Our whole family loves Vermont – there are so many great places to be enjoyed by the whole family. And one of our favorite places to visit while we are in Vermont is Shelburne Farms.
Shelburne Farms is located just south of Burlington and a few miles right off Route 7 (the main route to Burlington). This amazing farm is tucked away with many, many acres of land that has so much to offer.
Shelburne Farms is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to educate for a sustainable future. Our campus is a 1,400-acre working farm, forest, and National Historic Landmark, located on the shores of Lake Champlain in Shelburne, Vermont.
One of the first fun things to do is take a tractor ride to the farm. My kids have always loved this ride, taking in the beautiful views and getting some cute photo ops along the way. The tractor brings you right to the main courtyard part of the farm.
After you get off the tractor, there are many things to explore. The first place my kids like to visit is the farm animals and Children’s Farmyard. There are animals both inside and outside, including cows, sheep, goats, pigs, and more. There are also various events throughout the day, such as milking a cow, watching the parade of chickens, and more.
The barn is incredibly clean, and there is a large handwashing station that is easy to access.
In the spring and early summer, there are lots of baby animals, and plenty of farm animals year round.
You can go in the chicken coop, or visit the chickens outside.
The barn is also full of hands-on activities, from books to toys, a tractor, and all kinds of exhibits where you can learn about the farm. My kids have been going here since they were very little, and there is something for children of all ages. The little ones can toddle around and the older kids can explore the more complex exhibits.
We love to also visit the Shelburne Farms cheesemaking factory, where they have been making artisanal cheddar for decades. You can see the workers making cheese in various stages, which is a fascinating process. There are also samples of cheese, cheese for sale, and a small variety of snacks for purchase. My kids love their 6-9 month cheddar, and the smoked cheddar is my favorite!
There is also an area for kids, where little ones can put on a lab coat and pretend to work with cheese curds.
There is also an outdoor Farm Cart concession stand, with fresh treats like cold lemonade and foods like salads and sandwiches. You can also visit their O Bread Bakery, for delicious breads and cookies (their olive bread is amazing!).
There are also lots of beautiful trails around the property. The views are amazing and it is such a nice place to explore. You can even bring a jogging stroller for their gravel trails, while other trails go through the woods. There are trail maps available on their website.
Although not all of the farm is open in the winter, you can go for a sleigh ride around the holiday. This is one of our family traditions when we make it to Vermont in the winter. The whole family bundles up in the sleigh and covers up with the wool blankets they provide. It is a fun experience to go on a real sleigh ride (with actual rails and not wheels like some sleigh rides).
The sleigh ride makes for some great photo ops, and my kids love seeing the big horses. If you can brave the cold, the farm is just as beautiful in the winter for a walk around the farm, and you can always stop in the gift shop for some goodies (both foods and gifts).
If you happen to visit Shelburne Farms without the kids, there is a beautiful Inn along with dining that might be worth checking out (I would recommend it as a date or date night!).
And there are always lots of great events going on, especially in the summer. Worth checking out if you are in the area!
Overall, we love Shelburne Farms and it is always on our list of places to visit when we are near Burlington. This is a very family-friendly destination and so much to do and learn about.
Visit Shelburne Farms at http://www.shelburnefarms.org/ – their website has lots of great information, from the amazing history of the farm to current events, photos, trail maps, visitor information and more.
*Disclosure: I did not receive any compensation for this post.