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27 Fun & Best Things to Do in Manchester, Vermont

27 Fun & Best Things to Do in Manchester, Vermont

Manchester, a small town in southern Vermont, is where history, charm, and maple syrup meet. Nestled between the Green Mountains and the New York state border in the Green Mountain National Forest, outdoor adventures play a large part in Manchesterian daily life. It is a 4-hour drive from Manhattan and a 3.5-hour drive from Boston.

Visitors will find many things to do in Manchester, like a museum dedicated to fly fishing and a stunning granite waterfall — Lye Brook Falls. And just outside the town, Manchester’s hiking trails become part of the famed Appalachian Trail. For history lovers, Manchester offers numerous landmarks such as Hildene, the Georgian Revival mansion estate of Abraham Lincoln’s son Robert Todd Lincoln. 

Closer to town, the Northshire Bookstore on Main Street is a charming period home that is one of the best bookstores in the area. Comfy seating and nooks and crannies encourage customers to enjoy their purchases. 

While at the sprawling complex of the Southern Vermont Arts Center, classic and modern art exhibits complement a sculpture garden. From outdoor activities to a walkable downtown with great restaurants, literature, and art galleries, there are countless great things to do in Manchester, Vermont.

But is Manchester, Vermont, worth visiting? Manchester’s charm, size, and extensive list of attractions make it one of the best places to visit in the Green Mountain State. 

Reluctant Panther Inn Restaurant
1. Reluctant Panther Inn & Restaurant Top Recommendation

The Reluctant Panther Inn & Restaurant is a hotel in Manchester, popular choice for those who are looking to escape and explore the beautiful state of Vermont. It is ideally located near Stratton Mountain ski resort, with access to hiking trails, dog sledding and snowmobiling. The hotel features a restaurant, serving homemade American breakfast. Free WiFi access is available throughout the property.

Hampton Inn Suites Manchester Vt
2. Hampton Inn & Suites Manchester, Vt

The Hampton Inn & Suites hotel in Manchester, Vermont is located off I-91, within walking distance to many great restaurants and shops. Enjoy free breakfast, free wireless internet access and a fitness center. The hotel is few minutes from Stratton Mountain Resort, Mount Equinox Ski Area , Bennington Battle Monument and the Bennington Museum.

The Palmer House Resort Ascend Hotel Collection
3. The Palmer House Resort, Ascend Hotel Collection

The Palmer House Resort, Ascend Hotel Collection offers peaceful accommodations that are sure to make your stay a memorable one. The rooms here will provide you with a private bathroom and a dining area with a minifrigdge and coffeemaker. All rooms have air conditioning, a DVD player, desk, ironing facilities and Italian bath amenities. Some rooms have a mountain view.

TLDR

  • Most significant landmark – Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home
  • Best park – Dana L. Thompson Memorial Park
  • Best free activity – Manchester Hot Glass
  • Best activity for kids – The Manchester Skate Park
  • Best activity for adults – The Land Rover Experience
  • Best food – The Chop House
  • Best nightlife – Union Underground 
  • Best all-around accommodation – Reluctant Panther Inn & Restaurant

Best & Fun Things to Do in Manchester, Vermont

1. Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home

Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home
Theresa Lauria / Shutterstock.com

Address: 1005 Hildene Rd, Manchester, VT 05255

Hildene was the second home of Robert Todd Lincoln and his wife, Mary Harlan Lincoln. Robert Todd was the son of Mary Todd Lincoln and Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States.

This stately 1905 estate offers a glimpse into life at the turn of the Century. In addition to the 1905 Georgian Revival mansion, the grounds include stunning views and a European-styled garden with a separate butterfly orchard.

Named for its location, Hildene means ‘hill’ and ‘valley with a stream.’ The property is perched on a hill with the Battenkill River below. The Taconic Mountains are to the west, and the Green Mountains are to the east.

The home is furnished with period pieces and artifacts. And though President Abraham Lincoln never set foot in Hildene, his legacy remains with sections devoted to his memory. 

The 392-acre estate is also a working farm, with docent lead tours and walking trails. There is even a 1903 Pullman train exhibit. During winter, the Lincoln Family Home estate is famous for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, with 12 miles of designated trails. Ski and snowshoe rentals are available onsite.

2. Manchester’s Historic Districts

Main Street, Manchester, Vermont
Image by redjar/ CC BY-SA 2.0

Address: 40 Jeff Williams Way, Manchester Center, VT 05255

The Town of Manchester has four distinct historic districts. Each district has its charm, but together they chronicle Manchester, Vermont’s historical heritage and development. This collection of buildings and sites defines architectural repurposing.

The Manchester Center Historic District is located at the heart of Manchester on Main Street, including the two roundabouts. This district includes the Northshire Bookstore and the old Grist Mill.

The North Manchester Center Historic District is located on Main Street from Memorial Avenue north on Main Street. This district includes Zion Episcopal Church and the town’s Old Tavern.

The Manchester Depot Historic District includes portions of Elm Street and Highland Avenue off Depot Street. This district is a hidden gem, with the 1886 Colonial Theater — Manchester’s original movie theater.

The Bonnet Street Historic District focuses on the historical significance of the residences of Bonnet Street. It is home to House and Carriage House, now Brewster Antiques, and the original Rectory of First Baptist Church.

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Killington, Vermont

3. Southern Vermont Arts Center

Address: 860 Southern Vermont Arts Center Dr, Manchester, VT 05255

The Southern Vermont Arts Center is a 100-acre visual and performing arts complex located in a historic mansion in the Mount Equinox foothills. The Center includes Yester House, the iconic mansion, and the Elizabeth de C. Wilson Museum. Also on the sprawling acreage is the Arkell Concert Pavilion. 

The SVAC focuses on community outreach and child education with various artist-in-residence workshops and summer camps. Outside, the Center has an interactive botany walking trail.

The west Manchester museum is also home to curATE Cafe, which offers small plates, artisanal sandwiches, salads, and a full bar for lunch and dinner.

During the winter holidays, the Center is famous for its Winter Market. Spending a few hours or all day, the community-focused Southern Vermont Arts Center is one of the best Manchester tourist attractions.

See Related:  Fun & Best Things to Do in Bennington, Vermont 

4. American Museum of Fly Fishing

American Museum of Fly Fishing

Address: 4070 Main St, Manchester, VT 05254

Fly fishing is a historic sport with unique traditions and practices. The American Museum of Fly Fishing celebrates all things fly fishing. Housed in a 1800’s-era farmhouse, this small museum is home to the world’s largest collection of angling and angling-related items. The impressive collection contains over 40,000 individual pieces dating back to the 16th Century.

Part of the museum, the Leigh H. Perkins Gallery, maintains a rotating exhibit of fly fishing paintings, drawings, and photography. And the online gift shop is sure to have the perfect Vermont souvenirs for the Fly Fisher back home.

After perusing the American Museum of Fly Fishing, the Kimpton Taconic Hotel is Just down Vermont Route 7a for a rest and refresh. The modern boutique hotel sits in historic Manchester village within walking distance of outlet shops and downtown Manchester. 

The hotel’s onsite pub, the Copper Grouse, has incredible local brews and craft cocktails. Or, if you would like to continue exploring Manchester, The Silver Fork is a trendy, dinner-only restaurant housed in a historic library building.

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Stowe, Vermont

5. Lye Brook Falls and Trail

Waterfall at Lye Brook Falls and Trail

Address: Lye Brook Falls Trail, Manchester Center, VT 05255

Lye Brook Falls Trail is just a few miles from the city center, right off Route 7. The gravel trail is a 4.7-mile out and back hike that follows a former logging railroad bed up a gradual slope. 

A spur ends in a stunning 125-foot waterfall, Lye Brook Falls, at the southern trail tip and is one of the largest granite waterfalls in Vermont. At the base of the falls is an overlook with a short rough path to the streambed.

The climb is steady and perfect for all ages and skill levels. Lye Brook Falls is a good option if you’re looking for things to do in Manchester with kids. Hikers can access the trail along Lye Brook Access Road and Lye Brook Falls or in the Green Mountain National Forest.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Massachussets

6. Mount Equinox Skyline Drive

Mount Equinox Skyline Drive

Address: 42 Skyline Dr, Arlington, VT 05250

Wherever you go in Manchester, Mt Equinox looms protectively in the distance. There are several ways to see the 3840 feet peak, the highest in the Taconic Range. The most common is either by car or on foot.

