What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (2023)

Somewhere between camping and glamping is the exciting world of cabin camping, and Vermont State Parks has lots of options! The cabins in Vermont State Parks aren’t luxurious enough to be glamping cabins, but you do get a real bed, so it’s definitely a step above camping.

If you love the outdoors, but don’t love sleeping on the ground, cabin camping in Vermont State Parks is the ideal adventure. If you need to escape to the woods for a few days and don’t want to pack up ALL THAT GEAR, cabin camping will ease your burden (a little).

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (1)

I’ve been exploring Vermont State Parks since before I could walk, but this season, I decided that cabin camping was exactly what I needed. And I think it may be what you need too! Here’s what you should know about staying at the camping cabins in Vermont State Parks.

The Cabins Sleep Four People Who Love Being Together

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (2)

The cabins in Vermont State Parks have a full-size futon and twin bunk beds, which take up roughly half the space in a cabin, and sleep four comfortably. It’s much larger than your standard four-person tent and only slightly smaller than your average hotel room. Sure it’s a squeeze if you plan on spending a lot of time in the cabin, but not a problem if you know your bunkmates well and love spending time together.

You could even put two more people on the floor or in a tent outside the cabin (the parks allow up to six people at each cabin site).

If you’re planning on renting a cabin for a family vacation, I would recommend bringing art supplies and board games for those rainy days. And maybe keep the shoes out on the porch, especially if you have teenage boys.

You can Bring Your Dog (Maybe)

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (3)

Your dog is part of the family and probably loves camping in Vermont State Parks as much as you do. Fortunately, most parks with cabins have at least one that is dog-friendly. As of 2021, there are 12 dog-friendly cabins available at Vermont State Parks, so reserve your site as soon as you know when and where you want to go.

If you weren’t fortunate enough to get a dog-friendly cabin, all the lean-tos and tent/RV sites in Vermont State Parks are dog-friendly. You just need to keep your dogs on a leash and clean up after them. Oh, and be sure to bring proof of vaccinations (take a picture of their records to keep on your phone).

(Video) Camping at Quechee State Park in Vermont

You’ll Laugh at the Rain from the Comfort of Your Cabin

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (5)

I’m writing this from the comfort of Cabin B in Lake Carmi State Park and it has been pouring for the past 15 hours straight. I am warm, cozy, and most importantly — dry, as the rain drums away on the roof of the cabin. I can see how hard it’s raining by watching the barrage of raindrops on the otherwise peaceful surface of Lake Carmi.

Vermont weather is unpredictable, friends — especially early and late in the season. While there’s no heat in the cabins, they’re pretty tight, and they will definitely keep you dry as you laugh at the rain.

If you plan on exploring farther afield, bring a rain jacket, an umbrella, and towels!

It’s Still Camping (With Benefits)

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Yes, you get to sleep in a real bed each night, and the four walls and roof will keep you warm and dry, but this is definitely still camping. The cabins do not have heat or AC, you have to cook your meals outside, and when nature calls, the bathhouse is a five-minute walk.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t make your camping cabin cozy! Bring along a string of battery-powered lights, a tablecloth, a portable Bluetooth speaker, and real bed linens to glamp out your cabin. Home-sweet-home!

(Video) Vermont State Parks Open for the Season

Cabin Camping Amenities

These are basic one-room cabins with a covered porch, perfect for solo travelers, couples, or families of four. Outside of the cabins, there’s a picnic table and a fire pit, plus room for two cars. Here’s what you’ll find inside the cabins so you can plan accordingly:

  • A full-size futon – bring your own sheets, blankets, or sleeping bags. Fall temps can be below freezing, so throw a few extra blankets in your car just in case!
  • Twin bunk beds – Bring linens!
  • A small table with chairs
  • Hooks along the walls
  • Shelves for clothes/food
  • Overhead lights
  • At least one outlet (some have more)
  • A small air purifier
  • Broom and dustpan
  • A smoke detector
  • Windows with screens

It’s Cheaper Than Staying in a Hotel

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (7)

Most of the cabins in Vermont State Parks are $51 per night for Vermont residents and $53 for non-residents. The exception is the sought-after Burton Island cabins that are $73 per night for residents and $75 for non-residents.

