It’s wonderful to unplug from this technology age and reconnect with nature, and in Vermont, we have many places where we can do just that. Spend your days on the water or hiking through the woods, and wind down while cooking over a campfire with friends and family. Whether you’re looking for family-friendly camping spots, places perfect for groups, great views, epic hikes or boating spots, there is always a place in Vermont that will be perfect for you. Here are 8 of our favorite camping spots in the state.
1. Waterbury Center State Park, Waterbury Center
You’ll love to be surrounded by mountains at the Waterbury Center State Park, located on the Waterbury Reservoir. This is more commonly a day park, but there are a few primitive campsites accessible only by boat. The sand beach and grassy picnic areas are scenic and fun, and it’s a blast to rent a paddle board right at the beach. An added bonus to this location is that it’s located just down the road from the Ben & Jerry’s Factory.
2. Mt. Philo State Park, Charlotte
If its views you want, look no further than Vermont’s very first state park, Mt. Philo. Overlooking the Lake Champlain Valley and the Adirondack Mountains, you’ll love the vistas from the top via a steep auto toll road or hiking up the mountain trail. The top of the mountain has an open grassy area for picnics as well as an enclosed log shelter. The Mt. Philo State Park has only ten campsites so call ahead for some peaceful mountain top camping.
3. Elmore State Park, Elmore
Just check out the views from the fire tower facing north on one of the many trails in this awesome state park! Families will love the easy hikes, along with a large beach, grassy area for picnics and volleyball, boat rentals and a snack bar.
4. Osmore Pond, Groton
For peace and quiet, head to Osmore Pond, accessible through the New Discovery State Park. Located in a quiet corner, the secluded picnic areas all have their own stone fireplaces built around the 1930s. No motors are allowed here and you can rent a boat or canoe by the hour or as part of a “boat to remote” package. While this is a remote camping experience, the whole family will love the excellent hiking trails.
5. Smugglers’ Notch State Park, Stowe
Smugglers Notch is a narrow pass through Mount Mansfield with 1,000 foot cliffs on either side. Here you’ll find some of the best hikes in Vermont, the most popular being the Long Trail, which can be accessed from the Notch. Smuggler’s Notch State Park has tent, RV and lean-to camping with showers, perfect for a day hike or a camping trip just minutes from the charming village of Stowe.
6. Green River Reservoir State Park, Hyde Park
Looking to get away from it all? Check out the Green River Reservoir State Park, Vermont’s most secluded park. The 653-acre reservoir has 19 miles of shoreline, one of the longest stretches of undeveloped shorelines in the state. There are 28 campsites throughout the banks which are remote and primitive and can only be reached by paddling. All campsites have a fire ring and cooking grate and a nearby outhouse. Be sure to carry-in/carry out here – it’s a rule that everyone follows.
7. Kill Kare State Park, St. Albans
Kill Kare State Park in St. Albans is surrounded by sparkling water with views of the islands, hills and Adirondack Mountains. This former summer camp has a ferry that goes to another picturesque state park, Burton Island. Kill Kare has a large picnic shelter with grills and is a great launch site for paddlers. You’ll love strolling through the park’s many flower gardens!
8. New Discovery State Park, Groton
Set up camp here and then enjoy some of the best views in Vermont in the Groton State Forest area, which includes New Discovery State Park, Stillwater, Big Deer, Ricker Pond, Kettle Pond and Boulder Beach. Whether you drive or hike, be sure to check out Owl’s Head while you’re there as it’s easily accessible with stellar views at the top. This is one place you won’t want to forget your camera when camping in a tent, RV or a remote lean-to. There is even a horse camping area!