Skyline Drive is an ascent to the mountain’s summit if you are driving. The entrance to Skyline Drive is a few minutes south of Manchester on Route 7A. There is a nominal charge to access the toll-styled road. The paved toll road leads to the Saint Bruno Scenic Viewing Center. If you look, there is also a student radio tower.

If you are feeling adventurous, there is also a mountain hiking trail. The Mount Equinox trail is an unattended, 6.8 miles out-an-back. It is considered a challenging hike up 3840 feet, suitable for intermediate and advanced hikers. 

But either way, you reach the summit, and the view from Mount Equinox is well worth the effort. There are spectacular views at the top of the mountain, but there is also a lake and a monastery. Founded in 1960 by Fr. Thomas Verner Moore, the Charterhouse of the Transfiguration is the only Carthusian monastery in the United States.

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Burlington, Vermont

7. Northshire Bookstore

Address: 4869 Main St., Manchester Center, VT 05255

The next time you visit Manchester, consider spending some time at the Northshire Bookstore. It is housed in the historic Colburn House. Quirky and cozy, this iconic Manchester store offers bookseller recommendations and local Vermont lore. There is also a collection of rare and signed books. And the 2nd floor is dedicated to a Children’s Section.

As a historic home, Northshire Bookstore has numerous nooks and alcoves to enjoy your purchases. This family-owned, independent bookstore was voted ‘Best Bookstore in the Country’ by Publishers Weekly magazine and ‘Best of New England’ by Yankee magazine. 

After a day of reading, a hearty Vermont meal is in order. Despite its size, Manchester has many restaurants to choose from. The nearby Depot Street Burgers serves traditional burgers. But the Ye Olde Tavern housed in the Historic District will satisfy the most particular tastes.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Vermont & Places to Visit

8. Robert Frost Stone House Museum

Robert Frost Stone House Museum
hw22 / Shutterstock.com

Address: 121 Rte. 7A, Shaftsbury, VT 05262

While not directly within Manchester, the importance of this poetic icon warrants a slight detour. The Robert Frost Stone House Museum, curated by Bennington College, is located about 15 minutes away in Shaftsbury, Vermont. The house is also not far from Robert Frost’s gravesite in Old Bennington Cemetery in Bennington, Vermont.

Stone House served as this famous poet’s home from 1920 to 1929. Robert Frost is synonymous with New England, writing about the region’s culture and terroir. Poetry fans 

Pulitzer Prize winner Frost wrote the poem “Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening” while living in the area, celebrating the seasonal snow and charms of small towns.

See Related: Best Day Trips from Boston

9. Battenkill River

Battenkill River

Address: 5827 VT-313, Arlington, VT 05250

The Battenkill River is a natural flow river that runs from the headwaters in Manchester, Vermont, directly through Arlington, Vermont, and New York state. Affected by rainwater, the river is mercurial. The stretch along Manchester’s Route 313 is popular for short kayak runs, canoe paddling, tubing, and fly fishing. 

The river around Manchester is typically gentle and not very deep. The first bridge crossing over the river is the most visible entry point at the Route 313 and Route 7A intersection. A lazy couple of hours will lead to the covered bridge egress. 

If you don’t have a tube, there are several rental shops along the way. Tubing the Battenkill River or just enjoying a picnic on the river banks is a favorite thing to do in Manchester.

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Montpelier, Vermont

10. The Land Rover Experience

Address: 80 Union St., Manchester Village, VT 05255

The Land Rover Experience, based in Manchester, Vermont, provides the rare opportunity to drive the versatile Land Rover and encounter all kinds of terrain in all seasons and weather. 

This unique experience is open year-round and features off-road driving instruction in all conditions on an 80-acre purpose-built course with extensive trails and challenges. 

The difficulty degree matches the driver’s skill. Private instructors teach basic ascending and descending techniques. Drivers will also learn how to handle trail side tilts and significantly rocky terrain. In comparison, advanced drivers explore Land Rover’s Green Mountain trail system. 

Whether you take a brief 25-minute adventure or spend the day in four-wheel drive splendor, this is a one-of-a-kind attraction. Undoubtedly, the Land Rover Experience is one of the best things to do in Manchester.

