Okemo Mountain Resort -- Vermont
Okemo is a great choice for visitors who want the intimate ambience of a family-owned New England resort. This is scenic Vermont at its prettiest, and the staff gives plenty of personal attention.
Why kids love it: The SnowTracks Nature Program, incorporated into ski and snowboard lessons, teaches children about the animals whose tracks crisscross theirs on the mountain.
Why parents love it: Unlike many New England ski areas, Okemo is located adjacent to a real village, where visitors can explore the restaurants and boutiques.
Why families love it: All trails lead to one central base area, which means finding each other for lunch is a snap.
For non-skiers: Go from winter white to putting greens at the impressive Okemo Valley Indoor Golf Academy. Or try ice-skating at nearby Dorsey Park.
Children's programs: The Snow Star Skiers takes kids ages 4 to 7; Snow Star Riders teaches snowboarding to those 5 to 7. Programs for older kids also are available. The Penguin Playground Day Care Center for kids 6 weeks to 8 years takes non-skiers for full and half days; the Mini Stars program adds an introductory ski lesson for 3- and 4-year-olds. Activities include arts and crafts and outdoor play. Evening hours allow parents a night out.
Lodging: Mountain condos are plentiful. Kids 12 and under stay free; children 6 and under ski free. 800-78-OKEMO; www.okemo.com.