Burlington was a stop on our mega-vacay this past summer which meant that we also had the opportunity to spend a few hours in nearby Stowe. As a result, I’ve been doing a little research so that I’ll be ready whenever I get the opportunity to go go back.
I’m sharing things we did as well as things I’ll definitely plan on doing on my next visit.
How to Get Around in Stowe, VT
Stowe is a walkable and bikeable town with sidewalks starting in the village and going about two miles up the Mountain Road. The 5.4-mile flat, paved, all-season Stowe Recreation Path also starts in the village and meanders through town and up the Mountain Road, providing convenient access to many restaurants, shops, and accommodation options.
Beyond that though, there are taxis available, but you’ll probably want your own car.
What to See in Stowe, VT
Spend some time at the Trapp Family Lodge. The von Trapp family (from the Sound of Music) was a musical troupe that toured the world after their escape from Salzburg, Austria, in 1938. As the family business became lucrative, the von Trapps purchased a small farmhouse in Stowe and settled down to live amid the mountains yet again. Over time, the farmhouse grew into a large resort with cross-country ski trails, mountain biking paths, tennis courts, restaurants, and more. You can even take a history tour of the lodge to get an overview of the family’s history.
Visit Stowe Mountain Resort. The resort offers a wide variety of trails, from double-black diamonds to beginner terrain. There are also trails for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Buy passes online to save money. In the warmer months, the resort converts its skiing trails to hiking paths. Other warm-weather activities include gondola rides, rock climbing, zip lining and aerial ropes courses.
Take a 30 minute drive from Stowe to visit Montpelier, Vermont’s capital city.
Where to Stay in Stowe, VT
I haven’t yet had the chance to stay in Stowe, but here are a few places that look nice and have good recent reviews.
Trapp Family Lodge – A magnificent 2,600 acre resort managed by the family that inspired The Sound of Music
The Acorn House in Stowe Village – Located in the heart of Stowe Village, recently-renovated light-filled open studio with parking right outside your door.
Magical Karma Cabin in the Woods – Quintessential log cabin, private but only minutes from everything, edible landscape during the warm months.
What to Do in Stowe, VT
Stowe is a great place to visit for nature and beer.
- This Vermont Brewery Tour gets you a flight of beer and some appetizers at four or five breweries in and around Stowe.
- Or plan a jam packed day with this Mountain Biking and Brewery Tour that starts with a morning of mountain biking, followed by lunch and then a flight of beer at five different breweries.
- Take a moderate hike to Moss Glen Falls to see a series of cascading waterfalls.
- Watch sunset from Sunset Rock. Sunset Rock Trail is an easy 0.7 mile hiking spot very close to town, yet also in nature. More importantly, it’s one of the best places to watch the sunset in Stowe!
- Check out any number of activities offered at the Trapp Family Lodge or Stowe Mountain Resort.
Visitors to Ben & Jerry’s Factory are invited to watch Ben & Jerry’s ice cream being made on a factory tour, which includes a free sample. If you can’t get a tour, simply get in the long line for a unreasonably delicious scoop or two straight from the source. I strongly recommend two scoops!
Where to Eat and Drink in Stowe and Waterbury, VT
For whatever reason, the nearby town of Waterbury is home to a host of well-loved restaurants so you’ll likely want to head there for some delicious meals.
- Hen of the Wood – Waterbury was opened in 2005 by Chef Eric Warnstedt, putting Vermont on the national culinary map with multiple James Beard Foundation Awards for his groundbreaking farm-to-table menu served within the walls of a restored historic grist mill.
- Zenbarn is a yoga studio by day, music venue by night, with a bar and restaurant mixed in. It might be the most quintessentially “Vermont” place around. The unpretentious food menu includes everything from satisfying burgers to ramen bowls to lighter vegetarian options like turmeric-roasted cauliflower.
- Michael’s on the Hill is a chef-owned, restored 1820s farmhouse in Waterbury Center that offers locally-sourced fare from acclaimed Swiss-born chef Michael Kloeti, who brings his European roots and a refined approach to this rustic-romantic dining room.
- The Alchemist Stowe is a small, family run brewery specializing in fresh, unfiltered IPA. They are focused on brewing one beer perfectly – Heady Topper, an American Double IPA. It is not intended to be the strongest or most bitter DIPA. It is brewed to give you wave after wave of hop flavor without any astringent bitterness. And it has succeeded being consistently rated one of the top beers in the world. This is not to be missed.
- von Trapp Brewery and Bierhall is a huge Austrian beer hall with tons of indoor and outdoor seating, but make a reservation! They stick to traditional lager style beers and brew them to near perfection. They also offer freshly prepared Austrian foods.
- Idletyme Brewing Company is a small, artisanal brewery, with diverse beer offerings and American bistro fare.
Itinerary for a Weekend in Stowe, VT
It seems like 2-3 days would be a good amount of time for a first visit to Stowe, but 4 days would allow for a more relaxing trip. That said, I’m not going to spell out a detailed itinerary for you because you may want to do slightly different things than I would, but hit me up if you want help coming up with your own personalized itinerary. Here’s my Google Map that you can use to start planning your own adventure in Stowe and Waterbury, Vermont.
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