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Explore Northern Vermont State Parks
Trek across northern Vermont on your next trip to the north east – explore these state parks for unmatched outdoor fun in the Green Mountain State. With 30 state parks found in the northern reaches, plan your next trip carefully and experience a wide range of outdoor fun.
Alburg Dunes State Park
Opened in 1996 as an official Vermont State Park, Alburg Dunes State Park is 625 acres of sterling land. An ideal destination for South Burlington visitors, Alburg Dunes can be found between the Jordan Bay and the Alburg Passage in upstate Vermont. It's adjacent to the Northern Lights Airport.
At the Alburg Dunes State Park, you'll discover a wealth of entertaining activities for you and the family. Whether it be a picnic, a BBQ, or hiking and biking the many trails, enjoy your time spent at Alburg Dunes State Park. Access to Alburg Dunes is only from available from May 30 through Labor Day Weekend, and no pets are allowed at the park.
Allis State Park
The second state park in Vermont, Allis State Park opened in 1928. The park is named in honor of Wallace Allis who once owned the land where the park is set – it was then known as Bear Mountain Farm. In his will, be donated the land with the request it become a park for recreation.
On your next trek to upstate Vermont, drive to Allis State Park from nearby Waterbury. There are nine picnic tables at Allis State Park, hiking trails, and plenty of bird watching opportunities thanks to the wealth of trees. Try your hand at bass fishing along the streams and ponds at Allis State Park, or enjoy a family BBQ.
Big Deer State Park
Another of the wonderful natural areas in Vermont, Big Deer State Park is a short drive east of Waterbury. As you explore upstate Vermont, be sure to plan a trip to Big Deer State Park for a wide range of outdoor run. Open from Memorial Day through Labor Day, Big Deer State Park does permit pets.
Just one of the parks within Groton State Forest, Big Deer State Park allows access to the Osmore Pond, a great way to experience fishing in Vermont. Hikers and cyclists enjoy the Montpelier-Wells Rail Trail, while the Peacham Bog is great for a study in nature. Owl's Head Picnic Area is the place to be for a pleasant family picnic on your next trip into Vermont and the Big Deer State Park.
Boulder Beach State Park
Plan your next outdoor adventure in Vermont and head for Boulder Beach State Park. A premier destination in upstate Vermont, Boulder Beach State Park is found in Groton, just east of Waterbury. Among the 75 shaded picnic areas, you'll find BBQ grills, a swimming area, boat launches, and you can even rent a canoe or kayak.
Boulder Beach State Park is just one part of the Groton State Forest, and is set along the northeastern shore of Lake Groton. Open from Memorial Day through Labor Day, Boulder Beach State Park opens a wealth of possibilities for outdoor recreation.
Brighton State Park
Plan your next visit to Vermont and head for Brighton State Park. Open Memorial Day through Columbus Day, Brighton State Park is in the tree-lined mountains of upstate Vermont, northeast of Waterbury. You'll find plenty to see and do at Brighton State Park.
Whether you have an adventure at the two swimming areas, any of the many hiking trails, or cruise the waters of Island Pond on your boat, Brighton State Park is sterling choice. You'll also find access to the Spectacle Pond.
Burton Island State Park
Beginning Memorial Day weekend, head for Burton Island State Park in upstate Vermont. Just north of South Burlington, Burton Island State Park is 253 of the most pristine Vermont acres you'll find. Found on Lake Champlain, just south of Knight Island, Burton Island State Park is only accessible by boat.
You can hop on the ferry which departs from Kamp Kill Kare State Park; the trip is roughly 10 minutes long to Burton Island State Park. As you explore Burton Island State Park, try some bird watching, enjoy some fishing, or try any of the walking trails – look for the Southern Tip Trail, North Shore Trail, Eagle Bay Trail, or the West Shore Trail.
Button Bay State Park
The Button Bay State Park is a top destination in western Vermont. South of Waterbury and adjacent to the Basin Harbor Club Golf Course, Button Bay State Park is 253 acres of well maintained and charming parkland. Yielding access to Button Bay, the state park is a great way to have an aquatic adventure in Vermont.
