Don’t Miss These Fall Foliage Drives and Destinations in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire.
The scenery in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire is always beautiful, but during the fall it becomes a lot more colorful. And, although scenic walks and hikes are a favorite way for many to experience all the autumn shades, here are a few other suggestions to try!
There are plenty of scenic drives that lead you through the fall foliage. Just hop in the car and take a leisurely drive around Lake Winnipesaukee. Regardless of your starting point, there’s plenty to see on this 115-mile loop, sweeping through Alton, Alton Bay, Gilford, Weirs Beach, Meredith, Holderness, Center Harbor and Moultonborough. While there are many routes to choose from – one of the most popular drives starts in Meredith at the town docks by the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee. Then travel on Rte. 25 through Center Harbor and Moultonborough and continue on Rte.109 where there are frequent views of the lake along the windy road that takes travelers to the oldest summer resort in American, Wolfeboro. Some visitors find that even on a rainy fall day, the colors are indescribable.
One of the most enjoyable ways to view the fall colors is on the water. Whether it’s on the M/S Mount Washington or Winnipesaukee Belle on Winnipesaukee or the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center’s pontoon boat, you’re sure to enjoy seeing the fall colors surrounded by water. Sometimes, when it’s still enough, the water mirrors the vibrant colors making the scene even more breath-taking.
You can float above the fall foliage on the Gunstock Zip Line or Chair Lift rides, giving you an up close approach. We also recommend stopping at the Castle in the Clouds. As you drive up the 2 mile scenic road, stop at the waterfall and scenic over looks. You will be able to see much of the beautiful Lakes Region autumn colors simultaneously.
Another unique way to get up close and personal with the fall foliage is a train ride on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee on the Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad, the Hobo Railroad, or up to the highest peak on the Mount Washington Cog Railway which all run regular foliage trains throughout the season.
There are many seasonal deals available in the fall for visitors to take advantage of. Abakee Cottages, on Lake Winnipesaukee has discounted fall rates. This is the perfect spot to relax on the water and take in the beautiful natural and secluded setting. Or, relax at the Common Man for their Healthy Getaway, where you can enjoy a one night stay in their spacious and unique rooms. Common Man will also offer a guided hike up the Rattlesnake Mountain where you can overlook Squam Lake with breath-taking colors from the foliage. Woodstock Inn offers the Franconia Notch package, where you get to experience fall foliage by riding a tram to the top of the Cannon Mountain for awesome views and enjoy a nice cool walk on the way back down the mountain. Or discover the beauty of being on Squam Lake with the Manor on Golden Pond fall package. This package gives visitors a way to view the foliage by taking a boat tour of Squam Lake to see the historical movie location of “On Golden Pond” and the beautiful fall foliage from the water. For more lodging options check out our lodging page.
With all these options, it’s no wonder that visitors from all over the world make the Lakes Region of New Hampshire a “must do” for “leaf peeping!” There’s no training required to become a leaf peeper to view and take pictures firsthand of this colorful phenomenon that fortunately takes place in September and October every year! While planning your trip to the Lakes Region to see the foliage, don’t forget to look at the Lakeregion.org deals section for great deals, and don’t forget…New Hampshire is tax-free!