19 Best Places to Shop in Southern Vermont, Vermont

Brattleboro Books

Bibliophiles will love hunting for buried treasure in this mini labyrinth of used books.

Dorset Union Store

Dating to 1816, this 200-year-old general store is the oldest continuously operating country store in Vermont. Under the reins of co-owners Cindy Laudenslager and Gretchen Schmidt, it has great prepared dinners, a full deli, delicious homemade baked goods, and a big wine selection. It also sells interesting gifts, and houses its own soft-serve ice-cream machine.

Everyone's Books

The literary (and literal) center of a bookish town, this is the place to pick up a best seller, a local classic, or a book on progressive politics or the environment. The shop hosts readings and author events.

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Gallery Art Walk

On this walk, you'll pass more than 30 galleries and other venues downtown and nearby that exhibit art; it takes place 5:30–8:30 pm on the first Friday evening of the month.

Gallery in the Woods

This funky trilevel store sells art, jewelry, and light fixtures from around the world. Rotating shows take place in the upstairs and downstairs galleries.

H.N. Williams General Store

Started in 1840 by William Williams, this trilevel country store has been run by the same family for six generations. This is one of those places where you can buy maple syrup and ammo, while catching up on posted town announcements. There's a deli on-site for sandwiches; a farmers' market is held outside on Sunday in summer.

Manchester Designer Outlets

This is the most upscale collection of stores in northern New England—and every store is a discount outlet. The architecture reflects the surrounding homes, so the place looks a bit like a Colonial village. The long list of famous-brand clothiers here includes Kate Spade, Yves Delorme, Michael Kors, Ann Taylor, Tumi, BCBG, Armani, Coach, Polo Ralph Lauren, Brooks Brothers, and Theory.

Manchester Woodcraft

The millions of trees in the Green Mountains make Vermont a wood-carver's dreamscape. The saws, planes, and scrapers of the woodshop here turn out a range of handsome household goods, plus a wide selection of pieces and parts for DIY fans.

Northshire Bookstore

The heart of Manchester Center, this bookstore is adored by visitors and residents alike for its ambience, selection, and service. Up the iron staircase is a second floor dedicated to children's books, toys, and clothes.

Now And Then Books

This labyrinthine second-story bookstore stocks nearly 45,000 secondhand volumes.

Orvis Flagship Store

The lodgelike Orvis store carries the company's latest clothing, fly-fishing gear, and pet supplies—there's even a trout pond. At this required shopping destination for many visitors—the Orvis name is pure Manchester—there are demonstrations of how fly rods are constructed and tested. You can attend fly-fishing school across the street.

The Apple Barn & Country Bake Shop

Homemade baked goods, fresh cider, Vermont cheeses, maple syrup, and around a dozen varieties of apples are among the treats for sale here. There's berry picking in season, for a fun family stop, and on weekends you can watch the bakers make cider doughnuts.

The Bennington Bookshop

The state's oldest independent bookstore sells the latest new releases and hosts weekly readings, signings, and lectures.

The Vermont Country Store

This store opened in 1946 and is still run by the Orton family, though it has become something of an empire, with a large catalog and online business. One room is set aside for Vermont Common Crackers and bins of fudge and copious candy. In others you'll find nearly forgotten items such as Lilac Vegetol aftershave, as well as practical items like sturdy outdoor clothing. Nostalgia-evoking implements dangle from the rafters. The associated Mildred's Grill restaurant next door serves casual meals and, if you can’t get enough, there’s a second store on Route 103 in Rockingham.

Tilting at Windmills Gallery

This large gallery displays the paintings and sculptures of nationally known artists.

Vermont Artisan Designs

Artworks and functional items in ceramic, glass, wood, fiber, and other media created by more than 300 artists are on display at this gallery.

Vermont Center for Photography

The center exhibits works by American photographers. Opening receptions are held on the first Friday evening of the month.

Village Peddler

This shop has a "chocolatorium," where you can learn all about cocoa. It sells fudge and other candies and stocks a large collection of teddy bears, one of whom is giant and made of chocolate.