17 Reasons to Visit Vermont
Reprinted Courtesy of the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing
Vermont - Cruiser's Paradise
Whether it is on a motorcycle or bicycle or in a car, Vermont
is a cruiser's paradise. Vermont has three major north/south
routes that take you from the Massachusetts border to Canada
(Routes 5, 7 and 100) and three major east/west routes that take
you across the entire state (Routes 2, 4 and 9). Each road offers
its own unique treasures and all of the roads showcase the range
of Vermont from its smallest towns to its Vermont-sized cities.
Route 2, for example, takes you from the beautiful Lake Champlain
Islands east through Montpelier, the smallest state capital in
the country and further east toward St. Johnsbury and the gateway
to the rural grandeur of the famous Northeast Kingdom. At only
157 miles from top to bottom, you can see most of Vermont in
a week's time and find your own special places to fall in love
Vermont - 'Surprisingly Sophisticated'
When doing some brand research a few years back, we surveyed
recent Vermont visitors on their impressions of the state. Not
surprisingly, the leading responses were 'beautiful,' 'peaceful,'
'foliage,' 'four-season fun' and 'friendly people.' One of the
terms that caught our attention, however, was 'surprisingly sophisticated.'
You find that some people's impressions of Vermont and its people
were formed by Newhart and other similar depictions.
People are genuinely surprised at how sophisticated Vermont
is with top quality musical and dramatic performances held in
beautifully restored, turn-of-the-century theaters and music
halls. They delight in the Vermont Symphony Orchestra and our
more than 30 independent bookstores. They savor world-class cuisine,
some of which is prepared by graduates of the New England Culinary
Institute in Montpelier that is fast becoming one of the country's
leading training grounds for top new chefs. Our art galleries
and museums feature everything from hand-crafted wood products
and local artists to the works of Rodin and Andy Warhol.
For some it is 'surprisingly sophisticated.' For others, it
is just another reason to love Vermont.
Vermont - 'Moab of the East'
With 9,000 miles of mostly rural roads and hundreds of miles
of off-road trails, Vermont is rapidly gaining attention as a
mountain biking destination. Recent major articles in the New
York Times and Men's Journal touted Vermont as a mountain biking
mecca. From leisurely municipal biking trails to peaceful back
roads to hard-core off road terrain it may not be long before
you hear Moab referred to as 'the Vermont of the West.'
Vermont - A Glimpse Into The Creative Process
Each Memorial Day Weekend, artisans of all kinds from painters
to glassblowers to sculptors open their doors wide for an amazing
weekend of fun and insight into the creative process called Open
Studio Weekend. Vermont is home to some of the finest crafts
people in the country and has more artisans and artists per capita
than any other state. The unusual beauty of Vermont's countryside
and the solitude and peace found here nurture the creative spirit.
Vermont's community of 1,500 professional craftspeople includes
quilters, printmakers, potters, furniture makers, metal workers,
weavers, and glassblowers.
Vermont Maple - Accept No Substitutes
Nothing makes a real Vermonter crazier than the brown liquid
that sits on the store shelf that purports to be syrup that in
fact is mostly cane sugar. References to 'maple flavored,' while
legal, rankle maple-proud Vermonters. Vermont has the strictest
maple laws in the country and produces the most maple syrup of
any state in the country - about 37% of the entire annual national
crop. We celebrate maple as part of our heritage with Maple Open
House Weekend in March and the Vermont Maple Festival in April.
While the technology has changed, the process remains the same
and is a major part of Vermont's agricultural and cultural heritage.
Vermont - You Can Get There From Here!
There is a long standing piece of folklore about the Vermont
tourist who, when asking directions from the crusty old Vermonter,
is told, 'you can't get theah from heah.' In truth, while still
very rural, Vermont is very accessible. With the arrival of discount
carriers Jet Blue and Independence Air, getting to Vermont has
never been easier and less expensive. Burlington International
Airport continues to expand to meet demand, bucking the trend
of small regional airports nationwide that have seen service
levels plateau. Vermont is also serviced by Amtrak and is a seasonal
feature of the American Orient Express. Furthermore, Vermont
is within 300 miles (less than 5 hours) driving distance of nearly
80 million people.
Vermont - Crazy For Cars
Vermont is the best state in New England for viewing antique
and classic automobiles. The scenic Vermont countryside is a
great backdrop and the venues include some of Vermont's top attractions.
The annual Hildene Antique and Classic Car Show takes place on
the grounds of Hildene, the Manchester home of Robert Todd Lincoln,
son of President Abraham Lincoln and one of Vermont's grandest
estates. Stowe hosts two events each year, the Antique and Classic
Car Show in August and the British Invasion - the largest British
motorcar show on the East Coast - in September. Vermont is also
home to the Precision Valley Corvette Museum in Springfield.
When people think of Vermont, they usually think of white clapboard
villages. Vermont is also home to some spectacular mansions like
Hildene (Manchester), Wilson Castle (Rutland), Shelburne Farms
(Shelburne) and the Park McCullough House (North Bennington).
These estates are reminiscent of a very different era, but are
an indelible part of our cultural heritage.
Vermont - For Free!
