Edited by Laura Hoot
This winter sport wonderland may seem like a destination reserved only for the financially endowed, but Killington has more to offer the budget traveler than initial observations might reflect. Beautiful temperate vistas, fine dining establishments and outdoor excursions await even the most frugal traveler looking to save some greenbacks here in Killington. Here's your guide to Killington vacation deals:
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You may not be staying at any premier, four-star resorts here in Killington, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy all that this little mountain town has to offer. Stretch your budget and even save some dough when planning activities on your vacation to the Green Mountains.
- Gifford Woods State Park allows guests to enjoy a self-guided hike through the natural beauty of the northeastern landscape. Single day entry will cost $3 per person, but the views and memories you’re sure to find in a day will last a lifetime. Take a trek down the historic Appalachian trail or keep it short and sweet on the 1-mile Kent Brook Trail. Picnic areas are a plenty in these tranquil woods, so pack some snacks or a full meal to enjoy when you find a clearing a little off the beaten paths. 34 Gifford Woods Rd.
- Coolidge State Park, located just south of town, offers a scenic venue to enjoy a day with nature. This park is the recreational centerpiece for the abounding groves of the Calvin Coolidge State Forest, which occupies over 20,000 acres of central Vermont. Hike through trails to catch a glimpse of black bears, moose and barred owls, or fish the tiny rivers and creeks teeming with trout. 855 Coolidge State Park Rd, Plymouth, VT
- Aitken State Forest, located west of Killington in nearby Rutland features another beautiful backdrop provided by nature. The Bald Mountain Trail is a 3.5-mile trek through this historic forest that offers visitors premier bird-watching locations, as well as enchanting vistas overlooking the Green Mountains. On a warm summer night, recline back and experience the spectacular display of colors that is the Aurora Borealis as it gracefully bends and twists over earth’s atmosphere. Mendon, VT
Winter Sports on a Budget
- Rental equipment can become a huge expense for any winter sport enthusiast. Instead of renting from the expensive resorts, try some of the local retailers around town. Darkside Snowboards offers skiers and riders fair prices on rental equipment, with discounted rates on rentals lasting more than five days. 1842 Killington Road
- Cross country skiing, while not as invigorating as its downhill counterpart, offers athletes a chance to test their physical endurance. Mountain Meadows Cross Country Skiing features over 30 miles of trails that wind through the hills, fields and forests of central Vermont. You won’t have to purchase an expensive lift ticket to experience the beautiful vistas and natural beauty in the heart of the Green Mountains. 2363 U.S. 4
Art and History
- The Norman Rockwell Museum in nearby Rutland, presents visitors with a world renowned collection of work from the late American artist, Norman Rockwell. During his life, Rockwell was quite fond of Vermont and spent much of his time enraptured in its breathtaking beauty. The heart of this collection focuses on Rockwell's achievements in illustration and advertising, featuring a vast number of works from some of America’s most popular magazines. 9 Massachusetts 183, Stockbridge, MA
- Calvin Coolidge Homestead District allows travelers to step back in time and view Vermont through the adolescent eyes of one our most prominent presidents of the past century. The Homestead District is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., from late May through the middle of October. The Aldrich House is open year-round and features historical pieces and exhibits. 3780 Vermont 100A, Plymouth, VT
- Liquid Art, a gallery, coffee shop and cocktail lounge, allows guests to view artwork created by local artisans while sipping on your favorite beverage of choice. Pottery, paintings, photographs and jewelry are all on prominent display for your viewing pleasure. 37 Miller Brook Rd
- The Killington Arts Guild was first established in 1998 as a way for local artists to enhance their artistic visions through communication. In 2008, the guild opened its own gallery which displays the work of members from across the area. New gallery shows are held every three months, with rotating exhibitions held intermittently throughout the year.
While food options are plentiful throughout the little town of Killington, some venues could leave a sizable hole in your wallet. While four-star dining options might be left off the menu for budget conscious travelers, there are still a number of local spots to sustain your appetite. Dine on a dime at some of Killington’s best kept secrets.
- Enjoy a real American breakfast without sacrificing the funds for lunch and dinner at Johnny Boy’s This quaint little diner is known for its hearty proportions and excellent service. If you spent a night out on the town after a long day of skiing or boarding, a massive plate of eggs and hashbrowns are exactly what you need to get those energy levels back up for another day on the slopes. 945 Killington Road
Lunch and Dinner
- Back Behind Restaurant at the eastern foot of Killington Peak features heaping servings of mouth-watering barbecue at its very best. Their hickory smoked entrees are slow cooked up to 12 hours over smoldering aged wood, and offer a superior taste you can’t find anywhere else in town. 8490 U.S. 4
- Domenic’s Pizzeria is a little slice of paradise for pie lovers looking for that authentic NYC flavor. This modest establishment offers the full spectrum of traditional toppings, along with some specialty pizza combos that are sure to blow your mind. Complete with an outstanding selection of fine wines and a full bar, Domenic’s is sure to satisfy your every craving after a long day on the mountain, even when money is tight. 2822 Killington Rd
- For the traditional flavors of Asia, grab a bite to eat at Sushi Yoshi. Whether you’re just looking for a quick roll to snack on or to fill up on sashimi, this gourmet eatery and steakhouse offers a wide array of options for the frugal traveler. 1807 Killington Rd
Coffee, Tea and Dessert
- The Sun Up Bakery offers quality baked goods for budget conscious patrons. Sink your teeth into a variety of muffins, cakes, cookies or other assorted treats that are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. Compliment your snacks with a beverage from Sun Up’s selection of locally roasted coffee, espresso and tea blends. 2250 Killington Rd
You don’t have to stay at one of the expensive resorts to have a good day in the mountains. Low-budget opportunities can be found all around town if you know where to look. Sunrise Village offers guests the option of renting one-, two- and three-bedroom ski cabins without having to hoof it to the mountain every morning. Make those long morning walks to the peak in snow boots a thing of the past with the help of Sunrise Village’s triple chain. At the end of the day, ski home on one of many snowmaking trails.
The Tuck It Inn is another great option for budget conscious travelers, offering rates significantly lower than what you’d find at other establishments around town. Rent a cozy chalet that rests just minutes away from all the restaurants, shops and nightclubs that populate downtown Killington. In the evenings, after a long day on the slopes, warm up those frozen bones in their indoor sauna or outdoor Jacuzzi. Great rates for group travelers or a couple families looking to shack up for a discounted rate.
- Plan your trip accordingly and try to avoid the popular mid-season vacation. Killington sees many travelers through the winter holidays, but rates seem to fall throughout the later winter months. Enjoy the last quarter of the winter sports season at a reduced rate by investigating lower rate options later in the season.
- Catch an act at one of Killington’s local festivals for a fun time that won’t break the bank. The Killington Music Festival is currently in its 31st season and offers visitors a chance to take in the classical ensembles that present themselves on stage. See performances by both student and faculty musicians, as they dazzle the crowd with orchestral and string performances.