Amherst, MA, USA

Amherst, MA, USA

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Find the best place to stay — Amherst

I am what I Amherst

Dotted with farms and dairies in the Connecticut River Valley, Amherst is known for its bustling student community, scenic countryside, and the charming downtown around Amherst Common. Home to 3 of the so-called “Five Colleges,” Amherst has a proud countercultural history, which is reflected in the art galleries and funky shops of the downtown area. Hiking and camping are popular in the warmer summer months, while winter visitors enjoy ice skating and a year-round farmer’s market. An Amherst vacation rental will put you within easy access of local landmarks like The Hadley Farm, the Emily Dickinson Museum, and Mount Norwottuck.

I’ll follow the sun in Amherst

Surrounded by the low ridges of the Holyoke mountain range, Amherst offers plenty of outdoor activities from late spring through the fall. Mount Norwottuck, the area’s highest point, has hiking trails, and the Connecticut River is a major destination for boating, fishing, and kayaking. Between excursions, you can refuel at the many restaurants around the grassy Amherst Common, which also hosts regular farmers markets in the warmer months. Part of the UMass campus, the large Stonehenge-like sun wheel is also worth checking out, especially if you’re visiting during a solstice or equinox.

“Wild nights, wild nights” in literary Amherst

A town with a strong literary history, one of Amherst’s best-known native daughters is Emily Dickinson. The Emily Dickinson Museum is a short walk from Amherst Common, and you can see original manuscripts and biographical exhibits, and even take tours of the poet’s 19th-century home. For readers of a different sort, the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is a hit with kids and grown-ups alike. Here, you’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at Carle’s career – including “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” – as well as other illustrators’ work, going back to the 19th century and beyond.

Amherst – the great white north

Amherst has a humid continental climate, with hot summers and cold, snowy winters, and a number of overcast days throughout the year. Summers are warm, with highs around 82ºF in July and August. With students away for the holidays, you’ll also find that prices on Amherst vacation rentals tend to be lower during this time of year. You may want to bring an umbrella, though – most of the area’s rain falls between May and October. Amherst’s winters are chilly, with average highs in the 30s and lows in the teens from December through February, as well as plenty of snowfall.

Amherst, an uncanny valley

Amid the rolling fields of western Massachusetts, Amherst is located in the valley of the broad Connecticut River. The highest peak in the area is Mount Norwottuck, at a height of 1,106 feet above sea level. Despite the low elevation, the hilly ridges are especially popular in the fall, when brisk temperatures lead to a striking, colorful display of autumn foliage. The low-lying countryside is mostly farmland, and you can find several species of fish in the Connecticut River itself. An Amherst vacation rental will put you in the middle of a scenic, pastoral landscape with plenty of farms, fields, and dairies.