Why I live in Saint Albans
My name is Amanda Headley and I fell in love with the people and quaintness of Burlington over a decade ago. I visit Burlington at least once a week if not more, but I live in Saint Albans and I like it that way. If you don’t live in Vermont, you may be asking ‘where is Saint Albans?’ Saint Albans is located 15 miles south of the Canadian border and 28 miles north of Burlington. Saint Albans has 8 miles of coastline on Lake Champlain and is the 12th largest city in Vermont with a population of about 14,000.
Why did I choose to live in Saint Albans? For one thing, my money goes further when buying property. If you moved my house to Burlington, it would cost at least $200,000 more. I live on Saint Albans Bay, so I have water views from every room in my home.
There is never any traffic in Saint Albans. Okay, you might get stuck behind a tractor every once in a while. Be patient, farmers work hard to bring you food and milk.
Saint Albans is a city with a lot of heart. The people who live here are proud that they do. Saint Albans puts on fun events all year: 2 farmers markets all summer long, a car and motorcycle show in June, Bay Day on the 4th of July, Brewfest in August, Harvest Fest in September, Festival of trees in December (every business on main street decorates a tree to display), and The Maple Festival in April (parade & festival with food trucks and sugar house tours).
What else do I like about Saint Albans? I like that I do not have to drive more than 8 minutes to be at a restaurant. We have 29 restaurants to choose from, including 2 chinese restaurants, a Japanese restaurant, a thai restaurant, 3 pizza places, a seafood restaurant, a vegan deli, an italian restaurant, and much more. We don’t have a Mexican restaurant, so if you want to own a Mexican restaurant, please choose Saint Albans!! Of those 29 restaurants, 12 will deliver to most homes in Saint Albans either directly or through door dash. I am a meal planner, so we don’t have food delivered, but it's nice to know we could.
If I had to pick a favorite restaurant in Saint Albans, it would have to be Thai House. Did you know you can bring your own alcoholic beverages to the restaurant? Nourish Deli is probably the restaurant I visit the most since they sell plant-based cheese that I use at home.
I am from Seattle, so you know coffee is part of my DNA and Saint Albans has 2 coffee shops: The Traveled Cup and Catalyst. (We Seattlites do not count Dunkin Donuts as coffee, but if that is what you like in your cup, we have one of those too).
Our home is 12 minutes away from my favorite grocery store and 6 minutes from the nearest one. We have 4 grocery stores in Saint Albans if you include Walmart (Walmart does not carry produce). But I have to say, I have a farm stand half a mile from my house that carries eggs, milk, beef, and cheese. So if you open your fridge to make breakfast or coffee, you will be back in 2 minutes with what you need.
Our schools have the same rating as Burlington schools and our class size is about 21 students. My kids have enjoyed their teachers, including me for the year I homeschooled them during the pandemic.
Let’s talk healthcare, we have a hospital in Saint Albans called NMC, or Northwest Medical Center, if you are in need of one. We also have several medical offices, dentist offices, and eye doctors.
Skiing and boarding at Smuggler’s Notch is only 45 minutes away and Jay Peak is a 1 hour drive. If you lived in Burlington, the closest ski area, Bolton, is 35 minutes away. We have tons of hiking trails right in town at the Hard’Ack Recreation area. You can ski there too if you are just learning, they have a tow rope. I was able to rent Nordic skis for the season this year from The Alpine Shop and ski at Hard’Ack every week.
Besides Hard’Ack, Saint Albans has 7 parks. Not all of them have playground equipment and one of them is on an island, so you have to take a ferry to get to it!!
“But Amanda, I love shopping!” Don’t worry, Saint Albans won’t let you down, we have a TJ Maxx. We also have some great shops downtown that carry everything from homewares to clothing and shoes. Support your local business owners!
So if you are looking for small town life that is still close to Burlington, Saint Albans is a great place to live.