Both a state capital and "the insurance capital of the world," Hartford is where Mark Twain conceived Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn. Guests of hotels in Hartford can walk through Twain's home as well as those of fellow authors Noah Webster and Harriet Beecher Stowe. A small city with a small-town feel, visitors to Hartford sometimes feel like they've gone back in time. Among rose gardens and blossoming trees, visitors can find accommodations in bed and breakfast inns, luxury hotels, and even hostels for the extremely budget-minded. Wherever they may stay, they are greeted by the friendly people of Hartford.
From the skyscrapers of downtown to the Georgian Revival buildings of Frog Hollow, and out to the industrial and commercial South Meadows areas and the many parks in every neighborhood, Hartford encourages relaxed friendliness. And when the academic bug bites, visitors can go north to the Blue Hills area where Hartford University is located. The West End contains the Connecticut Historical Society and the University of Connecticut School of Law. Other neighborhoods are more residential in atmosphere, but all contain parks, interesting historic architecture and those friendly people. Visitors to Hartford University can find hotels in Hartford such as the Hartford Marriott Rocky Hill, just a short drive from campus, cutting down on driving times to visit the kids attending school, or the amenities on campus. Downtown visitors are served by the Holiday Inn Express Downtown, directly across from Bushnell Park, and within walking distance of Wadsworth Atheneum, the first public art museum in the country. This is a compact city, so no matter where the Hartford hotels are located, they are close to almost any site you might want to visit, although you may need to take a car as public transportation is limited.
The Connecticut Convention Center hosts aliens, elves, comic characters and simply fans of the various genres at the ConnectiCon convention in mid-summer. It also hosts the more conventional Stitches East Knitting convention!
Visitors to Hartford hotels can have a romantic Italian dinner at Salut, or try out the ever-changing menu at Firebox. When they are done with dinner or lunch, Munson's family chocolate factory is right there to provide dessert as well as some to take home.
The Wadsworth Atheneum is the United States' first public art museum, with over 45,000 paintings, sculptures and other art pieces in its permanent collection.
Shopping areas in Hartford are growing rapidly, but visitors should stop by the traditional New England town center at West Hartford Center. Most of the shops are privately owned, non-chain stores.
All of the local Universities have sports teams, and the town focuses much more on these than the professional sports world. The University of Connecticut Huskies play football at Rentschler Field. In addition to football games, this major stadium has hosted concerts by the Police, Bruce Springsteen, and more recently, Taylor Swift.