Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Stowe, Vermont

After much deliberation on where to take the boyfriend for a getaway while he was in the states, I finally decided upon Stowe, Vermont. It's a rather overpriced, touristy town, but that's probably because it is really beautiful up there.

Stowehof Inn

After much searching for an affordable place to stay, I found Stowehof Inn just outside of town. They have a "Thriftsaver" special that is $89.00 including tax and fees. That is about $30.00 cheaper than any other place I could find online in the area and so I went with them. And I was very happy with the choice. There were some complaints on Yelp and tripadvisor about the place having small rooms or the place looking too old and dated, but neither of these bothered me in the least. I loved the charm of the place and frankly, two people can only occupy so much space. Maybe living in Korea made me less attune to the size of rooms, it was plenty big enough for the two of us. Probably the same size as our bedroom in Seoul, but with a much prettier view out the window and a bathtub in the bathroom. I was also excited to see the pool and jacuzzi. Perhaps I made the mistake of going into the jacuzzi first, though, because after that I could not even get into the pool, it felt numbingly cold. Next time I'll remember to do pool first, then jacuzzi. But, who can complain about only getting to sit in the jacuzzi. And since we were there mid-week, there was no one around to bother us, we had the whole place to ourselves.

I didn't know that pancake eating etiquette was something that needed to be taught...

We planned to take the toll road up to the top and climb up to a peak of Mt. Mansfield, Vermont's highest mountain, but when we got there, the road was closed (it was open later when we passed by though, maybe we were there too early?) and so we went over to Stowe Ski Resort and climbed a trail to the top of the ski hill. It was a good little hour and a half hike to the top on the switchback trail. The folks who took the gondola up to the top were very impressed that we walked it... I guess that says something about American ajummas and ajosshis. We didn't see anyone else hiking the whole time we were there. It wasn't a very hard hike up, though down we wanted to see what their black diamond trails were like and so we hiked down one. Probably not the wisest idea, especially less than two weeks after all the flooding in Vermont from hurricanes and then other storms. We slid down a few places because boy was it steep, but we survived and weren't even in tooo much pain the next day.

After that, the boyfriend wanted to make sure he didn't bring his golf clubs to America for nothing, so we found him a golf course to check out. He wanted to play on the nice course in Stowe at the resort, but they weren't open for some reason and so we found the only other course open to the public that we could find. It's called Blush Hill Country Club in Waterbury. It was a bit rinky-dink, but the people were very friendly and he played 18 holes for $20 or something. He was very excited on his last hole, he made his very first Eagle. He was jumping up and down and everyone around congratulated him.

After that, we ate dinner and played mini-golf (his first time ever). Turns out, while his swing may be millions of times better than mine on the golf course, my putting is pretty even with his. We were more or less tied throughout the game until he lost his ball in the dark on the last hole making me the winner of the game! Small victories...

The next morning, before heading to Burlington, we stopped in Waterbury again to check out some of the stores. First we went to Cabot's outlet store of sorts, and we tried samples of all their cheeses. That's a lot of cheese... there are a lot of flavors that don't make it on to normal supermarket shelves. Like Habanero Cheese and Tomato and Basil Cheese and Chipotle.

After we were full on cheese, we checked out Lake Champlain Chocolate's store next door, but they (fortunately) had only one sample to offer. From there, what goes better with cheese and chocolate, but wine? We did a wine tasting down the road next door to the Cider Mill for $1 each and tried 5 or 6 different wines.

Overall, we had a lovely time in Stowe, our only complaint was the prices of meals in the area. Eating in Burlington... or anywhere else in Vermont is much cheaper!

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