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Retirement Living in Northampton - Massachusetts

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Area Description

Tucked into the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains, Northampton is an adorable New England town, that leans staunchly liberal and attracts scores of aging hippies, students and artists.
This college town is home to 5 top-notch colleges, including Amherst College, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Hampshire College, Mt. Holyoke and Smith. Retirees with a bent toward learning can take continuing education classes at any of these institutions, or sign up for the Five College Learning in Retirement program, a joint venture among the 5 schools that offer a variety of lectures, courses and special interest programs that cover topics like literature, culinary arts and travel.

The town’s rich cultural scene is bolstered by performances at Smith College’s New Century Theatre, the Paradise City Arts Festival, the Northampton Independent Film Festival and the town’s Academy of Music.

Outdoor lovers won’t be disappointed, either. The town is near the Berkshire Mountains, several state parks, city conservation areas and just a few minutes from the Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary, and is a haven for bikers and hikers with 25 miles of trails.

Foodies will enjoy their fair share of farm-to-table restaurants, as well as a number of ethnic eateries, such as Tibetan, Thai and Vietnamese, thanks in large part to the eclectic tastes of the town’s student population.

Retirees will enjoy wandering the charming, historic downtown, where a number of independently owned bookshops, coffee shops and boutiques line the streets.

Region Characteristics

Area Amenities

Things to Do, Recreation & Fitness

   Artists, farmers, scholars and professionals come together in harmony in beautiful Northampton, where the Connecticut River winds through the wooded hills of the Pioneer Valley. Once home to such diverse notables as U.S. president Calvin Coolidge, abolitionist Sojourner Truth, author Kurt Vonnegut and punk rockers Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore, and current home of the all women's Smith College, the city is famed for its arts scene and liberal values, plus a thriving lesbian community. This five-college community is known as an academic, artistic, musical, and countercultural hub. It features a large politically liberal community along with numerous alternative health and intellectual organizations

Many outdoor activities are available, such as hiking, biking, downhill & cross-country skiing, and water sports on the longest Connecticut River tributary in Massachusetts.

Cultural Activities

In the late 19th century, the City of Northampton, Massachusetts was nicknamed "The Paradise City of America" by famed opera singer Jenny Lind. Contemporary vistors to this vibrant college town on the Connecticut River will find that the nickname still fits--although these days, many call the bohemian city "NoHo."

Public transportation

The Pioneer Valley Transit Authority run throughout the valley. Bus fares for seniors is .60 and they run all night and all day during the college semester. All different routes. The international airport that serves the Pioneer Valley is Bradley International Airport, which is located 12 miles south of Springfield in Windsor Locks, Connecticut.

Medical Facilities

Cooley Dickinson Hospital in collaboration with Mass. General Hospital in Boston, has a new Cancer Care Center
Northampton Health Center/Valley Medical Group
OnCall Urgent Care Centers
VA Medical Center


Monthly Temperatures / Rain / Snow

 Month  Low  Avg  High  Rain  Snow
 Jan  11.2  22.3  33.4  3.8 "  11.7 "
 Feb  13.2  24.6  36.1  2.9 "  9.4 "
 Mar  23.8  34.8  45.7  3.6 "  7.2 "
 Apr  33.8  45.7  57.6  3.8 "  1.3 "
 May  45.0  57.4  69.8  4.1 "  0.0 "
 Jun  54.2  66.2  78.1  3.8 "  0.0 "
 Jul  59.1  71.2  83.2  4.0 "  0.0 "
 Aug  57.0  69.0  80.9  4.1 "  0.0 "
 Sep  48.7  60.9  73.1  4.1 "  0.0 "
 Oct  36.4  49.1  61.8  4.0 "  0.0 "
 Nov  28.3  38.9  49.4  3.9 "  2.1 "
 Dec  18.4  28.3  38.1  3.6 "  8.4 "

Winters in Northampton are cold and snowy, though the town enjoys beautiful fall, spring and summer seasons. Fall in particular is lovely, and a great time for retirees to go “leaf peeping” throughout the region and enjoy the changing colors of the Western Mass.forests.

Natural Disaster Areas

Cost of Living for Northampton, MA

Northampton, Massachusetts cost of living for Housing, Healthcare, Transportation, Taxes, Utilities, etc.:

Cost of Living




Political Party


Senior Housing Options

The cost of living in Northampton is slightly higher than the national average, and the median home prices is $228,000. The town is extremely safe, with a crime rate that’s 70% lower than the national average.

Senior Assistance in Northampton, MA

Northampton, Massachusetts offers the following assistance for seniors:

Job or Volunteer Opportunities

Jobs are all around the Northampton Area as well as the surrounding towns. With Northampton, Amherst, Springfield and many more towns all so close there is thousands of different work options.

Additional Information

Visitor Information

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