3 Best New Hampshire Vacation Road Trips

3 Best New Hampshire Vacation Road TripsNEW HAMPSHIRE -  A compact state with a big heart, boasts the majestic White Mountains, pristine lakes, and a cozy small-town atmosphere. Let's uncover some road trip itineraries that capture the essence of New Hampshire.

3 Best New Hampshire Vacation Road Trips
New Hampshire Road Trips: Mountains, Lakes, and Small-Town Charm

New Hampshire Road Trips: Mountains, Lakes, and Small-Town Charm

Road Trip #1: White Mountains Exploration and Scenic Drives

  • Route: Lincoln - Franconia Notch State Park - Mount Washington - North Conway - Jackson - Lincoln
  • Distance: Approximately 100 miles
  • Duration: 3-5 days

Delve into the heart of the White Mountains. In Lincoln, take a thrilling ride on the Loon Mountain gondola and enjoy panoramic views. Hike to cascading waterfalls or explore the Flume Gorge in Franconia Notch State Park. Ascend to the summit of Mount Washington, the highest peak in the Northeast, by cog railway or by car along the Mount Washington Auto Road.

Settle into North Conway, a quintessential mountain resort town known for outlet shopping and family attractions like Story Land. Finish in picturesque Jackson, home to covered bridges and lovely waterfalls.

Road Trip #2: Lakes, History, and Quirky Fun

  • Route: Portsmouth – Lake Winnipesaukee – Canterbury Shaker Village – Squam Lakes Natural Science Center – Clark's Trading Post - Portsmouth
  • Distance: Approximately 200 miles
  • Duration: 4-6 days

Begin in historic Portsmouth, a charming seaport city. Stroll the waterfront, explore Strawbery Banke Museum, and savor fresh seafood. Continue to Lake Winnipesaukee, the largest lake in New Hampshire. Enjoy boating, swimming, or try your hand at fishing. Learn about the simple, communal life of the Shakers at Canterbury Shaker Village.

Explore the natural world at the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center. Take a wildlife cruise or hike the nature trails. Have a blast at Clark's Trading Post in Lincoln, home to trained bears and thrilling water rides.

Road Trip #3: Tax-Free Delights, Fall Foliage, and a Touch of the Past

  • Route: Salem – Manchester – Concord – Keene – Peterborough – Salem
  • Distance: Approximately 200 miles
  • Duration: 3-5 days (Ideal in Fall)

Start with tax-free shopping galore in Salem, including the rocking Canobie Lake Park amusement park. Venture to Manchester, the state's largest city, and explore the Millyard Museum or the Currier Museum of Art. Continue to Concord, the state capital with its golden-domed State House. In charming Keene, admire historic architecture and stroll through a covered bridge.

Finish your trip in picturesque Peterborough, with antique shops and the inspiration for Thornton Wilder's play "Our Town." Maximize the fall experience with incredible foliage drives!

Tips for Your New Hampshire Adventure

  • Best Seasons: Summer is perfect for the lakes, fall is stunning for leaf-peeping, and winter provides cozy ski-town vibes.
  • Local Eats: Enjoy classic maple syrup, hearty diner fare, and farm-fresh produce.
  • More to Discover: Explore tax-free outlets throughout the state, hike to remote fire towers, or visit the childhood home of poet Robert Frost.

New Hampshire's stunning scenery, family-friendly towns, and unique attractions are sure to create lasting memories on your ultimate family road trip. Let the adventure begin!