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New England Top Tourist Destinatons - Best Places to visit in New England
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New England Vacation and Travel Guide
New England is a geographical region comprising six states of the northeastern United States: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. It is bordered by the state of New York to the west and south, and by the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Quebec to the northeast and north, respectively. The Atlantic Ocean is to the east and southeast, and Long Island Sound is to the south. Boston, the capital of Massachusetts, is New England's largest city.
The largest metropolitan area is Greater Boston, which also includes Worcester, Massachusetts (the second-largest city in New England), Manchester (the largest city in New Hampshire), and Providence (the capital and largest city of Rhode Island), with nearly a third of the entire region's population.
In 1620, Puritan Separatist Pilgrims from England first settled in the region, forming the Plymouth Colony, the second successful English settlement in the Americas, following the Jamestown Settlement in Virginia founded in 1607. Ten years later, more Puritans settled north of Plymouth Colony in Boston, thus forming Massachusetts Bay Colony.
The geography of New England is diverse for such a small area. Southeastern New England is covered by a narrow coastal plain, extending from southwestern Connecticut to northeastern Maine, is dotted with lakes, hills, marshes and wetlands, and sandy beaches. While the western and northern regions are dominated by the rolling hills and worn-down peaks of the northern end of the Appalachian Mountains that extend northwards into New Hampshire as the White Mountains, and then into Maine and Canada. Mount Washington in New Hampshire is the highest peak in the Northeast, although it is not among the ten highest peaks in the eastern United States.
The Atlantic fall line lies close to the coast, extending from southwestern Connecticut to northeastern Maine, which enabled numerous cities to take advantage of water power along the numerous rivers, such as the Connecticut River, which bisects the region from north to south. It is dotted with lakes, hills, marshes and wetlands, and sandy beaches. Lake Champlain, wedged between Vermont and New York, is the largest lake in the region, followed by Moosehead Lake in Maine and Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.
Major Cities and State Capitals of New England
Hartford - Connecticut
Hartford is the capital of the state of Connecticut. It is nicknamed the "Insurance Capital of the World", as it hosts many insurance company headquarters and insurance is the region's major industry. The city was founded in 1635 and is among the oldest cities in the United States. It is home to the nation's oldest public art museum (Wadsworth Atheneum), the oldest publicly funded park (Bushnell Park), the oldest continuously published newspaper (The Hartford Courant), and the second-oldest secondary school (Hartford Public High School). It also is home to Trinity College, a private liberal arts college, and the Mark Twain House where the author wrote his most famous works and raised his family, among other historically significant attractions. Twain wrote in 1868, "Of all the beautiful towns it has been my fortune to see this is the chief."
Stamford - Connecticut
Stamford is a city in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Located approximately 30 miles from Manhattan, Stamford is in the Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk Metro area which is a part of the Greater New York metropolitan area.
Stamford is home to four Fortune 500 Companies, nine Fortune 1000 Companies, and 13 Courant 100 Companies, as well as numerous divisions of large corporations. This gives Stamford the largest financial district in New York Metro outside New York City itself and one of the largest concentrations of corporations in the nation. Stamford is also home to the Stamford Waterside Design District, a creative neighborhood and shopping destination dedicated to Interior Design and Architecture.
Stamford has Arts, Science, and Cultural Tourist Attractions among which we can highlight:
- The Stamford Museum and Nature Center on a 118-acre site in the northern end of town, has a collection of works by Gutzon Borglum, the sculptor of Mount Rushmore, who was a Stamford resident for a decade.
- The Fairfield County Astronomical Society was started up in 1954 runs the Stamford Observatory, which has a 22-inch (560 mm) telescope.
- Bartlett Arboretum and Gardens is a 91-acre botanical gardens and science education center boasting over 850 specimen trees and plants from around the world. It is also home to several Champion Trees; the largest of their species within Connecticut.
- SoundWaters Community Center for Environmental Education is located in Cove Island Park.
- Franklin Street Works maintains an art space in the downtown area.
- Stamford Loft Artists Association provides support for visual artists and opportunities to exhibit their work.
- The Stamford Waterside Design District is a creative neighborhood and shopping destination dedicated to Interior Design and Architecture.
Augusta - Maine
Augusta is the capital of the state of Maine and the county seat of Kennebec County. Located on the Kennebec River at the head of tide, Augusta is home to the University of Maine at Augusta. Augusta is also the principal city in the Augusta-Waterville, ME Micropolitan Statistical Area.
Among the main Sites of interest in the city of Augusta we can highlight: The Blaine House, Fort Western, Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine at the University of Maine at Augusta, Lithgow Public Library, Maine State House, Maine State Museum and Viles Arboretum.
