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Nubble Lighthouse picture.Welcome to New Hampshire, affectionately known as "The Granite State."  If you are an experienced New Hampshire traveler or future first-time visitor, we have many helpful trip suggestions as well as mountains of detailed, local online storytelling to share with you right now...

Best of New Hampshire Travel, Vacation and Food Feature Stories

Best of New Hampshire Vacation, Travel, Food Blog Posts

More ideas on things to do and places to eat in The Granite State. Posted at The Thrifty New England Traveler and New England Travel and Food Photo blogs

Visiting New Hampshire and Carrying Those Memories Home Year-Round

A few personal thoughts of New Hampshire from the publisher of VisitingNewEngland

Echo Lake, Franconia State Park in the White Mountains of New Hampshire
Echo Lake at Franconia State Park, N.H.

by Eric Hurwitz

The best thing about growing up in Massachusetts was the many vacations we enjoyed in New Hampshire. The trips to Silver Lake in beautiful Hollis, N.H., were just a half hour away, but seemingly far away from everything.

To this day, it wouldn't be a New Hampshire vacation for kids without swimming in cozy, clean Silver Lake, playing ball in the pine tree-cooled fields, making sand castles, and eating hot dogs and hamburgers until blue in the face. Set in the quintessential New England colonial, church-steepled town of Hollis, Silver Lake is a quiet place to be close to family, make lots of new friends and years later happily relive those memories in the photo scrapbook and videotapes.

Fall time at Silver Lake, Hollis, NH.
Silver Lake in the fall.

People do not go to New Hampshire, however, to seek out just Silver Lake. Silver Lake is just a prime example of vacationing families finding their own special destination and the many things to do in the "Granite State."

New Hampshire is ultimately craggy and rugged, full of rocky terrain leading up to majestic mountains and stunning vistas. Mount Washington is New England's highest point at over 6,000 ft, but the "high points" just don't end there -- the state peaks frequently with great tourist destinations for children and adults, alike.

Theme destinations like Storyland, Santa's Village and Clark's Trading Post rev up the fun quotient for children, while revving up the adult side is July's Motorcycle weekend and, in the winter, some of the best skiing in the northeast. For those who like a quiet time, New Hampshire has plenty to offer from the tranquil artist's village of Peterborough in the southwest region to the relaxing, more mature environs of beautiful Wolfeboro in the Lakes Region. Wolfeboro is America's oldest resort community. It is well known for good reason, too: take a stroll down any of the east side streets and you'll end up with one of the prettiest views in New Hampshire -- a cool, calm lake surrounded by mountains. Nice walkways and a gazebo add to the charm, as well as extremely friendly residents who have a respect for their town and the people who visit their charmed community. Once at the lake, it's hard to believe one is just a major league baseball rightfielder's throw from Main Street. The feeling of going from a busy -- but not too noisy -- Main Street to aa place of great solitude by the water in just seconds provides a great option to those torn between shopping and relaxing within the same continent.

Beautiful Lakes Region town: Wolfeboro, N.H.
Wolfeboro, N.H.

There are many Wolfeboros in New Hampshire, especially in the Lakes Region -- pretty, quaint, friendly and open to visitors staying in their towns.

A little further north of the Lakes Region are White Mountains. This area is made for family fun, especially in the Lincoln-North Woodstock area. Great scenery, Mount Washington, motels with indoor swimming pools, family style restaurants that are easy on the wallet, great skiing in the winter, and lakes with crystal clear water perfect for summer swimming are just a few of the things that have families coming back year after year.

A Best of New Hampshire vacation tip for a place to stay in the White Mountains: the spectacular Mt. Washington Resort in Brettons Woods. The picture pretty much tells it all about the famous all-inclusive resort...

Omni Mt. Washington Hotel, Bretton Woods, NH. Courtesy of Omni Mount Washington Resort.
Omni Mt. Washington Hotel, Bretton Woods. Courtesy of Omni Mount Washington Resort.

For the less mature, there is Hampton Beach, a premier New Hampshire vacation destination on the limited New Hampshire seashore. Hampton Beach has tattoos, surfer dudes, future Jerry Springer guests, sloping foreheads, women who don't know the word "modesty" and... a beach, mounds of fried dough and pizza that isn't -- For better or worse, everyone has a Hampton Beach story. Full of show-offs and people who just can't seem to get that office job, Hampton Beach is a prime New England summer vacation spot and offers one of New England's prettiest beaches if you block out the honky-tonk. -- it's a great stretch of beach perfect to stroll and swim. Like Howard Stern, those who like Hampton Beach stay a day or two. Those who don't stay a week.

