48 Hours in Addison County for Charm Seekers
If you need a break from the hustle and bustle of city life or simply need to unwind after a hectic work week, Addison County, Vermont is the peaceful sanctuary you’ve been looking for. Kick back at one of our many incredible restaurants, breweries, or cafes to enjoy farm-to-table cuisine, partake in local outdoor (or indoor) activities from farm tours to historic landmark visits, and cozy up for the night at one of our lovely and accommodating inns. Addison County is the essence of idyllic Vermont charm, so spend a weekend with us and see what all the fuss is about – and follow along our itinerary for the ultimate New England experience!
There are plenty of quaint, cozy places to spend the night in beautiful Addison County. Vergennes’ historic bed and breakfast, The Strong House Inn, is located right in the heart of the Champlain Valley. Settled on five acres of trees and gardens, it combines modern luxury with New England charm. Hugging the base of the mountains, The Waybury Inn in Middlebury offers a completely classic and stunningly scenic New England lodging experience. Dream House Country Inn, also in Bristol, offers farm-fresh meals at their in-house restaurant, bicycles for guests to explore the local area themselves, and plenty of pastoral ground to stroll and picnic upon – and, right across the road, find a developing organic farm with bees, ponds, and trails to explore on a self-guided tour.
5pm: Enjoy a show at Town Hall Theater in Middlebury
From the art shows to the Opera Company of Middlebury to the Champlain Philharmonic, the Town Hall Theater brings a huge dose of arts and culture to Middlebury. Check their events calendar to see what’s scheduled while you’re in town, and check out the current exhibit at the Jackson Gallery to find some of Middlebury’s best local art.
6pm: Dinner at Morgan’s Tavern
Quoted as “a fresh take on a historic public house,” Morgan’s Tavern, inside the Middlebury Inn, is a favorite amongst locals and tourists alike for its classic and contemporary New England dishes and a warm sense of community. Through the Vermont Fresh Network Partnership, Morgan’s sources the freshest local ingredients every day to use in their comforting and creative dishes. Get a true taste of summer in Vermont with their Summer Salad, Strawberry Soup, Vermont Maple Glazed Ribs, or Cape Cod Fish Tacos (battered with local Switchback beer).
9am: Breakfast at Jones the Boy
Kick off your weekend at Bristol’s trendiest bakery, Jones the Boy, for a chai latte and a hummingbird cake (trust us). If you prefer a savory start to your day, their delicious egg tarts change up daily, and their savory scones are definitely something to write home about.
11am: Take a tour at UVM Morgan Horse Farm
Find some fun for all ages at UVM Morgan Horse Farm right outside Middlebury! From Monday through Saturday, 9am to 3pm, this beautiful farm hosts 30-minute farm tours that run on the hour all summer long. Every Saturday in June is Foal Day – come meet all of this summer’s foals, learn about their first year of life, and take a tour of the stables. Enjoy the serenity and beauty of Vermont’s rolling hills on 215 acres of lush farmland, and stop by the gift shop for a souvenir to remember your visit by.
1pm: Snag a slice at Rockers Pizzeria
This Vergennes spot has a totally charming identity and mission: “we aren’t upscale, we aren’t modern, we just want to be that ol’ pizza place in town,” their About Us page reads. Noticing a pizza-shaped gap in the Vergennes market, locals Jon and Arielle decided to step in and provide a casual, relaxed, and wholesome pizza joint with a vintage vibe. If pizza isn’t your thing, Rockers offers a long menu full of tasty starters, hearty sandwiches, and satisfying salads – but we highly recommend trying the (large) Jonny Rocker pizza for the full experience.
2pm: Explore Bixby Memorial Free Library
Head down the street to marvel at Bixby Library, a gorgeous fixture of Vergennes’ downtown. Supported by the towns of Addison, Ferrisburgh, Panton, Vergennes and Waltham, this gorgeous historical monument provides opportunities for all five communities to learn, grow, and connect. Named after William Gove Bixby, longtime Vermont resident who left the majority of his estate to establish a library in Vergennes in 1907, Bixby Library opened its doors in 1912 and now holds over 25,000 books (and counting). The architecture and stained glass ceilings are nothing short of stunning, and their historic photographs and artifact collection will keep you busy all afternoon.