See Related: Vermont Road Trip You’ll Want to Follow

11. Manchester Farmers Market

Address: Adams Park, Manchester, VT 05255

The Manchester Farmers Market began in 2000 and ran from May to October, offering fresh fruits and vegetables. The North Meadow Farms are always on hand with fresh produce, meats, cheeses, and eggs. There are also herbs and plants from the nursery. And prepared foods can be pre-ordered. At the same time, several area vendors sell potatoes, maple products, and creative crafts.

Located in Adams Park, the market has numerous kid’s programs running throughout the summer. Art Farm is a dedicated tent for free agriculture-inspired crafts and food-based activities. 

The farmer’s market also provides space, the tent, for local non-profits to present their involvement in the community. And on Kid’s Market Day, children get to sell their wares every year over the summer break. 

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Brattleboro, Vermont

12. Equinox Preserve

Equinox Pond and Mount Equinox at the Equinox Preservation Trust in Manchester, Vermont, USA.

Address: West Union St., Manchester Village, VT 05255

The Equinox Preserve, not to be confused with the Equinox Pond and Pond Pavillion, consists of over 914 acres surrounding Mount Equinox in Manchester Village. The Equinox Resort owns the Equinox Preserve, which the Equinox Preservation Trust curates.

The Equinox Highlands, including Mount Equinox and Mother Myrick Mountain, is at the northernmost end of the Taconic Mountain range. The Rich Northern Hardwood Forest on Mount Equinox is one of the Northeast’s largest. And rare plants are associated with the forest.

Twelve trails crisscross the Preserve. The easiest is the Flatlander Trail. Mountain Bluff, an advanced trail, has steep ascents, rising to an elevation of 1580 feet before joining the Pond Loop. Like many trails, this allows hiking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and biking. 

The Trillium and Equinox Pond Trails are great for hikers of all skills and ages. Trillium Trail is a 1.25-mile connector trail off the Pond Loop to the Southern Vermont Art Center Loop. The Equinox Pond Loop is a pleasant walk-around but crosses private land owned by The Equinox Resort.

See Related: Tips for Traveling with Toddlers and Kids

13. Manchester Skate Park

A concrete skate park

Address: 340 Rec Park Rd, Manchester Center, VT 05255

Known by the locals as The Rec, Dana L. Thompson Memorial Park is the largest park in the area – more than 95 acres. The park is home to athletic spaces, pickleball and tennis courts, and three kids’ playgrounds. And the Park House contains a six-lane swimming pool. There is also a paved one-mile walking path and a 400-meter running track. Even your favorite pup has a spot.

The Manchester Skate Park, located within the Dana L. Thompson Memorial Park, is a 6,000-square-foot skatepark. The skate park is a challenging half bowl that contains a mix of street elements and transition obstacles. It was explicitly designed for skateboards, bikes, and scooter use. The park is open from sunrise to sunset.

Relatively small, the skatepark is still well appointed with down and flat ledges, euro gaps, and handrails. While neither rentals nor lessons are offered at the skatepark, downtown Manchester has a skate shop, Arson Skate Shop, that can accommodate. This community green space is not far from Aspen at Manchester, a quiet motel perfect for couples or solo travelers.

14. North Meadow Farm

North Meadow Farm
Image source: TripAdvisor

Address: 726 North Rd., Manchester, VT 05255

North Meadow Farm is a Manchester working farm. It is home to a small herd of Guernsey, Jersey, and Holstein – all dairy cows. These include free-range bovines Dolly, Dopey, Margaret, and mama Margaret, Queen of the Farm. The farm produces grass-fed raw milk, meats, fresh cheese curd, artisan farmhouse cheeses, and fresh farm eggs.

All cheeses are handmade. The in-house fromagers (cheese makers) use traditional methods to craft Northshire Blue, Farmstead Cheddar, and Gouda. There are also cheese curds and farmstead spreads. Visitors to the farm can pet a baby calf and take home some Vermont cheese. And North Meadow Farm products are sold at the Manchester Farmers’ Market.

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Seattle, Washington

15. Equinox Valley Nursery 

Address: 1158 Main St., Manchester, VT 05255

Equinox Valley Nursery and Garden is a beautiful garden and retail nursery a few miles south of Downtown Manchester, down Historic Route 7A. It overlooks the Equinox Valley in the Mount Equinox foothills. The nursery’s old-fashioned charm makes this one of Manchester, Vermont’s top attractions. 

