When traveling to Vermont there’s one place you can’t miss out on! For years now Church Street Marketplace has been the center of Burlington VT, the state’s largest city. Its colorful cafes, thriving art scene, and good vibes draws in travelers from all over. So join us as we tell you all about Church Street, and why it’s a must-visit in Burlington Vermont!
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7 Things You’ll See on Church Street in Burlington Vermont
1. An Interesting History
Church Street in Burlington Vermont has always been a commercial hub and shopping center. In fact, it dates all the way back to the early 1800’s! Traces of history can be seen in the 19th-century brick church and the old courthouse.
However, post-World War II America saw a great movement out of the cities and into the suburbs. So when the 1960’s rolled around they decided to redesign Church Street.
Interestingly enough, a young architecture student in Copenhagen would play a major role in the transformation of Burlington! In 1962, Bill Truex saw how Sweden’s capital changed its main shopping street of Stroget into a pedestrian-only walking zone. Slowly but surely, Church Street in Burlington VT started to close to traffic and eventually turned into what you see today.
2. Shopping at Church Street Burlington VT Marketplace
One of the best activities on Church Street is to do some shopping! From beginning to end you’ll find everything from clothing stores, books shops, antiques, and artisan foods. If you need some outdoor equipment be sure to stop into the Outdoor Gear Exchange.
If you’re a dessert lover, then Lake Champlain Chocolates is a must! Even just window shopping can be a fun time on this vibrant walkway. Whatever you’re looking for, you’ll surely see it on Church Street Vermont!
3. Home of Ben and Jerry’s
Speaking of dessert… Church Street in Burlington Vermont is home to one of the most famous ice cream companies in the world! It all started out of a small gas station just around the corner from Church Street in Burlington.
Before they knew it, Ben and Jerry had to expand all over New England, and now to 35 different countries. You can visit the Ben and Jerry’s factory in Waterbury Vermont and see the ice cream and distribution process. Yet, the closest thing to the original store is still on Church Street today!
4. Fine Dining and Quirky Cafes
There are some amazing places to eat and drink in Vermont, and many of them are on or around Church Street Burlington. The famed walking street has no shortage of international food options, including Asian noodles, Turkish kebabs, and even poke bowls!
The most popular restaurant is actually a French Bistro called Leunig’s. You’ll also find plenty of food carts, pizza, and cheap eats as well. If you’re just in the mood for a coffee be sure to stop into Kru or the dog friendly organic cafe Cosmic Grind.
5. Art and Music of Church Street Burlington VT
Church Street is full of life, and with that comes an exciting art and music scene. It’s quite unusual to not see someone playing their guitar or hear some sort of music while walking here. Trey Anastasio even started his music career with Phish at the nearby Nectar Cafe!
The artistic side of Church Street Marketplace can also not be understated. Around every corner, you’ll find murals bursting with color and cultural significance. It’s also common to see people dressed very uniquely walking down Church Street, perfectly exemplifying the diverse residents of Burlington.
6. Exciting Church Street Burlington Nightlife
We’ve told you about the amazing restaurants on Church Street in Burlington Vermont, but you should know it comes alive at night! There is an assortment of bars catering to all different types of people. Whether you’re a college student from nearby UVM or just a tourist looking for a casual beer at the pub, Church Street Burlington is the place to be!
It gets especially lively on weekends in the summertime so be prepared to party on a Friday or Saturday night. Below are the most popular bars on Church Street, but there are plenty more surrounding it and in the North End as well. Also, don’t miss out on the great local breweries of Burlington!
- Red Square
- Akes’ Place
- Captain Tom’s Tiki Bar
- Ri Ra Irish Pub
- Ken’s Pizza and Pub
- Smugglers Notch Distillery
7. Year Round Spectacle of Church Street Vermont
By now you know that Church Street in Burlington VT is the center of all the action. Yet, that doesn’t mean spring and summer is the only time to visit! Year-round, Church Street Vermont is booming with fun.
If you come in the fall you’ll be surrounded by the colors of the leaves. Wintertime has the snow and Christmas lights which bring a different energy to Church Street. So no matter when you visit this part of Burlington you’re sure to have a blast!
Things to do Around Church Street in Burlington VT
After you’re done exploring Church Street there’s plenty more to experience in Burlington. Head down to the lake and swim at one of the many beaches. Ride the Burlington Bike Path, or even go for a hike up into Vermont’s Green Mountains.
Also, don’t miss out on the summer concerts at Battery Park and a visit to the historic Shelburne Museum. For more of the best things to do in Burlington check out our blog below!
Have any questions on Church Street Burlington or want to share more of the best things to do and see? Leave us a comment below!
Brigitte & Jake
Where in the world are we? Follow our daily adventures on Instagram @nothingfamiliar!
Where to Stay in Burlington Vermont
Fun Vacation – Hotel Vermont Burlington – This rustic yet modern hotel is in the heart of downtown Burlington. Enjoy a stay close to Church Street, Lake Champlain, and all the great Vermont outdoor activities.
Lake View – Courtyard Burlington Harbor – This gorgeous Marriot is located perfectly on Cherry Street in between downtown and the lake. Take in the views of Lake Champlain, eat at the onsite restaurant, and relax by the pool during summer.
Great Location – Hilton Garden Inn Burlington Downtown – Spacious rooms and close to all the best things to do in Burlington Vermont. Also, amazing lake and mountain views!
Suites – Green Mountain Suites Hotel – Green Mountain Suites is a relaxing boutique inn situated just outside the city. Experience the Vermont country life while still being just a few minutes drive from downtown.
For more places to stay near Church Street Marketplace you can explore the latest prices here!
USA Travel Planning
Rental Car: We use Discover Cars when traveling. Consider renting a car in one city and dropping it off in another for an epic road trip!
Tours: Check out Get Your Guide for hundreds of activities around the country. Book a tour of Fenway Park in Boston, skip the line at the Empire State Building in NYC, or go on a Sea Cave Kayak Tour in La Jolla California!
Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without being covered! We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years and they are there when we need them.