Vermont is known as the "Green Mountain State", which the state's name literally translates to in French. French explorer Samuel Champlain gave the region the name "Verd Mont" on his 1647 map and the name and landscape of the area have, for the most part, remained the same to this day.
Vermont is often described as a quiet place to live that has a rustic soul feeling when you cross the border into the mountainous state. It is perfect for those who love getting back in touch with nature. Vermont was also ranked the safest state in the United States in 2016, so you can feel at ease in the scenic hills of New England's "Vertical State".
The Green Mountain state is also New England's only land-locked state, however there is plenty of water nestled in the mountain ranges of Vermont which are like natural playgrounds to those who love to be outside.
Vermont has over 800 lakes, ponds, and reservoirs, with 220 of them being larger than 20 acres in size. The state also has 23,000 miles of rivers and streams, and 300,000 acres of wetlands. With hundreds of lakes to choose from, you are never far from being lake-side in the sixth smallest state in the U.S.
Popular summertime recreational outdoor and lakeside activities in Vermont include swimming, boating, hiking, kayaking, canoeing, fishing, sunbathing, cycling, camping, and scuba diving in a few of the state's deeper lakes. Lake Champlain and Lake Willoughby are the top two lakes in the state for scuba diving. Lake Champlain has more than 300 shipwrecks at the bottom and Lake Willoughby reaches depths more than 300 feet deep, both exciting adventures for any scuba enthusiast!
In the wintertime, outdoorsmen love to spend their time ice fishing, snowboarding, snow skiing, or riding four-wheelers thorugh the snowy mountains. Before the chill of winter, Vermont is known for its gorgeous views of the autumn leaves in the mountains. The hills light up with bright reds and oranges from the maple trees, the oak trees turn shades of bronze, and the beech and birch trees become bright hues of yellow.
It is a good thing Vermont has so many active and outdoor sporting activities to choose from year-round. Few states offer as many delicious signature flavors as Vermont and you are sure to want to try them all in several of the state's renowned eateries. Montpelier and Essex Junction have each had new restaurants recently open, thanks to the New England Culinary Institute, which pride themselves on using only locally grown produce, meat and dairy products.
Vermont's official flavor is sweet, as it is the nation's leading producer of maple syrup. The state even features an annual festival in the spring dedicated to the sticky breakfast staple for pancakes. Vermont is known to have some of the best diners and breakfast cafes in the nation, all of which serve stacks of pancakes with generous pitchers of maple syrup.
You might also notice several black and white Holstein cows dotting the pastures while driving through Vermont. Dairy farming is the primary source of agricultural income in the state and there are several famous dairy-based factories scattered throughout. Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream is located in Waterbury, Cobot Creamery Headquarters is in Waitsfield, and Crowley Cheese (said to be America's first cheese factory, opened in 1882) is located in the oldest continuously-operating cheese factory in Healdville.
Vermont may be the sixth smallest state in the U.S. by area, and the second-least populous of the states, but there is little this New England gem lacks. The state's cities and towns, such as Burlington, St. Johnsbury, and Brattleboro are very lively and full of international flavor. Take a drive out to the country and you can have the rural quiet of the rolling mountains almost all to yourself. New millennials and old time bohemians alike enjoy the beautiful scenery and flavors this unique state has to offer.