Alex and I visited North Beach Park, Burlington’s largest beach, on a rainy day in early May. The park was not yet open and we had the beach to ourselves. We spent the afternoon searching for beach glass and driftwood, gazing out at the stunning Adirondacks which were covered in a dreamy mist, and hiking out to the point.
The park is located on the stunning shores of Lake Champlain and consists of almost 45 acres of beach and woods. The 137 campground sites along with picnic areas, restrooms, a fish themed playground, and concession stands in conjunction with its close proximity to all that Burlington has to offer makes this one of the best camping options in Vermont.
Visitors can rent boats to explore the lake or follow the trail that leads from the end of the beach to lakeside cliffs which overlook the lake and provide stunning mountain views.
With the rain gently falling, Alex and I ventured along the trail that leads out to the point. A gentle mist fell as we wandered through the forest, following the trail through a marshy area, over wooden stepping “stones”, and through a meadow filled with wildflowers.
The trail has numerous branches which lead along the lakefront, through the woods, or through a small meadow depending on which trail you choose to follow.
We embraced the adventure- clambering over cliffs, resting on fallen trees, and picnicking on moss covered stones.
We meandered along, following multiple trails and becoming rather lost in the mesmerizing forest. Eventually we rejoined with the main trail that leads along the lakefront to return to the beach. Along the way, we happened upon a couple who had set up “wild camping”. We also encountered numerous campfire spots which overlooked the lake.
North Beach State Park is a well-maintained beach with coarse sand and stunning views of Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks. During the summer season life guards are on duty making for a safe, family friendly environment. The shallow water is perfect for wading and for young children. The beach is located along the Burlington Bike Path, making it a wonderful stop for bikers to pause and soak in the beauty of the lake.
Nearby Attractions: The 8 mile long Burlington Bike Path runs through many of Lake Champlain’s finest attractions and passes by North Beach State Park. For those who love shopping, Church Street Marketplace is within easy driving distance and offers a wide variety of dining options, boutique shops, specialty stores, outdoor equipment offerings, and more! The ECHO Leahy Center is a fascinating science museum located on the Burlington waterfront. The Spirit of the Ethan Allen is located right beside the museum and offers unforgettable nature cruises with dining options. Among Burlington’s many other sights worth seeing is the World’s Tallest Filing Cabinet, the Ethan Allen Homestead, numerous breweries, and the Burlington’s Farmer’s Market.