I haven’t stayed in a hotel that cheap since 1995. Aside from the affordable price tag, your camping cabin lets you explore public lands in Vermont simply by walking out your front door. There are cabins on the shores of mountain lakes, cabins on the side of a mountain, and cabins tucked away in the woods.

The Vermont State Park cabins spoil you in a way that no hotel ever will, provided your priorities involve loons and owls wishing you goodnight and shoreside sunrises with your morning coffee. Ahh, isn’t it fabulous to be reminded of how rich we really are?

It May Be Colder Than You Expect

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (8)

Back to practicalities – Most Vermont State Park campgrounds are open through the leaf-peeping season or the second Monday in October. Some close a bit earlier, some a bit later. Get the scoop on the dates over at Vermont State Parks.

Summer nights can still be chilly enough for a wool beanie and a fleecy layer, and wool socks (these are made in Vermont) are a must for hiking in every season. A rain jacket is never a bad idea in Vermont, and in the fall throw a down jacket and gloves into your bag too.

Since you’re cabin camping, you can pack real bed linens (recommended) or a sleeping bag. For fall, go with flannel sheets and a down comforter. For summer, regular cotton sheets and a lightweight quilt or comforter should be plenty.

This year, I brought one of those down throw blankets (here’s the one I have) with buttons on the edge so you can turn it into a massive downy shawl. I never thought in a million years that I would wear a puffy down blanket as a shawl. Never say never, my friends! It was actually the perfect thing for chilly fall evenings, and having it buttoned up kept it from falling to the wet ground – you know how slippery down blankets can be.

(Video) Woodford State Park - The Visitor's Guide to Southern Vermont

Choose from 12 Vermont State Parks with Camping Cabins

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (9)

As far as Vermont State Park campsites go, the camping cabins are pretty rare. There are 50 cabins spread out among 12 state parks. If you want to camp with your pup, you only have 12 cabins to choose from.

Cabin highlights include the sought-after Burton Island cabins, which you have to reserve for either four or three nights, leave your car on the mainland, and pay a premium rate of $73 per night.

Worth it? I don’t know! I’ve been trying to book a cabin on Burton Island for the past two years without success. They are the crown jewel campsites of the state park system – located on the eastern tip of Burton Island with lovely views and easy access to Lake Champlain.

Other destinations for waterfront cabin camping include Woodford State Park, where the cabins sit on a low ridge with a trail down to the water, Lake Carmi State Park, where there are two dog-friendly waterfront cabins, and Button Bay State Park, where the cabins provide sweeping views over Lake Champlain.

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (10)

Read Next: Best State Parks for Camping Near Burlington, Vermont

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (11)

In more of a mountain mood? Rent one of the Mt. Ascutney cabins, which are located halfway up the mountain on the Mt. Ascutney Parkway. These rustic cabins have no electricity, but they are perfect when you want to get away from it all. The summit of Mt. Ascutney provides several different vantage points, and from the fire tower, you can see into New Hampshire and Massachusetts, not to mention the beautiful Green Mountains to the west.

(Video) This Place in History: Little River State Park

Read Next: Vermont’s Mighty Monadnock: Mt. Ascutney State Park

What You Should Know About Cabin Camping in Vermont State Parks (12)

If you love the outdoors but are on the fence about camping, give cabin camping in Vermont a try!

The cabins are available throughout the camping season, which runs from Memorial Day weekend to either Labor Day or mid-October, depending on the park.

In the summer, you can take advantage of those long warm days to hike, paddle, swim, and bike, and then come home to a cozy cabin that will keep out the bugs and the rain.

Fall cabin camping in Vermont is up there with the first fire in the woodstove as one of the most exciting events of autumn. Who needs Oktoberfest and pumpkin spice when you can have the smell of wood smoke and forests alive with a colorful spectacle they’ve been rehearsing for all summer?
Whatever season you choose to camp in, there’s a pretty good chance that Vermont State Parks has a cabin with your name on it. Read more about the cabins or book your next trip at Vermont State Parks.

More Things to Do in Vermont

Grab our five-page printable bucket list that includes all the best things to do in Vermont!

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Tara Schatz is a freelance writer, and the founder and editor-in-chief of Vermont Explored and Back Road Ramblers, an American road trip blog. She is also the co-author of the 3rd edition of AMC’s Best Day Hikes in Vermont, which was released in May 2023.


