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Unusual Outdoor Winter Activities

Not a Skier? Here Are 5 Other Activities to Do During Winter in Vermont

Skiing may be the star student of winter activities throughout New England, but that isn’t to say there’s a shortage of other chilly weather affairs. Winter in Vermont is uniquely charming: the blanket of snow provides just as much a sense of calm and quiet as it does beauty. If you’re looking to skip the slopes for a day, here is our short list of winter activities you should experience in Vermont. 

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Dog Sledding

Though dog sledding gained popularity as a means of transportation during the Alaskan gold rush of 1896, the activity has changed a great deal over the course of history. Today, dog sledding in Vermont is a family-friendly activity that entails riding on a sled behind a team of dogs. 

If you’re looking to chase the beauty of Vermont’s backwoods this winter, Eden Dog Sledding is the perfect way to do it. This 140-acre sanctuary firmly believes in the ethical treatment of their pups, providing education to their tour groups, and having a safe and fun time in the wilderness. 100% of their tour proceeds go towards support for the dogs and their home. Your dog sledding adventure awaits—stay near Stowe to be a quick and convenient car ride from the farm.

Sleigh Rides

If you’re looking for a more widely romanticized form of transportation, opt for a sleigh ride through Vermont’s winter wonderland. This classic winter activity involves snuggling up in a horse-drawn carriage like you’ve seen in every romantic Christmas movie.

For a truly authentic sleigh ride in Vermont, visit Third Branch Horse Logging. Sip on complimentary hot chocolate and coffee as you’re led through the woods and fields of their farm and the surrounding areas of Braintree. You’ll ride through the White River Valley, providing stunning views of Vermont’s calm and beautiful landscape. 

The Trapp Family Lodge also offers charming carriage rides through scenic pastures and wooded areas in a mountaintop setting. To take away the stress of travel this winter, stay at the Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe and experience Austrian-inspired architecture surrounded by thousands of acres of natural beauty.

Snow Tubing

Seeking some thrill this snowy season? Vermont’s chilly climate provides ideal conditions for racing down a snowy hill on an inflated tube. Snow tubing in Vermont is a great way to bring the family together for an epic adventure.  

Though there are lots of snow tubing and sledding locations in the area, Smugglers’ Notch Resort snow tubing is our favorite venue to visit when we feel the need for speed. Opt-in for a day on the slippery slopes or try glow tubing under an array of LED lights at night. Book your stay right at Smugglers’ Notch Resort to partake in this family-friendly activity without ever having to hop in the car.

Ice Skating

Going ice skating in Vermont is the perfect way to embrace the beauty of nature while moving your body in the fresh mountain air. The town of Woodstock has many indoor and outdoor skating venues that promise the thrill of graceful skating for the whole family!  

But, if you’re looking for a more organic experience, here’s a crucial secret when it comes to skating—the best ice is that of an untouched natural lake surrounded by mountains. Lake Morey Skate Trail is just that. This free loop offers you the potential to glide smoothly atop glassy ice for 4.3 miles along the shores of the beautiful Lake Morey with trailhead access at Fairlee Town Beach and Lake Morey Resort. Here, you can also rent skates and accessories. 

Want to see the winter sunrise as you float along the trail? Stay at Lake Morey Resort to be steps away from the lake. Or, stay in Woodstock, VT and conveniently explore one of America’s prettiest towns during your visit. 

Ice Fishing

Ice fishing in Vermont is a timeless tradition that annually occurs from late January through March. Join thousands of anglers this season as they venture out onto the ice seeking pan fish for the dinner table as well as trophy-size lake trout! Vermont has many small ponds and large lakes that are open for ice fishing trout, bass, and salmon. Due to the nature of the activity, we suggest hiring a guide for this experience. If you do opt to lead your own adventure, be sure to educate yourself about the basics, rules, and regulations of ice fishing in Vermont.

About New England Inns and Resorts

New England Inns and Resorts was founded in 1907 and has been devoted to providing unforgettable experiences ever since. With over 300 hotels, inns, and resorts located across New England, we support exceptional hospitality with a dedication to keeping it local at every location. 

This year, spend the winter in Vermont. Picture yourself sipping cocoa by a crackling fire, reading a good book as snow floats down in the mountain air, and snuggling up under a plush duvet with the ones you love. Book your stay to take advantage of the many winter activities in Vermont and create timeless memories with your favorite people by your side.