By Melanie Oliva, media intern
Manchester, Vermont is nestled in the valley under Equinox Mountain. For this reason, the mountain finds its namesakes in a lot of local businesses. From hotels to gardening, “equinox” businesses can take you all over town doing all sorts of things. To visit all in one day would be busy, to say the least.
Let’s start out the morning at The Spa at The Equinox. You go for a swim in the 75-foot indoor pool, getting in a bit of morning exercise. You finish your laps just in time for your morning facial appointment. Actually, let’s say you get “The Spirit of Vermont” signature treatment, just to fit in the theme of things.
Photo: The Equinox Hotel
Throughout the day, turn your radio to 102.7 FM to listen to WEQX. Consistently rated one of the best radio stations in the area and in the nation, this station plays alternative music all day long. It’s just a bonus that it’s call sign is named for the same mountain (EQX).
After a luxurious morning routine, you decide to stop by the Equinox Valley Nursery, located on route 7A on your way to Arlington, Vermont. If you’re here in the summer, you’ll be greeted with hanging flower baskets and lush gardens. Inside the garden center you’ll find unique gifts, from plants and gardening tools to home furnishings and figurines.
Photo: Maisie Kane
In Autumn, the Nursery transforms. The pumpkin patch opens, the corn maze is back in operation and, most importantly, they start to make their cider donuts again. Freshly fried and coated in cinnamon sugar– they’re impossible to resist. The queue for the donuts is long, but entirely worth it. The nursery even offers an unique, Vermonter spin on an ice cream sandwich: one cider donut, cut down the middle, stuffed with pumpkin ice cream.
After eating one-too-many donuts (is there such a thing as too many donuts?!) you decide to gather a group of friends for a round of golf at The Golf Club at Equinox. “Equinox,” comes from the Native American word “Ekwanok,” meaning “the very top.” Maybe it’s best to just play nine holes… you still have so much else to do!
Photo: Hubert Schriebl
Finally, you visit the place that gave all the others their name – Mount Equinox itself! If you’re not looking for much of a hike, visit Equinox Pond. The reflective pools make for amazing photographs and a perfect view. The area is picnic friendly, making it a great place to eat lunch!
Photo: Maisie Kane
It’s a short walk up from Prospect Street onto Equinox Pond Rd.– follow the trail until you see this incredible view!
If you’re feeling a little more adventurous, strap on your sneakers and head to the trails. The local high school summits the peak every autumn. If they can do it, you can too! Round-trip, the hike takes about 5 hours. There are plenty of look-outs and amazing views on the way to the top. You can also get to the top of Equinox Mountain by car. Just make sure that your brake pads are ready for the ride down!
It’s easy to be busy in Manchester, Vermont. It might be hard to fit all of the “Equinoxes” into a single day, but don’t worry, no matter which you choose, you’re guaranteed to have fun.