Historic Cities & Places in Vermont

Historic Cities & Places in Vermont

Welcome to an exploration of the historic cities and places that make Vermont a treasure trove of fascinating landmarks and attractions. From charming downtowns to well-preserved architecture, Vermont’s historical sites offer a captivating glimpse into the state’s rich history. Join me as we embark on a journey through must-visit historic towns, uncovering their unique charm and historical significance.

Key Takeaways:

  • Vermont is home to a wide range of historic cities and places that showcase its rich history.
  • Exploring Vermont’s historic towns allows you to immerse yourself in the unique attractions and heritage sites that the state offers.
  • From picturesque downtowns to scenic drives, Vermont’s historical landmarks provide a glimpse into the past.
  • Make the most of your visit to Vermont by including city tours and sightseeing in historic towns on your itinerary.
  • Discover the New England charm and uncover the hidden stories that lie within Vermont’s historic sites and attractions.

Discovering Vermont’s Walkable Downtowns

Vermont is renowned for its charming, walkable downtowns that exude a rich sense of history and offer a myriad of unique attractions. These downtown areas are characterized by their well-preserved historic architecture, local dining experiences, and abundant opportunities for outdoor recreation. Exploring these walkable downtowns is a delightful way to immerse yourself in the captivating charm of Vermont.

Strolling through the vibrant streets of Vermont downtowns, you’ll encounter a tapestry of historic buildings, each telling its own story of the state’s past. The carefully preserved architectural gems serve as a testament to Vermont’s heritage and provide a picturesque backdrop for your explorations. From classic New England designs to Victorian-era facades, the historic architecture in Vermont’s downtown areas showcases the state’s fascinating architectural legacy.

While exploring Vermont’s downtowns, you’ll also have the chance to savor delightful local dining experiences. From cozy cafes serving freshly brewed coffee and homemade pastries to upscale restaurants specializing in farm-to-table cuisine, there is a diverse array of culinary options to suit every palate. Sample artisan cheese and craft beer, indulge in farm-fresh produce at vibrant farmers’ markets, or savor delicious dishes prepared with locally sourced ingredients.

Vermont’s walkable downtowns also provide easy access to outdoor recreation opportunities, allowing you to seamlessly blend history and adventure. Embrace the breathtaking beauty of Vermont’s natural surroundings by embarking on hiking or biking trails, or spend a relaxing day picnicking in a nearby park. The downtown areas often serve as gateways to the state’s remarkable outdoor attractions, such as scenic mountains, picturesque lakes, and idyllic countryside.

By exploring Vermont’s walkable downtowns, you’ll uncover a captivating fusion of history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re an architecture enthusiast, a food lover, or an outdoor enthusiast, these downtown areas hold something special for everyone. So grab your walking shoes and embark on a journey through Vermont’s historic and charming downtowns.

Highlights of Vermont’s Walkable Downtowns

Town Historic Architecture Local Dining Experiences Outdoor Recreation
Burlington Victorian-era buildings and historic marketplace Farm-to-table restaurants and vibrant food scene Bike paths along Lake Champlain and scenic waterfront
Brattleboro Quaint Main Street with diverse architectural styles Cafes, breweries, and international cuisine Hiking trails in the nearby Green Mountains
Montpelier New England charm with classic brick buildings Cozy cafes, local bistros, and farm-to-table eateries Access to nearby state parks for hiking and nature walks

Vermont’s Scenic Drives

Vermont is a treasure trove of natural beauty, and one of the best ways to experience it is through scenic drives. With 10 federally designated scenic byways, visitors can embark on unforgettable road trips that showcase the picturesque countryside of Vermont.

Driving through winding mountain roads and cruising along valleys, these scenic drives offer breathtaking views and a chance to immerse yourself in Vermont’s rural charm. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast or simply looking for a memorable road trip, exploring Vermont’s scenic byways should be at the top of your list.

Explore Vermont’s Countryside

Each scenic drive in Vermont offers a unique perspective of the state’s countryside, allowing you to witness the vibrant foliage in the fall, rolling hills, glistening lakes, and charming small towns along the way. You’ll have the opportunity to discover hidden gems, stop at quaint roadside cafes, and capture stunning photographs of the picturesque landscapes.

