Janine F. reports in this review:
|Weather||How much crime?||What are the neighborhoods like?||What are the people like?|
|Burlington offers a taste of all four seasons (five if you include the New England-specific "mud season") with breathtaking scenic views year-round. Winters can be especially cold with winds coming off of Lake Champlain, and flooding is sometimes a threat in spring when heavy snows finally melt. The lake winds are terrific in spring and summer, cutting through the humidity with a refreshing breeze.||There has been a lot of talk recently about hard drugs in the Burlington area - college kids getting publicly drunk and stoned isn't that uncommon with a major university in town, but lately the issue of heroin has been in the news more frequently. There is occasional gun violence reported and car break-ins are not uncommon in certain parts of town. Most businesses besides bars close early, so the streets can be somewhat barren late at night - it's wise to stay with friends when out on the town.||The North End area has a somewhat dodgy reputation, possibly due to the number of low-income residents and immigrant communities; however, it has developed more in recent years and has attracted more stable residents, as opposed to transient college kids and section 8 tenants. Isham Street is known for being the "college ghetto" for it's rambunctious residents and late-night noise.
The waterfront is home to pricey condominiums and attracts the more well-to-do crowd and retirees, and there are a number of beautiful homes in the Five Sisters neighborhood near the South End of Burlington. This is a desirable neighborhood as it is just outside of the main downtown area, and away from student housing.
|Burlington attracts a number of "types" from gutter punk hippie teenagers to affluent retirees. It's scenic but small, with a slower paced way of life than most other cities (in truth, "city" is a very generous description of Burlington). It would not hold much appeal for someone looking for the thrill of a large metropolis, nor someone that bores easily. There is a strong "localvore" food movement which is great for foodies, and a number of boutique shops catering to ethical consumerism and fair trade. Burlington is a great place for those with an interest in social justice and politics.|
|Downtown Area||Restaurants||Schools||Single life|
|The Church Street Marketplace is a beautiful outdoor shopping area with several blocks of boutique stores, an indoor shopping mall and various eateries, including the original Ben and Jerry's scoop shop. Whether shopping for clothes, sporting gear, books or jewelry, the downtown shopping area has something for everyone.||There is no shortage of restaurants to choose from. The Farmhouse Tap & Grill, the Vermont Pub and Brewery, Penny Cluse Cafe, Trattoria Delia and the Daily Planet are just a few reputable dining options in town.||The public schools have a positive local reputation, and are said to have a high graduation rate||Burlington is the place to be if you're single in Vermont. There are plenty of date spots from bars and restaurants to the waterfront, parks and theaters.|
|Noise||town comparison vs.||Best hospital||Tourist attractions|
|The University of Vermont, Memorial Auditorium and sometimes concerts and events held on the waterfront.||Burlington is much more quaint than neighboring South Burlington, which many locals complain has been overdeveloped by shopping malls and chain stores. It is also less sprawling than Colchester, though many parts of Colchester are more affordable. Burlington is walkable, bikeable and has a decent bus system for those who rely on public transit. If you want to be in the swing of things and have more convenient access to dining and retail, you'd be better off in Burlington.||Fletcher Allen Health Care is the local hospital. It seems clean and the staff are generally polite, but often there are too many chefs spoiling the pot, which can lead to miscommunications and frustration. Be prepared to advocate for yourself!||Church Street and the waterfront are the must-sees for any visitor. Get an eye-full of the Adirondack mountains while lounging on the green by the lake, or take a ferry ride for more site-seeing opportunities.|
|General comments|| || || |
|Burlington is a small but lively community with residents showing passion for arts, social justice, sustainability and creative expression. It can feel small when you're used to living in a larger, more densely populated area, but can also be exciting for those coming from more rural areas nearby. The locals are generally friendly and inviting and the pace is laid-back and relaxing.|| || || |