Best Things to Do in Vermont During Family Vacation

Vermont in the fall

A Vermont vacation is a great way to get the kids to unplug from the Internet and reconnect with family. With so many ways to get in touch with nature, this region promises ample ways to experience delicious food, enjoy the fresh air and create lasting memories.

Sometimes on vacation, we like to travel to places that we know our Wi-Fi reception won’t always have full bars. The mountains are always a great idea for adventure experiences like this. After a while, the children eventually give up trying to play their favorite games and, instead, focus on being present which is what family vacations are all about.

As New York residents, my family has had the chance to visit Vermont several times throughout the years and during all different seasons. Whether you are looking to hit the slopes in the winter months, witness the leaves turn during the fall, explore the trails or hike on some of the most incredible paths in New England during the summer, this state offers it all. So, plan a family vacation here whenever you can – something will always be waiting for you.

How to Get There

Fly into Burlington International Airport (BTV) and pick up your Alamo Rent-A-Car, which makes it really easy to get around with the kids. 

Where to Stay in Vermont

There are two different options when it comes to family vacations in Vermont. You can do a quaint bed-and-breakfast to truly slow things down, or you can stay at a hotel/resort that caters to children and has scheduled activities with them in mind. We have done both and really enjoyed both experiences. 

Smugglers' Notch kids' activities Smugglers' Notch kids' activities

 

Smugglers’ Notch

During our first stay, we took a trip to Smugglers’ Notch and our schedule was jam-packed with one super fun activity after the next, all of which kept my kids outside. I cannot reiterate how easy this vacation was for my family of five. 

Bed and Breakfasts

Another option is to book bed-and-breakfast suites and we truly love this idea. You might need two rooms if you have a large family. Make sure you search ahead for two queen beds to cater to families of four and ask about pull-out beds if you have more than two children. This option takes a bit of research. 

Butler House Stowe Inn Butler House Stowe Inn

 

Butler House Stowe Inn

A great place to consider is the Butler House in Stowe. Right next door is an amazing breakfast spot that is connected to the B&B (know that there is a bit of a wait to get a table, however, it is worth it).

Moose Meadow Lodge cabin Moose Meadow Lodge cabin

 

Moose Meadow Lodge

If you want to really surprise the kids and have some fun, check out the unique offerings at Moose Meadow Lodge (607 Crossett Hill Rd, Duxbury, VT). When looking for a different experience, a treehouse will check all your boxes. As a bonus, you can hike on the property and these establishments can house up to 12 people per stay. So, if you are planning a reunion or a larger get together, this could be a great option.  

Hiking and Trails in Vermont

One of the best things you can do with your children while visiting Vermont is hit the trails! Hiking is such a great way to do something together as a family. In Vermont, there’s a wide variety of trails to choose from. I usually find the best options by speaking to the bed and breakfast owners or hotel staff. 

Here are some of my favorite trails we've visited to date:

1. Deer Leap Trail - 139 US-4, Killington, VT 05751: Deer Leap Trail is a 1.9-mile trail and is rated as moderately difficult among avid hikers. Dogs are allowed on these hikes and it is suggested that you visit during the months of April and November. It has a beautiful view which kept my children interested, with lots of wildflowers to pick along the way. This is a particularly rocky trail, so be prepared if you’re bringing a stroller.

2. Mill Trail - Notchbrook Rd, Stowe, VT 05672: Mill Trail is very lightly trafficked and is around 2.2-miles long. It is also considered a moderately difficult trail. The beautiful part of this trail is that it features a waterfall, which my children absolutely loved! This is a great trail for families to try. Once we got to the water, we dipped in for some fun. Be sure to bring bug spray.

3. Willoughby State Forest - Sutton, VT 05867: In Willoughby State Forest, there are actually eight trails to choose from, each offering a different perspective on the land. The trails range from 1.6-miles all the way up to 8.2-miles. Naturally, since we had our children, we spent about 30 minutes exploring the land.

There are plenty of lookout spots for children to stop and take breaks. In fact, we were even able to spot an eagle while resting. A rare sight, indeed! One of the best parts is that since Vermont is a small state, you can drive from one trail to the next when you are finished and truly make the most out of your days. We were lucky enough to walk several beautiful paths together without much effort at all. 

Vermont Teddy Bear Factory Vermont Teddy Bear Factory

 

Best Things to Do in Vermont with Kids

Vermont Teddy Bear Factory

If you are looking for the best places to visit in Vermont with kids, there are two locations you cannot miss. The Vermont Teddy Bear Factory (6655 Shelburne Rd, Shelburne, VT 05482) gives kids the opportunity to learn about the history of the teddy bear, watch the entire process that a teddy bear goes through before it gets shipped out and have a chance to purchase one of your own.

Ben and Jerry's Factory Tour Ben and Jerry's Factory Tour

 

Ben and Jerry’s Factory Tour

Another great place to head with the kids is the Ben & Jerry's Factory (1281 Waterbury-Stowe Road, VT-100, Waterbury Village Historic District, VT 05676). Not only do you get to learn about the history of this amazing company, but also there is free ice cream at the end of the tour.

Shopping in Vermont

One of the most beautiful aspects of visiting Vermont is the ability to slow down. As a New York local, I cannot tell you how important it is for my family to wind down and take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. In Vermont, it's easy to do just that. 

We found mom and pop shops, local town fairs, and local church fairs wherever we drove, and it was absolutely magical. You will come across plenty of picnic benches at these locations and outdoor market seller’s tents as you explore your way through this state. As we drove downside roads or main drags, they popped up everywhere and it was wonderful. No matter what, we would stop because it would mean live music, fresh food and lots of downtime.

What better way to get to know the people of Vermont than through the products they make with their own hands? We thoroughly enjoyed tasting our way through this wonderful state, trying snacks such as homemade peanut butter and fresh lemonade.

Best Restaurants in Vermont

While enjoying your Vermont vacation, be sure to indulge in the fresh tastes and local flavors. There are unlimited options, but here are a few of our favorites: 

Mendon Mountain Orchards Mendon Mountain Orchards

 

Mendon Mountain Orchards

Mendon Mountain Orchards (1894 US-4, Mendon, VT 05701) is a spot you cannot pass especially if you are in the mood for apple turnovers. While there, be sure to pick up some apple cider donuts and fresh apple cider. There will be something for everyone inside this wonderful family-owned business. 

Breakfast restaurant in Vermont Breakfast restaurant in Vermont

Other restaurants in Vermont:


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About the Author

Vera Sweeney

Vera Sweeney, mom, blogger, social media influencer and New York resident – is the founder of Lady and the Blog. Her lifestyle and parenting brand help busy women stay on top of the latest style, travel and parenting trends.