For Photos, (disclaimer, I'm no pro)
!. Groton Forest (Still achin to see Owl"s Head Overlook at peak)
2. Lake Willoughby and Island Pond area
3. I know it's a very popular place, but I love the surrounding area as well, Jenn Farm. (Actually I don't know how anyone can limit themselves to three, it's the whole dang state!)
1. Love the corn chowder and the Star Turkey sandwich at The Whip, Green Mtn. Inn in Stowe
2. The Blue Benn diner in Bennington, and the little cafe next to the Vermont County Store in Weston. (can't think of the name right now!)
3. Bragg Farm for maple cremee's (actually any place that has them!)
1. Shelburne Country Store
2. Vermont Country Store, in Weston (I know it's a tourist trap, but ya gotta go at least once)
3. Cold Hollow Cider Mill, another tourist trap, but it's so much fun, and the cider & donuts, well worth it!
Waitsfield Farmer’s Market, Waitsfield
Shaw’s General Store, Stowe
Vermont Country Store, Rockingham
Autumn on the Green Foliage Festival, Danville
Mad Taco, Waitsfield
Common Man, Waitsfield
Positive Pie, Plainfield
Prohibition Pig, Waterbury (ain't been there yet but I know I'm going to love it! Going with the foliage gang!)
Lewis Pond Overlook, (The Holy Grail of Vermont) Nulhegin Basin, Lewis
Cabot Plains Road, Cabot
Noyes Pond, Groton State Forest
Stannard Mountain Road, Wheelock/Greensboro Bend
1. Dead Creek Wildlife area near Addison in western Vermont. I visited this place once and was disappointed until a flock of a bazillion snow geese circled and landed. This was a pretty amazing sight. It took several minutes for the entire flock to settle in. There are no guarantees when visiting there, but it is worth taking the risk.
2. Highway 232 from Groton to Mansfield. This is very pretty country and offers some nice photo opportunities including Ricker Pond, Kettle Pond and Owl's Head.
3. Lake Willoughby. This is a long, large lake and the tree covered mountains on the south and west side of the lake are beautiful when arrayed in autumnal color.
1. I'm not much of a shopper but I love stopping at the Johnson Woolen Mills in Johnson. I bought a traditional Vermont wool coat, lumberjack shirt, socks, and all kinds of stuff.
1.Ben & Jerry's always calls. My rental car automatically takes the exit at Waterbury. Cherry Garcia calls me every time.
2. Upper Valley Grill and General Store, Groton. This is clearly a non-tourist establishment. I stopped there for something to eat one year; sat at the counter and struck up a conversation with at native Vermonter. Two years later, I stopped and he was there! Had a nice conversation with him again. He didn't remember me, but I reminded him of the story he told me and he agreed that it was his story. I don't remember the food very much, but if you want to get to know the natives, this is the place to stop.
Our Favorite Drives: Rt 232 !!--to get there: from the South from Rt 302--302 from beautiful Interstate 91--off Rt 232 on your right is Owl's Head, short hike to a great view of the lake--2010 and 2014 were great
Darling Hill Rd in East Burke
Route 114 from Lyndonville to Island Pond and Beyond to Canaan in Northeast Vermont--Most sharpest colors are usually here, last week of September, this is a rural area--2012 and 2014 the color was exceptional
To anyone new reading this, remember that the best color is seen in Vermont on bright, mostly cloudy days, not sunny ones--and early in the day and late in the day are always good times
1) Old First Church in Bennington - it is the way I know I am "home". The burial grounds are beautiful and the building itself is New England perfection. Jaunt over to the battle monument just across the road a ways.
2) West River (from the old railroad bed to the Scott Bridge) - an old railroad bed re-purposed allows a peaceful walk along the river or use the stop off the road to see the Scott Bridge and photograph it from stream-side rock slabs.
3) Equinox Pond (never gotten a shot that I love but, it is so gorgeous that I will nail it one day)
1) Up for Breakfast (Manchester) - small and there can be a wait but, amazing and locally sourced.
2) Mio Bistro (Dorset) - intimate and delicious.
3) Manchester Pizza House - I have had pizza from Hawaii to London and from Chicago deep dish to New York slices and this one is up there for taste and quality of ingredients.
1) Orvis (Manchester) - the flagship store.
2) Northshire Bookstore (Manchester) - independent bookstore to end all independent bookstores.
3) Southern Vermont Art Center (Manchester) - yes, it is a gallery but, they also sell works by local artists. In fact, the "Fall Open" will be occurring when many of you are in Vermont. The grounds are picturesque from the sculptures near the road to the views from the gallery's back steps.
2. Barton (and NEK)
3. Waits River / E. Corinth /E. Orange area
If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .