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Smugglers Notch Ski Resort Profile
By Kellie K. Speed

There is no better family vacation in Vermont than Smugglers' Notch Resort. As soon as you step onto the property, you will know you have arrived. They offer everything right on the grounds, from water parks (including one indoor), guided walks along nature trails in the warmer months, tennis, golf, mini golf and canoeing to kayaking, fishing, biking and even camps for the kids.

Located in northern Vermont, Smugglers' Notch Resort welcomes skiers and riders to its 78 trails and three mountains. The property's three mountains encompass 1,000 acres of terrain, with trails that include learning areas for beginners as well as novice, intermediate and expert terrain. With such a large property, Smugglers' Notch offers a complimentary shuttle to take you around the property from specific pickup and dropoff locations but you can also flag the bus down as well.

The resort offers fully-equipped mountainside homes, lift tickets, ski and snowboard all-day camp for children ages 3-5, ski or snowboard lessons for children ages 6-17, learn-to-ski or learn-to-snowboard group lessons for adult beginners, a Winter Walking program, 34 km of cross-country trails and 24 km of snowshoe trails, a FunZone Family Entertainment Center, pool, hot tubs and teen centers and off slope activities such as snow tubing and nightly family and adult entertainment. While the kids are away at day camp, stop by the Mountain Massage Center and book an hour of some true relaxation.

Whether you are looking for a casual dinner or a fine dining experience, there is something for everyone here. The Morse Mountain Grille, which is located literally at the base of Morse Mountain, is one of the top picks for casual dining at the resort. Whether you are looking for a traditional Vermont country breakfast or an afternoon escape for a few beers, this is the place for you. For truly casual food, stop by Riga Bello's for a slice of pizza or the Green Mountain Deli to grab a quick sandwich before heading off to the slopes. If you are looking for a special night on the town, don't miss Hearth & Candle, the property's only fine dining restaurant.

The resort offers more than 500 privately owned and timeshare condominium style accommodations centered around a resort village, which offer a home away from home atmosphere. The best and newest accommodations are located in the North Hill community. The large family style condo in the Kestrels had a gas fireplace, kitchen with granite countertops, and the enormous master bedroom suite offered a steam shower and separate Jacuzzi tub. Some of the standard housing was built several decades ago so be sure to request a premium unit, which is also located adjacent to the indoor water park.

Smugglers' Notch offers full-day camps for children, which include on-mountain instruction, lunch, entertainment and exploration programs. Programs are available for children as young as two and one-half for ski lessons and age four for snowboarding lessons. Youngsters six to 10 years old can choose the Adventure Rangers Ski or Snowboard Camp for an all day adventure of guided on-slope treks, fun races, interactive nature and science discovery with on-mountain games. Tweens 11 to 15 enjoy one and one-half hour notch ski or snowboard lessons while kids 16 and 17 can opt for a six-hour private instruction or guided tour or alpine ski or private snowboard lessons.

There is so much to do here at Smugglers' Notch Resort that you can almost guarantee no one will ever get bored. If you are looking to get off property for a quick trip, just a short drive from the resort is Stowe, which offers some great restaurants and shopping as well as Ben & Jerry's factory tour and the Vermont Teddy Bear factory.

Smugglers' Notch Resort
4323 Vermont Route 108 South
Smugglers' Notch, VT 05464
Tel: (800) 419-4615

Lodging Choices: Condos with easy access to the lifts dot the landscape at Smuggs. A stretch from the Highlands Hill to Village area contains many lodging choices, all basically ski-in, ski-out. The Village area – east, central, and west, include more choices as well. We believe a large selection of ski-in, ski-out lodging is a key feature for families, and Smuggs achieves that.

Terrain / Highest Elevation / Vertical Drop: 1,000 / 3,600 feet / 2,600 feet

Activities for Non-Skiers: The Village at Smugglers Notch offers a quaint shopping area and restaurants. Around the mountain, Stowe can offer a sightseer a good day’s worth of activities. Stowe is 20 minutes away of the pass is open. Several historic sites are within a short drive of the area.

Ski School. The ski school at Smuggs is known for its quality of instruction and focus on development. Kids as young as 2 ½ can ski, and snowboarding can start at 4. Prices range from $65 for a 3-hour lesson to $139 for an undiscounted full-day rate. Group family lessons are also available for each member of the family at the same time. Rates are very competitive when compared to the western resorts. Most vacation packages include a portion of or discount on ski lessons.

Day Care: Treasures daycare offers professional staff to watch kids ages 6 weeks to 3 years. Starting at 2 ½, a portion of ski lesson can be mixed in to the day. Daycare rates are in the $85/day range.

Getting there: Smugglers Notch is driving distance from New York (6 hours) and Boston (4 hours). For those who want to fly, the nearest airport is Burlington, which will place you about 45 minutes from the resort village.

Insider Tip: If you are looking for a night out, complete with drinks and nightlife, you'll have options in both Smuggler's Notch and nearby Stowe.

Kellie Speed is a freelance writer based in Massachusetts. In the winter months, she and her husband can be found on various ski slopes throughout New England.