Can you drink alcohol in Vermont state parks? ›

Alcohol: Kegs of beer or alcoholic beverages in bulk containers (larger than 1 gallon or 4 liters) are prohibited in state parks except when served by a liquor-licensed caterer.

What is a camp cabin? ›

Camping cabin means a recreational unit that is a hard-sided tent or shelter, that is less than 400 square feet in area, that is on skids designed to facilitate relocation from time to time, and that does not have a direct connection to a source of water.

Is Boondocking legal in Vermont? ›

Vermont has a number of opportunities for dispersed camping throughout the state. There are several national and state forests, and most of these allow for boondocking for free at primitive campsites. Green Mountain is a popular destination for dispersed camping, and you can camp up to 14 days during a 30-day period.

Is Vermont good for camping? ›

Vermont State Parks offer a wide variety of camping experiences, including drive-in camp sites, lean-to's, remote campsites, group camping areas, and even an inn-style lodge, all surrounded by Vermont's beautiful mountains, lakes, forests and fields.

Can passengers drink in a car in Vermont? ›

Subchapter 011 : Miscellaneous Rules. (a) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, a passenger in a motor vehicle shall not consume an alcoholic beverage or cannabis in the passenger area of any motor vehicle on a public highway.

What are the liquor laws in Vermont? ›

It is unlawful to serve or sell alcohol to anyone under the age of 21. Admittance to establishments that serve alcohol is a decision left up to the establishment. However, if an establishment limits access only to those 21 or older, the policy must be uniformly enforced.

Is sleeping in a cabin considered camping? ›

With cabin camping, RVers are able to enjoy camping after their RV has been put away for the season. Staying in a cabin is still considered camping, and there are many reasons why cabin camping is better for certain campers.

What's the difference between a camp and a cabin? ›

Some opinions are that the shelter that has no plumbing and no electricity would be considered a camp, that a cabin is something that has some amenities but is not 4-season. A cottage, by extension, would then be something that could be lived in all year but isn't.

Can you sleep in a Walmart parking lot in Vermont? ›

The Walmart in Bennington does still allow overnight parking and RVs, but DON'T GO TO THE LOCATION IDENTIFIED IN THIS PARK ADVISOR APP. The Walmart Superstore is in downtown Bennington several miles from the location identified in this app. Use your favorite map app to find the real Walmart in Bennington.

What is the difference between boondocking and camping? ›

Boondocking is camping without any hookups outside developed campgrounds. Federal agencies refer to boondocking as dispersed camping. Other terms used to describe boondocking include dry camping and off-grid camping.

What are the rules for camping in Vermont? ›

Camping must be at least 200 feet from any trail or property line, and 1000 feet from any traveled road. Camping is allowed up to three consecutive nights in the same area. Groups of eleven or more individuals must obtain a permit from the District Office in order to primitive camp.

What is the best month to camp in Vermont? ›

Summer is the best time for camping, hiking, kayaking, and paddling in Vermont. Most Vermont state parks are open from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend, although some parks are open through the second Monday in October and others open earlier and stay open later.

What is the most visited state park in Vermont? ›

Quechee State Park is, without a doubt, the most popular of all Vermont state parks. Located along Route 4 in Hartford, the park's main attraction is Quechee Gorge, which happens to be the deepest gorge in Vermont.

Can you sleep at rest stops in Vermont? ›

Yes, you can sleep in your car. The State of Vermont has no laws or regulations prohibiting sleeping in a vehicle while at a rest area. The State would expect drowsy drivers to use a rest area to get some sleep.

Can you drink on a boat in Vermont? ›

Vermont law prohibits anyone from boating while intoxicated (BWI)—that is, operating a vessel while intoxicated due to alcohol, drugs, or any combination of alcohol and drugs. Alcohol and drugs cause impaired balance, blurred vision, poor coordination, impaired judgment, and slower reaction times.

Is Vermont open container? ›

Vermont law prohibits a driver or passenger from possessing or consuming an open container of alcohol or marijuana in a vehicle if: the vehicle is operated on a public highway, and. the seal of the container has been broken.

What states can you walk around with alcohol? ›

Mississippi is the only state that has no penalty for having an open container. In all other states, the penalties can range from fines risible j ail time, to suspension of one's driver's license if the infraction happened while in a vehicle.

