With stunning scenery, quaint towns, and fabulous winter snow, New England does have it all. This is why skiers love to come to New England as it provides excellent skiing opportunities as well as the chance to explore these beautiful towns. So, if you’re planning a skiing trip then it’s a good idea to know which are the best ski towns in New England!
1. Killington, Vermont
Located in the stunning Green Mountains, Killington is a thriving ski town just a stone’s throw from two ski resorts — Killington and Pico. Killington resort is the largest ski resort in New England and is known for offering high-quality skiing for the whole family. It is set in 1,526 skiable acres and boasts 155 runs and an immense 3,050-foot vertical drop. There are also 22 ski lifts, six terrain parks, and a tubing hill with ten lanes.
Although Killington town was founded back in 1761 it is a modern ski town with plenty of amenities. There are numerous lodges for you to choose from to recuperate after a long day out on the slopes as well as a charming new village — Six Peaks Killington — which offers ski-in/ski-out accommodation. Plus, there’s a wide range of restaurants — including The Garlic which is a highly-rated Italian restaurant, and the Wobbly Barn steakhouse. There’s plenty of nightlife too, particularly in the Pickel Barrel which hosts live music most nights.
Killington isn’t just famous for its skiing, though, as there’s plenty to do in the summer months too. There’s a golf course as well as miles of trails for both hiking and mountain biking.
2. North Conway, New Hampshire
One of the most charming ski towns in New England is undoubtedly North Conway which is tucked away in the Mt. Washington Valley. North Conway is a popular skiing destination, with Cranmore Mountain ski resort base camp situated almost within the town itself. Cranmore has 57 runs and offers night skiing, three terrain parks, and a ten-lane snow tubing park. There are also skiing and snowboarding lessons for all ages and abilities.
Even if you’re not skiing there’s plenty to do in North Conway. There are numerous shops, including an outlet village, and local antique and hand-craft shops. There’s also a historic scenic railroad where you can take a railway ride around the local area and the Kancamagus scenic highway. This is a 34-mile road with trails for hiking and driving where you can experience local wildlife and breathtaking views.
Back in the town, there are plenty of hotels and lodges for you to stay in as well as restaurants offering both local and world cuisine.
3. Bethel, Maine
With a population of a little over 2,500, Bethel is one of the smallest towns on the list. However, Bethel oozes charm and the heart of the town is undoubtedly the historic Bethel Inn from which there are various outdoor activities offered. Take a sleigh ride around the town or go Nordic skiing, fat biking, or snowshoeing in the surrounding woodlands.
If outdoor excursions aren’t your thing then you can explore the Maine Mineral and Gem Museum or stop for a bite to eat in one of Bethel’s numerous pubs and restaurants.
However, if you’re up for a challenge then Sunday River ski resort is located just six miles up the road. Sunday River is set in 878 acres of skiable terrain and has a vertical drop of 2,340 feet. There are a whopping 135 runs available to suit beginners to experts. There are also five terrain parks and a snow tubing hill. Skiers of all ages can take skiing and snowboarding lessons from highly-qualified instructors at the snowsports school. Plus, there’s the opportunity to learn how to use sno-go bikes too.
4. Stowe, Vermont
One of the most popular ski towns in Vermont is Stowe. Stowe is located near Mount Mansfield which is the highest peak in the state. Although Stowe is classed as one of the more modern, upscale towns, it still offers stunning views in an idyllic landscape as well as plenty of things to do. For a start, there are numerous hotels, lodges, and bed and breakfasts in the area to stay in. There’s also a wide variety of places to eat and shops to explore — whether you fancy a burger or a more high-class dining option.
When it comes to skiing, there’s the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum to explore when you’re not on the slopes. However, the Stowe Mountain Resort is just a short distance from Stowe itself. There are 485 skiable acres with 116 runs and a vertical drop of 2,360 feet. There are also two terrain parks with a variety of jumps and features suitable for beginners as well as experts. Private and group lessons are available for all ages. Plus, a unique adaptive program allows even people with disabilities to get out on the slopes. Plus, Stowe Mountain also offers a cross-country center where you can explore miles of trails while Nordic skiing and snowshoeing.
5. Lincoln, New Hampshire
The last ski town in New England on our list is the charming town of Lincoln in New Hampshire. Situated in the White Mountains, Lincoln is right next to Loon Mountain ski resort. Loon Mountain offers skiing and snowboarding for the entire family and is set on 370 skiable acres. There’s a vertical drop of 2,100 feet and 61 runs, with the longest being 2.5 miles. Plus, there are terrain parks, snow tubing, and private and group lessons available.
Away from the slopes, Lincoln offers several hotels and inns to stay in. There’s also a variety of bars and restaurants which offer great quality food for competitive prices. However, if you want to explore the area further then the Ice Castles are an award-winning frozen attraction that the whole family can enjoy. There’s also Whale’s Tale Waterpark which is a 17-acre waterpark with a variety of rides, slides, and pools to explore.
The towns that we’ve talked about all offer everything you could need in a ski town — shops, restaurants, lodging, fun activities, and of course great skiing. However, with such a wide range of things to do in these stunning ski towns, they are fabulous destinations all year round, not just during the ski season.
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