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Best Places to Live in Vermont

Great hotspots are Brattleboro, Burlington, Essex Junction, Middlebury, Montpelier

By Kevin Litwin on February 4, 2016


Here is some background on five really nice communities in The Green Mountain State:


Brattleboro, the oldest town in Vermont, has transformed into a vibrant arts community. Among its cultural attractions are Brattleboro Museum & Art Center, Brattleboro Music Center, Vermont Theatre Company, New England Youth Theater and Vermont Jazz Center. Annual events include a Winter Carnival in February, Strolling of the Heifers in June, and Shakespeare in the Park in July.


As the largest city in Vermont, Burlington lies 45 miles south of the U.S.-Canada border on the waterfront shore of Lake Champlain. ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center sits at the waterfront, and the Emily Post Institute etiquette organization maintains its long-standing headquarters in Burlington. Church Street Marketplace pedestrian mall highlights the city’s downtown district.

Essex Junction

A 10-day Champlain Valley Fair rolls into Essex Junction each summer and serves as the largest traditional agricultural fair in New England, with nearly 300,000 visitors attending the event each year. Also calling Essex Junction home are the Vermont International Festival, Champlain Valley Balloon Festival, world class skiing and snowboarding, and IBM’s worldwide Microelectronics Division.


The crown jewel of Middlebury remains Middlebury College (nicknamed “Midd”), known for its programs in language instruction, international studies and environmental studies, plus its sports teams have won 31 NCAA Division III championships since 1995. Annual events in Middlebury include the Vermont Symphony Concert & Fireworks and a weeklong Festival on the Green.


With 8,000 residents, Montpelier has the smallest population of any U.S. state capital and is known for its arts and culture scene. Attractions include Vermont College of Fine Arts, Lost Nation Theater and Montpelier Theatre Guild. For those pursuing a career in the food industry, the renowned New England Culinary Institute is in Montpelier.

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