In a region famous for its charming college towns, you'd be hard-pressed to find anything more appealing than the crooked streets of downtown Northampton. Old red-brick buildings, buskers and lots of pedestrian traffic provide a lively backdrop as you wander into cafes, rock clubs and bookstores. Move a few steps outside of the picturesque commercial center and you'll stumble onto the bucolic grounds of Smith College.
The presence of college students and their professors gives the town a distinctly liberal political atmosphere. The lesbian community is famously large and outspoken, making Northampton a favorite destination for the gay community.
The center of town is at the intersection of Main St (MA 9) and Pleasant St (US 5). Main St is where you'll find the core of restaurants and shops. Smith College is on the west end of town, where Main St curves right and turns into Elm St.