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Blog :: 04-2014

Planning a Family Vacation in Vermont

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Organizing a Vermont vacation that pleases the whole family is never an easy task. First: find a location that offers comfortable lodging. Second: make sure it has plenty of different nearby activities that keep the whole family happy. Last: it needs to be someplace that isn't difficult to get to. Thankfully, there's southern Vermont, which is less than 2 hours from Boston and less than 3.5 hours from New York's metropolitan area. Sound good? Great... time to start planning your spring or summer getaway that the whole family can enjoy.

Grout Pond, Stratton, Vermont

To begin organizing your family vacation in southern Vermont, you'll need a place to stay. And if you have a big family or you're planning a reunion or other get-together, you know that hotels are simply too expensive to consider for more than a night or two. In contrast, rental homes such as those available from Chimney Hill in Wilmington, Vermont provide a great option for a comfortable stay that won't break the bank.

When you stay in a Chimney Hill rental, you get access to a full suite of amenities that you won't find anywhere but in the expensive hotels. Your rental home includes a full kitchen and lots of bedrooms for all of your guests or family members. And the Chimney Hill Clubhouse area includes a swimming pool, fitness room, pool table, and much more. You can also fish in the private duck pond and enjoy the tennis facilities if you're in the mood for a workout.

Now that you have a place to stay, you'll need to find some fun things to do. Southern Vermont is brimming with activities during every season of the year. From skiing in winter to, well, just about any outdoor activity in summer, you'll find no shortage of attractions to warm your heart, and get it pumping.

A variety of exciting adventure activities can be found within just a short drive of the Wilmington area, including a number of renowned ropes courses and zipline trails. You'll also find hiking and biking in the local state parks, water sports such as rafting and kayaking, and plenty of activities at the local four-season resort, Mount Snow. You'll have no trouble finding activities to please even the pickiest of fun-havers in your family or group.Mountain biking at Mount Snow

And you gotta eat, of course. Thankfully there are several 5-stars-on-Yelp-worthy southern Vermont restaurants that you won't have to break out the reserve credit card to afford. When you factor in the many local wineries, museums, historical sites, and other educational and cultural attractions, you might find that your agenda is suddenly too full. You'll need more than a weekend to see everything that this area has to offer.

It's time to get packing. Remember to bring clothes that you can easily layer, like sweatshirts and jackets - Vermont springs and summers are known for their warm days and cool nights. You'll also want bug spray, sunblock, and sheets and towels for your rental home. Don't worry about bringing groceries or other perishables, though, as those items are easy to get locally.

The last step in planning your family vacation? Load up the car with your stuff and get here! Just be prepared to find a whole lot of fun, relaxation, and family togetherness at the end of the road. In fact, maybe you should book a few extra nights, just to be safe.

Vermont Attractions for Adventurous Families

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What do you do for fun in Vermont if you and your family are a bit more thrill-seeking than most? If you're the kind of person who thinks roller coasters are the perfect place for a nap and who would like zoos a lot more if they'd just let the animals run around with the people, you're just the kind of person who would get a kick out of the adventurous activities around southern Vermont. After all, who said family fun has to be boring?

Deerfield Valley Zipline Canopy Tours

Zip LineOK, so technically our first Vermont attraction isn't actually in Vermont - but it's so close it doesn't really matter, and it's so much fun you won't care. The zipline canopy tours and ropes course at Zoar Outdoor's Deerfield Valley Zipline in Charlemont, Massachusetts, are a perfect family activity for those families who thrive on adventure. Over 1.5 miles and 3 hours, you will complete 11 different zips, walk 3 sky bridges, and do 2 rappels from high in the tree canopy. And since the location is only a short drive south of Wilmington and southern Vermont, you'll be there and back in no time at all.

Bromley Mountain Adventure Park

What do you do with a ski resort in the summer? If you're Bromley Mountain, you turn it into one of New England's biggest outdoor adventure parks, complete with ziplines, rock walls, waterslides, and one of the longest alpine slides in the world. Bromley simply has too many activities and too much heart-pumping fun to list, so you'll have to check it out for yourself. Fortunately, at only an hour away from Chimney Hill, you'll easily be able to do just that. Just don't call it an amusement park; with lush green trails and beautiful views, this Vermont attraction is so much more.

TimberQuest Ropes Course

Tree houses and rope swings aren't just for kids, and TimberQuest is the proof. This huge Vermont ropes course in the tree canopies above Magic Mountain in south central Vermont is the best excuse you'll ever get to climb, zip, and swing from tree to tree like all kids -- young or old -- should do. And at up to 40 feet high, these ropes will certainly give you more of a thrill than your backyard tire swing did. And with courses rated from beginner all the way up to advanced, the whole family can have fun while finding just the right challenge.

White Water Rafting

White Water RaftingOne of the classic adventure sports, white water rafting is definitely not an attraction for the faint of heart. However, if you were faint of heart you probably wouldn't be reading this anyway, so white water rafting is probably right up your alley. In that case, we recommend the Deerfield River for a perfect balance of challenge and family-friendliness. Most of the river is rated at Class II, but it ranges from Class I all the way to IV for those families desiring additional challenge (or should we say additional fun?). Zoar Outdoor runs several types of rafting trips, both in Vermont on the West River and in Massachusetts on the Deerfield -- the same river that runs right through Wilmington.

Of course, no adventure vacation is complete without a place to crash at the end of the day. At Chimney Hill, you can get a Vermont rental home big enough for your whole family, plus all the gear you need for a properly adventurous vacation. Take a look at all our short-term vacation rental listings and find the perfect base camp for your trip.


  1. Patty Killion on

    […] are plenty of exciting adventure activities within just a short drive of the Wilmington area, including a number of renowned ropes courses and […]
    • Patty Killion on

      […] enjoy the fresh Vermont air. Many Vermont visitors enjoy spending time out in nature, on hikes, or doing adventurous activities. However, some just like to enjoy the twisting mountain roads and beautiful views to be seen on one […]
      • P.O. BOX 415, 9 Haystack Road, Wilmington VT 05363