Plan Your Vermont Road Trip

To help you plan your scenic drive adventure, here’s a table summarizing Vermont’s 10 scenic byways, their routes, and notable attractions:

Scenic Byway Route Notable Attractions
Lake Champlain Byway Route 7 and Route 2 Shelburne Museum, Burlington Waterfront, Fort Ticonderoga
Connecticut River Byway Route 5 and Route 2 Fort Dummer State Park, Brattleboro Museum & Art Center
Green Mountain Byway Route 100 Moss Glen Falls, Ben & Jerry’s Factory, Stowe Recreation Path
Mad River Byway Route 100B and Route 100 Mad River Glen, Warren Falls, American Flatbread
Middlebury Gap Byway Route 125 Middlebury College Museum of Art, Robert Frost Interpretive Trail
Molly Stark Byway Route 9 and Route 100 Bennington Battle Monument, Hogback Mountain Scenic Overlook
Mount Mansfield Byway Route 108 Smugglers’ Notch State Park, Stowe Mountain Resort
Stone Valley Byway Route 30 Emerald Lake State Park, Wells Village Schoolhouse
The Shires of Vermont Byway Route 7A and Route 7 Bennington Museum, Manchester Designer Outlets
Tyson/Reading Byway Route 106 Lake Rescue, Crowley Cheese Factory

As you embark on your scenic drive, make sure to plan enough time for spontaneous stops, hiking trails, and visits to local shops and restaurants. Don’t forget to carry a camera to capture the breathtaking views and memories that will last a lifetime.

Getting Around Vermont

Getting around Vermont is a breeze, thanks to the state’s reliable public transportation network. Whether you’re visiting for a day trip or exploring the historic towns and attractions, there are plenty of options to help you navigate Vermont’s beautiful landscape.

One of the most convenient ways to travel within Vermont is through the Vermont bus network. The extensive bus routes connect various towns and cities, allowing you to easily hop on a bus and explore different areas of the state. The buses are comfortable and well-maintained, providing a hassle-free and eco-friendly mode of transportation.

If you prefer a more flexible travel experience, ridesharing services are also available in Vermont. These platforms connect you with local drivers who can give you a ride to your desired destination. It’s a great way to explore Vermont while having the freedom to create your own itinerary.

Additionally, carpooling is another popular option in Vermont. By sharing rides with others headed in the same direction, you can reduce costs and make new connections along the way. Carpooling not only helps you get to your destination but also contributes to a greener environment by reducing the number of vehicles on the road.

When planning your transportation around Vermont, it’s advisable to check the bus schedules and ridesharing availability in advance. This will ensure that you can easily find a ride and plan your itinerary accordingly. Whether you choose to use the bus network, ridesharing services, or carpooling, getting around Vermont is convenient, efficient, and allows you to fully immerse yourself in the state’s charm.

Benefits of Public Transportation in Vermont

Public transportation in Vermont offers numerous benefits for both locals and visitors:

  • Convenient: The bus network provides regular and reliable services, making it easy to travel between towns and cities.
  • Cost-effective: Taking the bus or carpooling is a budget-friendly option compared to renting a car or using other private transportation methods.
  • Sustainable: Utilizing public transportation helps reduce carbon emissions, contributing to a greener environment.
  • Local Insights: Traveling on public transportation allows you to interact with locals and gain insights into Vermont’s culture and way of life.
  • Exploration: The bus routes cover a wide range of destinations, allowing you to discover hidden gems and explore different areas of Vermont.
Transportation Option Benefits
Vermont Bus Network – Convenient and reliable
– Affordable
– Reduces carbon footprint
– Wide coverage of destinations
Ridesharing Services – Flexible travel options
– Local insights from drivers
– Freedom to create your own itinerary
Carpooling – Cost-effective
– Socialize with fellow travelers
– Reduce traffic congestion and emissions

Stay and Play in Vermont

Vermont is not only rich in history and natural beauty, but it also offers a wide range of accommodations, events, shopping, dining, and area attractions for visitors to enjoy. Whether you’re looking for a cozy bed and breakfast, attending a local festival, exploring unique shops, trying delicious local cuisine, or visiting historical landmarks, Vermont has something to offer for every traveler’s interests. Exploring the different regions of Vermont will ensure that you make the most of your time in this historic state.

Lodging in Vermont

When it comes to lodging in Vermont, you’ll find a variety of options to suit your preferences. From luxurious resorts to charming bed and breakfasts, there are accommodations for every budget and style. Whether you choose to stay in a historic inn, a cozy cabin, or a modern hotel, you’ll be immersed in Vermont’s natural beauty and welcoming hospitality.

Events in Vermont

Vermont is known for its vibrant events and festivals throughout the year. From music and arts festivals to agricultural fairs and outdoor concerts, there’s always something happening in the Green Mountain State. Attending a local event is a great way to experience the culture and community spirit of Vermont.

Shopping in Vermont

Shopaholics will find plenty of unique and locally-owned shops in Vermont. Whether you’re looking for handmade crafts, local artisan products, or fashionable boutiques, you’ll discover a treasure trove of shopping opportunities. Take a stroll through the charming streets of Vermont’s downtowns and explore the diverse range of shops and boutiques.

Dining in Vermont

Vermont is a food lover’s paradise, with a thriving culinary scene that celebrates farm-to-table cuisine and local ingredients. From cozy cafes to upscale restaurants, there are dining options to satisfy every palate. Don’t miss the opportunity to savor Vermont’s famous maple syrup and artisanal cheeses during your culinary adventures.

