A few weeks ago, during the last full week before school started, my family headed up to Vermont for an end of summer family vacation. We started out with three nights at Smugglers’ Notch Resort, one of our absolute favorite family vacation destinations.
Smugglers’ Notch always feels like one of those old-fashioned vacation spots – a place where the kids enjoy camp and other activities all day and then come together with their families in the evening. The resort offers family-friendly activities all week long, from magic and marionette shows to the kids’ parade and Vermont country fair held every Thursday. For the past three years, we’ve visited in the summer, and for the past three years we’ve always left saying that we will definitely return, and stay for more days.
My kids were a little apprehensive about attending camp the first day (surprisingly, since they’ve attended over the last two years), but they loved it. My daughter got to choose between four different camp themes, and she chose adventure and hiking. Each day, her group hiked to a new location, and she had a great time My son also enjoyed his camp, and when we saw him throughout the day, instead of running to us, he just shyly waved and kept walking.
After our three nights at Smugglers’ Notch, we headed over the notch to Stowe Mountain Lodge for another two nights. While it’s just a short drive (maybe 10 minutes?) the notch makes it feel like a completely different place.
The Stowe Mountain Lodge is a four-season resort, but being more of a warm weather lover, I truly enjoyed spending time in the summer there. The kids loved the alpine slides, the heated pool, the bungee trampoline, and the inflatable obstacle course. The hotel rooms are absolutely amazing, and we definitely should have spent more than two nights there.
I originally thought that a vacation the week before school started would have been too hectic, but it turns out that it was the best idea. We had such a great, relaxing time. I’m considering traveling up there in the winter for skiing.
Disclosure: I received complimentary lodging at the Stowe Mountain Lodge, and complimentary camps at Smugglers’ Notch!