Burlington, VT Travel Guide

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Why Go To Burlington, VT

Burlington, a quaint Vermont town on the shore of Lake Champlain, thrives on all things offbeat. The public square on Church Street is an outdoor walking promenade lined with various shops, dining options and street performers. Meanwhile, the Shelburne Museum houses a fully transplanted train station and the steamboat Ticonderoga, and the city's breweries feature live events and interactive tours. Even the most famous Burlington settlers – like Ethan Allen (of the Green Mountain Boys, not the furniture retailer), Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield (yes that Ben and Jerry, which is founded and headquartered in nearby Waterbury) – march to the beat of their own drum. So, pack your Birkenstocks, book the bed-and-breakfast and get ready to live and let live in Burlington. 

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Best of Burlington, VT

Burlington, VT Travel Tips

Best Months to Visit

The best time to visit Burlington is from May to September when the festival schedule picks up and the city bursts with greenery. The shoulder months of April and November welcome fewer crowds and reduced hotel rates but are less desirable for adventure travelers. April can get pretty muddy, and the tourism industry slows down in November to prep for the winter sports season. Hotel prices spike from December to March, when skiers and snowboarders descend on the city's nearby slopes. 

Weather in Burlington, VT

Switch to Celsius/MM
Average Temperature (°F)
26.7
9.3
29
10.9
39.6
21.8
53.3
33.6
67.8
45.2
76.5
54.7
81.4
59.8
78.4
58.1
68.9
49.9
56.4
38.9
44
30.3
32.3
17.3
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Average Precipitation (in)
0.09
0.07
0.09
0.11
0.13
0.14
0.16
0.16
0.15
0.12
0.12
0.09
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
See details for When to Visit Burlington, VT

Data sourced from the National Climatic Data Center

What You Need to Know

  • Two words: free samples From chocolates to beer, Burlington is full of factory tours – and loads of free samples and giveaways too. 
  • It's a college town Home to the University of Vermont and Champlain College, the city has a younger vibe.
  • Pick up a paper Free local newspapers, like "Seven Days," will give you a good handle on the ever-changing festival schedule.

How to Save Money in Burlington, VT

  • Consider a bed-and-breakfast Burlington's quaint inns and bed-and-breakfasts may be a more economical choice than they city's brand hotels. 
  • Time your trip right Visit in May or the weeks following Columbus Day in mid-October for the cheapest hotel rates. May in Burlington is great because the weather starts warming up; late October offers beautiful foliage viewing without the crowds. Traveling midweek will also cut down on the cost of your accommodations.
  • Find free parking The first two hours of parking in downtown Burlington garages are free. On Sundays, parking is free almost everywhere in the city.

What to Eat

If your only knowledge of Burlington's dining scene is its famous Ben & Jerry's ice cream, you're in for quite a treat. Burlington is home to a diverse range of dining options, from food trucks and packed food halls to farm-to-table restaurants that celebrate the best ingredients Vermont has to offer.

In the summertime, the Burlington Farmers Market is the perfect place to start the day thanks to its wide range of local treats and fresh produce. But if you're looking for a heartier breakfast, The Skinny Pancake is famous for its fantastic crepes, both sweet and savory.

Of course, if you're on Church Street, you'll want to stop in to a few of the restaurants that line this popular promenade. Honey Road, an Eastern Mediterranean restaurant, earns high marks from diners for its eclectic menu and innovative cocktails. Plan to make a reservation as a tables are hard to come by, according to reviewers. For more casual pizza and beers, head one street west of the Church Street Marketplace to American Flatbread for wood-fired pies.

Many of Burlington's top restaurants pride themselves on their farm-to-table menus, with most sourcing their ingredients from nearby farms in the Champlain Valley. A few top-rated eateries include Farmhouse Tap & Grill, Hen of the Wood, Blank Page Cafe, Juniper and Revolution Kitchen.

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Burlington, VT1 of 14
Burlington, VT2 of 14

Rock Point offers a stunning view of Burlington's skyline.

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