Area Attractions in Vermont

Vermont is home to numerous attractions that showcase its natural beauty and historical significance. From stunning national parks and scenic hiking trails to fascinating museums and historic landmarks, there’s something for everyone to explore. Whether you’re interested in outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or learning about Vermont’s history, the state’s area attractions will leave you captivated.

With its diverse offerings and charming ambiance, Vermont is the perfect destination to stay and play. Immerse yourself in the history, culture, and natural beauty of this historic state, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Must-Visit Historic Towns in Vermont

Vermont is home to several must-visit historic towns that offer a glimpse into the state’s rich history. From beautifully preserved architecture to unique attractions, these towns provide a charming and authentic experience. Some notable historic towns in Vermont include Bellows Falls, Bradford, St. Albans, St. Johnsbury, Middlebury, Poultney, Woodstock, Bennington, Grafton, Springfield, Windsor, and Plymouth Notch. Each town has its own unique character and attractions, making them worth exploring for history enthusiasts.

Bellows Falls

Bellows Falls is a picturesque town located in the southeastern part of Vermont. It is known for its historic downtown area, which boasts beautifully preserved Victorian and Greek Revival architecture. Visitors can explore the Bellows Falls Canal, the Bellows Falls Opera House, and the nearby Rockingham Meeting House, which is the oldest fully intact meeting house in Vermont.


Bradford is a charming town that showcases Vermont’s rural beauty. This historic town is home to the beautiful Wright’s Mountain, where visitors can enjoy hiking trails and stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Bradford is also known for its historic downtown area, which features well-preserved 19th-century buildings and the iconic Bradford Academy.

St. Albans

St. Albans is a vibrant town with a rich history. Located in northwestern Vermont, it offers a range of historic attractions, including the St. Albans Historical Museum and the magnificent 19th-century St. Albans City Hall. Visitors can also explore the beautiful Taylor Park, which is surrounded by historic buildings and provides a peaceful setting for relaxation.

St. Johnsbury

St. Johnsbury is a town that seamlessly blends history with natural beauty. It is home to the Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium, which showcases a vast collection of artifacts and educational exhibits. Visitors can also explore the St. Johnsbury Athenaeum, a beautiful library and art gallery that features works by renowned artists. The town’s vibrant downtown area boasts historic architecture and charming shops.


Middlebury is a picturesque town nestled in the Champlain Valley. It is home to Middlebury College, a prestigious liberal arts institution known for its beautiful campus and cultural offerings. Visitors can explore the Vermont Folklife Center, the Henry Sheldon Museum of Vermont History, and the historic Middlebury Village Green.


Poultney is a small town with a big historical significance. It is home to the picturesque Green Mountain College campus, which features stunning architecture and well-maintained grounds. Visitors can explore the East Poultney Historic District, which showcases well-preserved 18th and 19th-century buildings, including the Union Academy, the town’s first freestanding brick schoolhouse.


Woodstock is a quintessential New England town known for its historic charm. Visitors can explore the Billings Farm and Museum, which offers an immersive experience of Vermont’s agricultural heritage. The town is also home to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park, a preserved 19th-century mansion and surrounding forestland.


Bennington is a town steeped in history and natural beauty. Visitors can visit the Bennington Battle Monument, a towering structure commemorating the Battle of Bennington during the American Revolutionary War. The Bennington Museum showcases artwork and artifacts related to Vermont’s history. The town is also known for its stunning covered bridges.


Grafton is a charming village known for its preserved historic buildings and serene countryside. The Grafton Village Cheese Company offers a glimpse into the town’s dairy farming tradition and offers delicious artisanal cheeses. Visitors can explore the Grafton Historical Society Museum, which houses a collection of artifacts and exhibits about the town’s history.


Springfield is a town with a rich industrial heritage. Visitors can explore the Precision Valley Historic District, which features well-preserved mill buildings and mansions. The Eureka Schoolhouse and Baltimore Covered Bridge are also worth visiting.


Windsor is the birthplace of Vermont and holds great historical importance. Visitors can explore the Old Constitution House, where the state’s first constitution was signed, and the American Precision Museum, which showcases the town’s industrial heritage. The Windsor-Cornish Covered Bridge, spanning the Connecticut River, is a popular attraction.

Plymouth Notch

Plymouth Notch is a small village that holds a significant place in American history. It is the birthplace and childhood home of President Calvin Coolidge. Visitors can explore the Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site, which includes the Coolidge Homestead and the nearby Plymouth Cheese Factory.

