12 Best Places to Live in Vermont (By Quality of Life)

by Jem
This post may have affiliate links, where I may receive a commission if you purchase through them. Here's our Disclosure and Privacy Policy for more info.

Vermont isn’t just a state; it’s a special way to live. Picture lush mountains, charming towns, and lively cities. This place, known as the Green Mountain State, mixes different ways of living and beautiful scenery. Finding your perfect spot here can be fun and exciting. I’ve put together a guide to help you find the best places to live in Vermont.

I’ve traveled around Vermont and seen its beauty and variety. Think peaceful Lake Champlain, Montpelier’s old streets, mountains with ski slopes, and Burlington’s artsy spots. Vermont has something for everyone. Love quiet country life, artsy towns, or outdoor fun? Vermont’s got the perfect place for you.

Wondering where to start? Everyone’s ideal spot is different. Maybe you want a quiet mountain spot, a friendly community, or good schools and affordable living.

I’m here to guide you through Vermont’s best living spots. I’ve used my travels, research, and local chats to make a list for all lifestyles and budgets. Ready to start this adventure? Let’s go!

The top places to live in Vermont for all

The Best Places to Live in Vermont       

Eager to explore the most picturesque places to call home in Vermont? Nestled in the northeastern United States, Vermont offers a variety of options for everyone. Continue reading to uncover the top living destinations in this charming state.

Searching for the ideal spot in Vermont to settle down? Whether it’s a quiet countryside retreat or a lively town center, Vermont, with its diverse experiences, has something to suit your preferences.

  • Best for community spirit: Bennington
  • Best for natural beauty: Brattleboro
  • Best for lakeside tranquility: Burlington
  • Best for modern conveniences: Colchester
  • Best for modern amenities: Essex Junction
  • Best for outdoor activities: Middlebury
  • Best for small-town charm in a state capital: Montpelier
  • Best for community engagement: Norwich
  • Best for cultural richness: Shelburne
  • Best for four-season outdoor activities: Stowe
  • Best for natural landscapes: Williston

Here are all the prime living spots in Vermont that you need to check out:

1. Bennington

In the heart of southern Vermont lies Bennington, a town where history and community spirit intertwine. This makes it one of the best places to live in Vermont. Known for its rich history, epitomized by the Bennington Battle Monument, it’s a town where the past is not just remembered but celebrated.

Bennington’s charm is in its blend of rural beauty and cultural richness. The town is a hub for artists and creators, evident in its bustling downtown lined with galleries, unique shops, and cozy cafes. The Southern Vermont Arts Center and the annual Bennington Arts Weekend are just glimpses into the town’s vibrant arts scene.

Living in Bennington means enjoying the tranquility of rural life without forgoing convenience. The town boasts high-quality schools, ample healthcare facilities, and a strong sense of community, all nestled in the scenic Green Mountains. Outdoor enthusiasts will revel in the town’s proximity to hiking trails, ski resorts, and its picturesque parks.

The real estate market in Bennington offers a mix of historic homes and modern builds, catering to a range of preferences and budgets. This variety, along with a cost of living that’s more attractive than many urban areas, positions Bennington as the best city to live in Vermont for those seeking a balanced, fulfilling lifestyle.

Bennington is one of the greatest locations to live in Vermont because it is a town where community spirit and history coexist.
Bennington is one of the greatest locations to live in Vermont because it is a town where community spirit and history coexist.

2. Brattleboro

A tapestry of artistic flair and natural beauty, Brattleboro stands out as one of Vermont’s best cities to live. This vibrant town radiates a welcoming, bohemian vibe, attracting artists, musicians, and writers. Brattleboro’s downtown bursts with unique bookstores, artisan cafes, and galleries, showcasing its lively cultural scene.

The town’s location along the Connecticut River adds a picturesque charm, with opportunities for kayaking and fishing at your doorstep. Brattleboro’s outdoor appeal extends to the nearby trails and parks, perfect for hiking and nature exploration. The Brattleboro Farmers’ Market is a community staple, offering fresh, local produce and a chance to mingle with friendly locals. Stay in a VT cabin rental to experience it all!

With a focus on sustainability and a thriving local economy, Brattleboro doesn’t just talk about community—it lives it. The town’s schools are highly regarded, adding to its allure as one of the coolest places to live in Vermont for families and individuals alike.

Brattleboro, one of Vermont's finest areas to live, is a mix of creative flair and tranquility.
Brattleboro, one of Vermont’s finest areas to live, is a mix of creative flair and tranquility.

3. Burlington

Enjoy the unique charm of Burlington, a city where busy city life and peaceful water life meet. Burlington is a culture center that comes to life with festivals, music, and art. It has a youthful energy that is hard to find elsewhere.

