The Vermont Ski Village: Where to Stay, What to Do
Sarah Neith, firstname.lastname@example.org
Whether it’s following a perfect ski day, or during a day of rest, no one can resist the charm of a Vermont ski village. Each mountain resort and town has its own irresistible charm, and plenty of non-ski specific activities to keep anyone and everyone entertained. Interested in exploring other snow related activities? Don’t miss moonlight snow-shoe tours, horse-drawn sleigh rides, ice skating, snowmobiling, or even ziplining through a twinkling winter forest. Looking for something warmer? How about an indoor waterpark adventure, world class shopping, concert going, or relaxing fireside at a cozy slopeside condo? After all of this activity, always be sure to book yourself a session at a soothing spa to melt the work of the day away!
Bromley is the epicenter for a host of off-slope activities. If carving figure eights is your thing, check out the ice at Riley Rink at Hunter Park in Manchester. Horse-Drawn Sleigh rides depart from the Taylor Farm on Route 11, Karl Pfister in Landgrove and Horses for Hire in Rawsonville. Cross-country skiers can check out Wild Wings in Peru, Hildene in Manchester, Tater Hill in Windham and Viking in Londonderry, which also offers snowshoeing. For guided snowmobile rides, there’s Equinox Snow Tours nearby and Alpine Tours on Stratton Mountain. More listings and all the contact info for these activities are on Bromley’s family ski vacations activities webpage.
Outlet shopping anyone? Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, Betsey Johnson, Brooks Brothers, Coach, Escada, Giorgio Armani, J. Crew, Polo and TSE are just a few of the names you'll find down the road in Manchester.
The Black Line Brew Pub on the top floor of Magic’s base lodge is home to one of southern Vermont’s most relaxed and spirited Après-ski, live music and dinner scenes. It’s a throwback to the original spirit of the 1960s skiing lifestyle—where fun was more important than fashion, and making friends preempted making statements.
Mount Snow Resort
There’s a ton of terrain to explore at Mount Snow while the lifts are spinning, but there’s just as many adventures to be had off the slopes. Guided snowmobile tours leave right from the base area and are available through High Country Tours (800-627-7533). Enjoy a guided snowshoe tour with equipment rental available at Mount Snow Sports at The Grand or glide on the many kilometers of the area’s pristine cross country ski trails. If you’re looking for a more unique adventure, dog sledding with Husky Works Mushing Company is where you’ll find it (802-896-3478). After all this adventuring, pamper yourself at the recently renovated naturespa, located in the Grand Summit Resort Hotel (802-464-6606).
Mount Snow offers an abundance of lodging located on-resort including the slopeside Grand Summit Resort Hotel, the recently renovated Snow Lake Lodge and a broad selection of multi-bedroom condominiums. The Mount Snow Valley is also home to many country inns, motels and ski-homes all available for your ski vacation. Contact Mount Snow Central Reservations, 800-245-SNOW.
Stratton’s one-of-a-kind Activity HUB is an insider’s guide, mountain concierge and tour leader rolled into one. For something unique (guided stargazing hikes by snowshoe), something exhilarating (dog-sled rides), or something personal (Ski with a Local), the HUB has an adventure for everyone.
Best of all, there’s no car needed at the resort with lodging and amenities just steps from the slopes. A variety of shops, a spa and restaurants line Stratton’s slopeside Village for a lively après ski scene. The well-equipped Sports Center and Nordic trail system are close at hand. Kids will love the lift served tubing park, ice skating and mini-snowmobile tours! Learn more at www.stratton.com.
With a jam-packed schedule of bands, festivals and celebrations, the challenge will be finding time to rest. And if the social calendar isn’t enough, there’s plenty more to do off mountain, including snowmobile tours, dog sledding, sleigh rides, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and new for this year, a lift served tubing park at Killington. Don’t forget the shopping, the 100 bars and restaurants to choose from in the region, and spa treatments at the Killington Grand Resort Hotel
Mad River Glen
Have you ever wondered why there are so many snowshoe hare tracks on the slopes? Or seen the bear bites and scratches on trees and questioned the meaning behind them? Perhaps you have encountered Moose tracks and pondered how they can survive the winters. You can learn more about these animals, mountains and forests of Vermont by taking part in one of Mad River Glen’s award-winning Naturalist Programs. These programs provide a window into the world of animals and a unique perspective on the woods.