Boston - Massachusetts
Boston is one of the oldest cities in the United States, founded on the Shawmut Peninsula in 1630 by Puritan settlers from England. It is the capital and most populous city of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States. It is the largest city in New England and is the economic and cultural anchor of a substantially larger metropolitan area known as Greater Boston, a Metropolitan Statistical Area. (MSA) and ranking as the tenth-largest such area in the country.
Its rich history attracts many tourists, with Faneuil Hall alone drawing more than 20 million visitors per year. Boston has been called the "Athens of America" for its literary culture, earning a reputation as "the intellectual capital of the United States." Several historic sites relating to the American Revolution period are preserved as part of the Boston National Historical Park because of the city's prominent role. Many are found along the Freedom Trail, which is marked by a red line of bricks embedded in the ground.
Cambridge - Massachusetts
Cambridge is a city in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, and is a part of the Boston metropolitan area. Situated directly north of the city of Boston, across the Charles River, it was named in honor of the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, an important center of the Puritan theology embraced by the town's founders. Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), two of the world's most prestigious universities, are located in Cambridge,
Kendall Square in Cambridge has been called "the most innovative square mile on the planet", in reference to the high concentration of entrepreneurial start-ups and quality of innovation which have emerged in the vicinity of the square since 2010.
Cambridge has a large and varied collection of permanent public art, both on city property (managed by the Cambridge Arts Council), and on the campuses of Harvard and MIT. Temporary public artworks are displayed as part of the annual Cambridge River Festival on the banks of the Charles River, during winter celebrations in Harvard and Central Squares, and at university campus sites. Experimental forms of public artistic and cultural expression include the Central Square World's Fair, the Somerville-based annual Honk! Festival, and If This House Could Talk, a neighborhood art and history event.
Within the main museums of Cambridge we can highlight: Harvard Art Museum, including the Busch-Reisinger Museum, a collection of Germanic art the Fogg Art Museum, a comprehensive collection of Western art, and the Arthur M. Sackler Museum, a collection of Middle East and Asian art. Harvard Museum of Natural History, including the Glass Flowers collection. Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard. Semitic Museum, Harvard. MIT Museum and List Visual Arts Center, MIT.
Concord - New Hampshire
Concord is the capital city of the state of New Hampshire and the county seat of Merrimack County. It includes the villages of Penacook, East Concord, and West Concord. The city is home to the University of New Hampshire School of Law, St. Paul's School, a private preparatory school; NHTI, a two-year community college; and the Granite State Symphony Orchestra.
Concord has many landmarks and other tourist attractions. Such as The New Hampshire State House, designed by architect Stuart Park and constructed between 1815 and 1818, that is the oldest state house in which the legislature meets in its original chambers. Located directly across from the State House is the Eagle Hotel on Main Street, which has been a downtown landmark since its opening in 1827. South from the Eagle Hotel is Phenix Hall, which replaced "Old" Phenix Hall, which burned in 1893. Both the old and new buildings featured multi-purpose auditoriums used for political speeches, theater productions, and fairs. Abraham Lincoln spoke at the old hall in 1860; Theodore Roosevelt, at the new hall in 1912. North on Main Street is the Walker-Woodman House, also known as the Reverend Timothy Walker House, the oldest standing two-story house in Concord. It was built for the Reverend Timothy Walker between 1733 and 1735. On the north end of Main Street is the Pierce Manse, in which President Franklin Pierce lived in Concord before and following his presidency. Beaver Meadow Golf Course, located in the northern part of Concord, is one of the oldest golf courses in New England. Besides this golf course, other important sporting venues in Concord include Everett Arena and Memorial Field.
Manchester - New Hampshire
Manchester is the largest city in the U.S. state of New Hampshire, it is located in Hillsborough County along the banks of the Merrimack River, which divides the city into eastern and western sections. Manchester is near the northern end of the Northeast megalopolis. It was first named by the merchant and inventor Samuel Blodget, after whom Samuel Blodget Park and Blodget Street in Manchester's North End are named. Blodget's vision was to create a great industrial center similar to that of the original Manchester in England, which was the world's first industrialized city.
Cultural landmarks in Manchester include the Historic Palace Theatre, the Currier Museum of Art, the New Hampshire Institute of Art, the Franco-American Center, the Manchester Historic Association Millyard Museum, the Massabesic Audubon Center, the Amoskeag Fishways Learning and Visitors Center, the Lawrence L. Lee Scouting Museum and Max I. Silber Library, and the SEE Science Center. Valley Cemetery, the resting place of numerous prominent citizens since 1841, is an early example of a garden-style burial ground.
