Winter Vacation Ideas

'Tis the season when the New Hampshire landscape is a study in contrasts. As bleachy-clean white snow settles on the branches of our deep-emerald evergreens, you have a choice to make: hibernate or recreate? We have winter vacation ideas for both.

Dogsledding, snowmobiling, maple sugaring—in New Hampshire, skiing is far from the only outdoor winter pursuit. We can't fault you, though, if you choose to do nothing more active than snuggling under a bunny-soft blanket and sipping a hot toddy by the fire at your cozy inn. These suggested vacation itineraries for couples and families will introduce you to winter's dueling possibilities. The perfect New Hampshire winter vacation is an exhilarating blend of frozen fun and heartwarming moments.

A Romantic Winter Stroll
The walkable Seacoast city of Portsmouth is New Hampshire's holiday-season hub. Experience the joys of Christmas past while shopping for the present! When you wrap up your gift list without paying sales tax, you can splurge on a horse-drawn carriage ride, a romantic dinner, or craft brews for two while you cheer your favorite NFL team.

Snowy Woods
Step out of your everyday routine and into a winter wonderland that's as storybook-perfect as any you'll see on a holiday card. The Monadnock Region makes a perfect home base for photographing covered bridges, dining fireside, and cuddling up at an antiques-filled B&B after spying on birds in our snow-laden forests.

Mountain Memories
Your kids are tweens or teens? It's time to make family memories before their childhood years melt away. Even if your offspring are still small, New Hampshire's ski mountains provide family-bonding opportunities on the slopes and off.

Grand Snowmobile Experience
If you've always wanted to snowmobile, why not hit the trail in a place where riders embrace the sport with unparalleled passion? More than 1,500 miles of snowmobile trails wind through New Hampshire's Coos County, and you can pull right up to a warming hut or restaurant whenever you're ready for a snack.

Maple for the Whole Family
One weekend each March, all of New Hampshire celebrates the sweetest crop of the year. Take your family on a tour of New Hampshire sugarhouses, and observe the maple syrup–making process. You'll enjoy the first taste of spring and bring home maple goodies to last through the year.

Grand Winter Getaway
Head north to the land of grand hotels, where you can give your legs a workout on downhill and Nordic ski trails, then immediately make it up to them by luxuriating in a muscle-melting spa treatment. If skiing isn’t your thing, watch the scenery fly by on a dogsled ride. You'll feel lucky to experience this winter fantasyland—luckier still if you observe the alpenglow, a sunset phenomenon you'll remember all your life.