History tell of times when Ben Franklin visited Button Bay State Park in 1776, and Benedict Arnold in 1777. Button Bay State Park opens to the public over Memorial Day Weekend and stays open until Columbus Day. Plan a nice picnic for you and the family, enjoy some fishing on the waters of Lake Champlain, or venture out on any of the many hiking and walking trails.
Crystal Lake State Park
As you explore northern Vermont, make plans to visit Crystal Lake State Park, northeast of Waterbury, Crystal Lake State Park. Open from Memorial Day weekend through Columbus Day, Crystal Lake State Park is an ideal destination for summer travelers – the 763-acre Crystal Lake is just waiting to be explored.
Whether you want to boat the waters of Crystal Lake, fish the shores, or feast upon a glorious picnic with the family, make your way to Crystal Lake State Park and enjoy. During your visit, keep an eye out for the Orleans County Fair, or the Bread and Puppet Circus.
Elmore State Park
Pack your satchel and keep your hiking boots tied – you'll find all the adventure you can handle at Elmore State Park. A top destination in Vermont, Elmore State Park is not far north of Waterbury. At 219 acres in overall size, Elmore State Park features Lake Elmore, great for fishing and kayaking, and plenty of hiking.
While pets are not permitted at Elmore State Park, you and the rest of the family will certainly enjoy the majestic views of north-central Vermont, the Open Air Picnic Pavilion, or the Elmore Mountain Fire Tower Trail. Experience the best of outdoor Vermont on your next visit – it's all at Elmore State Park.
Grand Isle State Park
Make travel plans to visit Vermont and head upstate – don't miss out on the views at Grand Isle State Park. Close to the city of South Burlington, Grand Isle State Park offers sterling views of Keeler Bay, and is easily accessed via the Roosevelt Highway. Annually, Grand Isle State Park opens on May 9th, and stays open until October 18.
Stretching across 54 total acres, Grand Isle State Park is favorite destination for locals and visitors alike. Opened in 1959, Grand Isle State Park is 14 miles long and three miles wide, yielding excellent fishing and boating on Lake Champlain. Pets are permitted at Grand Isle State Park, and the Grand Isle Ironwood Trail is less than a mile and fun for the whole family.
Green River Reservoir State Park
Beginning each year on Memorial Day Weekend, Green River Reservoir State Park opens up to the public. With access available through Columbus Day Weekend, Green River Reservoir State Park is a virtual must-see on any summer visit to upstate Vermont. Make the scenic drive north to the park from Waterbury.
A relatively new state park, Green River Reservoir became an official state park in 1999. With 653 acres to explore at Green River Reservoir, you'll find a wide range of adventures on your visit. From the hiking trails to the streams and ponds, Green River Reservoir State Park should yield long-lasting memories of fondness.
Hubbard Park & Tower
Outdoor enthusiasts near Montpelier, located east of the Green Mountains, love spending time in one of the wonderful city parks. The Hubbard Park and Tower encompasses 194 acres of land, just north of downtown Montpelier. Lace up comfortable shoes for trekking along the seven miles of hiking trails in the summer-time or buckle up cross-country skies for gliding across the trails in the winter.
The park features a soccer field, plenty of picnic areas, two picnic shelters, a baseball field, a small pond, a sledding hill and a 54-foot stone observation tower. Be sure to bring your camera to capture the view from the top of the tower. Make the most of your in this scenic area of Vermont by staying nearby Waterbury.
Kettle Pond State Park
Kettle Pond State Park, set up the shores of Kettle Pond, was once part of a travel route for Native Americans and the French, connecting Canada and Massachusetts. Now it serves as a haven for outdoor enthusiasts visiting Vermont and the Burlington region.
Visitors can spend the day swimming on the sandy beach, enjoying a picnic, and hiking the nearby trails, traversing the surrounding 26,000-acre Groton State Forest. The park also features a car top boat launch, perfect for getting kayaks and canoes out on the pond.
Kill Kare State Park
Conveniently located on the southwestern tip of St. Albans Bay, Kamp Kill Kare State Park houses a multitude of outdoor recreation. Since the park is located on a peninsula, it has the pristine waters of Lake Champlain on three sides, making it perfect for water-recreation near Burlington.