Serene and bursting with color, the nursery greenhouses are a visual feast. And there is a tropical conservatory with houseplants and Hawaiian orchids.

During the Fall, the nursery comes alive. Pick a pumpkin, and wander between the scarecrows and corn maze. Take a wagon ride to our “North Field” to view the changing foliage. 

And for a snack, enjoy locally sourced cider and donuts at the Equinox Valley Nursery. Holiday Open House kicks off the season where holiday trees, Poinsettias, and Christmas plants are available. There is even a chance that the big guy and the reindeer may stop by for some hot cider.

With everything there is to do at the Equinox Valley Nursery, it is no wonder this is one of the best free things to do in Manchester, with kids or without.

16. Helmholz Fine Art

Address: 442 Depot St., Manchester, VT 05255

Manchester is a city of art, whether a historically preserved building or a classical painter. The Helmholz Fine Art gallery represents local artists who are masters in their medium and passionate about sharing their vision and message.

Founded by Lisa Helmholz-Adams, this intimate gallery boasts a significant influence by using its proceeds to fund Global Reach. This unique philanthropic venture endeavors to impact humanitarian causes and concerns worldwide.

The dozen or so artists at the gallery represent a range of media, from the breathtaking images of intimate photographer Lisa Cueman to the authentic street artist Goons. And the environmental sculptor Pat Musick complements the conceptual sculptures of Stepahia Urist.

Exhibitions and artwork views are through scheduled events throughout the year and each weekend. A couple of blocks from the gallery is the Depot Cafe Restaurant. This iconic lunch and dinner eatery serves wood-fired pizzas & Mediterranean fare in a furniture store.

See Related: Best Museums in Minnesota: History, Culture, and Art

17. Manchester Hot Glass

Glass product at Manchester Hot Glass
Image source: TripAdvisor

Address: 79 Elm St., Manchester Center, VT 05255

If you are still wondering what to do in Manchester, try a trip to Manchester Hot Glass. The gallery is located in the town’s Historic Depot District. And this intimate blown-glass studio & and gallery is free and open daily. 

Hand-blown glass has been a part of homes for thousands of years. Glassblowing was invented by Syrian craftsmen 1st Century BC, although some archeological evidence dates back to the 2nd millennium BC. Visitors to Manchester Hot Glass can watch the artists demonstrate finely honed skills and precision necessary to work with molten glass. 

Artist and owner Andrew Weill crafts a full line of stemware, lighting decorations, and handmade jewelry. Manchester Hot Glass also offers private classes, including a beginner’s guide-Glass-blowing 101, and paperweight making.

18. Tilting at Windmills Gallery

Tilting at Windmills

Address: 24 Highland Ave., Manchester Center, VT05255

One of New England’s most extensive fine-art galleries, Tilting at Windmills celebrates essential regional and international artists. Exhibits represent paintings, mixed media, sculpture, and photography and are constantly changing. A virtual tour of hundreds of pieces is available online.

Tilting at Windmills is located in the town’s Historic Depot District. After a few hours of browsing, stop for a bit of pub fare and a brew at the Firefly Restaurant directly across the street. 

See Related: Ways To Avoid the Fast Food Trap!

19. Equinox Resort – Golf and Spa

Equinox Resort
LEE SNIDER PHOTO IMAGES / Shutterstock.com

Address: 3567 Main St, Manchester, VT 05254

Equinox Golf Course is a scenic 18-hole, par-71 course designed in 1927 by the famed Walter Travis. Known for its challenging play, The Equinox extends 6,423 yards and is surrounded by Green Ridge Mountains and hardwood forests.

But during the American Revolution, the site was less than serene. The Equinox was initially known during the American Revolution as Marsh Tavern. It was here that Ethan Allen’s younger brother, Ira, proposed seizing the property of Tories to raise money for the Green Mountain Boys. 

The Equinox Golf Resort & Spa offers 199 guest rooms, a full spa, lawn croquet, and specialty tours, creating an atmosphere of retreat and relaxation. The outdoor terrace and large fire pit ensure cozy year-round seating. 

