A Visitor’s Guide to the Upper Valley

 

A Visitor’s Guide to the Upper Valley

Upper ValleyThe Upper Valley, which covers acreage in both Vermont and neighboring New Hampshire, remains a historical, adventurous, and undeniably charming four-season destination. Travelers return time and time again to bask in the natural beauty, indulge in the sophistication, and learn more about the region’s absorbing historical significance. And the most desirable location to start and finish each day is right here at The Norwich Inn, one of the top-reviewed hotels near Dartmouth College. Where else can you stay on a 200-year-old property that features elegant guest rooms, fine dining, and an award-winning craft brewery?

15 Reasons to Visit the Upper Valley

The Upper Valley requires repeat visits as each season is unique. Summer is bustling with outdoor adventurers. Fall hosts a wide variety of leaf peepers. Winter ushers in hundreds of couples in need of an extended break from the city. And spring breathes new life into the Upper Valley’s shops, restaurants, and, of course, nearby wilderness. To ensure that your next visit to The Norwich Inn is nothing short of flawless, we’ve compiled 15 unique reasons to visit Norwich this year (regardless of the season).

  1. Tour Dartmouth College, with a Stop at the Hood Museum of Art
  2. Pose Next to the Prettiest Covered Bridges in the Upper Valley
  3. Spend a Day at Artisans Park in Nearby Windsor; the Path of Life Sculpture Garden Is a Revelation
  4. Upper ValleyEnroll in Baking School at King Arthur Flour’s Flagship Campus
  5. Attend Vermont NanoFest, New England’s Premier Beer Festival
  6. Plan a Stay During the Annual Upper Valley Restaurant Week
  7. Bask in the Upper Valley’s Jaw-Dropping Fall Colors
  8. Learn, Shop, and Dine at Simon Pearce’s Flagship Location (as seen in the photo above)
  9. Treat the Kids to an Afternoon at the Montshire Museum of Science
  10. Hike to the Top of Gile Mountain, Home to the Upper Valley’s Best Vantage Point
  11. Shop ‘Til You Drop in Norwich, Hanover, and Artisans Park
  12. A Weekend of Craft Beer at Jasper Murdock Ales, Our On-Site Brewery
  13. Paddle down the Connecticut River via Canoe, Kayak, or Paddleboard
  14. Farm to Barn to Bottle: Join a Silo Distillery Tour
  15. Plan a Picturesque Wedding at The Barn at Happy Hill, a Rustic Fairytale Come to Life

Upper ValleyHistoric Hotels in Norwich, VT

Whether you plan to visit Dartmouth College, explore the Green Mountain State, or relax here at The Norwich Inn, you quickly fall in love with this region’s unique blend of history, adventure, and refinement. And don’t forget that both the Ivy Lodge and Walker House boast some of the prettiest Upper Valley rentals, all of which are just a short drive (or walk) from the city’s best attractions. Please give us a call today at 802-649-1143, or visit our specials page, to book a well-deserved escape into the heart of New England.

An Upper Valley Shopping Guide

 

An Upper Valley Shopping Guide

hanover nh shoppingWith the unofficial start to summer only days away, thousands of couples, groups, and families are finalizing their mid-summer vacation plans to New England’s Upper Valley. Nestled in a quiet neighborhood across the Connecticut River from Dartmouth College rests The Norwich Inn, a charming, historical trip back in time. The Norwich Inn is home to one of the best breweries in Vermont (Jasper Murdock Ales), a top-rated restaurant, and Victorian-style accommodations. If you’re looking for a leisurely summertime activity during your stay, we recommend spending a couple of hours shopping in Norwich VT and Hanover NH. The streets in these two historic cities feature an eclectic mix of shops, galleries, and farm stands. Hanover NH shopping, in particular, is a popular mid-day activity as the best stores are just a short walk from Dartmouth College.

Norwich VT Shopping

Let’s start our shopping tour right here in Norwich VT, the proud home of world-famous King Arthur Flour. Whether you’re searching for fresh produce or a gripping new novel, you’ll find a place to spend a couple of bucks in our lovely riverside community.

  • hanover nh shoppingKing Arthur Flour – If you’re only planning on making one stop in the Upper Valley, we highly recommend choosing King Arthur Flour. We’ve collaborated with their excellent team for many events over the years. Browse through The Baker’s Store, enjoy a fresh-baked pastry, or join a hands-on baking class.
  • The Norwich Bookstore – You’d be hardpressed to find another small, independently-owned bookstore that cares as much as about the written word then the folks at The Norwich Bookstore. Find out what to read next, discover rare signed copies, and take a seat during an author’s reading.
  • Crossroad Farm Stand – Crossroad’s stand on Route 5 is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Many of our guests purchase bags full of fresh produce before returning home to Boston, Worcester, Springfield, and beyond.
  • Pompanoosuc Mills – While technically not a part of the Norwich VT or Hanover NH shopping scene, “Pompy” is an excellent hand-crafted furniture destination north of town. Their woodworks have been turning heads since 1978.