Exploring Vermont’s Oldest Communities

Vermont is home to some of the oldest communities in New England, offering a deep connection to the state’s past. With their rich history and unique attractions, these towns provide a fascinating glimpse into Vermont’s culture and heritage. Let’s take a closer look at some of these historic communities:


Montpelier, the smallest state capital in the United States, boasts a picturesque main street lined with historic buildings and charming shops. Visitors can explore attractions like the Vermont State House, the oldest state capital building in the country. Immerse yourself in the rich history of this vibrant city and enjoy the delightful surroundings.


Woodstock exudes New England charm with its well-preserved architecture and quintessential small-town atmosphere. The town is also home to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park, where visitors can learn about conservation and enjoy the beauty of Vermont’s natural landscapes.


Stowe is renowned for its ski resort and breathtaking mountain scenery. This charming town blends European influences with Vermont’s unique character, offering a diverse range of attractions. Whether you’re hitting the slopes in the winter or exploring the stunning outdoor trails in the summer, Stowe is a must-visit destination.


In the town of Shelburne, visitors can immerse themselves in fine historic architecture and cultural institutions. The Shelburne Museum is a highlight, showcasing an extensive collection of art and artifacts from American history. Take a leisurely stroll through this charming community and discover its hidden treasures.


Home to Middlebury College, Middlebury is a vibrant town with a rich cultural scene. The college campus boasts beautiful architecture and hosts various events throughout the year. Visitors can also explore the nearby Otter Creek Falls or enjoy the town’s charming downtown area, complete with unique shops and local eateries.


Manchester offers a unique blend of history and arts. Explore the Lincoln Family Home, the former residence of Abraham Lincoln’s ancestry, and learn about this influential family. The town also boasts a thriving arts scene, with galleries and studios showcasing works from local artists.

These historic towns in Vermont offer a captivating journey through time, allowing visitors to appreciate the state’s rich heritage. From Montpelier to Manchester, each community has its own unique attractions and stories to share. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore the oldest communities in Vermont and discover the hidden gems they have to offer.


Vermont, with its historic towns, offers a captivating journey through its rich history and New England charm. With walkable downtowns, scenic drives, and must-visit historic sites, Vermont has endless opportunities for exploration. Each historic town in Vermont has its own unique character and attractions, bringing the state’s heritage to life. Visitors can immerse themselves in the small-town ambiance, admire the stunning architecture, and connect with the friendly communities.

Exploring Vermont’s historic cities and places is like stepping back in time. From the charming downtowns and beautifully preserved architecture to the scenic drives that showcase the state’s natural beauty, there’s something for everyone. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, nature lover, or simply seeking a slice of American history, Vermont’s historic towns and sites should be at the top of your must-visit list.

So, pack your bags and embark on a journey to Vermont’s historic towns. Immerse yourself in the rich history, experience the New England charm, and create memories that will last a lifetime. Vermont’s historic cities and places are waiting to be explored, offering a glimpse into the storied past of this captivating state.


What are some must-visit historic sites in Vermont?

Vermont is home to several must-visit historic towns, including Bellows Falls, Bradford, St. Albans, St. Johnsbury, Middlebury, Poultney, Woodstock, Bennington, Grafton, Springfield, Windsor, and Plymouth Notch. Each town offers a unique experience and attractions that showcase Vermont’s rich history.

What can I expect to find in Vermont’s walkable downtowns?

Vermont’s walkable downtowns are filled with historic architecture, unique attractions, public art, locally-owned retail businesses, and fine dining establishments. Visitors can also enjoy outdoor recreation opportunities and the charming ambiance of these downtown areas.

Are there any scenic drives in Vermont?

Yes, Vermont offers 10 federally designated scenic byways that provide breathtaking views of the state’s countryside. These scenic drives allow visitors to immerse themselves in Vermont’s natural beauty, whether they’re driving along mountain roads or cruising through picturesque valleys.

How can I get around Vermont?

Getting around Vermont is easy thanks to its reliable public transportation network. Visitors can use Vermont’s bus network to travel between towns and cities. Additionally, there are options to find rides through ridesharing services or carpooling.

What amenities and attractions can I find in Vermont?

Vermont offers a wide range of accommodations, events, shopping, dining, and area attractions. Whether you’re looking for a cozy bed and breakfast, attending a local festival, exploring unique shops, trying delicious local cuisine, or visiting historical landmarks, Vermont has something to offer for every traveler’s interests.

What are some of the oldest communities in Vermont?

Vermont is home to some of the oldest communities in New England, such as Montpelier, Woodstock, Stowe, Shelburne, Middlebury, and Manchester. Each community has its own unique attractions and offers a glimpse into Vermont’s history and culture.

What can I expect when exploring Vermont’s historic cities and places?

Vermont’s historic cities and places offer a unique blend of history, charm, and natural beauty. Visitors can explore walkable downtowns, go on scenic drives, and visit must-see historic towns. These sites allow travelers to experience the rich heritage and New England charm that Vermont is known for.

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