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10 Reasons to Visit the Lakes Region in New Hampshire

Explore New Hampshire This Summer

View of Squam Lake in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire

New Hampshire is a diverse state with plenty to do and see. This summer, head to the stunningly beautiful Lakes Region of New Hampshire, located just south of the soaring White Mountains, and enjoy a relaxing quiet getaway in nature.

New Hampshire's Lakes Region, aptly named for the abundance of lakes in the area, is a veritable summer playground.  However, come fall, it lights up with the spectacular hues of the season. If you're looking to get outside and enjoy a breath of fresh air, away from the busy din of city noise and crowds, the Lakes Region is calling your name. 

Once you've decided on the "when," we'll be happy to help you with the "where!"  There are two Select Registry Bed and Breakfasts in the Lakes Region itself, and several just beyond the lakes in the stunning White Mountains. A trip to any of these Inns is the perfect way to enjoy a few days of respite on the lakes, followed by a stunning mountain getaway.  

However it is you spend your vacation this summer, our Select Registry branded properties stand ready to welcome you for a safe and relaxing getaway.  Our Innkeepers provide luxurious and unique accommodations, and a level of personalized service not found at large hotel chains.  Browse our wonderful collection of New Hampshire Bed and Breakfasts, and come explore with us!

The beautiful Flume Gorge in Franconia Notch State Park near the Lakes Region of New Hampshire

10 Things to do in the Lakes Region

There are an astonishing 273 lakes in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire. Needless to say, there are plenty of opportunities for fun on the water when you visit this remarkable area.  

While cooling off and playing in the water on a hot summer's day is fun (and beautiful), that's not the only reason to visit the Lakes Region.  The area is surrounded by mountains and natural beauty, which makes it an excellent area for hiking, biking, and other outdoor recreation as well.

The Lakes Region is actually a fantastic 4-season destination - but more on that later.  First, let us share with you 10 of our favorite things to do in the Lakes Region this summer: 

  1. Get out on the water - it's the most obvious thing to do when you're surrounded by so many lakes! A variety of boats, paddleboards, and canoes can be rented from Winnisquam Marine.  You can also take a cruise or boat tour in the area! The historic M/S Mount Washington Cruises out of Weirs beach have been on these waters since 1872!
  2. Take a hike in the Lakes Region - there are plenty to choose from! Among the popular local favorites is Mount Major, but heading north into the White Mountains opens up a whole new world of hiking for you. Ask your local Innkeeper for their favorite hiking recommendation!
  3. Enjoy some birdwatching.  The Lakes Region is home to the popular Common Loon, with their sleek black heads, striking red eyes, and mournful yet beautiful song. Other feathered friends include cormorants, mergansers, and great blue herons, among others.
  4. In the mood for some biking?  There are great trails in the area, including the Winnepesaukee River Trail.
  5. Take a hike, ride bikes, or enjoy an adventure at Gunstock Mountain Resort during the summer - and then come back to ski this winter!
  6. Head to the stunning Franconia Notch State Park, home to the popular Flume Gorge.
  7. Snap a photo of the romantic covered bridges in the area.  The Lakes Region of New Hampshire is home to 54 of them!
  8. Visit local breweries and wineries, like Sap House Meadery and Twin Barns Brewing Company.
  9. Wander the gardens and trails while enjoying the views at the historic Castle in the Clouds
  10. Enjoy some old-fashioned fun at Weirs Beach on Lake Winnipesaukee, one of the most popular destinations in the Lakes Region!
hiking to an overlook for fall foliage near the Lakes Region of New Hampshire

Plan Ahead for Fall Foliage

Apart from summer, fall is one of the most popular times to visit the Lakes Region and the surrounding White Mountains.  Fall foliage in this area is simply spectacular.  You can never plan too early for this popular and busy season, either! Here are a few of our favorite ways to soak up the colorful hues of fall in and around the Lakes Region: 

  1. Take a hike in the fall, where you'll find breathtaking panoramic vistas everywhere!  A popular one, pictured above, is the Artists Bluff Trail at Franconia Notch State Park. Once again, your Innkeeper is going to be the best source for personalized recommendations!
  2. Take a scenic drive through the White Mountain National Forest.  It’s nothing short of breathtaking in the fall, when the mountains are set ablaze with color. There are a number of other scenic drives in the area, too, including the famed Kancamagus Highway
  3. Train rides in the fall are a quick and easy way to take in some scenery. The Lake Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad travels along the shore past beautiful resort homes, and it's a beautiful trip in the fall. The Hobo Railroad offers 80 -minute roundtrip rides along the scenic Pemigewasset River.
  4. For a different railroad trip altogether, ride the Cog Railway to the top of Mt. Washington, and be rewarded with some truly exceptional views. 
  5. Take scenic Gondola Rides at Bretton Woods or Cannon Mountain.

While these 5 ideas are all good ones, we haven't even scratched the surface of the many great things to do in the Lakes Region and New Hampshire's White Mountains in the fall.  You'll just have to come see it all for yourself!

Partner with Select Registry-branded Bed and Breakfasts for the ultimate in luxury accommodations and attentive, personalized service.  At these inns, you'll enjoy a warm welcome, a fresh made-to-order breakfast, and an unparalleled opportunity to relax in the sanctuary of your own private room. Are you ready? Browse our New Hampshire Bed and Breakfasts below, and start planning!

