Prospective Students: I'd Say Dartmouth 'Isn't' in the Middle of Nowhere
I've officially survived two terms at Dartmouth College, now entering my last term as a first-year. Time flies, am I right? When I was accepted to Dartmouth in December 2020, as an early decision applicant, my biggest fear was moving to an institution in a less-populated, secluded location—or, as some people call it, "the middle of nowhere." However, now, I want to debunk this common conception of Dartmouth: I'd like to argue that Dartmouth "isn't" really the middle of nowhere.
Dartmouth has very easy access to main East Coast cities, especially through its own bus service, Dartmouth Coach. It's not difficult to find the right time (perhaps on a weekend after midterms) to visit these cities with your friends, enjoying a weekend out of the Hanover bubble. During my fall term, I was able to complete multiple one-day trips to Boston, which is about a two to three hour bus ride, as well as a multi-day trip to New York City, which is about a four to five hour bus ride. If everything is planned right, supplemented by your efforts to wake up early, trips are completely doable! And I'd like to argue that these cities are remarkably closer to Hanover than you've imagined.
In front of Dartmouth, we have what is known as the "Rodeo Drive" of New Hampshire: Main Street. While seemingly small, the street has restaurants with a wide variety of options, amazing cafés, and stores. My friends and I typically head to an Asian restaurant on Main Street and grab take-out on Fridays, rewarding ourselves for all the work/exams we completed that week. Dartmouth College students use an app known as "SnackPass," that functions as an UberEats or DoorDash for students at other institutions. Deliveries are done within a reasonable timeframe, and all foods come in a well-packaged and fresh manner! Dartmouth also has one fine-dining restaurant that is available for special occasions within a hotel next to Hopkins Center for the Arts.
Dartmouth students have access to ZipCar, a car renting service on-campus. Rates start at around $10 to $15 an hour, depending on the size of the car. All you have to have is a picture of your license! It's exciting to drive and head to a nice, delicious restaurant outside of Hanover, to West Lebanon or even main Lebanon. Although I personally have never done it, I know a few students who also rent cars for whole days to drive down to Boston.
While Dartmouth College's location may seem as if it's in the middle of nowhere within the woods of New Hampshire, there are so many exciting things to do on and off-campus, with numerous major cities being less than five hours away. I hope this helped you decide whether or not Dartmouth is a place you want to be!