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To see The Essex Resort & Spa at its peak, the best time to visit is autumn. From the end of September through October, admire the colorful fall foliage around the hotel's 18 acres against the backdrop of Lake Champlain and the mountains. It's one of the busiest and most beautiful times of the year at the Forbes Travel Guide recommended hotel. However, winter and summer are both strong contenders as well. Winter visitors have some of the best mountains just an hour east of the resort; 500 acres of cross-country powder to ski; and ice fishing at the lake. If you seek a warmer month’s stay, trade skiing for hiking the trail around the resort in hopes of spotting a peregrine falcon nesting on a cliff. You can also bike, swim, kayak, just relax by Lake Champlain or hit the course at The Links at Lang Farm, which was voted Favorite New Golf Course by Northeast Golf Magazine.