Are you looking for a few family-friendly places to visit this summer? If so, Vermont should definitely be on your list. I’ve lived here for the past thirty years and wanted to share a few of my favorites spots. They’re perfect for kids—and adults will enjoy them, too!
The Shelburne Museum is a museum of Americana located in Shelburne, Vermont. This amazing museum includes 39 different exhibition buildings. You’ll see traditional artwork from artists like Norman Rockwell, as well as live demonstrations of everything from cooking to horse shoeing, depending on what time of year you visit. There is also a full-size Ticonderoga Steamboat to walk through. Don’t forget to visit the stunning gardens, too!
Also located in Shelburne, Vermont, Shelburne Farms is a nonprofit education center that is a 1400- acre working farm. Throughout the summer there are programs on making butter, milking cows, baking bread, and other farm crafts. There are also walking trails, a children’s barnyard, and a variety of different farm tours.
Hildene was the country estate of the Lincoln Family. Located in Manchester, Vermont, Hildene is an example of a Georgian Revival Home that is open to tours. You’ll find a working pipe organ and gorgeous formal gardens that were restored based on period paintings. This is an attraction better suited for older children.
Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium
Parents of younger children won’t want to miss this one. The Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium is located in St. Johnsbury, Vermont. It’s an old-fashioned Victorian-era museum with exhibits about wildflowers, Native American stone tools, Civil War memorabilia, bugs, beetles, and a live broadcast studio. But, that’s not all you’ll find. Located on the lower level, your child will be able to visit a hands-on nature museum including wasp hives, frogs, iguanas, and even a planetarium program that examines the sky above the planetarium.
Quechee Gorge is one of my favorite spots to visit during the summer. Located in Quechee, Vermont, this is Vermont’s deepest gorge. It was formed about 13,000 years ago. You can view the gorge from a walkway suspended above the Ottauquechee river, which flows 165 feet below. After you see the gorge, visit the nearby Vermont Institute of Natural Science raptor center where injured raptors (eagles, owls, hawks, and other predatory birds) are rehabilitated before being returned to the wild.
If you travel to Vermont this summer, I hope you’ll visit a few of my favorite places. Are there sites in Vermont you recommend?