Covered Bridge Driving Tour of Southern Vermont
Short. Long. Red. Brown. Open. Closed. With windows, or without. There are over 100 covered bridges in the state of Vermont, making us the state with the most covered bridges per square mile in the entire country. They are among our most popular and timeless attractions.
This driving tour is a wonderful day trip. The loop is about 100 miles and you’ll see a dozen covered bridges. There are many other sites to see and great places for lunch, snacks or Vermont products along the way. Snap lots of pictures and share them with us on Facebook!
Chester, VT: Bartonsville Covered Bridge, Worrall Bridge, and the “Kissing Bridge”
From the Inn, follow Main St. east and go over the bridge and turn left on Route 35 towards Chester. When you reach the village of Chester turn right on to Route 11. Continue past The Country Girl Diner on your right and watch for Route 103 (pretty much straight ahead). Travel approximately 4 miles, keeping a sharp eye out for Lower Bartonsville Road on the left side of the road. Take that left and the bridge is a short distance from the turn. The original bridge was washed away during tropical storm Irene in 2011 (you can see that dramatic footage on YouTube).
Turn around and head back to Route 103. Turn left on 103 and travel less than a mile, watching for a green sign for Williams Rd. Turn left on Williams Rd and after a short distance, you will see Worrall Bridge, built in 1868. Continue over the bridge traveling approximately 2 miles. At the stop sign turn left on to Route 103.
After approximately 1 mile you’ll see the Vermont Country Store on the right. Pull in for some shopping if you like and a photo at their covered bridge called “The Kissing Bridge.” Leaving the Vermont Country Store, turn right on to Route 103 and travel about 3 miles to Interstate 91 North.
Windsor, VT: Cornish Covered Bridge and Martinsville Bridge
You’ll travel about 20 miles north on I-91 to exit 8 Ascutney/Windsor. At the bottom of the exit, bear right on to Route 131 East and travel a short while bearing to the left at the traffic lights. Turn left at the lights on Route 5 north towards Windsor. You will travel approximately 5 miles. Along the way, you’ll pass the entrance to Ascutney Mountain State Park. This is a nice side trip if you’d like to take a toll road to the summit (2300ft) for some spectacular views. You might even see some hang gliders flying as this is a popular spot for soaring!
When coming into the town of Windsor (the birthplace of Vermont), at the first traffic light, turn right on to Bridge St. After a short drive, you’ll see the Cornish Covered Bridge spanning the Connecticut River across to New Hampshire. It was built in 1866 and is the longest two-span wooden bridge in the world. After your photo op, travel back over the bridge to the traffic light in Windsor and turn right again on to Route 5 north. You’ll travel approximately 5 miles and cross the bridge that passes over Interstate 91; traveling about 1 more mile, watch for a sign on the right for Martinsville Road. Turn right on Martinsville (dirt road) and travel a mile or 2 and you’ll come upon the Martinsville Bridge built in 1881.
North Hartland to Taftsville: Twin Bridges, Quechee Covered Bridge, and Taftsville Bridge
Continue on Martinsville Rd until it ends. Cross over Depot Rd and immediately get on Route 5 north toward North Hartland, VT (there is no sign identifying Route 5 at this intersection).
Travel on approximately 4 miles, through the tiny village of North Hartland. Keep a sharp eye out for a bridge that goes over Route 5. At that bridge take a right turn on to Evarts Road. Take your very next left on to Mill St. In a short distance, you’ll come to the Twin Bridges. After photos head back the way you came and turn right on to Route 5 north.
You’ll travel a short 100 yards or so and take a left at the Fire Station on to Clay Hill Road. After approximately 5 miles, Clay Hill ends. Take a right on to Quechee Rd. Travel 1 mile or so to the intersection with a flashing red traffic light. After stopping, cross over the road and down the hill to the Quechee Covered Bridge. This bridge was also partially washed away by Tropical Storm Irene.
After crossing the bridge (and pausing for your photo op) bear left on to Quechee’s Main St. You might want to stop at Simon Pearce Glass for some shopping or a fabulous lunch. If not, continue down Main St. bearing left out of the village and travel on past the Quechee Lakes Golf Club and along the Ottauquechee River for approximately 4 miles and you’ll come to the beautiful red Taftsville Bridge. This bridge, too, was severely damaged by Irene and just recently re-opened to traffic. Cross over the bridge to Taftsville and bear right/turn right on to Route 4 (unless you want to stop at the Taftsville General Store). Continue on Route 4 toward Woodstock.
Woodstock, VT: Middle Bridge and Upper Falls Bridge
Travel in to the village of Woodstock (great shopping and dining) through the downtown district and find a place to park along the village green. Across from the village green is Middle Bridge. After your photo and shopping, travel 3 quarters of the way around the green, following signs for Route 106 south. Take a right on to 106.
You’ll travel about 18 miles on Route 106 through some beautiful horse country in South Woodstock. You might want to stop at the South Woodstock General Store. After 18 miles you’ll come to the very tiny town of Downers (with a great ice cream stand) and at the intersection of Route 131 and 106 take a right turn on to 131 and travel a few hundred yards, watching for Upper Falls Road on your left. You’ll shortly come to Upper Falls Bridge, built in 1840.
Perkinsvile, VT: Titcomb Bridge
Cross over the bridge and bear left down the dirt road for approximately 2 miles. The road will end and intersect with Route 106. Bear right on Route 106 and travel less than a mile through the village of Perkinsvile and watch for the Weathersfield School on your right. Park at the lot by the school and walk across the road through the field. You’ll see the Titcomb Bridge, which is on private property. By all accounts we are told that the farmer does not mind people coming to take photos. The bridge was built in 1880 and was moved to its present location due to the construction of the North Springfield Dam.
Back to Grafton
Next, follow Route 106 south towards Springfield. At the next main intersection with traffic lights, turn right on to Route 11 west to Chester. In Chester, turn right on Route 103, then left on Route 35, and in 7 miles you’re back home to Grafton. To end your covered bridge tour, you can always take a stroll down to the McWilliam Covered Bridge, built in 1967 and located right next to the Grafton Village Cheese Company.