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Stowe Travel Guide: Where to Stay, What to Eat, and More

Church in Stowe, Vermont
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Spread in the shadow of Vermont’s highest peak, 4,395-foot Mount Mansfield, Stowe has a well-deserved reputation as a winter sports destination. Founded in 1794, the historic hamlet cradled by the Green Mountains emerged as a hub for downhill and cross-country skiers beginning in the 1930s — and is home to the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum. But, there’s much more than just skiing. The town is an alluring year-round destination, a portal to the Green Mountains with a bustling après adventure scene, and a wide array of accommodation options.

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Here are just a few ways to make the most of a getaway to Stowe, no matter the season:

View of Green Mountains from Stowe.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

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While Stowe’s ski slopes are renowned, the town has plenty to offer outdoor lovers all year long. From hiking and cycling trails, and beyond.

Lamoille Valley E-Bike Tour

For a taste of the region’s extensive trail networks, try a Lamoille Valley E-Bike Tour. Rides take place year-round on the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail, the longest in New England, and utilize electric bikes that make cycling a cinch. Specialty tours include the Fireside Fat Tire E-bike Adventure, a winter excursion that ends with toasted marshmallows, hot chocolate, and a cheese tasting, or the Vermont Bike and Brew Tour, a leisurely half-day excursion featuring stops at three local breweries.

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Vermont Canoe & Kayak

For a summer excursion, Vermont Canoe & Kayak offers canoe, kayak, and paddleboard rentals, along with guided trips and an array of unique tours on the Lamoille River just outside Stowe. Trip options include a full-day Rock Climb and Paddle excursion, a half-day Hike and Paddle combination, and a two-and-a-half-hour outing to the Vermont Maple Outlet.

Schedule a Tour

Waterfall in Green Mountains near Stowe.
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Eat & Drink

The state of Vermont has a thriving brewing culture, and Stowe has no shortage of local craft beers. But, the historic town offers much more than just microbrews. Stowe’s charming downtown is brimming with enticing eateries, from coffeehouses perfect for a quick, pre-adventure dose of caffeine to lounge-worthy cafés dishing up locally sourced, farm-to-table cuisine.

  • “$”= budget-friendly
  • “$$”=average
  • “$$$”= expensive

The Alchemist 

Alchemist Beer

Get a sampling of the town’s craft beer scene at The Alchemist. Renowned for hazy, full-bodied New England-style IPAs, the family-run brewery offers daily tours, curbside beer pick-up, along with a seasonal beer garden. The beer selection includes offerings like the Heady Topper, an American Double IPA (8% ABV) designed to be consumed from a can, or the Knuckle Dragger (8.4% ABV), a full-bodied imperial-style milk stout.

  • Best for drinks
  • $$

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Idletyme Brewing Company

For drinks and dinner, Idletyme Brewing Company pours robust ales, stouts, and lagers, while serving up elevated pub fare like specialty burgers and sandwiches, along with pasta dishes and hearty salads. Brews include staples like the classic Idletyme (8% ABV), crisp American-style Double IPA, the easy-sipping Bohemia Pilsner (4.8% ABV), and the robust Oatmeal Stout (5.8% ABV), flavored with notes of coffee and chocolate.

And, during warmer months, the brewery’s dog-friendly patio is easily accessible from the Stowe Recreation Path.

  • Best for lunch, dinner, drinks
  • $$

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Doc Ponds

Craft beer connoisseurs will also love the selection at Doc Ponds. The homey eatery serves locally inspired New American plates, and features an ever-evolving rotation of beers on tap, an extensive selection of bottles and cans, and ambiance provided courtesy of the joint’s extensive vinyl collection, including more than 1,000 records spun on in-house turntables.

