In And Around New Hampshire

mount washington
Despite its modest size, "The Granite State" offers a wide range of attractions. From the seaport of Portsmouth to the peak of Mount Washington, New Hampshire draws thousands of tourists to its historic sites and beautiful landscapes. Following is a list of places for visitors seeking to tackle rugged mountain terrain or look back hundreds of years into the origins of our nation.

White Mountains National Forest

Just a few miles east of Franconia, the White Mountains National Forest covers more area than Rhode Island and contains some of New England's most pristine forests and wilderness. Dozens of hiking trails wind through terrain ranging from lush hardwood forests to treeless tundra.

The Great North Woods

Covering most of the northern portion of the state, the Great North Woods is characterized by acres of undeveloped woods, lakes, rivers, and streams. In the summer, the small towns that dot the area thrive on thousands of visitors who come to enjoy the fishing, boating and hiking.

Mount Washington Observatory

Located on the highest peak in the northeastern U.S., the Mount Washington Observatory records some of the foulest winter weather imaginable. The observatory holds the world record for the highest wind velocity ever recorded, at 231 mph.

The summer, however, sees far less extreme conditions. Educational tours are available at the summit observatory as well as a beautiful view of the surrounding White Mountains.

Lost River
North Woodstock

Formed by centuries of glacial activity during the Ice Age, the Lost River cuts through narrow crevasses and caverns, creating spectacular waterfalls and serene pools. Self-guided tours on walkways and bridges let visitors explore geological anomalies and hundreds of species of native plants and wildlife.

Conway Scenic Railroad

If you would like to enjoy nature from the comfort of an antique passenger car, the Conway Scenic Railroad offers several tours through the valleys around Mount Washington. All depart from the historic North Conway Railroad Station and include commentary on the history and folklore of the surrounding area.

MS Mount Washington Cruise Ship

Tour Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshir's largest lake, aboard the MS Mount Washington. Day cruises depart from five ports along the lake, bound for the surrounding wilderness and the peaks of the White Mountains.

Dinner cruises give passengers a chance to witness the sun set on the lake while dancing the night away to a live band.

The New Hampshire Audubon Society

The state's Audubon Society maintains more than 40 sanctuaries throughout the state that are open to the public. The society offers maps and guide books for local bird watching as well as educational nature programs to inspire the public to support environmental conservation in the area.

Guidelines and current conditions for fishing, hunting and boating in New Hampshire are available through the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department.

For more information on hiking in the state, Hike New Hampshire has maps and profiles of routes, and a bulletin board for comments by hikers.

History and Tradition

The Fort at No. 4 Living History Museum

This recreated walled village from the 1700s displays the lifestyles of the European men and women who first settled in New England. The museum features demonstrations of early colonial life including hearth cooking, wool spinning, and militia skills.

The French and Indian War Weekend (Aug. 5 - 6) attracts big crowds as they watch a recreation of the historic battle where village militiamen and British regulars repelled a siege of French and Indian soldiers.

Daniel Webster Birthplace Historic Site

Part of the New Hampshire State Parks system, the Daniel Webster Birthplace Historic Site provides a look at the early life of one of the country's most distinguished statesmen and orators. This two-room house contains a vast collection of Webster memorabilia.

Museum of New Hampshire History

The Museum of New Hampshire History attempts to capture the spiit behind the "live free or die" motto of this state, where fierce independence is a tradition.

Now on display, the New Hampshire History through Many Eyes exhibit compares the lives of the first European settlers with the native people they encountered.

Remick Country Doctor Museum and Farm

The Remick Country Doctor Museum and Farm honors the hard work and dedication of Dr. Edwin Remick, who set up his practice in 1894 and cared for patients in the Tamworth area for more than 50 years. His home and farm offer a glimpse of what life was like for a rural doctor who had to serve as both veterinarian and general practitioner.

Strawbery Banke Museum

Located over 10 acres on the banks of the Piscataqua River, the Strawbery Banke Museum traces the changes in the American lifestyle through the history of one community. Settled in 1630, Strawbery Banke is one of the oldest continuously occupied neighborhoods in the U.S.

Shaker Museum

The Enfield Shaker Museum is on the site of an 18th century Shaker community. The museum encompasses 28 acres and eight historic buildings built by the founders. Visitors are welcome to walk among displays of woodworking, hymn singing and, of course, furniture making.

For more on New Hampshire's past, History in New Hampshire has articles, directions and links to historic sites.


The New Hampshire Division of Travel and Tourism has information on recreation, travel advisories and links to quaint inns and bed-and-breakfasts.

Abbington Village is an online resource offing suggestions on "where to stay and play" in New Hampshire. It also has information on other New England states.