Due to its easy access to the lake, the park makes for an outstanding picnic and swimming location, as well as boating and fishing. Visitors are also encouraged to visit the Rocky Point House Museum – featuring displays and exhibits native to the region’s history.
Kingsland Bay State Park
Set upon the vast, beautiful shores of Lake Champlain, Kingsland Bay State Park entices Vermont visitors to experience its wealth of outdoor recreation. The park is approximately 264 acres, with most of the land remaining as a natural area.
Just south Burlington, visitors will relish in the lakeside swimming, fishing, picnicking opportunities abound. Moreover, the park frequently hosts weddings, events, reunions, and more at the renovated Banquet Hall and Hawley House along Kingsland Bay.
Knight Island State Park
Located in the heart of Lake Champlain, Knight Island State Park provides an ideal day trip destination for Vermont visitors looking for some island-adventure. The park is most easily accessible from North Hero, just two miles from the island, where boat owners can park and launch their own boats. Or, water taxi services can be arranged for visitors who don’t own a boat.
The island is full of outdoor adventure opportunities. Visitors can explore the island via hiking trails, or utilize the picnic shelters on the beaches. Be sure to visit Oak Cliffs and High Cliffs on the east side of the island for spectacular views of the lake.
Knight Point State Park
Opened as a state park in 1978, Knight Point State Park offers a full array of outdoor recreation to visitors of northwestern Vermont. Just north of Burlington, you’ll find a haven for water-related activities along the shores of Lake Champlain.
Popular activities with park guests are the swimming beaches, picnic shelters, and boating-friendly waters. Boat rentals are also available through the park for those who don’t own a boat themselves.
Lake Carmi State Park
Located along the shores of the fourth largest, natural lake in Vermont, Lake Carmi State Park offers a variety of outdoor, aquatic recreation to its visitors. The park is just north of Burlington and only a few miles from the Canadian border.
The lake boasts a 1,375-acre surface area, so water recreation is a must for visitors. Take in the boating, swimming, picnic areas, fishing, hiking, and much more when visiting Lake Carmi.
Little River State Park
Once a settlement in the 1800s, Little River State Park is now one of the most popular state parks in Vermont. The park is located along the shores of the Waterbury Reservoir, giving guests an endless amount of water recreation and plentiful activity on the shore as well.
Visitors often choose Little River for the boating opportunities, as well as fishing for bass and trout. Water-skiing, swimming, and boat rentals also provide further aquatic recreation. Whereas on land, the kids will love the play area, picnic shelters, and hiking.
Maidstone State Park
Known as the most remote of Vermont’s many state parks, Maidstone State Park offers visitors an outdoor adventure they won’t soon forget. Located just east of Waterbury, the park is set along the shores of Maidstone Lake, creating a plethora of water-recreation.
Visit Maidstone State Park and experience great fishing – as the lake is chock full of trout and salmon. Plenty of native wildlife inhabits the region, though, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled on the shores as well. Other activities include beach swimming, numerous hiking trails, a picnic shelter, and play area for the kids.
Mount Philo State Park
Located atop Mount Philo near Burlington, the appropriately named Mount Philo State Park is 168-acres of beautiful mountain top scenery. The park is found via the narrow, steep road accessible by foot or vehicle.
Mount Philo is actually Vermont’s oldest state park, created in 1924. Make your way up the mountain and utilize the picnic areas complete with spectacular views of the lake and surrounding valleys.
New Discovery State Park
Originally settled as an access way for travelers going from Canada to Massachusetts, New Discovery State Park is now a scenic stop for Vermont visitors looking to experience the great outdoors.
Located just outside of Waterbury, guests will be treated to a play area, horseshoe pits, a picnic pavilion, a pond for fishing, and a staging area for miles of hiking trails. Visit the park and enjoy the beautiful scenery set within Groton State Forest.
Niquette Bay State Park
Located on the shores on Malletts Bay just north of Burlington, Niquette Bay State Park provides a small escape for northern Vermont visitors. The area is mostly forested, providing guests a wooded, scenic atmosphere native to Vermont; even if at one point it had been primarily used for farming.
Visitors of Niquette State Park have plenty of outdoor recreation to choose from. Swim in the waters of Lake Champlain, hike the multiple walking trails, or witness the gorgeous views on one of the many vistas overlooking the bay. The park is 553 acres in size and is ideal for a day spent outdoors with the family.