  • Best for dinner, drinks
  • $$

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Cork Restaurant & Local Wine Shop

Rather sip locally sourced wine instead? Cork Restaurant & Local Wine Shop specializes in sourcing wines from regional vineyards relying on earth-friendly, biodynamic growing techniques. The stylish eatery also offers a seasonally inspired dinner menu that includes a diverse selection of small plates, with offerings like short-rib meatballs, steamed mussels, and seasonal squash salad.

  • Best for lunch, dinner, drinks
  • $$

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Cliff House Restaurant 

And, for a unique dining experience worth the trip, there’s the Cliff House Restaurant. Perched at 3,625 feet, the gondola-served restaurant is nestled into the flanks of Mount Mansfield, treating visitors to an alpine dining experience – enhanced with floor-to-ceiling windows. The high-elevation eatery specializes in classic American cuisine made with regionally sourced ingredients, and serves local microbrews, along with wine and craft cocktails.

  • Best for lunch, drinks
  • $$

Browse the Menu

Stay

Stowe is renowned for harboring some of New England’s most storied mountain hideaways, offering everything from quaint bed and breakfasts to chic lodges that provide easy access to the region’s natural assets. The outdoorsy town is also loaded with options for group getaways, including trailside chalets and family-friendly villas with plenty of space for stashing gear.

Trapp Family Lodge

Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Among the town’s most celebrated accommodations is the Trapp Family Lodge, operated by the von Trapp family memorialized The Sound of Music. After relocating to Vermont, the family began hosting guests at their Stowe-based chalet in 1950 – and today, the Trapp Family Lodge features a range of accommodations, including villas, guest houses, and rooms at the main lodge. The 2,500-acre resort is also a playground for outdoor lovers, with more than 60 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails. Post-adventure, the resort also offers plenty of places to grab a beer and a bite, including a formal dining room, and trail-accessible Bierhall Restaurant serving lunch and dinner, and pouring Austrian and German-style beers crafted at the resort’s von Trapp Brewery.

  • Nearest Airport: Burlington International Airport
  • Time: 50 minutes
  • Distance: 35 miles

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Tälta Mountain Lodge

For visitors planning a vacation-inspired by Stowe’s outdoor adventure scene, the stylish Tälta Mountain Lodge is a strategic basecamp. Situated beside the West Branch Little River, the lodge offers everything from standard king rooms to bunks perfect for groups, along with plenty of thoughtful touches for outdoor lovers hauling gear, including bike storage, ski lockers, and boot drying rooms. And, post-adventure, there’s a sauna and indoor pool, perfect for relaxing after a day on the slopes.

  • Nearest Airport: Burlington International Airport
  • Time: 50 minutes
  • Distance: 37 miles

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Field Guide Lodge

Outdoorsy souls will also appreciate the amenities at the chic Field Guide Lodge. A modern take on the classic ski haus, the boutique lodge features a décor inspired by Vermont’s biodiversity, and offers a variety of accommodations, from rooms in the cozy main lodge to spacious suites in the separate Trail House. And, the grounds include a cozy, fireplace-bedecked guest lounge, along with a hot tub and seasonal outdoor pool.

  • Nearest Airport: Burlington International Airport
  • Time: 45 minutes
  • Distance: 35 miles

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Stone Hill Inn 

Stowe Hill
Image used with permission by copyright holder

And, for a classic taste of Stowe, the Stone Hill Inn is an idyllic getaway – combining outdoor adventures with plenty of pampering. The thoughtfully appointed bread and breakfast features rooms equipped with fireplaces and Jacuzzi tubs, and the 9.5-acre property also offers convenient storage for gear like bikes and skis, along with wooded trails onsite to hike or snowshoe, depending on the season. And in the morning, the inn’s panoramic dining room serves up a three-course breakfast showcasing artisanal products from local vendors, including cheeses, breads, and meats.

  • Nearest Airport: Burlington International Airport
  • Time: 50 minutes
  • Distance: 37 miles

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Mike Richard
Mike Richard has traveled the world since 2008. He's kayaked in Antarctica, tracked endangered African wild dogs in South…
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