updated 12/26/2006 2:02:08 PM ET 2006-12-26T19:02:08

Burlington is blessed with numerous city parks. Most popular is Leddy Park on North Avenue, with an 1,800-foot beach, tennis courts, ball fields, walking trails, and a handsome indoor skating rink. North Beach also features a long sandy beach, plus a campground for those looking to pitch a tent or park an RV. The 68 sites cost $21 to $29 per night.

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On the downtown waterfront, look for the Burlington Community Boathouse (tel. 802/865-3377), a modern structure built with Victorian flair. A lot of summer action takes place at this city-owned structure and along the 900-foot boardwalk. You can rent a sailboat or rowboat, sign up for kayak or sculling lessons, or just wander around and enjoy the sunset.

One of Burlington's hidden but beguiling attractions is the Burlington Bike Path, running 9 miles on an old rail bed along picturesque shores of Lake Champlain to the mouth of the Winooski River. An easy and quiet trip, you ride through parks, past backyards, and along sandy beaches. You can start near the Community Boathouse and head north toward the Winooski River. It's worth packing a lunch and exploring for a few hours on a sunny afternoon.

More exciting still, this path is just one segment of an ambitious project to create a 350-mile bikeway around Lake Champlain. Several key links were recently made in the Burlington area, first in fall 2000 when an experimental bike ferry was established across the Winooski River.

From the north shore of the Winooski, you can pedal northward, picking up the Causeway Park trail, which lets you seemingly skim across the lake's surface by bike. A ferry was also recently established across Colchester Cut, a boater's break in the causeway that prevented bikers from making through-trips. (Note: Burlington Bikeways, a local nonprofit, is working to find funding to keep both ferries operating during bike season, and biking advocates hope that both will soon be permanent features. Ask at the Burlington visitor center for the current ferry status, or contact Burlington Parks and Recreation at tel. 802/864-0123.)

Bike rentals are available downtown at Skirack, 85 Main St. (tel. 802/658-3313; www.skirack.com), from 4 hours to a whole day. Skirack also rents in-line skates, commonly used on the bike path as well. North Star Cyclery, 100 Main St. (tel. 802/863-3832), rents bicycles at comparable rates.

When at the bike shops or the chamber of commerce, ask for the free map Cycling the City, which will help you plot a course around town.

For more on what to see and do in Burlington, VT, visit our complete guide online at http://www.frommers.com/destinations/burlingtonvt/.

Frommer’s is America’s bestselling travel guide series. Visit Frommers.com to find great deals, get information on over 3,500 destinations, and book your trip. © 2006 Wiley Publishing, Inc. Republication or redistribution of Frommer's content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Wiley.


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