Our road trip through the Litchfield Hills, the Berkshires, the Hudson Valley and the Catskills explored one of the most historically significant areas of the country. Along the way, these were some of the places that we most enjoyed.
New Britain Museum of American Art
New Britain, Connecticut
From the Mayflower Inn & Spa in Washington, it is a 55-minute drive to New Britain, Connecticut, on the western edge of the state capital, Hartford. We made this slight detour to the east in order to visit the New Britain Museum of American Art. The relative obscurity of this institution is surprising, given that when it opened in 1903, it became the first museum in the country exclusively dedicated to American painting. A century later, a striking new building was opened with 43,000 square feet of exhibition space. Today, the permanent collection includes notable works from the Hudson River school and American impressionists. Also on display are works by luminaries such as Winslow Homer, Thomas Eakins, John Singer Sargent, Georgia O’Keeffe and Andrew Wyeth. (While in the vicinity, we also paid a visit to the Hill-Stead Museum in the lovely colonial town of Farmington, 8 miles away, which houses a collection of French and American impressionist paintings. Nothing in the house has been altered or moved since the Edwardian period.)