Collinsville has been called one of America’s coolest small towns. Now a laid-back, artsy, outdoorsy section of the town of Canton, it was built up in the early 19th century around the world’s first ax factory and offers something to please every type of traveler.
For history buffs, there’s the surprisingly large Canton Historical Museum, which combines exhibits like a recreated general store and post office with impressive displays of the various edged weapons and tools once manufactured on this site and used around the world. Outdoor enthusiasts can canoe or kayak on the Farmington River or bike and hike along the Farmington River Trail, part of a larger heritage trail system following old canals and rails across the state. Wanderers can explore the distinctive streets and discover places like LaSalle Market and Deli, with its front porch view of Main Street, and Antiques on the Farmington, where multiple dealers of everything from furniture to collectibles gather under one roof.
And though it feels like you’re in the middle of nowhere (in a good way), Collinsville is only about 45 minutes from Hartford.