Bed and Breakfasts in the Lakes Region

The Lake House at Ferry Point

Come and unwind at the Lake House at Ferry Point, where you'll always enjoy relaxed comfort in a scenic setting! The Lake House at Ferry Point is one of only two lakefront inns in all of New Hampshire.

Perched on Lake Winnisquam, we offer guests luxurious accommodations overlooking New Hampshire's 4th largest lake! Whether guests want to get out and explore New Hampshire, or stay and play at the lake, the Lake House is the perfect location.

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The Manor on Golden Pond

The Manor on Golden Pond overlooks Squam Lake and the White Mountains and is a 24-room Country Inn that awaits discerning visitors. We offer local character, refined décor, memorable cuisine, and world-class service. 

Beautifully appointed accommodations offer all the amenities of a luxury New England hotel while retaining the charm and tranquility of a New England country inn. And, of course, you'll enjoy our world-class hospitality while you stay in style with us.

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More New Hampshire Bed and Breakfasts

Sugar Hill Inn

The good life is waiting for you at the romantic Sugar Hill Inn. Surround yourself with amazing views, beautiful art, stylish rooms, and the best dining in the White Mountains. The Sugar Hill Inn is the place to unwind after hiking Franconia Ridge, zipping across Breton Woods, climbing Mount Washington, or photographing New Hampshire’s numerous waterfalls and covered bridges.

Each guest room is decorated with a focus on comfort, romance, & luxury.

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Adair Country Inn & Restaurant

Down a long winding drive surrounded by rock walls, ponds, gardens, and 200 acres, sits the Adair estate. Relax in elegance at this White Mountain retreat. Our bed and breakfast offers spacious public rooms with fireplaces, comfortably appointed guest rooms, many with fireplaces, and all with air conditioning.

The restaurant features a diverse menu with exciting food in a casually elegant atmosphere. Enjoy it all with wonderful views of the Presidential Mountain Range.

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The Notchland Inn

Get away from it all, relax and rejuvenate at our comfortable granite manor house, completed in 1862, on a 100-acre estate within the White Mountain National Forest. Settle into one of eight spacious, romantic guest rooms, five luxurious suites, or two pet-friendly cottages which offer couples or families a bit more independence.

We're in Crawford Notch, where outdoor activities abound in every season, A wonderful five-course dinner and full country breakfast are served in the dining room overlooking the pond and gardens located on the grounds. Secluded, yet near to all that the Mt. Washington Valley has to offer. Notchland... a magical location

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Top of the Ridge Farm 

Top of the Ridge Farm Bed & Breakfast is a charming, upscale New Hampshire inn located in New Durham, NH. Situated on a quiet country road with sweeping views of Mt. Washington, the inn features four spacious rooms, each with a private bath and deck. Guests can enjoy a delicious breakfast each morning, as well as cooking classes and other activities. Top of the Ridge Farm is the perfect place to relax and recharge in the beautiful New Hampshire countryside.

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Best Places to Stay in Bethlehem

Adair billiard
drink at the restaurant
table for 2 at restaurant
back patio
summer day

Adair Country Inn & Restaurant

Bethlehem, NH

Best Places to Stay in Hart's Location

aerial summer
Notchland Inn Winter
notchalnd interior
Notchland Inn Room with Fireplace
Notchland Inn Hammock
notchland sitting room
notchland bedroom
notchland room open
two dogs
snowy day
aerial snow
aerial fall
notchland key
chess and wood

The Notchland Inn

Hart's Location, NH

Best Places to Stay in Holderness

the manor on golden pond exterior front
summer view
guest room with fireplace
guest room with fireplace
outdoor tennis
water view
bath tub
dining room

The Manor on Golden Pond

Holderness, NH

Best Places to Stay in New Durham

A sprawling field with green grass, blue skies, and rolling mountains.
Red patio chairs on porch with landscaping and pathway in the foreground.
Guest room
Common area at Top of the Ridge Farm
Patio table with bottle of red wine and two glasses.
Fall Mountain view
Guest Room
Guest Room
Breakfast pancakes
sunset over mountains
Sunset Over Top of the Ridge Farm
Sunset views over the White Mountains
Yoga retreat at Top of the Ridge Farm
Charcuterie board
Breakfast additions
Cooking class at Top of the Ridge Farm
Welcome sign with Select Registry plaque.
Red outdoor chairs set in a grass field.
Patio table with a bottle of white wine and two glasses.
Exterior shot of Top of the Ridge Farm Bed & Breakfast.
Exterior bed and breakfast building with landscaping and road.
Red outdoor chairs on porch with potted plants.
Bright and cozy room with en-suite bathroom and sliding doors to a private deck.

Top of the Ridge Farm Bed & Breakfast

New Durham, NH

Best Places to Stay in Sanbornton

bedroom with view of water
back of inn on lake
back porch
fall sunset on lake
wine by fire

The Lake House at Ferry Point

Sanbornton, NH

Best Places to Stay in Sugar Hill

Sugar Hill Exterior
Sugar Hill Inn Dream Porch Swing
Sugar Hill Pool

Sugar Hill Inn

Sugar Hill, NH

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