Today on MassFinds, we’ve decided to highlight one of the best ways to travel Massachusetts from end to end: Amtrak, along with a rundown of places to see and things to do in close proximity to a few of Massachusetts’ popular stops.
With services that stretch from Boston to Pittsfield, making stops in Westwood, Framingham, Springfield, and Amherst, Amtrak is one of the most convenient and scenic ways to travel the state.
And, right now (through December 16, 2013), when you travel with a friend on Amtrak’s Northeast Regional and Lake Shore Limited, you can save 30% on a companion fare! For details on the promotion, click here.
Till then, here’s a quick rundown of places to see and things to do along your next Amtrak experience! Starting out west…
In the Berkshires, the Pittsfield train station is conveniently located downtown in an area that includes plenty of cultural spots, restaurants and boutiques. The Berkshires Artisans Gallery, Berkshire Museum and Barrington Stage Company are each located less than a 15-minute walk from the station.
For folks interested in historical sites and a little more exercise, Herman Melville’s Arrowhead is in the area, where you can embark on tours, exhibits and artifacts focusing on the famed writer’s time there.
Springfield’s Amtrak station is also located in close proximity to a number of things to do. The Dr. Seuss National Memorial, with its iconic statues of famous Seuss characters, is always worth a visit, which doesn’t require more than a short walk from the station.
If you’re a sports fan, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame is a must-see. The hall is home to more than 40,000 square feet of hoops history, with great exhibits and events that are always educational and enjoyable.
Dr. Seuss National Memorial
Elm Park, one of the first publicly purchased parks in the country, is a great place to relax outside, and for shoppers, Greendale Mall is a popular spot, thanks to its large selection of specialty stores and restaurants.
Worcester Art Museum – Credit Tim Grafft
Nearby the Westwood train station, Hale Reservation is a great spot for fishing, hiking, picnics and other outdoor pursuits, although the availability for some of these activities is weather-sensitive. For directions and hours, click here and here.
Folks taking the train into Westwood would do well to bring an appetite with them, as Chiara Bistro features a menu that deliciously combines Mediterranean influences with regional fare. When it comes to dessert, Bubbling Brook, which has been serving Westwood with a variety of enticing flavors since 1951, is as good as it gets.
It’s no secret that Boston has loads of ways to spend an afternoon (or an entire weekend!), many of them accessible from the three train stations. The Institute of Contemporary Art is a great spot for folks who are already familiar with the Museum of Fine Arts and Children’s Museum of Science.
If you’re looking for eats, Café Rustico has delicious, substantial sandwiches in the North End, while the Sweet and Savory Walking Food Tour combines great food with history and little light exercise in the South End.
Boston’s North End – Credit Tim Grafft
Granted, these are just a few of the many ways to have some nearby fun when traveling by Amtrak, so for a more robust list of things to do, places to see, eat and stay, head to www.massvacation.com!
What’s your favorite way to navigate the state? Train, bus, car, walk, plane, boat? Tell us in the comments below!