If you are visiting New England in the fall, be sure to visit New Hampshire. New Hampshire has lakes, mountains, including New England’s tallest peak Mt. Washington, and brightly colored leaves as far as the eye can see. Last week, I shared my New Hampshire long weekend road trip foliage itinerary. Today I am continuing my discussion about fall in New Hampshire by sharing my favorite things to do in New Hampshire in the fall.
- 1. Take a Scenic Drive
- 2. Take a Casual Hike
- 3.Mountain Bike
- 4. Zip Line through the Leaves
- 5. Take a Gondola up a Ski Mountain for a View
- 6. Take a Foliage Cruise
- 7. Walk up the Saco River
- 8. Find at Least One Covered Bridge
- 9. Take a Scenic Train Ride
- 10. Hike a Mountain
1. Take a Scenic Drive
The most famous New Hampshire foliage drive is over the White Mountains on the Kancamangus Highway (Route 112). This 35-mile ride provides some of the best scenery in New England.
Bear Notch Road, Bartlett
Although this drive is shorter at 9 miles, this road that connects the town of Bartlett to the Kancamangus is less busy and just as beautiful.
2. Take a Casual Hike
There are so many family hikes to choose from in New Hampshire. Read Hikes around Lincoln for some ideas.
A few ski mountains will rent you bikes. Then you take the ski lifts up with your mountain bike and ride down the ski mountains. Read on for a complete list of participating ski resorts.
4. Zip Line through the Leaves
5. Take a Gondola up a Ski Mountain for a View
I have been to the top of both Cranmore Mountain and Loon Mountain. They have panoramic views of the area without putting in much effort. At the top of Loon Mountain, you will find caves. Read more about what to do around Loon in fall. You can also hike any of the mountains to get the same amazing views.
6. Take a Foliage Cruise
You can take a private foliage cruise on Lake Winnipesaukee on a pontoon boat or choose a dinner cruise on a large boat.
7. Walk up the Saco River
Take a ramble anywhere along the Saco River to see reflections of the trees in this rocky river. You can also throw in a fishing pole.
8. Find at Least One Covered Bridge
The red bridges look gorgeous surrounded by New England fall colors. There is even one you will pass on your drive over the Kancamagus- the Albany Covered Bridge.
9. Take a Scenic Train Ride
We love the short foliage trip on Conway Scenic Railroad. You will see apple orchards, forests, rivers, fields, and mountains covered in fall colors. I would recommend trying to get a seat on the side of the train opposite the station.
If you really love a train ride, check out the best scenic train rides in North America and consider taking the 5-hour ride on the Conway Mountaineer. This ride in a World War 2 era train travels through the Mount Washington Valley and over the Crawford Notch. There is even a first-class dining car.
10. Hike a Mountain
The most popular mountain to climb is Mount Washington, but you will need to be in great shape to do this treacherous climb. It is on my list to do, but I want to do it in two days, staying at the backpacking cabins on my way up.
For a moderate mountain that you can climb in half a day, I highly recommend Mount Major. The views of the lakes and Mount Washington are spectacular. You can read all about my adventure hiking it.
Another choice closer to Boston is Mount Monadnock.
I hope this article has helped you plan your fall trip to New Hampshire. If you have any questions, please ask in the comments.