You’re likely to return from New England with an album of images: white-clapboard churches on well-manicured greens; red-brick buildings on leafy college campuses; granite mountains majestically ablaze with fall colors; paint-peeling fishing boats bobbing at their mores. New England is all that, and more. Besides rural charm, New England is also about urban grit. Industrial and port cities around the region were built on the backs of factory workers, mill girls and sailors. New England is at the cutting edge of culture, with the recent opening of the Institute of Contemporary Arts in Boston, the region is now home to two exciting, experimental contemporary art museums. The world-renowned Boston Symphony Orchestra takes its show on the road in summer, delighting audiences in the Berkshires. Around the region concert series, film festivals and theater productions make for a cultural calendar that is jam-packed and jaw-dropping. New England is big on outdoor adventure: you’ll find a sport for every season. Whether you’re hurdling over carriage roads on a mountain bike or swooping down a snowy slope on a snowboard, the rounded peaks of the region’s mountain ranges give everyone a rush. While you’re paddling the luxuriously languid inland lakes or rafting down a rippling river, her waterways awaken your senses. Whether you’re bird-watching or building sand castles, her windswept beaches are beguiling. New England is history. It’s the Pilgrims who came ashore at Plymouth Rock and the minutemen who fought for American independence. But it’s also contemporary. It’s the farmers and fishermen struggling for survival; students and immigrants, always adapting. New England oozes individuality and diversity; it’s colorful and controversial, free-thinking and forward-looking.
Autumn starts in the north in September and spreads redly south through New England, the north-easternmost corner of the USA which is made up of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. If temperate spring weather lasts a while, traveling from late April to early June can be glorious, with apple and cherry trees in bloom and farmers out tapping maple trees for sap. If spring is short, as it usually is, it may arrive on a Tuesday, and be followed on Wednesday by the heat and humidity of summer which last throughout July and August. Another great time is early September – after the big summer rush but before the ‘leaf-peepers’ (foliage tourists) arrive. The weather in these shoulder seasons is generally warm and sunny. Autumn harvest time means fresh cranberries on sale in the markets, pick-your-own fruit days and cider-making at orchards. Early November is a serene, almost haunting, time before the snows hit and icy winds blow. Winter can be severe or moderate, but it’s rarely mild. December to March is ski season in the mountains. Almost all of interior New England experiences harsh weather with lakes ‘iced in’ until April. When it’s not snowing, however, you’ll likely find winter in New England to be bright and sunny. Cuisine: New England’s cuisine has been characterised by extensive use of seafood and dairy products, which results from its historical reliance on its seaports and fishing industry, as well as extensive dairy farming in inland regions. Two prominent characteristic foodstuffs native to New England are maple syrup and cranberries. The standard starch is potato. Parsley and sage are common, with a few Caribbean additions like nutmeg. maple syrup