Montpelier Tourist Information and Tourism

(Montpelier, Vermont - VT, USA)

The smallest state capital in the whole of America really is quite compact, with its population not even yet topping 10,000 people. Yet, it is the small-town feel and intimate, walkable nature of Montpelier that is all part of its allure as a potential holiday destination with a difference, not to mention the scenic verdant backdrop of hills and abundance of historic period architecture.

Settlement of Montpelier commenced in the late 1780s and in 1805, the city became the capital of Vermont, being officially incorporated the following decade. Today, the cityscape remains somewhat dominated by the rather eye-catching Vermont State House, which comes complete with a shiny gold-leaf dome and imposing columns, and is fronted by a giant staircase.

The corner of Main Street and State Street is a good place to head if you are beginning to feel peckish, since here you will find a particularly good selection of eateries. However, don't expect to find a McDonald's - this is a Ronald-free city. State Street is the place to come for tourist information, being home to the Capitol Region Visitors Center, which is located just across from the meandering Winooski River.

Montpelier Tourist Information and Tourism: Top Sights

Being such a tiny city means that tourists don't usually spend a great deal of time in Montpelier and the tourism infrastructure is fairly basic. However, there are a few attractions that add interest to the city and welcome visitors all through the year. Being fairly compact means that downtown Montpelier is extremely easy to walk around and this is the ideal way to get to know this intriguing city. During the summer months, the outdoor pool at the Recreation Field is a popular haunt of locals, while the resident sports fields here are often used for baseball, soccer and American football games.

At the City Hall Auditorium Arts Center on Main Street, the Lost Nation Theater injects more than its fair share of culture and was established towards the end of the 1980s, regularly hosting plays, musicals and a number of comedy gigs. Just a very short stroll away is the Savoy Theater, where mainly independent films are screened on a regular basis, with vintage-style seating and plenty of popcorn. You may also like to catch one of the tourist buses and pay a visit to the Morse Farm Sugar Works, on the northeasterly outskirts of the city, to sample the various different syrups produced here. More information about Montpelier Tourist Attractions.

The Vermont State House is certainly central to local tourism and the free half-hourly guided tours are strongly recommended and extremely popular. Behind the Capitol, a woodland trail takes you away from the politics and government issues, and allows you to almost immediately immerse yourself in real Vermont nature. On the edge of Hubbard Park and just a short distance directly north of the State House (via Course Street) is the Hubbard Park Tower. This rather unexpected stone tower really is a must-see, particularly if you are prepared to climb to the very top and take in some superb views of the surroundings from the highest point in Montpelier. During the winter, when the weather becomes colder and snow reliably comes along, local children often head to this hill with their sledges. More information about Montpelier Landmarks and Monuments.

Museum-goers will soon realise that the Vermont Historical Society Museum is the city's only real offering that falls into this category. Situated within the French-inspired Pavilion Building and right next to the Vermont State House, this museum is filled with interest and information relating to 'Vermonters'. Further museums lie outside of the city, at neighboring Vermont towns such as Cabot, Calais, Northfield, Randolph and Stowe, while for art galleries, consider checking out the T. W. Wood Gallery and Art Center on Barre Street and the Vermont Crafts Council on Main Street, both of which reside within downtown Montpelier. More information about Montpelier Museums and Montpelier Art Galleries.

Montpelier lives within New England and on the northern side of Vermont, where it is intersected by Interstate I-89, Highway US-2 and Highway US-302. These excellent road connections mean that the capital enjoys good access to much of its state, with an Amtrak railway station providing a further way to get out and about if day trips appear on your agenda.

As the biggest of all the cities in Vermont, Burlington is still far from what you might call a metropolis and comes with a population in the region of 45,000 residents, along with more of a developed tourism infrastructure. Tourist offerings include a healthy shopping scene in downtown Burlington and various attractions around Lake Champlain, such as cruises, North Beach, and the ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center (Leahy Center). The Vermont Symphony Orchestra regularly performs at the Flynn Theater, and guided tours of the Ethan Allen Homestead may warrant a look. Elsewhere, day trip possibilities include the Cabot Creamery - with information about the making of its cheese, the Stowe Mountain Resort - home of Mount Mansfield and the Spruce Peak, and Waterbury - featuring tours of Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Factory. More information about Montpelier Attractions Nearby.

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