5 Best Kept Swimming Hole Secrets

What if we told you the stuff of summer dreams is just a spectacular road trip away in New Hampshire? Whether it’s a refreshing dip in a lazy rambling river, a cascading waterfall and pool nestled in the wilderness, or clear, cool lake with magnificent mountain views, Granite State swimming holes do one thing: rejuvenate. And we’ve got intel on five of them you’ve got to try.

1. Franconia Falls, Lincoln, NH

There’s nothing like splashing around in New England water on a summer day. Picnicking upon massive sun-warmed slabs of natural stone? Even better. Franconia Falls is the destination to do just that. Just a couple miles of easy hiking on a flat, tranquil trail and you’re there.

2. Ashuelot River, Gilsum, NH

Downstream from the Stone Arch Bridge—an architectural gem listed on the National Register of Historic Places—visitors enjoy dipping and diving at the “The Deep Hole,” a beautiful gorge on the Ashuelot River.

3. Ammonoosuc River, Bath, NH

The Ammonoosuc River runs beneath another historic New Hampshire landmark—the Swiftwater Covered Bridge, and close by, are plenty of plunge-worthy pools dotted with oversized rocks to relax on.

4. Horseshoe Falls, Wilton, NH

Off Route 101 on the Souhegan River, you’ll find visitors scrambling up a grand natural ledge and taking the exhilarating plunge into the water below. Don’t worry if heights aren’t your thing, though. There are plenty of ways to descend into these memorable waters at your own graceful pace.

5. Emerald Pool, North Chatham, NH

At a mile and half, the hike to this swimming hole is short, shady and sweet. It’s a wonderful place to play with kiddos, soak your toes and enjoy a picnic.