Can you buy beer on Sunday in Vermont? ›

Malt and vinous beverages may be sold on Sundays by second class licensees during the same hours as allowed during other days of the week." 3. Notwithstanding the provisions in these Regulations, the Control Commissioners shall have the right to prescribe shorter periods of sale within the hours specified above.

What liquor is Vermont known for? ›

Vermont is home to a thriving spirits industry. Our in-state distillers are producing a wide variety of products from vodka and maple liqueurs to gin and rye whiskey. Many of them are winning national acclaim and international awards for their fine quality and appealing flavor.

Do gas stations in Vermont sell alcohol? ›

The state contracts with private retailers to sell alcohol rather than operating state stores. Beer and lower alcohol wine are typically available in convenience and grocery stores. While retail stores can sell alcohol from 6 a.m. to midnight, bars and restaurants may serve from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m.

What is the golden rule of camping? ›

DO: Set your tent up in established spaces. It protects the surrounding wild by keeping it…well, wild. DON'T: Set up too close to water. Unless an established campsite places you closer, try to stay 200 feet away from streams, rivers or lakes.

What is the number one rule of camping? ›

Written rules of camping are straightforward: don't burn trash, clean up after your dog, don't cut down trees, leave nothing but footprints, etc. Usually, they'll be posted as rules for camping when you check in. You'll see them.

What should you not bring to camp? ›

7 Things You Honestly Should NOT Bring Camping
  • Excessive Electronics. Most people go camping to escape and unplug. ...
  • Perfumes or Potent Smells. Anything with a strong smell can be dangerous to bring camping. ...
  • Glass or Other Breakable Items. ...
  • Valuables. ...
  • Too Many Clothes. ...
  • Fashion Accessories. ...
  • Wrong Types of Food.
Apr 18, 2022

What clothes do you sleep in when camping? ›

Wear dry clothing.

A good sleepwear choice while camping is clean long underwear, top and bottoms, plus clean socks. Avoid overdressing before you hop into your bag. Wearing bulky clothing inside a bag can actually reduce the bag's ability to efficiently trap body heat.

Can I live full time in a cabin? ›

Many cabins (especially small ones) are designed as vacation or summer homes. Often they're designed for spending small amounts of time indoors, and their floor plans reflect this. If you're looking to live in a cabin year-round, transition your space from vacation home to full-time residence.

Why are cabins better than tents? ›

While it's not exactly an every-day occurrence, tents can and do get blown over or drenched in extreme weather. Wind and rain both have the potential to ruin the tent camping experience. A cabin, on the other hand, has a foundation, solid walls, a roof, and isn't going anywhere.

What are the disadvantages of cabin tents? ›

Cons for cabin tents include poor weather performance, low durability, and difficulty in replacing broken tent poles. Cabin tents are great for casual camping in nice conditions – they're not so good for bad weather or hiking trips.

What makes a cabin a cabin? ›

While a house is basically any structure where people live – usually with one or two families, a cabin in the traditional sense, is a small and simple dwelling built from logs and plain tools.

Why are Maine cabins not insulated? ›

The short answer, we don't have to. Many camps and cabins in Maine are only used seasonally, during the summer months. In fact some aren't even accessible in the winter due to unplowed roads. For this reason, we don't need to insulate them because they don't get used.

Can you stop overnight in a Walmart parking lot? ›

The policy of Walmart welcomes RVers to spend a night in their parking lot, as long as you have the individual location's permission. In some places, city zoning laws or ordinances will prohibit overnight stays in parking lots. Typically, larger cities are most likely to have these types of restrictions in place.

Is it safe to sleep overnight in a Walmart parking lot? ›

In general, overnight parking and camping at Walmart stores is safe. You're in a well-lit public location with security cameras.

Can you park overnight in Burlington VT? ›

With a maximum stay of 48 hours, it charges $10 per 24 hour period. Like College Street and Lakeview garages, payment can be made at the Pay on Foot stations prior to returning to your car or upon exiting by scanning the barcode on your ticket.

What is RV moochdocking? ›

Also known as driveway surfing, moochdocking is a lot like couch surfing in your RV. Basically, you park on someone's driveway or land, and you camp there.

Can you shower while Boondocking? ›

When boondocking, you take a shower just like you would when camped at an RV Park with full hookups. Taking a shower while boondocking doesn't have to be any different. However, most full time boondockers prefer to shower more efficiently.

