Not only is it home to the beautiful Vermont State House, but there are many historical museums and excellent places to eat here. It’s also on the Winooski River and is one of the best places to live in the state. What’s not to love?
By the end of this article, your Montpelier itinerary will be fully packed. Below, find all of the best things to do in Montpelier VT!
Table of Contents
Things to Do in Montpelier VT
Visit the Vermont State House.
If you only have time to cross one of these attractions off your list while visiting Montpelier, then visit the Vermont State House! Set against beautiful trees and featuring a golden dome, this is one of the top places to visit in the whole state.
The Vermont State House was built in the mid-nineteenth century and is beautiful architecturally. Free guided tours are available to guests during the warmer months of the year so that you can get a unique look inside the statehouse. Almost all Vermonters have been to the capitol at least once on a school trip!
Walk around Hubbard Park.
Hubbard Park is a huge green space located in Montpelier. It covers almost 200 acres and was first opened to the public back in 1899. It’s not that far from the Vermont State House, so both could easily be explored in the same afternoon.
Within the park, be sure to be on the lookout for the Hubbard Park Tower. It’s located on top of a hill, and there’s a great trail that leads up to it. The whole park is beautiful, and you could easily spend an hour or two here and get lost in the woods (in a good way)!
Learn at the Vermont Historical Society Museum.
The Vermont Historical Society Museum is one of the best educational things to do in Montpelier. The museum is located inside a gorgeous mansion and also has a gift shop so that you can pick up a souvenir to remember your fantastic trip to northern Vermont.
Inside the museum, which was only recently established in 2002, you’ll find lots of artifacts, exhibits, and pieces of art showcasing Vermont. The museum also often hosts events, so be sure to see if there’s one going on during your visit.
Have fun at the North Branch Vineyards.
This family-owned vineyard opened in 2007, and though it’s a small winery, it’s a favorite of locals in Montpelier.
If you can’t get onsite, don’t worry! A lot of the local shops and festivals will sell North Branch Vineyards’ drinks. Some of the flavors the winery sells include Miss Maeve, Frontenac Gris, and Seyval Blanc.
Try VT maple syrup at the Bragg Farm Sugar House.
The Bragg Farm Sugar House is the perfect place to go if you want to learn more about Vermont maple syrup. It is what the state is most well-known for!
This sugar house is family-run. The family has been making maple syrup and selling it here for eight generations and counting. The gift shop is filled with tons of maple treats. Be sure to try maple candy for a delicious sweet!
PS Morse Farm Maple Sugarworks is a good one, too!
Attend a pottery class at Montpelier Mud.
There are lots of artists in Vermont, and Montpelier is no exception. If you’ve always wanted to learn pottery from a master, make your way to Montpelier Mud. They offer classes throughout the year so that people can bring home their own piece of pottery!
See a show at the Capitol Theater.
Capitol Theater is a historic movie theater in Montpelier. It’s genuinely one of the best things to do in Montpelier. There are only a few movies ever showing at a time.
For a fun time, you can combine your movie with a reservation at J. Morgan’s Steakhouse. This is one of the top-rated places to eat in Montpelier, and the food is superb. Prices can be a little high, but it’s worth the splurge!
Take a photo at the Coburn Covered Bridge.
Vermont, in general, is known for its covered bridges, and there’s one right in Montpelier! The Coburn Covered Bridge is easily one of the most picturesque covered bridges in the state. While it’s not painted red like many other bridges in the state, the dark wood is a beautiful contrast against the surrounding forestry, especially in the warmer months.
This bridge was officially built in 1851 and has been open to the public ever since. Traditionally, Montpelier did have multiple covered bridges. Unfortunately, this is the only one that has survived.
Peruse art at the T.W. Wood Gallery and Arts Center.
The T.W. Wood Gallery and Arts Center is the top art center in Montpelier. It’s located near the water and is filled with lots of great galleries and exhibits.
Named after Thomas Waterman Wood, you know it’s going to have a lot of great art, many from local artists. This is definitely a very Vermont thing to do!
Stroll downtown Montpelier
Downtown Montpelier things to do include browsing independent bookstores, craft shops, art galleries, and other intriguing places to shop, and enjoying tasty treats!
Coffee and Vermont go together hand in hand, so check out 802 Coffee (formerly Capitol Grounds), to sample the goods from one of the top coffee shops in Montpelier and throughout the state!
Eat at Kismet Kitchen.
Kismet Kitchen, while pricy, offers some of the best luxury food that you could want in Montpelier. It’s the perfect place for a romantic night out.
The restaurant was founded by a chef named Julie, who was a personal chef for many years. She likes to use a lot of local ingredients in her food and loves homemade things. Because she experiments a lot with her dishes, you can often find some unique dishes on the menu.
Go for a hike on Camel’s Hump.
Camel’s Hump is said to be one of the top trails to hike in all of Vermont. It’s also one of the highest summits in the state, so it’s not an easy hike. If you can make it to the top, the views are well worth it.
The trail is about 18.7 miles long if you choose to take the long hike. A lot of the peak is underdeveloped, which is why it’s difficult at times. The best time to do the hike is in the fall because you can catch the breathtaking foliage.
Learn at the Vermont Granite Museum.
Did you know that Vermont is known for its granite? It’s true! You can learn all about the state’s history with granite at the Vermont Granite Museum in nearby Barre. It opened in the nineteenth century.
The museum was opened to teach others about granite because it’s a huge part of Vermont’s heritage. The museum often hosts events throughout the year, so check their schedule to see if they have one during your visit for an even more memorable trip.
Attend a local farmer’s market.
There’s no better way to support the locals than by going to a farmer’s market! They are often held on the weekends in Montpelier. In addition to fresh produce, vendors often sell different meals and fun crafts to take home as a souvenir.
The Capital City Farmer’s Market is the top farmer’s market held in Montpelier. It’s held right in front of the Vermont State House and is an event that brings together all of the locals and visitors in the area!
Try the ice cream at Wayside Restaurant, Bakery, and Creamery.
Last but not least is one of the best things to do in Montpelier if you’re looking for a great meal! Make your way to the Wayside Restaurant, Bakery, and Creamery. This restaurant opened in 1918 and has been a local staple ever since.
You’ll often find that the restaurant is packed, so be prepared to wait in line just for a little bit before a table becomes available. After your meal, you’ll want to get some of the excellent ice cream or try something from their bakery. You won’t regret it!
Where to Stay in Montpelier, Vermont
If you’re looking for hotels in Montpelier that are both beautiful places to stay and conveniently located, you’re going to want to check out Capital Plaza Hotel Montpelier.
This gorgeous hotel is within easy walking distance to all kinds of great downtown Montpelier things to do AND the onsite restaurant is none other than J.Morgan’s Steakhouse!
Hopefully, this post has convinced you to visit the fantastic city of Montpelier. As a Vermonter myself, I can guarantee that you will have a fantastic experience here no matter what time of year you visit.
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Krystianna is a born and raised Vermonter and lived in the state for 22 years. She is the founder of Volumes & Voyages, a blog devoted to books and travel. After studying abroad in Dublin for a semester, Krystianna got bit by the travel bug and has been chasing her wanderlust ever since.