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10 Must-Visit Stops For Your Boston To Vermont Fall Road Trip Adventure

by Staff

Summary

  • Fall road trips in New England offer picturesque views and abundant festivities. Explore historic towns and beautiful landscapes on the Boston to Stowe route.
  • Each stop along the way, such as Concord, Lowell, and Manchester, has unique attractions and accommodations for road trippers to enjoy.
  • In Stowe, the grand finale of the trip, visitors can explore the village, visit the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum, and indulge in delicious local cuisine.

Fall is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque times of year for the New England region in the US. Fall colors frame every route, and festivities abound in nearly every town. Fall is also one of the best times of year to take a New England road trip.

One of the best road trip routes in New England runs from Boston, Massachusetts, to Stowe, Vermont, which explores historic New England towns and the beautiful Vermont countryside. This road trip route is ideal for those interested in a road trip that is all about the journey rather than the destination.

There are plenty of ways to get from Boston to Stowe, from the direct I-89 to the meandering Route 100. Below are just 10 of the best stops along these routes from Boston to Vermont for roadtrippers looking for their Fall adventure.

Just as important as planning the perfect itinerary for a road trip from Boston to Vermont is finding the perfect place to stay for those overnight stops. Each must-see location is accompanied by a highly-rated accommodation, selected based on its guest reviews and proximity to major attractions in the city.

Related: 10 Incredible Things To Do In New England During The Fall

10
Concord, Massachusetts


Via: Shutterstock

Old North Bridge in Concord, Massachusetts at sunrise.

In true road trip fashion, the first stop between Boston, Massachusetts, and Stowe, Vermont, is just a short drive from the starting point. Despite being a mere half an hour outside of Boston, the historic town of Concord, Massachusetts, has plenty of things to do that make it well worth the detour.

For those making this New England road trip in the fall, a walk around Walden Pond in Walden Pond State Reservation is a must. The already picturesque water, the inspiration for Henry David Thoreau’s “Walden,” is even more stunning as the vibrant fall colors reflect on the pond.

Concord is also a great road trip stop for outings when the weather is less than ideal. Indoor activities like the Concord Museum ensure there is always something to see in this Massachusetts town.

9
Lowell, Massachusetts


A road winding through a forest in Massachusetts in the fall.
Photo by Eilis Garvey on Unsplash

A road winding through a forest in Massachusetts in the fall.

Like Concord, Lowell, Massachusetts, is rich in history which makes it a worthy addition to any New England road trip itinerary. Lowell’s history is primarily industrial, and the historic mills and numerous museums have taken great efforts to preserve that history.

Road trippers can tour several of the historic mills in Lowell or enjoy the interactive exhibits at Lowell National Historical Park to learn more about the town’s industrial past. Tours of the Lowell Canal System are also available for those looking to cruise through the town as they learn about its past.

Those needing some outdoor time can enjoy a walk or bike ride through either Lowell-Dracut-Tyngsboro State Forest or the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail, both excellent opportunities to enjoy the Massachusetts fall foliage.

8
Manchester, New Hampshire


Palace theater in Manchester
shutterstock: Wangkun Jia

Historic Palace Theater in Manchester, NH

Manchester, New Hampshire, is a must for road trip travelers looking to embrace the fall season. Outdoor spaces like Stark Park, Massabesic Lake, and Livingston Park are perfect for a casual walk through the hues of red, orange, and yellow.

Other Fall festivities, like Apple Picking or tasting seasonal offerings at the local meaderies and cideries, are perfect ways to spend an afternoon on the way from Boston to Stowe.

7
Ludlow, Vermont


Ludlow, Vermont
Shutterstock

Ludlow, Vermont

A popular ski resort town, Ludlow is an excellent first stop in Vermont on a road trip from Boston to Stowe. Since fall is outside of peak season, it is the perfect time to enjoy the quiet side of this scenic town. Attractions like the Okemo Mountain Resort and Ludlow Village are scenic areas to explore and shop in even before the snow hits the ground.

Other picturesque outdoor areas in Ludlow include the Healdville Trail, Echo Lake, and Buttermilk Falls, giving plenty of opportunity to rest cramped legs and enjoy the fall foliage of New England.

Related: Feeling Fall: 10 Most Idyllic Spots In Vermont To Visit When The Leaves Change

6
Killington, Vermont


Mendon Peak in Coolidge State Forest
Shutterstock 

Mendon Peak in Coolidge State Forest and Rutland Vermont from Killington Mountain Peak in the Fall

Road trips may be a relaxing way to enjoy the countryside, but that doesn’t mean there can’t be some truly high-adrenaline fun.

