“Live Free or Die”
Vast wilderness, rugged mountain landscapes,
Granite State’s raw, breathtaking beauty, living free is the only way
Get To Know New Hampshire
The state motto of New Hampshire is “Live Free or Die,” which perfectly encapsulates the state as it is home to the vast wilderness and rugged mountain landscapes. To fully enjoy the Granite State’s raw, breathtaking beauty, living free is the only way to do it. Learn more about what makes New Hampshire an amazing destination for your next bus adventure.
A Brief History of New Hampshire
One of the original 13 colonies, New Hampshire’s history is closely tied with that of America’s own. It was in Portsmouth that American folk hero Paul Revere rode 55 miles on horseback to warn of Fort William and Mary’s forthcoming capture by British troops — before his famous “midnight ride” to Lexington, Mass. The state was also the birthplace of American astronaut Alan Shepard Jr., who in 1961 was launched into the atmosphere and orbited the earth, making him the first American to travel into space.
There's no shortage of things to do in New Hampshire.
A Look at Culture in New Hampshire
The same self-reliant attitude that aided in the war of independence centuries ago still exists within the people of New Hampshire today. Proud of their heritage, the people of New Hampshire are welcoming to visitors, encouraging them to enjoy the colonial-influenced cities and robust mountain landscapes that their state is famous for. It’s that landscape that the majority of New Hampshire culture is centered around. Residents of New Hampshire take land conservation very seriously and do so with some of the most effective conservation programs in the country. Enjoying the wilderness and mountains of New Hampshire is common among New Hampshirites, and done so through activities like skiing, fishing, and hiking.
What to See and Do in New Hampshire
Home to vast amounts of wilderness, immerse yourself in nature, then stroll the quaint towns when the adventures are complete and you’re ready to relax.
The Mountains — If you’re looking to satisfy your craving for outdoor fun, take a trip to the White Mountains, a mountain range covering a quarter of New Hampshire’s territory. Then, marvel at the grandeur of Mount Washington, the highest peak in all the Northeast, as you can trek through its gorgeous rugged hiking trails. Or, for a leisurely experience, take Mount Washington’s Cog Railway, where you can relax and take in the scenery as the train climbs to the mountain’s peak.
Franconia Notch State Park — Another great place to explore while in the White Mountain ranges is Franconia Notch State Park. Hike, swim, and ski in this beautiful stretch of land nestled inside an expansive mountain pass.
Hit the Towns — Need a break from the outdoors? Head to one of the many cities or towns in New Hampshire. Portsmouth offers a Harbour Trail that includes a walkable downtown and picturesque piers on Ceres Street, home to the city’s famous tugboats. Decorated with 17th-century architecture, peppered with museums, and situated on the Piscataqua River, Portsmouth delivers an easygoing experience amongst historic charm. Other cities are also worth visiting: Concord, Keene, and Manchester. Each glows with unique cuisines, shopping experiences, and museum excursions. Make sure to grab a bite to eat at Red Sparrow Diner in Manchester, a regular haunt on the campaign trail for many presidential candidates.
Must See List
- Cafe Lafayette Dinner Train, North Woodstock
- Conway Scenic Railroad, North Conway
- Hobo Railroad, Lincoln
- Mount Washington Cog Railway, Bretton Woods
- White Mountain Central Railroad, Lincoln
- Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad, Meredith or Weirs Beach
- Apple Haven Farm
- Poverty Lane Orchards
- Gould Hill Farm
- Pitcher Mountain Wild Blueberries
- Windy Ridge Orchard and Christmas Tree Farm
- Glove Hollow Christmas Tree Farm
- Stonewall Farm
- Bartletts Blueberry Farm
- Return of the Pumpkin People, Jackson
- Warner Fall Foliage Festival, Warner
- New Hampshire Pumpkin Festival, Laconia, NH
- RiverFire Festival, Berlin
- Muddy Paw Sled Dog Kennel & Raft NH
- ELC Outdoor Adventure Outpost
- Chuckster’s Family Fun Park – Chichester
- Monkey Trunks Zipline Parks
- Nordic Center at Waterville Valley
- Cranmore Mountain Resort
- Eastern Mountain Sports School
- Ragged Mountain Resort Ski Area
- Mt. Washington Valley Ski Touring & Snowshoe Center
- Pine Hill Nordic Ski Club
- Flume Gorge
- Arethusa Falls
- Crawford Notch State Park
Top Cities To Visit in New Hampshire
Situated on the scenic Merrimack River, the city of Manchester charms its residents and visitors with a 19th-century industrial appeal. With a reputation so gleaming because of its textile production, even Her Majesty the Queen was a customer and the city now serves as an antiquated, yet endearing place to visit. The city offers beautiful access to hiking trails and parks, where one might find themselves taking a stroll around Dorrs Pond; or viewing some wildlife at the Amoskeag Fishways Learning and Visitors Center. Downtown visitors can make themselves acquainted with a more social scene — knocking back some drinks or having a nice meal at any one of Manchester’s reputable bars and eateries. Also located downtown, the Veteran’s Memorial Park is home to a WWII monument and is a host to many concerts and charity events.