What are quiet hours at Vermont State park? ›

Quiet hours are between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. except in areas otherwise designated by the Commissioner of Forests, Parks and Recreation. Visitors who violate quiet hours may be evicted from the camping area and may forfeit their fees and reservation.

Can you leave your tent unattended at a campground? ›

You can leave your tent unattended when camping but at your own risk. Campsites are generally pretty safe as there are plenty of other people about but that doesn't mean there aren't criminals about too.

Can you camp on state land in Vermont? ›

Primitive camping is available in state forests and at some undeveloped state parks. This is not car camping -- you must backpack in at least 1,000 feet from any road. There is no public drinking water or toilet facilities, no reservations or assigned sites.

Can you drink in public Vermont? ›

Vermont. There is no statewide ban, but public drinking is illegal in most or all districts, including in parks.

Can you drink alcohol in a New York state park? ›

Alcoholic Beverages: While alcoholic beverages are allowed in most NYS campgrounds without a permit, it is the responsibility of each camping party to comply with all laws and regulations. Stony Brook State Park and Beaver Pond Campground prohibit the use of alcohol.

Can you drink alcohol at New Hampshire state parks? ›

You could end up in legal trouble. Alcoholic beverages are prohibited on New Hampshire state beaches, and most New Hampshire towns have bylaws that make it illegal to drink in public, including town beaches and parks. The rules are different in some states.

Can you drink in Maine state parks? ›

Intoxicating beverages are not permitted in historic sites, day use areas, or in the common public areas in campgrounds. Disorderly conduct is prohibited.

Can I buy alcohol on Sunday in Vermont? ›

Malt and vinous beverages may be sold on Sundays by second class licensees during the same hours as allowed during other days of the week." 3. Notwithstanding the provisions in these Regulations, the Control Commissioners shall have the right to prescribe shorter periods of sale within the hours specified above.

Is Vermont an open container state? ›

Vermont law prohibits a driver or passenger from possessing or consuming an open container of alcohol or marijuana in a vehicle if: the vehicle is operated on a public highway, and. the seal of the container has been broken.

Does Vermont sell alcohol in grocery stores? ›

The state contracts with private retailers to sell alcohol rather than operating state stores. Beer and lower alcohol wine are typically available in convenience and grocery stores. While retail stores can sell alcohol from 6 a.m. to midnight, bars and restaurants may serve from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Can you walk around with alcohol? ›

Is it illegal to walk around with an open bottle of alcohol? Most U.S. states prohibit you from having an open bottle of alcohol in a public place, such as on the streets. Open container laws generally also prohibit drivers and passengers from possessing an open container of alcohol inside of a car.

What is the fine for public urination in NYC? ›

Section 16-118 - “Public Urination”

Administrative Code - “Section 16-118 - Public Urination” are eligible to plead guilty and pay a $50 fine by mail.

Can you drink on the sidewalk in New York? ›

It is illegal to have an open container of alcohol on any public sidewalk, road or park in New York.

Can you drink in the car in New Hampshire? ›

In addition, a passenger of the vehicle shall not "carry, possess, or have any liquor or beverage" in the passenger area of a motor vehicle. This means that even if a passenger has an open container in the car, they or the driver could be charged with a violation of New Hampshire's open container law.

Can you conceal carry in NH state parks? ›

Yes. Concealed carry is allowed in state/national parks, state/national forests and Wildlife Management Areas in New Hampshire.

Can you drink outside in NH? ›

Public open container laws generally prohibit possession of open containers of alcoholic beverage in public places."

Do grocery stores in Maine sell alcohol? ›

Do they sell liquor, wine, or beer in grocery stores in Maine? While Maine is a control state, grocery stores can sell beer, wine, and liquor.

Can passengers drink alcohol in a car in Maine? ›

In Maine, drivers and passengers are generally prohibited from consuming and possessing open containers of alcohol in motor vehicles.

Can you buy alcohol on Sunday in Maine? ›

A Maine Agency Liquor store is any retail establishment licensed by the Maine Department of Public Safety to sell liquor. Alcohol may be sold between the hours of 6 a.m. and 1 a.m. of the following day. On Sundays, sales may occur from 9 a.m. to 1 a.m. the following day.


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