We just came back from the most relaxing spring getaway to the quintessential Grafton Inn, Vermont, and I am here to share all the details with you guys. When most think of Vermont, they think of Fall or Winter, but spring in Vermont is often underrated. Especially late Spring, when the muddy season is over. This is the season of fresh maple syrup, lush greenery, and blooming wildflowers in the stunning valleys and hillsides of Vermont. We visited Grafton in early May and, the weather was very favorable. We started early in the morning and drove through the scenic routes and crossed many picturesque small towns. This 4 and half hours journey was so enjoyable that we didn’t feel a bit exhausted from the long drive.
Grafton Inn is located in the most breathtaking and postcard-perfect historic town of Grafton. It is often listed as one of the New England’s prettiest villages. If you want to experience the charm of a timeless Vermont village, then this place is for you. From picturesque landscapes, to historic houses, to covered bridges, to the laid-back lifestyle, there are so many reasons to fall in love with this place. The real beauty of Grafton lies in its historic buildings, tranquility, and most importantly the true small town lifestyle of low-key, friendly residents (a population of 600). I was lucky enough to interact with some of them, all thanks to Angela (the Innkeeper at Grafton Inn) and was absolutely flattered by their warmth and friendly nature.
About Grafton Inn
Founded in 1801, The Grafton Inn (formerly the Old Tavern at Grafton) is one of the oldest operating inns in America. As a matter of fact, Grafton Inn just celebrated its 220th birthday in 2021. It has hosted such famous guests as Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, and Ralph Waldo Emerson. The inn features 45 rooms, including seven luxury suites and four guest houses.
The Grafton Inn is a Select Registry Member SINCE 2019. If you don’t know, Select Registry is a diverse collection of independent, boutique hotels and Grafton Inn is one of these upscale properties.
We stayed in the Cricketers Suite across from the main inn. Our spacious suite was tastefully decorated with four-poster bed, floral furnishings, beautiful antiques and rugs. The inn is a perfect amalgamation of historic charm and modern day luxury. It has free Wi-Fi connection, a Game room, Tennis courts, a fitness center and bikes for its guests.
The Grafton Inn specializes in weddings. Due to its fairy-tale location, it is one of the most popular wedding venue of southern Vermont, and hosts around 30-35 weddings per year.
But, the best part about the inn is it’s very welcoming, attentive and helpful staff. A special mention goes to Angela Comstock, the innkeeper. She is truly the anchor of this place, her enthusiasm, hard work and dedication is commendable.
Dining & Breakfast
The Grafton inn offers 3 unique dining experiences at the Phelps Barn, Pine Room Bar and 1801 Tavern (formerly the Old Tavern). All of them serve exquisite, locally inspired farm-to-table meals.
During our stay, we had the opportunity to try some of their delicious dishes and everything turned out pretty good. While the indoor section had a live music going on during weekend evenings, we couldn’t resist sitting outside and enjoying the great weather.
Breakfast was included in the stay and we got to devour a hearty, warm Vermont breakfast . If you ever visit this place don’t forget to try their Egg Benedict, French toast and pancakes with some Vermont special maple syrup.
Things to do in Grafton, Vermont
During our two days brief stay, our main focus was to de-stress and enjoy the countryside slow living, and that’s what we exactly did. Grafton is a very walkable town, we took some short walks through the village streets, visited the local general store and antique shop, chatted with the residents and tried some cheese at the Cheese company store.
But if you are up for some adventure and exploring, you can actually do a lot here. So here are the list of activities which can be done in any season.
Relax, Relax and Relax
Grafton literally is a place to do absolutely nothing. The best thing you can do here is just sit by the swimming pond, breathe some fresh air and relax. At night, after dinner, just sit in one of the rocking chairs on the front porch and sip some wine.
Biking through the country roads
Borrow a pedal bike from the bike center at the inn and explore the country roads and two of the Grafton covered bridges.
Explore the Grafton Trails & Outdoor center
Grab a trail map from the inn front desk and explore the beautiful Grafton Trails & Outdoor center. During winter, you can enjoy a lot of winter activities like snowshoeing, snow tubing or even sleigh ride. Spring/summer is perfect for mountain biking, swimming in the pond and hiking.
Cheese tasting at Grafton Village Cheese Company
Any trip to Grafton is incomplete without trying out their award-winning cheese! Watch the process of cheesemaking, try some and buy some. They have a retail shop which is located next to the Inn. You can also buy other stuff like candy, jams, cheddar cheese etc from this store.
Shop at the local general store & antique shop
Grafton may not be the regular shopping destination, but you will not be disappointed when visit the MERCANTILE, a perfect place to find some cute gifts, antiques and souvenirs.
Go to MKT, the local general store, to experience a classic Vermont country store. Buy stuffs sourced from local businesses. Don’t miss out to try their tasty sandwiches and maple creemees!
Plummer’s sugarhouse is a family owned and operated sugar shack in Grafton. Grab some delicious Maple Syrup or sugar and, get a free tour of the production process.
The Nature Museum
Experience the wonder of the natural world at the Nature museum. This place is equally captivating for kids as well as adults.
Grafton Historical Society
Learn about the 250 years of history of Grafton at this award-winning museum.
Tips to visit Grafton in Spring
Grafton, Vermont is a four season destination and a trip during spring can be really enjoyable for many reasons. First of all, the weather is gorgeous, secondly, it is less crowded. Also this is the perfect time of the year to tour a sugarhouse and taste the best maple products. When planning your trip to Grafton during Spring, just remember few key things. Try to visit during late Spring, once the rainy, soggy, muddy season is over. May/June are one of the best months to visit. Packing layers is highly recommended this time of year as it can be really warm during the day and chilly in the evening.
All in all, Grafton is a beautiful destination for a relaxing New England getaway. It was hard to leave, but we promised ourselves to come back soon, may be in Fall or winter.