Killington, Vermont, is another great road trip stop between Boston and Stowe, with all the fall color visitors can expect from Vermont. It is also home to the Killington Adventure Center at the Killington Resort, where travelers can do everything from enjoy free hiking trails to catch a high speed ride down the resort zipline and mountain coaster.

For those looking for a more relaxing afternoon in Killington, local stops like the Vermont Farmstead Cheese Company offers cheese tastings daily.

5
Waitsfield, Vermont


Stark's Nest, Waitsfield, Vermont
Photo by Alex Moliski on Unsplash

Stark’s Nest, Waitsfield, Vermont

Fall is a great time to get outdoors in New England, and a road trip from Boston to Vermont is a great way to enjoy the best views, like Waitsfield, Vermont.

Waitsfield is one of the best places to enjoy the Fall foliage in Vermont, with numerous outdoor spaces to explore. The scenic chair lifts at Mad River Glen, taking guests right up the mountain to sprawling landscapes of the state.

For a more on-the-ground approach to the colors of Waitsfield, the Appalachian Gap, Warren Falls, and Camel’s Hump State Park all provide plenty of hiking and biking trails for locals and road trippers to explore.

4
Waterbury, Vermont


Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Factory
Shutterstock

WATERBURY, VT, USA: Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Factory in the town of Waterbury, Vermont VT, USA.

Treats are another staple of the road trip experience, so it’s no surprise that the location of the Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Factory is a must on the road trip from Boston through Vermont.

Situated in Waterbury, Vermont, visitors can tour the Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Factory, grabbing samples of the delicious flavors along the way.

Waterbury is also home to a variety of other exploration-worthy attractions, including the Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Visitor Center, the Cold Hollow Cider Mill, and local breweries like The Alchemist and Prohibition Pig.

Meanwhile, those looking for outdoor experience can enjoy some time on and around the water at the Waterbury Reservoir, ensuring that every kind of traveler can find something to enjoy.

3
Montpelier, Vermont


Fall foliage in Montpelier, Vermont, USA
Shutterstock

Fall foliage in Montpelier, Vermont, USA

As the road trip creeps towards its final destination of Stowe, there are still plenty of places to explore on this New England road trip. Montpelier, the smallest state capital in the US, is one of the best places to stop in Vermont, with all the amenities and experiences that one expects from a capital city.

Montpelier offers a wide variety of things to do and is a great stop for road trippers, particularly who want to include a variety of Museum stops in their itinerary. The Vermont History Museum and T.W. Wood Gallery and Arts Center both explore the beauty of Vermont, with one offering an in-depth look at the past and the other displaying the talent of the present.

Of course, leaf-peeping travelers will still have plenty to do in Montpelier. The city and its surrounding area are full of hiking and biking trails, and designated areas like the North Branch Nature Center, Hubbard Park, and Mill Pond Recreation Area provide even more ways to enjoy fall in the heart of Vermont.

Related: Explore The 10 Most Scenic Fall Hikes In Vermont Before Autumn Is Over

2
Hyde Park, Vermont


Asphalt road between beautiful fall foliage in Vermont, USA
Photo by Aditya Vyas on Unsplash

Asphalt road between beautiful fall foliage in Vermont, USA

Interestingly, the last stop on the way to Stowe, Vermont, from Boston, Massachusetts, is actually further north than the final destination. However, considering Hyde Park is a culmination of the best things about a New England road trip, with an abundance of outdoor opportunities, fall festivities, and, of course, plenty of color.

Elmore State Park and the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail both offer great vantage points for those hoping to immerse themselves in the fall foliage. Many guests, however, simply choose to set up a picnic or take a walk around the local park, since the entirety of Hyde Park is so colorful.

Cultural attractions also abound in Hyde Park, with various cultural and seasonal events happening year-round, particularly during the Fall.

Related: Leaf Peeping: 10 Least-Crowded State Parks In Vermont To See Fall Foliage

1
Stowe, Vermont


Church in Stowe, Vermont, framed by a tree
Shutterstock

Church in Stowe, Vermont, framed by a tree

The Grand finale of the Boston to Vermont Road trip, Stowe, Vermont, arguably one of the best places to live in Vermont, is the perfect place to explore at the end of this multi-day excursion through the countryside and mountains.

A true ski town, Stowe, Vermont, has a rich European history with plenty to do, making it a joy to explore all year round. Travelers will love exploring Stowe Village, full of shops, restaurants, and even the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum. The Trapp Family Lodge, established by the Von Trapps (from The Sound of Music), is another exceptional outdoor space to enjoy, with plenty of hiking trails to wander along.

Delicious food options are also abundant in Stowe. The Trapp Family Lodge has a variety of Austrian-inspired cuisine and other local offerings, like Vermont cheese tastings and Stowe Cider craft Cider tastings have something for every palate.

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