fall leaves in VermontThree weeks ago I finally got to experience an adventure that’s been on my bucket list for the last ten years: an autumn road trip through the fall leaves in Vermont. I only had a weekend to see the fall leaves in Vermont but I lucked out and managed to capture the trees at their color peak. Seriously, the colors of the leaves were out of control bananas levels of bold and bright! I loved how the species of trees in the different forests across the state showed their own unique palettes: from one that was akin to a rainbow to others that were alive with fiery reds and auburns. After the jump I’m sharing all my tips for where to stay, where to eat and, most importantly, the best places to drive and hike to see the fall leaves in Vermont. There’s also the video I made showing the spectacular views of the fall leaves in Vermont, too. Come, let’s go for a drive…!

fall leaves in VermontSTOWE
I loved the charming little town of Stowe. Not only was it storybook levels of adorable but it also had plenty of classic Vermont details to see, such as the white steepled churches and sweeping hills alive with fall foliage all around. Plus, it’s perfectly located for fall foliage drives, too.fall leaves in Vermont– Black cap coffee & beer | I had a quick lunch here and it was super tasty. Sit out on the sidewalk tables so you can people watch and meet some of the locals. Who, by the way, could not have been more friendly to my heartmate and I during our weekend there.fall leaves in Vermont– The Country Store | A cute little store for gift shopping on Main St.fall leaves in Vermont– Hikes | If you just want a gentle hike then I recommend the trails in Wiessner Woods and Kirchner Woods. For something more challenging, the Long Trail is for you. It’s a 265-mile trail system running throughout Vermont and it crosses Mt. Mansfield and Spruce Peak in Stowe. Vermont’s highest peak at 4,393′ is situated on the Long Trail, too. Perfect for sweeping views of fall foliage in Vermont!fall leaves in Vermont– Drives to see foliage | There are a series of long and short drives from Stowe that you can take to see fall foliage in Vermont. I found this list really helpful when planning which drives to take.
– Ben & Jerry’s factory tour | Ice cream lovers rejoice: there’s a Ben & Jerry’s factory tour in Stowe!fall leaves in VermontLAKE ELMORE
Several people kindly recommended I visit Lake Elmore to see fall foliage in Vermont before my trip and it didn’t disappoint. The lake was surrounded with cute little cottages nestled in between woods that were alive with color – it was a photographer’s dream! There were a few people rowing on the lake when I visited which made it hard to capture crisp reflection shots but if the water had been calm this would be a great spot to take those types of pictures.fall leaves in Vermont– Lake | The lake itself is well worth stopping to enjoy. There are several car parks on the surrounding road that you can pull up into. Jump out the car with a picnic and enjoy the tranquility of the water while you eat lunch.fall leaves in Vermont– Hikes | There are also a number of stunning hikes through Elmore State Park that depart from the perimeter of Lake Elmore. Check out this list to choose which one you’d like to do.fall leaves in VermontYou guys know how much I like a color match moment and this certainly ticked that box!fall leaves in VermontSHELBURNE
Shelburne was established in 1763 and is located on beautiful Lake Champlain in Chittenden County, which is the most populated county in the State of Vermont. I stopped off here on my way to Vergennes (about 30mins or so on from Shelburne), which I made a special trip to visit because I wanted to try out the Vergennes Laundry bakery and espresso bar. It was worth the trip for the gorgeous white interior and delicious buns.

– Antique stores | There are countless antique stores across the state of Vermont but some of my favorite little places were tucked away in Shelburne.fall leaves in Vermont– The Dutch Mill Diner | I stopped off for lunch at the Dutch Mill Diner one day and it was the perfect respite from the autumn chill. Hearty (and comfortingly greasy!) home-style diner food in a no-frills environment.fall leaves in VermontBURLINGTON
Burlington is the main city in Vermont and it’s buzzing with life thanks to the large student population. I loved how Main St. was pedestrianized because it reminded me of towns and cities in England that are similar to this. In fact, the whole state reminded me a lot of growing up in England with all the sweeping countryside and woodland. It really is such a gorgeous state – I loved it!