North Hero State Park
Located along the beautiful coast of Lake Champlain near Burlington, North Hero State Park offers a wide range of outdoor fun for the entire family. Specifically, coast visitors can take part in the swimming, boating, and picnic opportunities.
Since the park doesn’t have a great deal of infrastructure, it's ideal for wildlife viewing. Be on the look out for native Vermont wildlife like white-tailed deer, waterfowl, fish, woodcock, and turtles.
Ricker State Park
Established in 1930, Ricker State Park has plenty to offer outdoor enthusiasts visiting the park. Given its namesake, the park is located along the shores of Ricker Pond, near Waterbury in northern Vermont.
Of course, having a home along a large water source has lead to a wide selection of water-related recreation. Swimming, boat launches, and fishing is in full swing in the summer months. Moreover, the park features biking trails, hiking trails, and picnic areas throughout the park.
Sand Bar State Park
Named after a natural sandbar formation on Lake Champlain, the Sand Bar State Park features a variety of lakeside, outdoor recreation. Located near Burlington, the park welcomes visitors year round to embark upon a Champlain adventure.
Visitors enjoy the 1,000-acre Sand Bar Wildlife Refuge, home to multitude of native animal species. Moreover, the beaches of Lake Champlain are ideal for swimming, boat rentals, picnic areas, and grills.
Seyon Lodge State Park
Set among Groton State Forest near Burlington, Seyon Lodge State Park is a beautiful respite for northeast Vermont visitors seeking outdoor recreation. Enjoy the scenic, natural beauty with multiple hiking and cross-country trails traversing the park.
Further outdoor recreation is enjoyed at nearby Noyes Pond – guests can rent a boat and try their hand at fly-fishing for brook trout on the pristine waters. The park also has the indoor capabilities to host weddings, small conferences, retreats, and other small events.
Smugglers' Notch State Park
Located just north of Waterbury, Smugglers’ Notch State Park treats visitors to a great deal of history set among the Green Mountains in northern Vermont. Given its namesake, the park was originally a pass through the Green Mountains for Vermont settlers to trade with Montreal.
The park is riddled with natural beauty, too. The path is set between hanging, 1,000-foot cliffs and is ideal for hiking, picnicking, and wildlife viewing.
Stillwater State Park
Located along the pristine waters of Lake Groton, Stillwater State Park offers a multitude of outdoor recreation to visitors of the parkland. The park is set among the 26,000 acres of woodland in Groton State Forest.
Visitors of the park are treated to some of the best shoreline and water-related recreation Vermont has to offer. Partake in the shoreline swimming, picnicking, hiking the different trails, and of course, outstanding fishing.
Underhill State Park
Surrounded by almost 40,000 acres of Vermont’s Mount Mansfield State Forest, Underhill State Park is an outdoors person’s paradise, featuring a multitude of outdoor recreation fit for the entire family.
Just east of Burlington, northern Vermont visitors are treated to a numerous picnic grounds and four hiking trails leading to the summit ridge of Mount Mansfield and Underhill State Park. Each trail varies in length, but all showcase the unique vegetation brought on by the elevation and climate.
Waterbury Center State Park
Make the most of a day spent outdoors in Vermont. The Waterbury Center State Park can be found along the eastern shore of Waterbury Reservoir, featuring a wide variety of aquatic and landlocked outdoor recreation. Just west of Burlington, the park is housed on a 90-acre peninsula in northern Vermont.
The park features 22 picnic sites, a swimming beach, boat ramps, and the peninsula nature trail – a hiking trail that traverses the park grounds boasting 10 sites to be seen along the way. Fishing is a popular activity among park visitors as well – there are two fishing platforms along the trail suspending over the reservoir.
Woods Island State Park
Located among Lake Champlain’s “inland sea,” Woods Island State Park is a 125-acre scenic destination near Burlington. The island features a plethora of wildlife and diverse plant life all native to Vermont.
Woods Island was designated as a state park in 1985, becoming Vermont’s 45th state park. A trail system runs throughout the park and its shorelines, leading visitors between old growth trees, wetlands, farmlands, and pastures.