The Green Mountain State
Updated: Feb 4
You probably already know that Vermont is known for their great skiing and snowboarding resorts, but we set out looking for other things that we think should be noted in Vermont’s fine print.
First of all, we visited Vermont in August of 2020. That means there were just a ton of rules and regulations in place due to COVID-19. That also meant many places were either closed, or operating under less than normal circumstances.
When we arrived, we couldn’t do too much. Vermont had a 14 day self quarantine in place since we were coming from Wisconsin. What we packed into the following two weeks though made the long drive out so worth it. Here is our list of places we are so glad we visited! Some of them are more obscure, but well worth the visit!
There are a number of larger and more popular falls, but that is exactly why this one stole our hearts. It is much smaller and more intimate, making it enjoyable with our two year old.
Montpelier’s capital building is more than 160 years old and in pristine condition. We were not able to enter the building, but even being on the front lawn was very nice. This is a great area for families to play frisbee, enjoy a picnic, or even begin a stroll down the main street to visit boutiques and bookstores.
We intended to visit Liquid Art to sit with an iced coffee and read a book. It was well beyond that. Their coffee drinks are delightful, their adult beverages very imaginitive, and their food was wonderfully pleasant. The owner and staff are really wonderful, and although the product they put out earns them a spot on any recommendations list, the service sets them ahead even further.
Okemo Mountain Coaster
This was an accidental find. Allison and I were driving back from town, and passed the sign saying the mountain coaster was open, we assumed it was the ski-lift ride to the top. We did a quick Google search and found that it is indeed a winding coaster that goes down the mountain. We rode together so that I could get footage, and that made it even more fun!
This is a great place to spend a couple of days while in Vermont. Again, I couldn’t take advantage of everything they have to offer because classes were minimal and the sauna and hot tub in the spa were closed. The stay was still a very nice change of pace. Very tasty meals, wonderful grounds with lots to do, for adults and the kids. They have cornhole sets, a nice pool, bikes for rental, tennis courts, and a shuttle to the nearby golf course. If you have time to spend in the spa, their facials are relaxing and rejuvenating.
Cold Hollow Cider Mill
This place was great, it had something to offer everyone. Their gift shop area had lots of Vermont items, handmade items, chocolates, honeys, teas, and of course maple syrup products. They have free sampling of their delicious cider, fresh made cider donuts, all day-everyday, and hard cider tastings for the adults. All of their products are very high quality, and this is a great place to stop and spend some time.
Woodstock struck us immediately as cute and quaint, and just what you’d like an old small town to be. It became even more interesting as we learned of its history. In the 1930s, Laurance Rockefeller married Mary French, whose family had ties to Woodstock. The Rockefellers then decided to keep the are rich in its heritage and invested in burying the electrical lines, creating a 550 acre national park that includes their 26 room summer cottage, and continuing the conservation of the area.
Church Street Marketplace
I think most people who look into a trip to Vermont will see this on the list of recommended places, but I liked it for what may be a different reason than most. Sure, I love to shop, but half the shops were still closed when I was there. I liked it for the atmosphere. It is a short walk to both Lake Champlain and the University of Vermont, so there are so many different people walking around, doing their own things. There were great places to stop and have a Vermont Craft Beer, and I even enjoyed sitting on a bench and reading for a while, just being out and about.
It is exactly what it sounds like, but what a cool place to see. Walking the patch along the gorge was very pretty. There were little picnic areas to stop and relax, and the shop up in the parking lot had lots of great Vermont products to offer. This is definitely a place to get some great photos, it’s not to be missed.
I know, this isn’t a place, but being a Wisconsin girl, did you think I wouldn’t mention this? We didn’t know at first what it would be, as in Wisconsin we just call this soft serve, but it was delicious. We got ours from the Green Mountain Sugar House, and it didn’t disappoint. It was lightly maple, with a hint of brown sugar without being overly sweet. The Sugar House also had lots of other maple products and other treats, but the Cremee was the highlight of this stop.
Vermont is a beautiful state, even without the fall colors or freshly fallen snow. Hopefully this gives you some information on places to check out if you are planning a trip out. If not, maybe it will give you the inspiration to add Vermont to your bucket list.