– August First bakery for breakfast | This was my favorite spot for breakfast in Burlington because everything was made from scratch. Delicious breakfast sandwiches and pastries await!
– El Cortijo Mexican Restaurant | This was my favorite place I ate at whilst in Vermont – the tacos were so good! Plus, the staff were super friendly and our waitress even hand-wrote a list of her favorite places in the surrounding area that we should see.fall leaves in Vermont– Hotel Vermont and its bar and restaurant, Juniper | I stayed at Hotel Vermont during my visit and I loved it. It was the perfect base to explore the state and I loved being able to come back to a larger city after a day in more rural areas because it meant that there was plenty of options for dinner that were open late etc. The hotel itself had a great bar and restaurant, Juniper, too. I loved the organic touches to the decor throughout.
– American Flatbread | A great spot for wood-fired pizzas and handcrafted beers. The restaurant is really cozy inside and it makes for a great place to relax after a day peeping the fall leaves in Vermont!fall leaves in Vermont– Maglianero cafe | This was my favorite spot for coffee in Burlington. There’s a co-workign space and they also offer free bike storage inside for patrons!
– Hen of the Wood restaurant | Everyone recommended this place to me as being great for oysters. I don’t eat seafood so I didn’t try it out myself but every time I walked past it was packed so I’m guessing it’s the spot to eat at if oysters are your thing!

Hope you found my travel guide to fall leaves in Vermont useful. If you go during leaf peeping season, I hope you have just as magical a time as I did! Next on my list is to return and see this beautiful state covered in a blanket of white snow…!fall leaves in Vermont// Photography by Will Taylor


Will Taylor

Will lives in NYC and is an interior design author and content creator. He's been blogging about his love of design, style and travel since 2009. His #MakeYouSmileStyle approach to decorating and dressing has inspired over one million Instagram uploads to the hashtag from followers across the world.


  1. Will, may I have your life for a month or so?I always enjoy your posts and your immaculate taste. the pics are epic; which camera were you using?

  2. Incredible pics Will. Thank you for sharing this beauty with us all.

  3. Oh wowwwwwwww… I’ve always dreamed of visiting Vermont during fall….. beautiful photos x

    • @Caroline – I highly recommend a trip if you can make it. I felt the same way before I took this road trip and it didn’t disappoint one bit!

  4. Oh my goodness me! These images are off the chart amazing! Love love love! One day I have to make this trip too. xo

    • @Emily – Thank you so much! I hope you get to see this part of the world during autumn one day because it is truly magical! I’d never seen colours like it in nature before. xx

  5. Hi Will 👋

    How did you feel after your trip? I have always wanted to take a road trip through Maine thanks to the movie the Iron Giant. It pictures the quaint and quiet seaside town of Rockford Maine. Rockford has quaint houses, its own white steepled church and a small down town with small wall to wall shops. Anyways! Your post brought me back to that movie – it is a very touching film about a young boy’s friendship with a crash-landed amnesia stricken giant robot from space during the paranoia of the nuclear age. I highly recommend viewing the film!!!

    Colin 👩‍👦🤖🌲🏡🌳🌅

  6. Harry M. Fontenot III Reply

    Finally able to sit down and enjoy the post on your recent Vermont trip. In a word…breathtaking! You have captured the incredible autumnal beauty of Vermont through your lense and given us a great travel guide along the way. For a lover of all things fall it’s an aesthetic dream…thanks so much Will.❤

  7. Awww You’ve made me homesick ☺️ But I’m so glad you enjoyed my home state. 😉🍁🍂

  8. Wowww……Great images and post! This is a must read & informative travel post. Keep Up the good work. Thanks!

  9. Ahh I like to visit this blog. 😍 I can not stay indifferent, you are so good in this, every honor! Go on. 👏👏👏

  10. Beautiful photos! Great read! We recently returned from a similar Vermont trip. Next time, definitely try Hen of the Wood… you don’t have to get oysters! Plenty of other delicious items to enjoy!

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Hey, I'm Will

Welcome to Bright.Bazaar, my make-you-smile style corner of the internet. I’ve been sharing my love of beautiful design, feel-good homes, everyday style, inspiring travel and, pretty much everything in between, since 2009. As well as working as a content creator, I write interior design books and edit a bi-weekly e-newsletter called Smile Mail. I live in New York City with my heartmate and can often be found listening to Madonna’s Confessions album and dreaming up my next home renovation project.