Vermonters believe in offering value for the money, that's why
we open up a good part of the state for a test drive in mid-June
- for free. The event is known as Vermont Days and it happens
every year during the second week of June. For this weekend,
admission to all state parks and state owned historic sites is
free. Saturday is also Free Fishing Day where anyone can fish
without a license and clinics are offered in selected locations
for folks who want to sharpen their skills. Vermont gives you
808 lakes and ponds and over 7,000 miles of streams with the
greatest variety of high quality fresh water fishing in the Northeast
to choose from.
Vermont - The Bridges of Addison County?
Sure, Clint Eastwood, Meryl Streep and Robert James Waller can
make anyone's bridges famous. Still, without a New York Times
bestseller and a big budget picture to back it up, Vermont has
managed to carve out a reputation for itself as the place to
come for covered bridges. You'll notice that those Madison County
folks aren't crowing about having the longest covered bridge
in the world - that's because the Windsor-Cornish Bridge in Vermont
holds that distinction. Vermont is home to more than 100 covered
bridges and each one has a story to tell. You can find at least
one covered bridge in 13 of our 14 counties.
Vermont - Water Country
When most people think of Vermont, they think about white clapboard
villages and rolling hills. But make no mistake - Vermont is
water country. Vermont is home to Lake Champlain, the sixth largest
freshwater body in the United States. Our senior senator once
even tried to get it declared the sixth Great Lake. Vermont has
808 lakes and ponds, 284 of which are larger than 20 acres. Vermont
is also home to over 7,000 miles of streams. Whether you're into
canoeing, kayaking, sailing, fishing, tubing or swimming, you
can find the right venue in Vermont's waterways.
Vermont - Join the Club
How many states have a fan club? People develop a special bond
with Vermont. How strong is this bond? So strong that more than
4,000 people now belong to the '251 Club.' The Vermont 251 Club
is an organization whose members attempt to visit every town
in the state of Vermont. Those who visit all 251 towns are known
as "plus" members. The 251 Club was first suggested
in a 1954 Vermont Life article by commentator Arthur Wallace
Peach. The club meets twice a year and a newsletter is distributed
to club members. There are no secret handshakes and the uniting
bond is a love for the Green Mountain State.
Vermont - The Art of Stone
Vermont granite and marble can be found around the world in
monuments and buildings. The quality and creativity of the craftsmanship
is stunning. It was Barre, Vermont craftsmen who cut and finished
the stones used for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington,
D.C. From the Slate Valley, to the Proctor Marble Works to the
granite quarries of Barre, stone craftsmanship is a major part
of Vermont's cultural heritage. Vermont green marble is found
in the state capitol of Idaho and Vermont granite is found in
the state capitol of Kentucky. The Cook County Courthouse in
Chicago features Vermont granite and Memorial Hall at Harvard
has Vermont slate on its roof. Literally dozens of venues in
Washington, D.C. are built with Vermont stone products, including
the Jefferson Memorial, the Department of Agriculture, the Museum
of Natural History, the Smithsonian, the Capitol, the Supreme
Court and Union Station, to name but a few, and most recently,
major portions of the World War II Memorial.
Vermont - Skiing
Vermont is famous for alpine skiing and boarding for a very
good reason. Skiers and snowboarders can choose from more than
5,700 acres of terrain at 17 different alpine resorts throughout
Vermont. Vermont offers terrain to suit every ability level from
gentle teaching slopes, miles of novice and intermediate trails,
wide open boulevards for cruising and gladed terrain, steep mogul
fields and technically demanding terrain for experts. Annual
mountain snowfall averages 250 inches and 70% of Vermont's terrain
is covered by state of the art snowmaking. What more needs to
Vermont - More Than Just Skiing In Winter
Vermont is where the world celebrates winter. Vermont is well
known as a downhill skiing and snowboarding mecca throughout
the Eastern United States, and a growing number of people are
seeing that Vermont has a lot more to offer for wintertime fun.
- Vermont offers hundreds of kilometers of terrain through
woodlands, fields, foothills and mountains at its 37 cross
country ski touring centers.
- With more than 120 groomers in action and over 6,000 miles
of trails, Vermont is a snowmobiler's paradise. Vermont's 145
community based snowmobile clubs offer activities all winter
long from ride-ins and dinners to radar runs and snocrosses.
- Snowshoeing is one of Vermont's fastest growing winter sports
and is one of the easiest in which to get started. Many nordic
centers and other businesses offer rentals and there's terrain
for all ability levels.
- In addition, there's ice fishing, ice climbing, sleigh rides,
skating, sledding and more.
Vermont - Agricultural Heritage
Contrary to popular belief, cows do not outnumber people in
Vermont (not since the 1960's anyway). But we do love our cows
and we treasure our rich agricultural heritage. Vermont's beautiful
working landscape is one of the primary draws for visitors and
Vermont agriculture is celebrated at fairs and field days throughout
the summer. While you need to go to Pamplona for the Running
of the Bulls, we bring you the Strolling of the Heifers in June,
not to mention the Vermont Dairy Festival. Vermont has also emerged
as a national leader in agritourism featuring everything from
farmstays to tours of working farms, sugarhouses and more.
Vermont - The Questing Continues
Valley Quest is a series of more than 175 treasure hunts stretching
across 50 towns in the Connecticut River Valley in Vermont and
New Hampshire. Quests, making use of hand-drawn maps and riddle-like
clues, lead to hidden special places, such as remote lakes, old
cellar holes, favorite trees, and forgotten cemeteries. Quests
are exciting adventures that gently share and teach the natural
and cultural history of the region. The idea is based on a based
on a 150-year-old British model.