The John F. Kennedy Memorial Coliseum is another, smaller venue located in downtown Manchester with a capacity of approximately 3,000 seats. It was completed in 1963, serves as home ice for the Manchester Central and Memorial High School hockey teams, and is home to the Southern New Hampshire Skating Club.
Manchester has three main retail areas: downtown Manchester, South Willow Street (NH Route 28), and Second Street (NH Route 3A) on the West Side. The Mall of New Hampshire is located on South Willow Street, and, with more than 125 stores, is one of the largest shopping centers in southern New Hampshire and central New England.
Providence - Rhode Island
Providence is the capital of and most populous city in the state of Rhode Island, founded in 1636 and one of the oldest cities in the United States. It was founded by Roger Williams, a religious exile from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He named the area in honor of "God's merciful Providence" which he believed was responsible for revealing such a haven for him and his followers to settle. The city is situated at the mouth of the Providence River at the head of Narragansett Bay.
Providence is home to eight hospitals and seven institutions of higher learning which have shifted the city's economy into service industries, though it still retains some manufacturing activity. The city was once nicknamed the "Beehive of Industry"; it began rebranding itself as the "Creative Capital" in 2009 to emphasize its educational resources and arts community.
As one of the first cities in America, Providence contains many historic buildings, while the East Side neighborhood in particular includes the largest contiguous area of buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places in the U.S., with many pre-revolutionary houses. The East Side is also home to the First Baptist Church in America, which was founded by Williams in 1638, as well as the Old State House which served as the state's capitol from 1762 to 1904.Nearby is Roger Williams National Memorial. The Westminster Arcade is the oldest enclosed shopping center in the U.S.
The main art museum is the Rhode Island School of Design Museum, which has the 20th-largest collection in the country. The city is home to the Providence Athenæum, the fourth oldest library in the country, in addition to the Providence Public Library and the nine branches of the Providence Community Library. Edgar Allan Poe met and courted a love interest here named Sarah Helen Whitman on one of his many visits to Providence. Poe was a regular fixture here, as was H. P. Lovecraft (who was born in Providence), both influential writers of gothic literature.
The Alex and Ani City Center is located near Kennedy Plaza in the downtown district, connected by pedestrian tunnel to Waterplace Park, a cobblestone and concrete park below street traffic that abuts Providence's three rivers. The southern part of the city is home to the famous roadside attraction Nibbles Woodaway also known as the "Big Blue Bug", the world's largest termite.
Providence is home to a 1,200-acre park system, notably Waterplace Park and Riverwalk, Roger Williams Park, Roger Williams National Memorial, and Prospect Terrace Park. Roger Williams Park contains a zoo, a botanical center, and the Museum of Natural History and Planetarium. Another well-known site is the Providence Biltmore Hotel located downtown near Kennedy Plaza, a historic location built in 1922. The hotel closed in 1974; it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977, and it reopened in 1979.
Montpelier - Vermont
Montpelier is the capital city of the state of Vermont and the seat of Washington County. It is located in the north-central area of Vermont. The city center is a flat clay zone, surrounded by hills and granite ledges. On its borders are the towns of Middlesex to the west, Berlin to the south, and East Montpelier to the north and east. Montpelier lies near the geographic center of the state.
Montpelier has become one of Vermont's most readily accessible cities and towns, as Vermont's founders deliberately placed the capital near the geographic center of the state. The city is located along Interstate 89. East-west U.S. Route 2 and north-south Vermont Route 12 are two other principal routes that intersect in Montpelier. Both I-89 and U.S. 2 provide a direct link to Burlington and the populous Lake Champlain Valley in the northwestern corner of the state. U.S. Route 302 has its western terminus in Montpelier, connecting it with the nearby city of Barre and points east.
The Vermont College of Fine Arts and New England Culinary Institute are located in the municipality. The city was named for Montpellier, in southern France. The Vermont History Museum, operated in The Pavilion by the Vermont Historical Society, and has become a touristic attraction.
The city has three city nature centers. Hubbard Park rises behind the state capitol building and extends along the ridge line towards the north past the pool to the stump dump. Accessible from Cummings Street off State Route 12, the North Branch River Park is the second-largest park in the city. The Mill Pond Park is located along State Route 12 approximately a 0.25 miles from the cemetery and features boat access to the North Branch river, as well as benches and short-term parking. The North Branch Nature Center is located at the northern end of town and includes 17 acres (6.9 ha) of protected land as well as a community nature center. A bridge from the North Branch Nature Center connects the land to the North Branch River Park on the opposite side of the North Branch River.