Discover and Explore Burlington, VT
In the city of Burlington, Vermont's best features combine in one picture-perfect region and bustling center of economic activity. The greater Burlington area is also home to more than a quarter of Vermont's population, as well as several of the state's largest employers. The region is easily accessible via rail, car, and ferry. Four colleges and universities provide big-city sophistication and atmosphere without urban hassles. With a multitude of festivals, events, attractions and peerless quality of life, Burlington and the Lake Champlain Region are repeatedly recognized as one of the country's best for living, working and visiting. It is not surprising that Burlington scored top honor in one of Outside Magazine's "Dream Towns” selections.
Burlington and the region are as rich in history as honors. The true first residents, Algonquin and Iroquois tribes, were displaced by settlers after Samuel de Champlain sailed the lake in 1609. In the late 1700s, Ira and Ethan Allen amassed 300,000 acres of unsettled land between New Hampshire and New York, land that would become Vermont. Located on Lake Champlain’s northeastern shore, the city of Burlington was chartered in 1763 and was already a flourishing lumber port in the 1860s.
Today, Burlington is Vermont's largest city, with about 40,000 year-round residents. It attracts visitors who like the juxtaposition of college-town sophistication with idyllic rural beauty. In Burlington and the region, they find both. There are excellent dining, diverse cultural events, and bountiful shopping, in addition to plentiful outdoor adventure and recreational activities. Lake Champlain, often referred to as the sixth Great Lake, stretches for more than 120 miles between Vermont, New York, and Quebec. The lake, in concert with the rugged Adirondack Mountains and beautiful Green Mountains that surround it, sets the stage for outdoor festivals, historic exploration, and everything from swimming, sailing and fishing, to hiking, mountain biking and skiing. Its mountain backdrop is one of the reasons author and world-traveler Rudyard Kipling said Lake Champlain was one of the most spectacular places in the world to view a sunset.
The city of Burlington, built on a hillside overlooking the lake, has a cosmopolitan flair that is complemented by one of the lowest crime rates and best air-quality measures in the nation. It is the region's commercial center, with more than 160 retail stores. Many are located in the historic Church Street Marketplace, a brick-and-cobblestone pedestrian mall lined with restored buildings that also include restaurants and coffee houses. In 1997, the National Trust for Historic Preservation named the Marketplace one of five national winners of the "Great American Main Street Award." Often compared to Boston's Faneuil Hall area, it attracts more than 3 million visitors and shoppers each year, making it one of the country's most successful pedestrian malls. The New York Times Magazine even said it has "a real similarity to Paris."
Interested in what Burlington Vermont has to offer?
Check our Annual Publication, Experience Burlington.
Top photo by Allison Volz Photography