Things to Do in Montpelier and Barre, Vermont
in Things to Do by
In central Vermont, Montpelier sits as the smallest capital city in the United States — but what it lacks in size, it makes up for in a big way with charm, historic appeal and Vermont’s overall great dining and beverage scene. If you’re visiting Montpelier and adjacent Barre for the first time, here are a few “must” activities to add to your itinerary.
1. Visit a sugar house (or two or three!)
Vermont is known for its maple syrup industry. Support the local producers and enjoy a tasty treat or two by visiting some of the area sugar houses. Even if you’re not visiting the state during maple syrup season, you can still taste test the fruits of this unique harvest year-round thanks to delicious local products like maple candy and syrups from last season. Try Morse Farm Maple Sugarworks or Bragg Farm Sugar House.
2. Visit the Vermont State House.
The Vermont State House is touted as one of the oldest and best-preserved state capitals in the country. History and architecture buffs alike will enjoy taking in the Greek Revival stylings and the surrounding Montpelier Historic District.
Photograph courtesy of Vermont History Center
3. Check out the Vermont Historical Society Museum.
Want more history? Visit the Vermont Historical Society Museum. Learn about the small state’s past and discover exhibits on Vermont residents, inventions and more. Artifacts on display are mostly related to Vermont history, as you would expect, but many also have national appeal, such as the Revolutionary War artifacts.
Photograph courtesy of North Branch Nature Center Facebook
4. Get outdoors at the North Branch Nature Center.
While Vermont is filled with spots to hike, ski, mountain bike and otherwise enjoy the great outdoors, if you want something that’s a little tamer than the surrounding peaks, you might try a stop by North Branch Nature Center. Located conveniently close to downtown Montpelier, the nature center welcomes all ages to learn and play.
Photograph courtesy of City of Montpelier
5. Go on an adventure just steps from downtown, at Hubbard Park.
Another spot to enjoy Vermont’s scenery and natural landscape, but without needing to go very far at all, Hubbard Park is one of the area’s largest and most popular outdoor attractions. It offers over seven miles of hiking and cross-country skiing trails, a sledding hill and a stone observation tower, all on its more than 200 acres.
Photograph courtesy of the Central Vermont Chamber of Commerce via nps.gov
6. See one of Vermont’s famous covered bridges, Coburn Covered Bridge.
Just as Vermont is famous for its maple syrup, the state is likewise famous for its covered bridges. You can easily see one while staying in Montpelier, thanks to the Coburn Covered Bridge, the only remaining historic covered bridge in the area. Built in the 1840s, the bridge crosses the Winooski River and you can get out of your vehicle and see it on foot, if you so wish.
Need more ideas for what to do while in Montpelier? Our list above just scratches the surface of all the fun to be had in the area, whether you’re traveling as a family and looking for kid-friendly activities, as a couple and looking for romance or just as anyone interested in all of Vermont’s history and adventure. Find all the information you need to plan your perfect Vermont vacation, with the Discovery Map Montpelier and Barre, Vermont guide.