6pm: Dinner at Middlebury’s Two Brothers Tavern
Take your pick from Two Brothers’ Tavern’s 32-draught collection – the largest in the region – and enjoy Vermont-inspired comfort food in the heart of Middlebury. With an accommodating, extensive menu and a cozy hometown vibe, this casual spot will make you feel like one of the locals. Start with the Plaid Salad and Poutine, and finish with their hot, house-made doughnut holes to wrap up your busy Saturday in Addison County.
9am: Breakfast at Vergennes Laundry
After a long, restful nights’ sleep, head to this beautiful and cozy wood-fired bakery in the heart of Vergennes. Transformed from a laundromat ten years ago into the iconic breakfast spot that it is today, this bakery/café/épicerie is a staple of any Vergennes visit. The menu reflects the background of its previous owners from France, and its current owner, Nadia Dole, from Montreal. Sip on an espresso and grab a fresh croissant to munch on while you stroll through Vergennes’ town green, right across the street from this lovely spot.
11am: Guided tour at Rokeby Museum
Right outside Vergennes, the beautiful Rokeby Museum shares a nationally significant Underground Railroad story through its major exhibit, Free & Safe: The Underground Railroad in Vermont, and the historic Robinson home. Free & Safe tells the story of Simon and Jesse, two fugitives from slavery who found shelter at Rokeby in the 1830s, while the Robinson home, still furnished with 200 years-worth of belongings, paints an intimate picture of the Robinson family’s life during an incredibly turbulent time in American history. Guided, hour-long tours of the Robinson home and outbuildings are at 11am and 2pm Friday through Monday. If you’d rather take a self-guided tour, you can find an educational guide at the reception desk or here online. After your tour, feel free to stroll or picnic on the beautiful acres of Vermont land near the museum, or explore the property’s nine historic farm buildings chock-full of agricultural artifacts.
2pm: Stock up on souvenirs
The ideal stroll to wind down your Sunday, Addison County has a shop for everyone. If you want to take a piece of VT home with you, stroll down Middlebury’s Main Street: stop by Addison West for “Vermont modern” decor, and pop into Sweet Cecily for a “curated collection of all things wonderful,” from Ruth Bader Ginsburg felt dolls to locally made mittens and mugs. Rest your feet and soak up some sun near the fountain in the town green, and make a stop at Edgewater Gallery for some gorgeous art (and some air conditioning). If you’re looking for absolutely charming home goods (and to support an incredible cause), make sure to visit Vergennes’ Sweet Charity, a resale shop filled with a huge variety of “pre-loved” goods – and it’s managed by Women of Wisdom, a 501(c)3 non-profit giving circle that empowers philanthropic projects and individuals in need.
4pm: Catch a movie (and a Southwestern snack) at the charming Marquis Theater
Fuel up for the weekend ahead with a relaxing visit to Middlebury’s Marquis Theater! With three screens and a full bar and restaurant, Marquis is a quaint spot to snack on some nachos and catch the hottest new releases. In addition to new movies, Marquis also offers community events like weekly trivia nights and live comedy shows – check out their calendar to see what’s going on during your stay in Addison County.
6pm: Say bye to Addison County at Fire & Ice
Locally and family owned since 1974, Fire & Ice serves both incredible food and incredible amounts of Vermont charm. A Middlebury landmark, enjoy their 4 spacious outdoor decks or the delightfully decorated interior, complete with an original 1921 Hackercraft motorboat, WWI wooden airplane propellers, and nearly 1,000 black and white photos (many of which are gifts from guests). With a name inspired by poet Robert Frost and a culture founded on community and family, you’ll leave Fire & Ice feeling like a true Vermonter.
For a restorative and recharging weekend away, come enjoy everything our little patch of Vermont has to offer.
This page was created with support from the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing, Tourism & Economic Recovery Grants.