The Church Street Marketplace is in the middle of this busy city. It is a pedestrian-only street full of shops, cafes, and street artists. Lake Champlain’s shoreline is a peaceful place to walk, take a boat ride, or just enjoy some local Airbnb. The city’s dedication to sustainability is clear in its bustling community projects and local food scene.

Burlington is a nice city to live in Vermont because of its educational institutions, which include the prestigious University of Vermont. Burlington is one of the best places to live in Vermont because it has a lot of academic life, a lot of different cultural experiences, and beautiful natural settings.

Savor the distinct beauty of Burlington, a place where tranquil waterways and bustling city life collide.
Savor the distinct beauty of Burlington, a place where tranquil waterways and bustling city life collide.

4. Colchester

Discover the allure of Colchester, a gem nestled along the shores of Lake Champlain. This town merges the serenity of lakefront living with the conveniences of modern life, creating an ideal balance for its residents.

Colchester’s natural beauty is its crown jewel, with the lake offering a playground for boating, fishing, and swimming. The local parks and trails cater to outdoor enthusiasts year-round. The town’s educational system is top-notch, complemented by a variety of community activities and events that foster a tight-knit community spirit.

The real estate market here caters to a range of preferences, offering everything from quaint lakeside cottages to modern family homes. Colchester, with its harmonious blend of natural beauty and community warmth, stands out as the best place to live in Vermont for those seeking a tranquil yet active lifestyle. Its charm and amenities make it an easy choice for where to live in Vermont.

Experience the charm of Colchester, a hidden gem tucked away along Lake Champlain's coastline.
Experience the charm of Colchester, a hidden gem tucked away along Lake Champlain’s coastline.

5. Essex Junction

Welcoming streets, community-focused events, and a strong educational system define Essex Junction, a town that epitomizes small-town charm with modern conveniences. Here, community events like the annual Essex Fair bring neighbors together, showcasing the town’s close-knit feel.

Essex Junction’s appeal is further enhanced by its commitment to education and family-friendly amenities. The town’s schools are highly regarded, creating an environment conducive to family life and learning. Green spaces abound, offering residents a chance to unwind and connect with nature.

The real estate market in Essex Junction is diverse, providing options for various lifestyles and budgets. This range, coupled with the town’s robust community spirit and scenic beauty, places it among the good places to live in Vermont. Its blend of tranquility and community engagement solidifies its reputation as one of the best Vermont cities for a balanced, fulfilling life.

Essex Junction is a town that embodies small-town charm with contemporary comforts. 
Essex Junction is a town that embodies small-town charm with contemporary comforts. 

6. Middlebury

Middlebury, renowned for its academic atmosphere and natural beauty, is a hub for those who cherish a blend of intellectual engagement and outdoor activities. Home to Middlebury College, the town buzzes with a youthful and scholarly energy, reflected in its vibrant arts and cultural scene.

The town’s centerpiece, Middlebury College, not only adds to its educational prestige but also brings a wealth of cultural offerings, from theater productions to art exhibitions. Surrounded by the rolling hills and lush landscapes of Vermont, Middlebury offers an array of outdoor pursuits, from hiking in the Green Mountains to kayaking on Otter Creek.

As one of the best areas to live in Vermont, Middlebury appeals to those seeking a lively community with a strong sense of local identity. Its picturesque downtown, dotted with independent shops and eateries, complements its standing as one of the nice parts of Vermont, offering a high quality of life in a serene setting.

For people who value a combination of outdoor recreation and intellectual stimulation, Middlebury is a hub.
For people who value a combination of outdoor recreation and intellectual stimulation, Middlebury is a hub.

7. Montpelier

The smallest state capital in the U.S. is Montpelier, which has a unique mix of politics, culture, and natural beauty. With its famous State House, charming streets, and lively community events, this city is full of history and makes you want to explore it.

Downtown is the busiest part of the city, with lots of shops, cafes, galleries, and bookshops. The many festivals and events in Montpelier show how much the town cares about the arts and help build a strong sense of community among its people. The nearby Green Mountains make for a beautiful background and offer a huge range of outdoor activities, such as skiing and climbing.

Montpelier is a great place to live in Vermont for people who want to live a mix of city and country life. A lot of people in the city ask and answer the question, “Where is the best place to live in Vermont?” Montpelier is a clear winner because it has a lot of community, culture, and natural beauty.

With a distinctive blend of politics, culture, and scenic beauty, Montpelier is the smallest state capital in the union.
With a distinctive blend of politics, culture, and scenic beauty, Montpelier is the smallest state capital in the union.

8. Norwich

Nestled in the picturesque Upper Valley, Norwich is a town where community and nature converge in harmony. Its quintessential Vermont charm is complemented by the warmth of its residents and the town’s rich history.

The community thrives on active engagement, with events like the Norwich Farmers Market being a weekly highlight. The town’s proximity to Dartmouth College adds a unique intellectual vibrancy. Outdoor enthusiasts will love the easy access to hiking trails and the Connecticut River, perfect for a range of activities.

