Colorful Foliage & Outstanding Attractions Are A Winning Combination
Visitors arrive from all over the world to view New Hampshire’s brilliant fall foliage. In the northern part of the Granite State peak foliage, the point at which the color of the leaves is the brightest, generally happens between mid-September and mid-October, from north to south.
The fall months are some of the prettiest, as the landscape changes hues right before your eyes in a kaleidoscope of reds, golds and oranges. The cooler days of autumn encourage visitors to spend time outdoors, and the crisp fall nights are perfect for snuggling up at your hotel, motel or inn under a warm blanket with a cup of hot cocoa near at hand. And while many fall visitors are here to see the spectacular foliage display, the region has plenty of other appealing attractions that suit a variety of tastes, from the active adventurer to the couple on a romantic getaway to families travelling with children. You’ll find dining and lodging options, along with dozens of suggested activities and itineraries on our website at www.nhgrand.com.
For those travelling to northern New Hampshire we’ve put together some suggested ideas featuring several of our most outstanding attractions to help you see the best and brightest colors the region will be showing off.
An invigorating fall hike along any trail in the White Mountains will put you in touch with nature and reveal ever more gorgeous views as you climb to the top, where you’ll be rewarded with amazing views of a landscape overflowing with spectacular autumn color. Check in with the staff at the Appalachian Mountain Club’s Highland Center in Bretton Woods for everything you need to plan a day hike or overnight trek. The knowledgeable staff can advise you on hikes for varying abilities, the types of gear needed and how the weather forecast will impact your plans. Comfortable lodging and home-cooked meals are available at the Highland Center, or plan to spend a night or more at one of the AMC’s High Huts, which are situated a day’s hike apart across the White Mountains. Several offer full service through mid- to late October, while several others are self-service through the end of the year.
America’s Oldest Manmade Tourist Attraction — the Mount Washington Auto Road — and the world’s first Mountain Climbing Cog Railway — the Mount Washington Cog Railway — are located on opposite sides of Mount Washington, the Northeast’s highest peak at 6,288 feet. Expect plenty of jaw-dropping beauty during your excursion up the mountain and a panoramic view that stretches for miles and miles once you reach the mountain’s summit.
The Mount Washington Auto Road offers guided tours in comfortable vans with experienced drivers who entertain passengers with the history and lore of the mountain. Visitors may also drive their own cars or hike to the summit. The Mt. Washington Auto Road is open daily until late October. The Auto Road also ferries passengers to tree line during winter months aboard a specially outfitted Snow Coach.
As you board The Mount Washington Cog Railway you step back in history — the first passengers made the trip in 1869. During the spectacular climb up a three-mile-long raised track to the summit, the brakemen provide lively commentary about the many points of interest, the incredible history of the railway, and the various climate zones you travel through on your journey to the summit. Choose to ride in an old fashioned steam-powered train or one of the new, environmentally friendly bio-diesel trains.
Once you reach the summit by Auto Road or Cog Railway, check out the Mount Washington Weather Observatory’s Extreme Mount Washington exhibit with hands-on displays to help you understand why the mountain is known as the home of the “world’s worst weather.”
Open weekends during early October for regular visits, and then again in late October for its spooky, silly Halloween extravaganza, Santa’s Village is everyone’s favorite Christmas theme park. Take a break from leaf peeping and treat the kids to a day at this outstanding park. Kids love to visit with Santa and his elves, feed the reindeer, and enjoy unlimited rides on amusements like the Skyway Sleigh monorail, Rudy’s Rapid Transit Rollercoaster, and the Reindeer Carousel. If the day is hot, cool off at the Ho, Ho, H2O Water Park. Santa’s Village is also specially decorated and open select days between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
The historic Mount Washington Resort has innumerable activities, plus extravagant views of the mountains and their amazing foliage display. Begin your day with an exhilarating flight through the treetops on the three-hour Bretton Woods Canopy Tour , which takes visitors across zip lines, sky bridges, and sturdy platforms for a truly amazing tree top adventure that includes incomparable views of the Presidential Range of the White Mountains. Or choose from one of the Bretton Woods Adventure Center’s many other activities like the Williwaw Racing Zip, mountain biking, indoor rock climbing, disc golf, a kids’ ATV park, archery, and guided tours. The Donald Ross-designed 18-hole golf course, horseback riding, and an award-winning spa are also favorites of visitors to the resort, which offers luxury accommodations and fine and casual dining.