The things to do in New Hampshire are as varied as the state's many attractions, which include the spectacular scenic beauty of the White Mountains, the year round playground of the Lakes Region, and the beaches of the Atlantic Ocean coast.
Several of the New Hampshire tourist attractions are excellent places to get married. They provide lovely venues for the ceremony, and the many resorts are perfect for the honeymoon. In addition to the appeal of the locale, many travel to New Hampshire for this purpose because there is no blood test or residency requirement, and no waiting period. A number of charming bed and breakfast inns in places like Rye Beach, resorts, and old mansions full of history in places like Exeter are available to cater ceremonies, and often offer special New Hampshire vacation packages just for that purpose.
You will find day spas in many towns and cities in the state, with concentrations in the resort regions and the largest cities of Concord, Manchester, and Nashua. You'll also find them tucked away in unpretentious small towns like Plymouth and Goffstown. There are numerous spas of varying degrees of simplicity and sophistication, including day spas and full-service spas connected to deluxe hotels. There are many active and recreational things to do in New Hampshire and it is a welcome break during your vacation to day simply for relaxation and pampering.
Hopping on a pair of skis is one of the most popular things to in New Hampshire both for visitors and residents, and this is possibly the East Coast capital for the sport. The White Mountains, highest range in the northeast, cover virtually the entire northern part of the state. They provide an incredible number and variety of slopes and trails, with international competitions and Olympic trials held on many of them. You'll also find that there is skiing in the southern part of the state. Even if you're staying near the ocean in Portsmouth, you'll be within an hour's drive of a ski area. And, don't forget about cross-country skiing that occurs in the forests of the state parks, on hiking trails and frozen lakes, and even on a winter's "walk" to the store.
With so many mountains and ski areas in the state, pockets and complexes of ski resorts have developed around several of the best mountains. The town of Jackson is one of these centers, with Wildcat Mountain boasting incredible views of Mount Washington; Black Mountain, the oldest ski resort in the state; and the famous Attitash Ski Resort. This is also the site of a world-famous, 150-kilometer cross-country trail system. Other ski resorts include Waterville Valley in the White Mountains National Forest. Both of these towns are New Hampshire tourist attractions that are pretty much dedicated to skiing in the winter.
Many of the best ski resorts are year round destinations, providing venues for many warm weather activities. The lifts remain open for scenic rides that are particularly beautiful during the autumn foliage season, and many travel to New Hampshire specifically during September and October for "leaf peeping." The Lakes Region communities of Meredith, Weirs Beach, and Wolfeboro (also near ski areas) are summer resorts drawing millions for activities and recreation on the water. Hampton Beach, one of the state's most popular ocean beaches, is also a resort area with scores of oceanfront New Hampshire hotels, dining and entertainment venues, and even water parks.
In addition to the large resort lakes of the Lakes Region, there are scores of other pristine lakes, ponds, and reservoirs scattered throughout the state. Quiet little lakes provide opportunities to sit in silence and watch loons dive with beautiful sunsets every evening. Larger lakes provide things to do in New Hampshire that include every imaginable water activity, entertainment, amusement arcades, and much more. Town ponds and reservoirs offer swimming beaches. Some lakes, like Sunapee near the Vermont border and Meredith, are also winter ski resorts
Important New Hampshire tourist attractions are the nearly seventy state parks and national forests. All of these have extensive hiking trails. Many farms that provide unique New Hampshire vacations have trails on their lands for hiking and horseback riding. Don't forget the ski resorts, many of which remain open after the ski season for scenic hiking. One of the most historic hiking trails in the country is the Appalachian Trail that stretches from the Gulf Coast of Georgia to Maine. The portion that runs through the New Hampshire White Mountains provides some of the most rugged and rewarding terrain.
There are hundreds of golf venues in New Hampshire. Just about every group of small towns has a public course. Resorts areas and the larger cities have extensive country clubs, some of which host regional and national tournaments. The locations that are important ski resorts also boast world-class courses. Even the kids can get in the act at numerous miniature golf courses in places like Weirs Beach and North Beach.
There's a lot of water in the state, and fishing provides one of the things to do in New Hampshire that appeal to serious anglers as well as the casual enthusiast. Trout thrive in cold water, and the mountain streams provide superb opportunities for fly fishing. It's almost impossible to find a town set on a lake that doesn't have a town fishing pier, and you can book deep sea fishing charters from all the seacoast towns.
There are camping sites in nineteen of the state parks, and numerous private campgrounds on lakes, rivers, and near certain attractions like the New Hampshire Motor Speedway near Concord, the state's historic covered bridges, water parks, and the venues of special events. You can also travel to New Hampshire in your own recreational vehicle or motor home, and find campgrounds with water, sewer, and electric hook ups. Many of these campgrounds include resort-type facilities, including water parks, playgrounds, hiking trails, bathhouses, and an activities center.
Most people think of cozy mountain lodges and little lakeside cottages when cabins are mentioned, and that's exactly what you'll get when you travel to New Hampshire looking for this kind of lodging. But you can also find large houses sleeping as many as twenty people and breezy beachside bungalows. There are even huts, maintained by the Appalachian Mountain Club along the trail from Hanover into the White Mountains.