Hampton Beach, N.H. during the summer.
Hampton Beach, N.H.

New Hampshire is not famous for its cities, but Manchester is worth a look. Not too long ago, Manchester was a run-down city casting its head down on the Merrimack River, with urban blight and a Gotham City feel. The vacant mill buildings overlooking the River eventually filled up with businesses, stores, restaurants and other attractions, creating a vibrant entrance to the inner city, which has followed suit. The downtown is alive with a new entertainment center, lots of new retail and dining choices, and growing neighborhood pride with many homes being lovingly restored to their original splendor. The great Manchester International Airport is all shiny and new and has helped bring further appeal to this proud city.

Lakes, mountains, fresh air and other rural delights ultimately put New Hampshire on the map as a great New England vacation destination. It is the place where childhood memories are made, no matter what age.

Nissitissit Covered Bridge in Brookline, N.H.
Nissitissit Covered Bridge in Brookline.

Eric Hurwitz, editor and publisher of VisitingNewEnglandWe encourage you to read our Best of New Hampshire Vacation, Travel Food stories through our online library at Visiting New Enjoy!

Happy travels,
Eric at VisitingNewEngland

List of New Hampshire Trip Planning Articles

Visiting Hanover, N.H.
Hanover, N.H.

Find great destinations, attractions in The Granite State at our Best of New England Travel Lists section

Discover must-visit NH destinations in the Best New England towns and cities article

Experience local family fun things to do in the Best New England Attractions article

Check out incredible NH hotels in the 10 Memorable Weekend Getaways in New England article

Chutters in Littleton features the longest candy counter in the world

Best ski resorts for kids

Find top cross country skiing spots

Experience a timeless White Mountains  summer family road trip

Finding lobster roll and New England clam chowder to die for at The Beach Plum

Port City Pretzels, an amazing small business success story in Portsmouth

Pickity Place, Mason: 5-course lunch, gifts, gardens, cozy red cottage setting for 1948 version of Little Red Riding Hood

Taking in breakfast and a morning walk in Peterborough

Homemade ice cream like you've never tasted before at Hayward's Homemade Ice Cream in Nashua

Feeing right at home in Exeter

CJ's Great West Grill, Manchester

What to expect when visiting downtown Hanover

Parker's Maple Barn restaurant in Mason specializes in maple-based foods

Echo Lake in the White Mountains reflects the scenic beauty of The Granite State

Why hidden Walpole might be a better destination that popular vacation towns

Lively Meredith features a beautiful setting on Lake Winnipesaukee

Finding authentic New Hampshire joy in Harrisville

Red Jacket Resort in North Conway features indoor water park

Portsmouth: New England's most appealing small city?

What it feels like to visit the only Henniker on earth

Downtown Keene is a city that offers a quaint New England small town setting

Exploring Wolfeboro on the quieter side of Lake Winnipesaukee

Locals create art in Nashua

Popular walks in the Lakes Region

What NH amusement park made "The Best of New England" list? Find out here

Markey's Lobster Pool in Seabook is the ultimate New England lobster shack

The 3 best NH pancake houses

Scenic drives and overlooks in the Mount Washington Valley

Hollis offers a timeless fall travel experience

Hampton Beach might not be for everyone, but, then again, maybe it is

Find great NH apple orchards in the story on Best New England Apple Picking Destinations

See what Granite State destination is listed in The Best Picnics in new England article

Book a Room in NH and get a great rate

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Relax and stay for a while: Start with our navigation links and also our articles on the best New England towns and cities, hidden travel destinations, scenic drives, seafood restaurants and lobster shacks, lobster rolls, ice cream stands, and country stores, as well as our New England summer, fall, winter and spring sections. Then take a fun online journey on VisitingNewEngland to read the rest of our articles for your trip planning needs!

VisitingNewEngland's small business commitment to excellence: is a proud, small business based in New England. We love it when one of our articles helps you with your New England vacation and travel trip planning! That's what we are here for: to serve you in the most genuine, helpful way possible.

Old-fashioned New England work ethic: All articles, photos by Eric Hurwitz unless otherwise noted. Eric also manages the site's layout and design, social media, and public affairs.

All this, and blogs too! Also, please check out our authentic, informative and entertaining New England travel blogs with original content: The Thrifty New England Traveler (New England travel ideas on a budget), The New England Travel and Vacation Gazette (more original New England travel articles), and Old School Boston (warm memories of Boston and New England from back in the day).

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