"MSNBC: America's Best College Towns" (news item)

<p>America's</a> best college towns - Travel - Destinations - US and Canada - msnbc.com</p>

<p>"There's something special about college towns. </p>

<p>Whether it's their abundance of used bookstores and funky cafes, the historic buildings and landscaped lawns of their universities, or simply their undercurrent of youthful energy, college towns have a certain appeal even to those of us who haven't cracked a textbook in years.</p>

<p>Best of all, there's probably one near you. Check out our nine favorite college towns around the United States.</p>

<p>Austin, TX
Berkeley, CA
Athens, GA
Lawrence, KS
Gainsville, FL
Princeton, NJ
Madison, WI
Boston, MA
Boulder, CO</p>

<p>Princeton, NJ</p>

<p>"Known mainly for its world-class university, Princeton is a charming, relaxing town filled with historic stone buildings and tree-lined streets.</p>

<p>Don't miss a stroll along the main drag, Nassau Street, where you'll find bookstores and boutiques, as well as Bainbridge House, home to the Historical Society of Princeton; take a quick tour of its museum for some background on the town's history. Then head over to nearby Princeton University with its famous bronze tigers at the entrance to Nassau Hall.</p>

<p>Wander among the ivy-covered stone Gothic buildings and towering shade trees en route to the on-campus art museum. Other Princeton sights include the mansions along Library Place and the Delaware-Raritan Canal, a great place to bike, paddle or jog. For a quick bite, don't miss local institutions like PJ's Pancake House, Thomas Sweet (for ice cream) or Hoagie Haven."</p>


<p>Lists such as this one are, of course, totally a matter of personal opinion, but I too found the town of Princeton to be a charming place. Its history, dating back long before the American Revolution, is palpable. The streets that Einstein walked are still crowded with visitors from around the world, students, professors and locals. Numerous small coffee shops allow for meeting places and animated conversation. Live music in the evenings can be found at Triumph, the local brew pub, and ice cream is everywhere. In nice weather, sidewalk dining in front of Panera and elsewhere is popular. A new set of downtown condominiums has just been built and the town is expanding in a controlled manner. Of course, if you want a real city, New York and Philadelphia are each an hour away by train.