brook, which twists and turns through a 60-foot gorge. The park also includes a marble quarry and a human-made marble dam. Need we say more?
Stay at Porches Inn
No matter the season, North Adams is the ideal destination for artists and adventurers alike. After you’ve explored our suggestions, escape to Porches Inn and relax in one of our beautifully detailed Victorian row houses. Book your stay now!