Other resort activities include disc golf, an up-close look at the area’s owls, ravens, hawks, and an afternoon of axe throwing. Afterward, sip a craft cocktail at the Falcon Bar before enjoying dinner at Chop House, Equinox’s onsite steak house.

20. Appalachian Trail

Wooden Bridge in Vermont Forest - Appalachian Trail

Address: Manchester, VT 05255

Manchester, Vermont, is just over four miles from the Appalachian Trail and the Long Trail. This proximity makes Manchester a hiker hub each summer, and the town is peppered with Hiker Friendly signs. 

The Appalachian Trail is a 2,200-mile hike trail that extends up and down the eastern United States, traveling through fourteen states along the crests and valleys of the Appalachian Mountain Range.  Its northernmost point is at Katahdin, Maine, and its southernmost is Springer Mountain, Georgia. 

It takes five to seven months for a dedicated and experienced hiker to complete an Appalachian Trail thru-hike. The Green Mountain Hiker Hostel in Manchester is open during the summer offering private rooms and amenities. Reservations are recommended. 

The Long Trail is the oldest long-distance trail — inspiring the Appalachian Trail. It followed the main ridge of the Green Mountains from the Massachusetts-Vermont line to the Canadian border. The two routes merge for 100 miles in the southern part of the state. For hikers that want a feel of the Appalachian Trail, the LT/AT trailhead is near Manchester.

See Related: Best Hiking Trails in America

21. Manchester Dog Park

Group of dogs playing

Address: 340 Rec Park Rd, Manchester Center, VT 05255

With such exquisite beauty surrounding Manchester, Vermont, it is only fair that the family pup has a dedicated urban green space. Dana L. Thompson Memorial Park, the largest people-park in Manchester, has set aside space for our four-legged friends. 

The Manchester Dog Park is southwestern Vermont’s first public dog-centric space. It is a fully fenced, leash-free, run-and-play zone. 

Manchester Dog Park is open 365 days a year from sunrise to sunset. It welcomes canines of all sizes and, of course, their handlers. However, there is no specific small or elderly dog section, so it is asked that owners stay with their dogs at all times. Dana L. Thompson Park, a community recreational complex, was named for a police chief killed in the line of duty. 

22. The Museum of the Creative Process

The Museum of the Creative Process
Image source: TripAdvisor

Address: 3814 Main Street, Manchester Village, VT  05255

The Museum of the Creative Process is a fascinating look at the human psyche. It is a new theory that integrates psychology and religion into the science of morality. 

It features five permanent art exhibits explaining the creative process as conflict reflecting the unconscious. Located on the Wilburton Campus, the multimedia exhibits attempt to bridge art and science to redefine our understanding of psychology and religion. 

Paintings, murals, garden sculptures, and statues that investigate human myth and mythos are located at the Museum of the Creative Process, Wilburton Campus, with The Moral Science Project Gallery and Sculpture Park, in Manchester Village.

After several hours of intellectual musings, enjoy a serene evening at the nearby Reluctant Panther Inn & Restaurant, where all rooms are fully appointed for a relaxing stay.

See Related: Best Military Museums in Europe

23. The Union Underground

Address: 4928 Main Street, Manchester Center, VT 05255

The Union Underground sits in the heart of Manchester Center. It is a gastropub with an upscale, locally sourced pub menu. 

But that is not all. This popular downtown destination is housed in an industrial bank vault in a restored building. And is the go-to place for billiards and live music. There is also a game room with shuffleboard and, of course, darts. The Union Underground also offers karaoke competitions for the adventurous.

If you are looking for a more sedate evening with friends, try Mulligans directly across from the Taconic Hotel in Manchester Village. Housed in a converted 19th Century Victorian home, this genuine Irish-style pub offers classic American fare and imperial pints. 

24. Pastime Pinball

Address: 4802 Main St, Manchester Center, VT 05255

The best part of Play Pastime Pinball, besides over 60 vintage games, is that everything is free play, almost. There is a flat cover charge that includes all-day play. 

This old-style arcade in Manchester, Vermont, is located near the Manchester Designer Outlets, about a block from the Depot Street round-a-bout. The Manchester Designer Outlets are stand-alone stores with recognized brand names such as Eddie Bauer, Armani, and Eileen Fisher.

