Litchfield, Connecticut, about an hour west of Hartford, is a small town with a sophisticated side; its got the densely forested rolling hills and picturesque church spires of a Norman Rockwell painting, as well as restaurants and shops to please every taste. Just outside of town on Route 202 is Mount Tom State Park (860-567-8870, www.ct.gov/dep
; also www.berkshirehiking.com/hikes/mt_tom.html
), where you can find harder hikes but not prettier ones than the 1-mile loop about 100 feet from the rangers booth near the top of the mountain. The hikes most interesting feature is a 34-foot rook-style fire tower at the 1,300-foot mountains summit, which can be reached by car and offers unobstructed views for miles around.
Photo courtesy of Berkshire Hiking