Mountain Top Inn & Resort
When you’ve had enough of Nordic skiing on the Resort’s 60km, there’s still plenty to do at The Mountain Top Inn & Resort. Enjoy the magic of an old fashioned horse drawn sleigh ride, or take an exhilarating guided snowmobile tour. The ice skating rink is lit for evening skating (skate rentals available); just outside the door is the best sledding hill around with sleds awaiting you and the kids. Massage therapy is available to relax your weary muscles, take a yoga class, workout in the fitness center or sip a glass of wine while reading your favorite book.
Okemo Mountain Resort
Okemo offers one of New England’s largest selections of slopeside and mountainside lodging options and excels at providing a memorable winter experience off the slopes, as well as on. Visitors can ride an all-season mountain coaster, take a zipline tour, or enjoy ice skating, snow tubing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, swimming, family après-ski activities, indoor golf, fitness classes, massage, sauna, relaxing by a fire, or soaking in a hot tub.
For those who travel farther afield, the village of Ludlow and the entire Okemo Valley invites visitors to enjoy shopping at classic country stores, specialty shops and galleries. The area offers numerous dining options and community events open to the public. www.okemo.com
Although 52 trails, 7 lifts and 17 miles of terrain are enough to keep even the most avid skier or rider busy, vacations are not measured by numbers alone. Shops, entertainment, off-mountain activities including dog sledding, sleigh rides, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and more than 100 bars and restaurants to choose from in the region present endless opportunities for a break from the slopes. Check out the natural beauty that surrounds us - Vermont is stunning at any time of year, but especially amidst the white glow of winter.
Rikert Nordic Center
Rikert Nordic Center will be partnering with the businesses in the town of Middlebury to provide great winter opportunities to enjoy at the heart of the Green Mountains and the beautiful town of Middlebury, VT. Visit our website at www.rikertnordic.com or go to www.addisoncounty.com/winter
Adventures at Sugarbush include sunset groomer rides, fireside dining at Allyn’s Lodge via cabin cat, guided evening mountain hikes, parents’ night out, family rock climbing parties, bounce house, tennis, snowshoe tours, teen nights and more. For overnight guests, Clay Brook Hotel and Residences is absolute winter vacation convenience. Ski and gear valet, concierge services, outdoor pool and hot tubs accompany studio to five-bedroom suites just steps away from the lift. Guests are within walking distance of four dining choices, a general store, and ski and ride schools. For more affordable options, check out Sugarbush Inn and resort condominiums; please visit www.sugarbush.com.
Woodstock Inn & Resort / Suicide Six Ski Area
The Spa at Woodstock Inn & Resort debuted in September 2010 as the first dedicated spa in the resort’s 218-year history and marked another milestone as it received its LEED Certification in May 2012. The Spa is a celebration of light, nature and harmony, offering spa-goers a haven within the quaint town of Woodstock. Housed in a 10,000 square-foot structure, The Spa, provides a plethora of services including an ode to the seasons. Each season, a different signature treatment takes center stage among the extensive selection of year-round spa offerings. Mirroring the four seasons of Vermont, each 100-minute treatment draws upon natural outdoor elements; pumpkin spice, deep forest, vanilla maple and berry bliss.
The Spa’s a la carte selections include massages, facials, body treatments, waxing, and a selection of treatments specifically for men and teens. It uses organic skin care products from Eminence, Naturopathica and Spa Ritual. The Spa is designed to maximize light and the surrounding views with an indoor and outdoor relaxation spaces, including The Great Room, with double-height vaulted ceilings, custom furnishings and a wood-burning fireplace, where guests relax before and after treatments. The outdoor meditation courtyard has a sauna, fire pit, hot soaking pool and a Japanese Lilac meditation tree that marks the passing of seasons.
