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We live in Burlington and are just about to start searching for our first house. The median home price in Chittenden county is $206K. A lot more than the place in Indiana where I'm from but a lot less than NJ, where we were before moving here. If you're willing to live further north of Burlington housing prices start to go down. Burlington is in a valley but less than an hours' drive from the mountains.

It is progressive here and I've found that even our technically mainstream ped is pretty progressive. I found even in giving birth at Fletcher Allen, the big hospital here, that if you said breastfeeding is what you wanted to do formula was never mentioned or suggested. I've been thrilled with all of the organic choices from fruits and veggies to meats as well.

The other thing I really love about here is something my MIL always raves about, when Vermont is confronted with a problem everyone gets together and says, "OK, how can we address this?"

And last but not least, I really value the New England, Live and Let Live attitude that I find here for the most part. So even though there are Republicans, they're the old fashioned kind, for the most part, and not the neocons you might find in other states. (oops, my bias is showing
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Friends of mine stayed at the Tibet Inn relatively recently with their toddler and said it was nice. It's I think about $30/night. Breakfast is included but I'm not sure about a pool. And yes the area of South Burlington south of town is rather strip mallish for Vermont. My ILs tend to stay north of town in Winooski/Colchester. There's a Motel 6 there and another hotel. It's right across the street from a fine diner named Libby's and right by a good Italian one, sorry I'm not awake yet, need more coffee, so I can't remember the name. It's also a little quieter up there b/c there's construction on the road going on south of town.
 
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