Norwich’s commitment to maintaining a high quality of life places it among Vermont’s best places to live. Its balance of educational excellence, community spirit, and natural beauty makes it one of the most livable cities in Vermont.

A town where nature and community coexist together is Norwich, which is tucked away in the gorgeous Upper Valley.
A town where nature and community coexist together is Norwich, which is tucked away in the gorgeous Upper Valley.

9. Shelburne

A town that effortlessly captivates with its stunning scenery and vibrant arts scene stands as a prime example of Vermont’s wide appeal. At the core of Shelburne town is the Shelburne Museum, a significant edifice displaying art, history, and Americana, showcasing the local community’s profound appreciation for culture.

The beaches of Lake Champlain add to Shelburne’s natural beauty by providing peaceful views and fun activities. Attractions like Shelburne Farms, an educational and cultural center on a working farm, show how much the town cares about protecting its natural and historical history.

Many people wonder what are the best places to live in Vermont because Shelburne, one of the best cities to live in Vermont, strikes the ideal balance between cultural richness and natural beauty. Shelburne definitely makes the list because of its unique personality and friendly people.

Shelburne is a good illustration of Vermont's attractiveness to a broad audience.
Shelburne is a good illustration of Vermont’s attractiveness to a broad audience.

10. Stowe

Often hailed as a four-season paradise, this town offers more than just its world-renowned ski slopes. Stowe is a mosaic of stunning landscapes, vibrant local culture, and a thriving arts scene, making it one of the most sought-after places to move in Vermont.

The town’s allure lies in its ability to offer a perfect mix of adventure and relaxation. Summer brings lush greenery and a plethora of hiking and biking trails, while winter transforms the landscape into a snowy wonderland, ideal for skiing and snowboarding.

The vibrant community of Stowe, with its array of local shops, galleries, and farm-to-table restaurants, adds a unique charm. This harmonious blend of natural beauty and community spirit makes Stowe one of the best Vermont towns to live in, appealing to those seeking a dynamic yet serene lifestyle.

Beautiful scenery, a flourishing arts sector, and a lively local culture all coexist in Stowe.
Beautiful scenery, a flourishing arts sector, and a lively local culture all coexist in Stowe.

11. Williston

Embodying the essence of suburban living with a Vermont twist, Williston offers a lifestyle marked by convenience and natural beauty. Despite its significant growth, it retains a small-town feel, making it an ideal choice for where to live in VT.

The town’s appeal lies in its blend of modern amenities and access to nature. Retail centers like Maple Tree Place offer shopping and dining options, while nearby trails and parks provide a quick escape to nature. The community is close-knit, with events throughout the year fostering a sense of belonging.

With a range of housing options, excellent schools, and a friendly community, Williston is undoubtedly one of the best towns to live in Vermont. Its balance of modern living and natural charm appeals to families and professionals alike.

Williston represents the epitome of suburban living with a Vermont touch, providing a convenient and scenic way of life.
Williston represents the epitome of suburban living with a Vermont touch, providing a convenient and scenic way of life.

12. Woodstock

It’s like walking into a painting when you visit Woodstock, Vermont. Woodstock is one of the best places in Vermont. It is famous for its covered bridges, village green, and stately colonial homes. In this spot, the past and present, the community, and the beauty of nature all mix together perfectly.

As you walk through Woodstock’s pretty streets, you’ll see one-of-a-kind shops, art galleries, and restaurants serving farm-fresh food. Each one shows how dedicated the area is to the cooking and craft arts. The Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park is a great example of how hard the United States works to protect nature. It has beautiful views and trails for exploring.

Local projects and care for the environment in Woodstock show how much people care about preserving history and building a healthy future. Wassail Weekend in the town celebrates both Woodstock’s past and the holiday season. It brings in both locals and visitors, showing off the town’s lively and friendly vibe.

When you live in Woodstock, you embrace a way of life that is both simple and elegant. For people who enjoy the charm of a small town with a diverse culture and natural environment, it’s a nice city to live in Vermont.

One of the nicest places to visit in Vermont is Woodstock, which has the atmosphere of entering into a picture.
One of the nicest places to visit in Vermont is Woodstock, which has the atmosphere of entering into a picture.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About the Best Places to Live in Vermont                       

Eager to find out about the best residential areas in Vermont? Here are some questions that people often ask me about where to live in VT.

What is the best part of living in Vermont?