Off the slopes, Bolton Valley offers a ski to your door lodging experience. The Inn at Bolton Valley is so close to the mountain you can put your boots on in your room and head straight to the lifts. You can choose from a traditional hotel room, a studio or a one or two bedroom suite all conveniently located in the main base area. Several condos located just a short walk to the main base area are also an option for guests. Bolton also offers two restaurants; The James Moore Tavern and Fireside Flatbread. Other food and beverage options include a cafeteria and a real Vermont country store complete with a deli that is always serving up tasty treats. Don’t forget about the sports center with pool, hot tub, sauna and plenty of games for the kids.
The Burke area offers a variety of lodging options ranging from quaint B&B’s, to slope side condominiums, rejuvenating spas and family-friendly hotels. Explore your options at www.skiburke.com
Hungry? The quaint little town of East Burke has (surprisingly to some) excellent options. From make your own waffles in the morning to a perfect rack of lamb finished in a wood oven, to a burger and craft beer at a pub, there’s something for every palate.
Located minutes away, Nordic skiing and snowshoeing are offered at the home of the best mountain bike trail network in North America, the Kingdom Trails Network. Explore these world famous trails in the winter too! www.kingdomtrails.org. Or, explore Vermont by snowmobile on VAST Snowmobile Trails. Burke is central to the miles of trails in the Vermont wilderness. Snowmobile rentals are available with free delivery to Burke Mountain.
Or you can explore the country stores, craft shops, art galleries, historic libraries and museums for that special gift or unique, locally-made collectible.
Jay Peak Resort
Why worry about the weather when planning your winter vacation. Jay Peak Resort has invented the weather-proof getaway. With the 50,000-square foot Pump House indoor waterpark and the NHL-sized Ice Haus skating arena, no matter what’s happening outside, you are guaranteed a vacation.
Smugglers’ Notch Resort
Off-slope activities at Smugglers’ Notch Resort are abundant and provide fun for all ages. For ages 8 and older, the ArborTrek zip line canopy tour offers breathtaking views of the snowy mountains in winter on travel from tree platform to tree platform on three- or six-line options. Adults enjoy the Snowshoe Adventure Dinner that features a late afternoon lift ride to the top of Sterling Mountain and a gourmet dinner in a candlelit cabin, with a guided snowshoe trek back to the base completing a companionable evening with other guests. For those seeking indoor pursuits, local artisans teach painting and sculpting classes, and massage services, foot reflexology and yoga sessions provide soothing relaxation. Evening fun for adults in Bootlegger’s Lounge features magic shows, karaoke, dance parties and live music.
Family activities at Smugglers’ include playing in the indoorFunZone featuring climbing inflatables; ice skating; and tube sliding. Two teen centers offer a home base with plenty of activities for ages 13 and older. (www.smuggs.com)
Stowe Mountain Resort
Winter Packages for 2012-2013 at Stowe Mountain Lodge:
For a truly one-of-a-kind experience, visit the luxurious Stowe Mountain Lodge and book one of their Winter Extravagance Packages, the S’more Fun and S’more Love Packages, or the Spring for the Mountains Package, which include offerings such as a private snowshoe tour and campfire in the woods with s’mores, a private all-day mountain ski guide, a butler-served dinner in your penthouse suite, along with spa treatments, private sleigh rides, dog sledding and more.
Visit www.stowemountainlodge for more details or call 1.888.4.STOWE.VT
Trapp Family Lodge
The Trapp Family Lodge is a 2,500 acre natural playground for the outdoor and nature enthusiast. Guests of the Lodge enjoy full use of a state-of-the art Fitness and Activity Center, focusing on the best of health and well-being. The facility is complete with a full array of cardio and aerobic machines, yoga studio, spacious massage rooms, climbing wall, 60" x 24" heated indoor pool and outdoor hot tub. Your kids can climb our rock wall and meet new friends at the Mountain Kids Club, which combines fun learning with outdoor discovery and creativity.
Interested in the family whose story inspired “The Sound of Music”? Then attend one of our History Tours that begins with an overview of the von Trapp family history – actual versus movie version - discussion of the property’s history, and the family’s early years in America. View a documentary film of Maria von Trapp’s memories during her final visit to her former home in Salzburg, Austria. Whenever possible, a von Trapp family member either leads the tour or hosts a question and answer session.
We want to be your tour guide! Ski Vermont offers individual media tours of our member resorts.
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