A rural Vermont treasure, West Windsor appeals to anyone who loves quaint, out-of-the-way communities and outdoor activities. Consisting of less than 25 square miles, this charming little burg is surrounded by verdant forests and meadows. Meander through the countryside on unpaved roads bordered by towering trees and revel in the beautiful sounds of babbling streams running alongside old stone walls.
Come to West Windsor on your next trip to historic New England for an unforgettable getaway, and make one of our cozy vacation rentals your home base for all your Vermont adventures.
West Windsor is situated just eight miles west of the Connecticut River, which acts as a border between Vermont and New Hampshire. The town feels removed, but it is only five miles west of Interstate 91. The most notable attraction here is Mt. Ascutney, rising 3,143 feet just south of town. Not only is this mountain a natural oasis for outdoor enthusiasts, but it provides inspiration for artists, as well.
If you're a hiker, head to Mount Ascutney, part of the Monadnock Mountain Range, for both challenging and gentle trails that offer beautiful vistas and up-close-and-personal looks at flora like Highbush Blueberry, Leatherleaf, and Roundleaf Sundew in addition to kettle bogs, a variety of migrating birds, moose, deer, black bears, and more.
Give the 5.8-mile Weathersfield Trail a walk and see Cascade Falls, the mountain's largest waterfall. If you're a birder, you'll surely catch a glimpse of several varieties, and wildflowers abound here in spring. The similar-length Windsor Trail features a smaller waterfall, as well as a rustic hut for shelter, shimmering brooks, nice views of the Connecticut Valley and Green Mountains, and a fire tower for a spectacular lookout. It also joins up with Brownsville Trail if you're a more avid hiker and want to go on a longer trek.
Weathersfield Trail isn't just for hiking- it also serves as the sole launch point for hang gliders. In fact, this particular spot has been called the best gliding site in all of New England! Haul your craft to the platform, take the leap, and drift high above the ground while you take in gorgeous scenery below. If you'd rather stay bound to the ground but want a different perspective, ride on horseback up to Mt. Ascutney and the surrounding area.
If water is what you love, Great River Outfitters will take you on unforgettable boat tours and offer a variety of water sports, like kayaking, canoeing, and rafting. Paddle down the river adjacent to the Path of Life Sculpture Garden, which features metal sculptures in human form, as well as labyrinths, tree-lined paths, and flower gardens.
Before you leave, be sure to head out for a scenic drive and travel across the Cornish-Windsor Covered Bridge, which is said to be the longest covered bridge in the U.S. Stop your car at the pull outs and get some photos or Mt. Ascutney and the Connecticut River to commemorate your time here.
Great River Outfitters also offers an abundance of winter activities in West Windsor. If you like adrenaline-filled and fast paced activities, do some mushing with a dog sled team or try your hand at Fat Tire biking. Head to Mt. Ascutney for downhill skiing and snowboarding, or if you prefer the tranquility of a quiet trek through the trees, strap on some cross-country skis or snowshoes, and head out into the woods.
And if you're in the mood to scope out the area, why not head over to the charmingly small Pico Mountain with big resort skiing, just 30 miles away, or to family-friendly Okemo Mountain Resort, just 21 miles away for top-notch skiing and boarding.
If you like the diner atmosphere and you want to hang with the locals, treat yourself to breakfast at Dan's Windsor Diner for healthy servings at a fair price. If you love burgers, another diner worth your while is Frazer's Place, a modest roadside eatery featuring burgers, fries, and lots of other diner-esque food. Hartland Diner also provides locals and travelers alike delicious fare, like the Veggie Griller and Black Bean Burger, as well as delicious homemade pies.
Harpoon Brewery serves not only tasty beers they make themselves, they also offer tours and sell their hoppy creations in their retail shop. Harpoon also hosts several festivals and events throughout the year, like Pink Boots Society Night, HarpoonFest, and Harpoon Brewery BBQ Festival.
Photo Credit: Stew Stryker via Flickr