The Berkshires

In summer, the rolling mountain region of the Berkshires become a cultural destination par excellence, with world-class drama, music and dance; with its fine museums of art, walking trails and picturesque villages, this is a region well worth exploring.

The Tanglewood estate, in the town of Lenox, is the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, but the music programme also includes opera and jazz. In nearby Stockbridge, a “classic” New England town, you will find the Norman Rockwell Museum which houses the world’s largest and most significant collection of Rockwell’s work, including 574 original paintings and drawings.

In North Adams, an abandoned factory complex was turned into one of America’s largest venues for contemporary visual and performing arts,  MASS MoCA, . Close by is 3,491-ft Mount Greylock, the highest point in Massachusetts. It is easy to hike or drive up for the 60-mile views.

One of the USA’s first scenic drives was the Mohawk Trail, a 65-mile road from Orange to Williamstown that is particularly stunning in autumn, where enroute in Shelbourne Falls you can stop for local crafts and to photograph the unusual Bridge of Flowers. In Williamstown itself, the Clark Art Institute is the major draw. One of the country’s finest small art museums, its collection includes works by Renoir, Turner, Monet and more. Summer brings an excellent theatre festival, presenting both new and familiar works.

Just outside the vibrant city of Pittsfield, is the Hancock Shaker Village, a beautifully restored 19th Century town, set amongst acres of farm, woodland and pasture that tells the story of this intriguing religious sect.

New York to Toronto – 2015 (Smith)

I have just returned from a tailor made holiday made possible by Jeannette Dembrey. This was the first time I had ever organised such a major holiday and as it was a gift for my children after my retirement it was really important to get things right. I went to quite a few agencies but Jeannette was way better than any of the people who I spoke to. She was so professional and wanted me to get the best from the money I could afford. The holiday was absolutely amazing and everything went like clockwork. Jeannette had thought of everything even the connections between places and the things we would do in each town. We stayed in 6 hotels altogether starting in New York and ending in Toronto. I am amazed at how smoothly it went. Even my son who has travelled all over the world was impressed with the way things had been organised. I cannot praise Jeannette enough for her professionalism. Thank you Jeannette. I would recommend you to anyone with the satisfaction of knowing that you did an amazing job. Thank you.

J Smith - Travelled New York to Toronto