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Stowe City Guide - Shopping, Dining, and Outdoor Destinations

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While it's utterly charming with a sprinkle of snow, Stowe isn't just for winter. Just 40 minutes from Burlington, other seasons provide spectacular panoramas of tree-covered slopes ablaze with red, gold, and orange foliage, rivers, and watering holes. Stowe also offers shops, restaurants, galleries, yoga classes, and horseback riding; and sometimes the latter two are combined.

Spots for skiers


The Stowe Mountain Resort and the Trapp Family Lodge (founded by Maria von Trapp and her captain, of “Sound of Music” fame) are 2 of the nation's favorite ski resorts, and both are located in Stowe. With a gondola, golf course, 116 trails for skiers of all levels, and multiple excellent restaurants and bars, Stowe Mountain Resort calls Vail and Aspen to mind. The Trapp Family Lodge, on the other hand, offers 2,500 acres of cross-country or Nordic trails, along with old-world, European charm. Once indoors, try Trapp's hot rum toddies in front of the fireplace in the library.


  • Trapp Family Lodge, 700 Trapp Hill Road, Stowe, VT 05672; Tel: + 1 855 318 4641; Website: Trapp Family Lodge

  • Stowe Mountain Resort, 7412 Mountain Road, Stowe, VT 05672; Tel: + 1 802 253 3000; Website: Stowe Mountain Resort

The Stowe Mountain Road


Driving up this winding road from the village, you'll cross a tiny, picturesque bridge. A minute later, you'll find yourself surrounded by shops and restaurants galore, from outdoor gear stores to funky art galleries, and local produce vendors to fine French dining. Some favorites along this road include the Matterhorn, for hearty après-ski or post-hike fare to the tune of live bands, and the Crop Bistro & Brewery, famous for its locally sourced, farm-fresh ingredients and craft beer.


  • Matterhorn Restaurant, 4969 Mountain Road, Stowe, VT 05672; Tel: +1 802 253 8198; Website: Matterhorn Restaurant

  • Crop Bistro & Brewery, 1859 Mountain Road, Stowe, VT 05672; Tel: + 1 802 253 4765; Website: Crop Bistro & Brewery


Stowe's other outdoor fun


As you're driving up the Stowe Mountain Road, you'll find a plethora of outdoor options. To the right of the road, walk, bike, or run the paved bike path meandering through rolling farmland and crossing the Lamoille River. To your left, look for small parking areas leading to miles of twisting dirt trails that are perfect for hiking and biking. Some even have built-up, cambered curves and jumps for more mountain biking fun. The Stowe Mountain Ranch offers retreats featuring yoga with horses and running with horses - the beasts being enormous, gentle Clydesdales and Hanoverians.


  • Stowe Mountain Ranch, Stowe Mountain Ranch, Stowe, VT 05672; Tel: + 1 802 585 9006; Website: Stowe Mountain Ranch


Bolton Valley


An easy 30-minute drive from Stowe is Bolton Valley, with 5,000 acres of Vermont's most spectacular Green Mountain views. Since Bolton sits higher than any other Vermont ski resort, it gets more snow, more often. Families enjoy skiing and riding on this 3,150-foot peak, which has a high volume of beginner and intermediate downhill runs. For the hard-core, there's backcountry, Nordic skiing and snowshoeing on 100 kilometers of trails, with spectacular views of distant mountains and rolling valleys. Wanting something to do at night? Bolton Valley Ski Resort also offers Vermont's most extensive night skiing and riding under the stars.


  • Bolton Valley, 4302 Bolton Valley Access Road, Bolton Valley, VT 05477; Tel: + 1 802 434 3444; Website: Bolton Valley


The small capital of Montpelier


Montpelier in Vermont is the nation’s smallest state capital, with fewer than 8,000 inhabitants. It combines this small-town feel with a rich history. Take a free summer tour of the State Building, with its real gold leaf dome, or visit the Vermont Historical Society Museum, and the “Freedom and Unity: One Ideal, Many Stories” exhibit. Here, you can walk into a life-sized Indian wigwam, visit the hangout of Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys, or test out a telegraph at a period railroad station.