Hanover NH Shopping

Some of the best stores in the region lie in downtown Hanover NH. In fact, Hanover NH shopping has become one of the top summertime activities among couples and groups. Here’s a short list of our favorite Hanover NH shopping destinations:

  • Farmhouse Pottery – Book a “Clay Date” this summer, where you’ll have the rare opportunity to work alongside a master potter before crafting your own artisan souvenir.
  • My Brigadeiro – Don’t forget to pick up some fresh-baked cookies, cupcakes, and Brazilian-style brigadeiros during your Upper Valley getaway. Enjoy these sweets in the comfort of your elegant suite.
  • League of N.H. Craftsmen Gallery – Some of New England’s best potters, artists, and craftspeople display their award-winning work at this beautiful gallery along Lebanon Street.

Artisans Park

There are myriad shops and attractions at Artisans Park in nearby Windsor VT. You’ll discover eight businesses in all, highlighted by Silo Distillery, Vermont Farmstead Cheese Company, and Simon Pearce. You can also stroll through a sculpture garden, savor a craft beer, and indulge in artisan eats. Artisans Park is a must-visit destination for those who enjoy hand-crafted, locally-sourced, and artisan products from talented craftspeople.

hanover nh shoppingHistoric Hotels near Hanover NH

The perfect way to cap off a full day of Hanover NH shopping is with fine dining, housemade craft ales, and sophisticated relaxation right here at The Norwich Inn. We’re one of the only hotels near Dartmouth College that provides specialized vacation packages for a variety of local events ranging from nano brewery festivals to 50k races. To book a well-deserved summertime escape to New England’s Upper Valley, please give us a call today at 1-802-649-1143.

3 Exciting Outdoor Summer Activities in the Upper Valley

 

3 Exciting Outdoor Summer Activities in the Upper Valley

hotels near dartmouth collegeSpring has officially arrived here in the blooming Upper Valley, signifying that it’s time to start planning your upcoming summertime escape to The Norwich Inn, one of the top-rated hotels near Dartmouth College. In a matter of weeks, the Upper Valley will once again be a lush, kelly green wilderness filled with seemingly endless outdoor adventure possibilities. We welcome all sorts of guests here in Norwich, VT, during the summertime, many of which are self-proclaimed outdoor enthusiasts who explore our glorious mountain ranges in a wide variety of ways. When they’re not sipping on one of our award-winning Jasper Murdock Ales, touring Dartmouth College, or savoring a freshly-baked pastry at King Arthur Flour, they’re found deep in the heart of the Upper Valley on a kayaking, hiking, or rock climbing expedition. To ensure that your stay with us is picture-perfect, we’ve compiled three of our guests’ favorite summer activities.

Hiking

Vermont and New Hampshire are known for offering outdoor enthusiasts a wide variety of summer activities, most notably hiking. The Norwich Inn, home to one of the best breweries in Vermont, is minutes away from mountain hikes, lakeside strolls, and the famous Appalachian Trail. Our favorite local hike is the Gile Mountain Trail, located six miles north of our historic Vermont Inn on Turnpike Road. The Gile Mountain Trail is an easy 1.4-mile, out-and-back hike to the summit, which provides visitors with panoramic views of the glorious Upper Valley on top of the Fire Tower. The trail itself is quite easy, but to reach the Fire Tower’s peak, you must trek up 324 stairs – it’s unquestionably worth the journey!

Nearby Boston Lot Lake is the perfect daytime stroll for dog walkers, families with young children, or couples looking for a romantic, secluded space for a picnic. This 2.4-mile loop is flat, scenic, and moderately popular among locals. We recommend parking in the lot along Main Street in West Lebanon, NH. Arguably our favorite Appalachian Trail hike is Holts Ledge in nearby Lyme, NH – it’s more challenging than Gile Mountain and Boston Lot but undeniably rewarding and beautiful.

Kayaking, Canoeing, or SUPing

hotels near dartmouth collegeThe tranquil Connecticut River, which separates Norwich, VT, and Hanover, NH, transforms into an outdoor enthusiast’s playground during the summer months. Canoeing is easily one of the top three summer activities here in the Upper Valley, especially along the Connecticut River. The Ledyard Canoe Club provides visitors with canoe, kayak, and SUP rentals at a fantastic price point. Despite being quite wide, the Connecticut River’s flow is slowed by strategically-placed dams which create watercraft-friendly basins. Paddlers of all skill levels will have no issues traversing these slow-moving currents. The river gorge itself is fully-enclosed by towering forestry. If you’re looking for a lazier but equally beautiful canoe trip, we recommend Storrs Pond Recreation Area.

Rock Climbing

The sport of rock climbing certainly isn’t for everyone, but for those who enjoy scaling natural rock walls or those who’re searching for a new challenge, please give Vermont Adventure Tours a call! Vermont Adventure Tours has a team of skilled, professional guides that lead tours into the heart of the Upper Valley. One of their locations rests in nearby Quechee, VT, which is only a short drive from The Norwich Inn, one of the only luxury hotels near Dartmouth College. Vermont Adventure Tours also offers rappelling, paddling, caving, and hiking expeditions.

Historic Hotels near Dartmouth College

hotels near dartmouth college

After exploring the jaw-dropping Upper Valley’s natural beauty through a variety of exciting summer activities, retreat to The Norwich Inn for refreshing craft beer, fine dining, and a sunset stroll along our colorfully-landscaped grounds. Pair your grass-fed filet mignon or parmesan risotto with a traditional English-style cask ale on our outdoor patio. Our instant-classic Whistling Pig Red Ale satisfies all beer palettes. To learn more about our historic inn or to book a well-deserved summertime getaway to Norwich, VT, please give us a call today at 1-802-649-1143, or simply visit NorwichInn.com.