Play Pastime Pinball is also a short walk from the Manchester Vermont Visitor’s Center and The Bonnet & Main Cafe.  There is even an EVO charging station nearby.

See Related: Cheapest Shopping Destinations in the World

25. Fairs and Festivals

Address: 410 Hunter Park Rd, Manchester Center, VT 05255

Numerous festivals and fairs keep everyone occupied throughout the year in Manchester, Vermont. From winter snow festivals to lake summer musical festivals, it is easy to find things to do in Manchester, Vermont.

In the Fall, the breathtaking display of color makes Manchester, Vermont, a top tourist destination. Along with the change in foliage comes the Merck Forest and Farmland Center’s Harvest Festival. Another seasonal event in Manchester is the annual Barn Sale selling kitchen supplies, books, and clothing for a worthy cause.

Also in town is the Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival. Held in the valley at the Northshire Civic Center at Hunter Park, you’ll find artists galore displaying their work and selling their goods. And while you are at Hunter Park, carve out a few hours to enjoy Riley Rink, an indoor public ice skating rink.

26. Stratton Mountain Resort

Stratton Mountain Resort

Address: 5 Village Lodge Rd, Stratton Mountain, VT 05155

Vermont is also known as the American’s winter playground with several mountains and resorts within a hour’s drive. Stratton Mountain is a favorite among locals. It is also accessible by MOOver, a free transit system that runs 4 to 8 trips to the mountain daily

About 20 miles from Manchester, Stratton Mountain offers a whole host of snow-induced entertainment including excellent downhill snow skiing with sweeping views of the valley. If you are a bit rusty, ski pros at the Mountain Sports School teach mountain awareness as well as downhill, snowboarding, and cross-country ski lessons.

A mobile app keeps visitors up to date on mountain conditions and allows reservations and appointment settings. You wouldn’t want to be late for your custom ski fitting!

Stratton is not just for winter, there are activities on the mountain and in small village towns throughout the year. Mountain biking, festivals, and concerts are all part of the Stratton Mountain Resort experience.

See Related: Best Hiking Trails in the World You Must Visit

27. Bromley Mountain

Address: 124 Bromley Lodge Rd, Peru, VT 05152

Another all-season mountain close to Manchester is Bromley Mountain. During the seasons without snow, mountain goes can sign up for lessons at the Orvis Fly-Fishing School or enjoy Bromley Mountain Adventure Park. There is also Wood & Meadows, a 18-hole, Disc Golf Course that can only be reached by ski lift. There is also horseback riding, climbing, and authentic mountain biking.

One of the best uses of a ski lift in the off-season is to tour the tree tops for a look at the spectacular Vermont Fall Foliage. A bird’s eye view of the changing colors is definitely worth the trip.

Located just six miles east of Manchester, Vermont, this family-friendly mountain park boasts an alpine slide and a maze of cross-country ski trails that blanket the area. The mountain also has 44 downhill trails, 10 lifts, a terrain park with half-pipe and big air jumps. If you are just getting started on your snowboarding obsession, ski and snowboard rentals and lessons are available.

FAQ

What is the best thing to do with kids in Manchester?

North Meadow Farm is a Manchester working farm with a small herd of dairy ten cows and a petting zoo. The farm offers tours highlighting the natural healthy processes of locally sourced food. Kids can learn about the farm and its traditions. And visitors can grab fresh cheese, raw milk, and farm eggs, or pet the newest baby calf.

What are some things to do in Manchester when it’s raining?

Manchester Hot Glass is a public glassblowing studio and gallery in Manchester’s Historic Depot District. Visitors can watch artists create masterpieces with molten glass or take a private glassblowing lesson. If it’s a long storm, find a nook and a good book at the Northshire Bookstore. Quirky and cozy, this historic Manchester store offers a unique selection of books. Kids can head to the 2nd floor for their own sections

What are the best tourist attractions in Manchester?

Lye Brook Falls Trail is a 4.7-mile gravel trail that follows a former logging railroad bed up a gradual slope. It ends in a 125-foot waterfall. For something a bit more sedate, another great tourist attraction in Manchester is The American Museum of Fly Fishing which celebrates all things fly fishing. It is the world’s largest collection, with 40,000 items, of angling and angling-related items — dating back to the 16th Century.

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