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A short ride away from New York City on the Metro North commuter rail, Poughkeepsie sits on the banks of the Hudson River. The close proximity of Vassar College and the Culinary Institute of America guarantees the presence of fun boutiques and fine dining. Main Mall Row, a group of 1870s Renaissance Revival storefronts along Poughkeepsie's Main Street is on the National Register of Historic Places. The twenty-two surrounding parks provide the opportunity to take a relaxing break from city life.
From its origins as a Connecticut River trading post in 1633, Hartford has become not only the state capital but also the insurance capital of the world, with a slew of historical attractions, a thriving arts and entertainment centre, a revitalized riverfront and beautiful parks and public gardens. It was here that the lovable Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer were born in the imagination of celebrated author Mark Twain and immortalized on paper during the writer's Hartford years. Twain's home and those of fellow literary figures Harriet Beecher Stowe and Noah Webster are open to the public. The Wadsworth Atheneum, the oldest public art museum in the U.S., houses Pilgrim-Century furniture, the Amistad collection and a special treasure hunt system to entice kids to explore the museum's works. If your timing is right (end of June, beginning of July), you'll catch the Elizabeth Park rose gardens in bloom, but fall is also great for brilliant leaf colours, and spring yields colorful gardens and blossoming trees. For a bird's-eye view of the city, visit the observation deck of Travellers Tower, where you might also spot two resident falcons.
Located in the foothills of the Catskills Mountains, Cooperstown is proud to be a one-stoplight town, with quiet streets and charming old homes, sitting amidst the natural beauty of Otsego County. The area is home to the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the National Soccer Hall of Fame, the Fenimore Art Museum and the Glimmerglass Opera. Otsego County is also a popular destination for activities as diverse as antiquing, horseback riding and golf.
Dolphins frolic in the waves, manatees loll in the canals, and colourful umbrellas confetti the sands of Cocoa Beach. Watching a space launch from Kennedy or Cape Canaveral, or exploring the restaurants and nightlife of cruise ship dock Port Canaveral, adds to the excitement of this barrier island city.
Everyone who visits Paris for the first time probably has the same punchlist of major attractions to hit: The Louvre, Notre Dame, The Eiffel Tower, etc. Just make sure you leave some time to wander the city’s grand boulevards and eat in as many cafes, bistros and brasseries as possible. And don’t forget the shopping—whether your tastes run to Louis Vuitton or Les Puces (the flea market), you can find it here.
The small city of Sitges parties big. The nightlife is thumping, the people are gorgeous and the annual Carnival festival is utterly epic. A countercultural touchstone, Sitges is lively and very LGBT friendly. Native food and beverage is sublime—you simply must sample the Malvasia wine, made from grapes descending from Ancient Greece. Don’t miss the Museu Romàntic "Can Llopis" or, if you’re in Sitges in October, the world-renowned Sitges Film Festival, a cinematic extravaganza of horror, sci-fi and fantasy.