Home to Antioch University New England and Keene State University, the city of Keene is a humble, if not charming slice of New Hampshire. Quiet and warm is the perfect way to describe the small city of Keene. Consisting of cozy suburbs and townhouses — the residents of Keene are among the most welcoming of New Hampshirites. Invitations are open to enjoy Keene’s many cafes, restaurants, and parks. If it’s a midday pick-me-up you’re looking for, head to the local favorite, Prime Roast Coffee Co. — the perfect place to grab a piping cup of joe. Outdoor enthusiasts are never left disappointed in the city of Keene, as adventure seekers have convenient access to Surry Mountain Lake, Otter Brook and Granite Gorge — all great places for hiking, kayaking or skiing.
The capital city of New Hampshire — Concord, radiates a subtle beauty and grace. This can be easily detected by its gilded-age architecture and regional capital buildings. History thrives in a flattering fashion in Concord, where places like the Canterbury Shaker’s Village are open to curious visitors. Declared as a National Historic Landmark in 1993, the Shaker’s Community is home to a fascinating museum and sits on a gorgeous piece of old-American landscape. Contributing to the alluring austerity and historical atmosphere of Concord is the aboundingly entertaining McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center — featuring interactive space exhibits, an observatory, and planetarium.
Who doesn’t love history? If you answered me to that question, you might not be all that interested in the historically rich city of Portsmouth. On second thought, there might still be some hope for you, as Portsmouth boasts much more than just it’s reputation for being a haven of history. Like a scene from a postcard, Portsmouth is nestled on the picturesque Piscataqua River. Reflecting on the surface of the river are the wonderfully preserved Victorian-era houses which decorate much of the city. Make your way to the downtown’s Market Square, and you’ll be met by the stoic presence of North Church, built-in 1855, and looming over the square. Back towards the river, you’ll find Prescott Park, a riverside paradise featuring gardens and boat docks — serving as a great place to reflect on the beauty of Portsmouth. Fans of naval history will be delighted with a visit to the USS Albacore Museum — where tours of a unique exploration submarine are offered.
When to Visit
Factor in the climate while planning your trip and booking your bus ticket to New Hampshire, as the weather in this region varies greatly throughout the year.
Unsurprisingly, summers offer the best weather for travel, with warm temperatures that thaw the stunning landscape and provide the best view for enjoying outdoor activities. It should be noted that precipitation is typically high during the summer season, so be mindful of the forecast when planning your trip. Hotel prices are also at their highest during the summer, so make sure to book lodging well in advance.
Springs and falls are less busy seasons for New Hampshire, so if affordable accommodation is a priority for you, these times of the year would be better to visit during. Spring in New Hampshire tends to be quite cool and makes for nice hiking weather, while fall is known to be chilly here, but not nearly as severe as the winters the state endures. Unless you’re planning on enjoying some skiing, New Hampshire isn’t an ideal place for tourism during the winter season.
Where to Stay
There is no shortage of hotels, cabins, and resorts for you to choose from when considering your lodging options. Ranging from inexpensive to illustrious — you’ll have an easy time of booking the perfect place to lay your head.
There are a few cool and unique places to stay throughout the state that may even serve as one of the highlights of your trip. Adventure Suites in North Conway, for example, is a charming Victorian-styled hotel with meticulously designed themed rooms, such as “The Cave” or “Victorian Spa.” However, if you’re looking to add mountain views to an elegant atmosphere, check out the Omni Mount Washington Resort — a historic Spanish Renaissance building in Bretton Woods.
The promise of thrilling adventures amongst vast mountain landscapes and the comforting solitude of quaint colonial towns calls you to explore all that New Hampshire has to offer. Purchase your bus ticket and start planning your trip today!