You’ve decided to take the family on a winter getaway to Bolton Valley VT, and you’re wondering what there is to do in this picturesque part of the state? Luckily, we’ve taken the time to create an ultimate winter travel guide for this family-friendly year-round vacation spot, with information on everything from learning to ski backcountry skiing. Take a look at our guide to learn more about this wonderful place… year-round (though we absolutely loved snow season)!
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Our family-friendly stay at Bolton Valley
Just a short 40 minute drive from Burlington VT airport is a scenic, family-friendly lodge in the Green Mountains. From the moment we drove in the views of snow-covered hills immediately took our breath away.
We were greeted with kindness and anticipation that made it feel like we were celebrated not tolerated… which to be honest, doesn’t always happen even at family-friendly places. The mountain employees and staff were very kind and friendly.
Since we arrived a bit early, our room wasn’t quite ready, but it didn’t stop the adventure. A quick trip to the rental shop and we were fitted for our equipment. There are day rentals and season rentals available, we opted to rent for the three days of our stay and were able to keep our boots, skis, and helmets with us for the entirety of our trip.
We were all newbies here for skiing and snowboarding… and still on the slope for our first lesson within two hours!
With 6 lifts, 71 trails, and the highest base elevation in the Northeast (2100 ft), Bolton Valley averages over 300″ of natural snow every year!Bolton Valley
Ski Lessons in Bolton Valley VT
My husband, son, and I all decided to ski. Our daughter had her heart set on learning to snowboard.
Even with the different forms of snow play, all our lessons were able to be scheduled at the same time and we got to practice on the same hill, which was a plus.
You could tell the instructors were very wise in their craft and SO good with people, including kids and true beginners. They displayed nothing but patience and understanding as we asked ALL THE questions and learned “How-To”… each of us at our own level.
And some, even became fast friends and joined us on the slopes. Shout out here to Michelle who took Aliyah under her wing and went out of her way to encourage her in her new skills! It’s THOSE little things that make us want to go back, and I can see why families come year after year.
Whether your interest is skiing or snowboarding, telemark or Nordic, backcountry or night skiing or just a relaxing snowshoe in the woods, Bolton Valley has it all in abundance.Ski Vermont
Night Skiing in Bolton Valley VT
The Bolton Valley 5,000 acre playground, buried in 300 inches of annual snowfall with a powerful snowmaking system to lend a hand when Mother Nature needs a breather, is one of the few ski resorts that offer lit night skiing! Meaning, you don’t have to rush to get your time in on the slopes and can head back out after dinner.
Lodging in Bolton Valley VT
The stay in the updated hotel rooms at Bolton Valley Resort with views of the Green Mountains makes for a trip in itself and is more affordable than many ski resorts. Comfortable and relaxing… with a place to rest your head and your ski gear.
You could also consider renting a chalet or condo through Bolton Valley Resort. The prices are reasonable, and you can easily cook at home instead of eating out… though the eating out on the property at Bolton Valley is pretty good too!
Places to Eat in Bolton Valley VT
The on-site restaurants proved quick and very tasteful.
MAIN BASE LODGE DINING OPTIONS
Base Lodge Cafe
Quick and easy made-to-order breakfast, lunch, donuts, beer, cider, and milkshakes in the main base lodge just steps from the slopes. Eat it outside by one of the wood-burning fires, take it on the chair with you or spread out in our spacious base lodge.
James Moore Tavern
This was our absolute favorite place to apres! Overlooking the slopes, we had the perfect view for the daytime skiiers and with the LED lights on to watch the night skiing, there really isn’t any place quite like it in the area… with a large fireplace and cozy ambiance, it was the perfect spot to warm up for a bit, get a bite and a bev, and then back out on the slopes!
You tell us who has better pizza by the slice slopeside? Go on, we’ll wait. Fresh out of the wood fired oven, this is sort of one of the bucket list items here at Bolton Valley… a must-try for everyone!
Plus, there are a couple options right at the base of the slope making it very easy to come off the hill and eat before jumping back out.
Miso Toh Kome
The Traditional Japanese Onigiri, Miso Soup, and Japanese Coffee to keep your belly warm as you crank out a few more runs! And the delicious sushi rice balls are packed with cha-shu pork belly, spicy tuna, ume-boshi (sour plum), and more. A fun and different tasting experience!
Homemade donuts and more! You won’t want to miss it when they bake fresh house-made donuts with creative flavors to choose from. You can also grab these fresh donuts inside the Base Lodge Cafe.
Things to Do in Bolton Valley VT: Awesome Adventures
Besides ski and snowboarding less ons, lift rides, and making our way down the slopes together, the on-site sports center was a welcomed reprieve from the cold and tiring day of using muscles we didn’t even know existed. Outfitted with a sauna, jacuzzi tub, and swimming pool it offered some much-needed downtime and warmth for our bodies and souls.
The sports center also has an indoor skate park and rec room with a pool table, ping pong, and other games for indoor fun when you need a break from the slopes.
At only 24 hours in, we have filled our day with activities for all ages, without having to leave the grounds.
Year-Round Fun for Families in the Bolton Valley
Not quite ready for a winter-wonderland ski trip yet? You can make your way to Bolton Valley for summer adventures too!
Even the lifts run every single month of the year! With summer lift service from May to October and winter lifts from November to April, it’s always a good time for hopping on the lift at Bolton Valley.
From summer camps for the kids to disc golf, Live Music on the Lawn and lobster boils to extreme mountain biking, there is something to do all year long. I can just imagine how beautiful the Green Mountains are when they’re, well, green.
Explore Burlington: More to do Around Bolton Valley
After a couple of FULL days of skiing, we decided to spend time in downtown Burlington before heading back home, and it didn’t disappoint! We stayed at Hotel Vermont, and loved the rusticly modern charm. I mean, those Vermont Flannel Bathrobes were everything… along with cozy beds and the best showers.
There are so many things to do in downtown Burlington! Take a stroll on the shores of Lake Champlain, nosh on some amazing eats, find Vermont syrup to bring back home, catch live music all over town – whatever fits your interest, Burlington will deliver.
It was definitely weather to bundle up in, but we didn’t want to miss the views along Lake Champlain or shops along the Church Street Marketplace.
A dining experience you don’t want to miss? Skinny Pancake – a creperie with so many options we weren’t quite sure where to start, but every dish was splendid!