Mountain Lodge in Wooded Enclave
Two preserved maples stand at the entrance to Stowehof Inn & Resort in northern Vermont. Transferred from the woodlands of the surrounding Green Mountains, the trees have been integrated into the inn's structure, creating a sense of outside blending into inside. That sensibility permeates the place, attracting outdoor enthusiasts who revel in the rolling topography before retiring to well-appointed guest rooms. It’s the kind of setting that draws visitors back for repeat visits—a quality that earned the inn a spot on Travel + Leisure’s list of hotels with “die-hard family followings.” The resort is also just 5 miles from Stowe Mountain Resort, where winter visitors can ski or snowboard down more than 100 snowy trails.
Stowehof's in-house restaurant serves upscale contemporary fare in an elegant dining room with a wall of windows showcasing the property. As part of this deal, you’ll enjoy a dinner for two that includes a soup or salad and an entree for each person. Though the menu changes more often than an award-show hostess, past offerings have included foie gras strudel, seared trout, and braised rabbit. In the morning, the chefs prepare a hearty breakfast buffet composed of pancakes, eggs, and bacon.
Dark woods, a gabled rooftop, and carved balconies imbue Stowehof Inn & Resort with the feel of an alpine chalet. The vast communal living room is dotted with peaceful nooks for reading books from the substantial library or playing a board game. Floor-to-ceiling windows overlook the resort's small pond and, in the distance, Mount Mansfield—one of Vermont’s tallest peaks.
Stowe, Vermont: Quiet Village Where Winter Adventure Abounds
The quaint town of Stowe is nestled in the quiet countryside of northern Vermont, where 22 feet of snow cover the rolling hills over the course of the typical winter. A statewide ban on billboards ensures unobstructed views of the Green Mountains along the roadways. One of the area's biggest draws is Stowe Mountain Resort, which is full of downhill ski runs and cross-country ski and snowshoe trails. You can also rent equipment from a local shop and follow the Stowe Recreation Path along the sparkling West Branch River.
If you prefer to be carted around, Stowe has you covered. Horse-drawn sleigh rides glide through wooded winter landscapes worthy of a Christmas card. Elsewhere, packs of siberian huskies whisk adventurous visitors over the terrain during dogsledding excursions.
About 12 miles south of Stowe is Waterbury, home to a Ben & Jerry's ice-cream factory. Guests can watch as machinery zips the famous pints from one end of the facility to the other during a factory tour, which ends with a sampling of the flavor of the day.