Vermont is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, strong community spirit, and relaxed lifestyle. Here’s what makes it special:

  • Scenic Beauty: The state’s landscapes, featuring the Green Mountains, serene lakes, and lush forests, provide breathtaking views and tranquility.
  • Distinct Seasons: Vermont’s seasons each bring unique beauty, from colorful autumn leaves and snowy winters to spring blossoms and lush green summers.
  • Community and Culture: Known for friendly, welcoming communities, best towns to live in Vermont host local events and farmers’ markets, creating a strong sense of belonging.
  • Outdoor Activities: Outdoor enthusiasts love Vermont for skiing in Stowe, hiking the Long Trail, and kayaking on Lake Champlain.
  • Health and Wellbeing: With its clean air, active lifestyle, and focus on organic, local food, Vermont ranks high in health and happiness.
  • Arts and History: The state’s rich history and vibrant arts scene, particularly in places like Burlington and Montpelier, offer diverse cultural experiences.

Is it expensive to live in Vermont?

Vermont can have higher housing and energy costs than the rest of the country, making it more expensive to live there. There is a big difference in the cost of living from one place to another. In general, more rural areas are cheaper than famous towns or cities like Burlington.

Groceries and health care can also be a little more expensive than usual, but many people think that the high standard of these services is worth the extra cost. But it’s important to remember that Vermont’s focus on sustainability and local food can save you money on other things, like food, if you use farmers’ markets and community-supported farms.

If you want to know where in Vermont is the most affordable place to live, you should look into and compare a number of towns and areas. Each has its own unique mix of cost and quality of life.

Where do most people live in Vermont?

Most of Vermont’s people live in cities and suburbs, with the highest number near Burlington, the state’s biggest city. Burlington, South Burlington, Essex, and Colchester all work together to make a lively city center. This place is famous for the jobs it offers, the schools it has, and the arts it features.

A lot of Vermonters live in smaller towns and rural places outside of these cities. People want to live in places like Montpelier, Rutland, and Stowe because they have beautiful scenery, a friendly community feel, and lots of outdoor activities. Vermont has a unique charm that can be seen in both the city and the countryside. This makes it one of the best states for people with a wide range of lives and tastes.

Finding the best places to live in Vermont is like discovering a world of quaint villages, vibrant cities, and serene countryside.
Finding the best places to live in Vermont is like discovering a world of quaint villages, vibrant cities, and serene countryside.

What is the quality of life in Vermont?

The quality of life in Vermont is often celebrated for its pristine environment, low crime rates, and strong sense of community. Here’s why living in Vermont is so fulfilling:

  • Natural Beauty and Health: Vermont’s stunning natural scenery isn’t just a feast for the eyes; it encourages a healthy, active lifestyle outdoors.
  • Community and Sustainability: The state’s focus on community and sustainability enriches life here. There’s a strong emphasis on cultural events, local food, and being part of the community.
  • Education and Healthcare: Vermont boasts excellent schools, with a special emphasis on environmental learning and outdoor activities. The healthcare system is also top-notch, focusing on both accessibility and quality.
  • Balanced Living: While some areas might be pricier, many residents believe the benefits of a peaceful, community-oriented, and eco-friendly lifestyle are well worth it.

How much money do you need to live comfortably in Vermont?

The amount of money you need to live comfortably in Vermont depends on where you live, how you live, and your unique situation. An annual income of $40,000 to $60,000 might be enough for one person to live a comfortable life, paying for things like housing, food, transportation, and fun things to do. For families, this number would be higher, possibly between $70,000 and $100,000 or even more, especially in more urban or sought-after places like Burlington or some of Vermont’s best cities to live in.

Is it affordable to live in Vermont?

Affordability in Vermont depends a lot on the person and how they live their life. Some places, like small towns in the country, can be very cheap to live in. Other places, like the Greater Burlington area or famous tourist spots like Stowe, may have higher cost of living. Usually, the biggest cost is the home itself. In some parts of the state, property taxes and energy costs make living costs even higher.

Final Thoughts on the Best Places to Live in Vermont                     

Discovering top cities in Vermont to live is like uncovering a world of charming towns, lively cities, and peaceful countryside. Each place, from Burlington’s busy streets to Woodstock’s quiet trails, shows off Vermont’s variety. Here, life is about natural beauty, community, and caring for the environment.

In Vermont, you can enjoy all four seasons, live in a town that cares about the outdoors, and have a good mix of modern conveniences and natural ease. Vermont has a place for everyone, whether they like the artsy vibe of Brattleboro, the history of Bennington, or the outdoor fun of Stowe.

Thinking of moving? Vermont is more than a home; it’s a full, real experience. Every town has its story, inviting you to be part of it. Looking at Vermont’s best places to live, it’s clear: living here means more than just the usual. It’s about making every day an adventure.

Come see these great places. Maybe you’ll find your perfect lifestyle in one of Vermont’s lovely spots. Remember, the journey matters as much as where you end up. And in Vermont, that journey is sure to be as rewarding as it is beautiful.

The top places to live in Vermont right now
Enjoyed reading about the top places to live in Vermont? Pin it!

You may also like

Leave a Comment