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The Thrifty New England Traveler is a blog of VisitingNewEngland.com, a regional web site that focuses on the joys of travel in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

New England Winter Travel Ideas for the Non-Skier

You can have a homemade apple dumpling and shop a country store at Brookfield Orchards, N. Brookfield, Mass., during the winter (photo by Eric)


So, you’re a non-skier and looking for cheap winter travel ideas in New England. Is all hope lost?

No! As a non-skier whose first and last skiing experience was crashing into a fence on the beginner trail on a hill at a second-tier ski facility, I had to find alternatives to skiing. Bottom line, your New England winter travel plans really don’t have to go “downhill” if you are not a skier, so here are some ideas written straight from experience and from others I know that don’t ski, either…

Take a Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Tour at its main facility in Waterbury, Vt.

Go ice skating at the Boston Frog Pond at the Boston Common, Boston, Mass.

Go to a museum. You wouldn’t believe how many cultural institutions we have in New England. You can keep up-to-date through our live, streaming updates from museums in New England.

Browse a winter farmers market in Connecticut. There are resources through our Farmers Markets in Connecticut page where you can locate winter farmers markets in some of New England’s most beautiful, quintessential towns.

Yes, Virginia, there is an ice cream stand in New England open during the winter. Visit the Ice Cream Machine in Cumberland, R.I., for some of the most delicious homemade ice cream in the New England region. They are open Tues-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

Make a beeline to Chutters candy store in Littleton, N.H., which has the longest candy counter in the world at nearly 112 ft. long!

Explore snowshoeing opportunities in Maine.

Go cross country skiing at the Weston Ski Track in Weston, Mass. It’s easier than skiing and better exercise!

Have a homemade apple dumpling and shop a real country store at Brookfield Orchards in North Brookfield, Mass.

Tour the Sam Adams Brewery in Boston, Mass.

Stay off season at the coast. Sure, swimming is certainly off limits and many things are shut down, but the isolation, fewer crowds and virtually having the place to yourself comprises a true getaway. On a nice winter day, there’s something so nice about walking the beach, too.  You’ll also save money with off season rates. One place we would recommend is the Katahdin Inn, overlooking Short Sands Beach in York, Maine.

Do you have any New England travel ideas for the non-skier. Feel free to post in the “Leave a Reply” box below in this post!

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