stoweFamily Holiday Lodging & Food: Picture postcard pretty Stowe, Vermont, 35 miles from Burlington, hits all the right notes. The family friendly Stowe Mountain Resort has two mountains: Spruce Peak, where the children’s learning programs are based, and Mount Mansfield, with more advanced trails and two freestyle terrain parks. When the snow melts, you can take the gondola and hike in the mountains, or try the alpine slide, rock climbing wall, inflatable obstacle course or bungee trampoline.

The five mile, flat Stowe Recreation Path is ideal for bicycling or snowshoeing. The path leads right form Stowe Village and crosses 11 quaint wooden bridges.

All this exercise works up an appetite and Stowe delivers. Just outside the village, in Waterbury, Cold Hollow Cider Mill, presses fresh apple cider daily, year round. You can tour the mill and watch cider being made, sample the apple cider and eat warm cider donuts. Adults can taste wine and hard cider.

For even more kid-friendly fare, head to the Ben & Jerry Factory Tour where you can see ice cream being made and sample the flavor of the day. A scoop shop sells cones and sundaes, and you can picnic on the grounds, visit the cows and romp in the playground.

Stowe lodgingWe have stayed at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa which has a luxury spa, with hydrotherapy waterfall and mineral soaking pool, year round outdoor hot tub, groomed snowshoe and cross county ski trails and Stoweflake Discovery Programs for kids and families. Our Mountain Biking Adventure took us into the woods and the Reservoir Expedition Paddle offered a guided canoe trip.

You can leave the car behind and hop on the free Stowe Mountain Road Shuttle to go into town for dinner, or eat at Winfield’s Bistro, which features local produce and has an extensive children’s menu. The wickedly good macaroni and cheese uses local Cabot cheese and you should make sure to try your kid’s portion.

snow shoe in stowe vermont

If you are a Sound of Music fan, stay at the Trapp Family Lodge, where von Trapp family members offer a family history presentation. Luxury Villas offer two or three bedrooms, gourmet kitchens and stone fireplaces on wooded trails. In winter you can cross country ski or snowshoe from your villa to the lodge; hike or mountain bike the rest of the year. The lodge has its own sugarhouse, and in March you can watch the maple sugaring. The horse drawn carriage ride is great for little kids; there is a kiddie pool next to the indoor pool, ecology tours and camp fires. I took a  Nordic walking class with my teen which she found rather silly at first, using poles to get an upper body workout as well, but once she got over her slight embarrassment, she had a good time.

Even if you can’t climb ev’ry mountain at Stowe, you can have lots of fun.

Find Stowe vacation deals here.

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