Best of NH 2023 Fun & Adventure

Sprinkled across every corner of New Hampshire are spectacular outdoor sanctuaries, unique museums and delicious experiences. Check out where to take in 18 holes, find kid-friendly museums and go deep sea fishing.

Editor’s Picks

Nordic Glamping

20220626 5r6a9095Glamping lovers and adventure seekers need to know about Lumen Nature Retreat in Woodstock. The gorgeous location and private environment create a sense of exploration, and their mix of Nordic cabins, spacious Safari tens and cozy A-frames give you that true “bedroom” in the woods experience. They are smaller than most campgrounds in the area, but that just makes it an even more private and cozy opportunity to enjoy a late night campfire after a day of kayaking around nearby Echo Lake.

Indigenous Dinner  

Chef Stephen Nass moved here from the midwest where, he says, indigenous restaurants served a variety of foods honoring the original inhabitants of the great plains. Seeing nothing quite like it in New Hampshire, he consulted with local Abenaki leaders and has hosted two Indigenous Dinner Nights at the Independence Inn in Strafford, where he is chef and owner. Specialties like cranberry and duck pemmican over winter greens with shaved root vegetables or trout cake with scape oil and tree leaf dust were served with blueberry fritters with sugar maple frosting. As a farm-to-table restaurant, Nass took the additional step of boosting local farmers with a farmers market at the inn, every Sunday through October. Dinners are limited to 20 guests.

Gun Safety Training  

Nearly half of the adults in New Hampshire have guns in their homes, yet the firearm-related death rate here is one of the lowest in the country. This has a lot to do with traditions of gun ownership in our sports-minded, hunter-friendly culture. But with gun ownership increasing among less experienced sectors of the population, there’s increased need for training and knowledge to keep guns secure and in the right hands. The Sig Sauer Academy offers a firearms educational experience at their facilities located on 140 acres in Epping with state-of-the art indoor and outdoor ranges, tactical training areas, urban environments, a shoot house, a maritime training area and a “force-on-force village.” It’s part of a selection of more than 110 courses for civilians, law enforcement agencies, and military professionals.

Adventure Farm 

Farm At Wolf Pine HollowThe Farm at Wolf Pine Hollow in Hancock has it all — 100-plus acres, barnyard, farmstand, flowers, fruit, produce, events, kitchen, tasting house and even farm stay accommodations. Owners Tom and Ariane offer an authentic and unspoiled FarmLuxe experience where you can smell, taste and touch an agrarian lifestyle with products and experiences crafted for your enjoyment and lasting memories. Whether you are in town for a quick drive by or for a long weekend, this farm will leave you coming back for more pastoral life-meets-modern luxury adventures.

Family Attraction Center  

The self-proclaimed largest attraction center in the Seacoast, Somersworth’s Hilltop Fun Center is cut from the very fabric of a 10-year-old’s wildest summertime dreams. With go-karts, laser tag, mini golf, an arcade and a full bar for accompanying adults, there’s a whole lot of school-break-fun to be had for patrons of all ages. The batting cages also give hitters of all ages and abilities to conquer a mini-replica of the Green Monstah at Fenway Park.

Urban Trails 

The metropolis of New York wouldn’t be the same without the huge natural space in its heart known as Central Park. Similarly, the sprawling Gate City of New Hampshire would seem a lot less leafy and family-oriented without the Mine Falls Park in Nashua for walking/biking. New Hampshire may be one of the most forested states in the country, but having greenspaces nearby is even more important for those who dwell in our concrete forests. A trip through the 325-acre park includes forest, wetlands, and open fields and provides the forest bathing experience to any city-dweller willing to take a walk and breathe it all in.

Next Level Gaming

The Fourth Place In HanoverWhile the digital gaming revolution gets blamed for social isolation and even anti-social behavior, it’s part of a world of modern game play where folks gather on tabletops and consoles as well as world-wide networks. It’s that kind of next-level social bonding that informs the mission of The Fourth Place in Hanover. The goal was to “create spaces where people feel at home sharing hobbies and passions, and where everyone is welcome.” That includes an online community, pop-up gaming events, geeky celebrations like Free Comic Book Day and fun sidetrips like their Sticker Club where a $15 subscription supplies a monthly envelope filled with iconic fandom and other club privileges.

Kid-friendly Learn & Do

Can you believe it? The Children’s Museum of New Hampshire is officially middle-aged, and celebrating 40 years of offering inquisitive kids learning to enjoy the world around them. Look for play groups for kids to makerspaces for anyone plus summer camps, autism-friendly programming and military appreciation with free entry during specified days. The museum includes interactive exhibits like their yellow submarine, where kids can operate the periscope to secretly search the museum above their heads, identify mysterious deep-sea sounds at the listening station, and use sonar to measure the distance of approaching objects.

Indie Movie Theatre  

Wilton Town Hall TheatreIf the idea of going to see a movie at the Wilton Town Hall Theatre in Wilton sounds like a rustic trip back in time, well, you’re half right. There’s a timelessness to this two-screen theatre that once featured vaudeville and silent films, but their standards for displaying the best of current cinema (and the occasional vintage silent film) are high and their popcorn is fresh with real melted butter. Residents of the Wilton area and fans of the Town Hall Theatre are aware of what a cinematic treasure they have. Folks from all over the state are getting the message.

Tasty Tours 

Med Res68The Savory Lane takes the love of family road trips up a notch with their passion for food, travel and community, and their renovated school bus turned tour bus, Freddie. Owned by a group of mothers and daughters, this tour company offers unforgettable adventures that showcase the best of New England. Savor, gather, journey and dine your way through a birdwatching tour, tea party adventure to Portsmouth, farm-to-table farm hopping experience, lavender picking at Pumpkin Blossom Farm and more.

New Theme Park

Start your vacation with a trip to StoryLand in Bartlett, and then pop by next-door to Living Shores Aquarium that offers over 32,000 square feet of ocean life at their indoor walk-through aquarium. Visit touch pools, meet real-life sea creatures at a variety of exhibits, feed the Lorikeets, attend one of the many daily talks and stop by the Bistro for a flat bread and Gifford’s ice cream on your way home.

Sunflower Capitol 

Sun Fox Farm 2From body care to culinary oils to teas and animal feed, Sunfox Farm in Concord specializes in all things sunflower. Enjoy the taste and beauty of sunflowers while you connect with nature at the farm or during a farm-to-table dinner where you can indulge in delicious dishes crafted from locally sourced ingredients. Stop by their annual Sunflower Bloom Festival from August 12-20 where you can see their fields in all their golden glory, enjoy live music, sample local food and drinks and cut your own sunflowers.

One More Thing 

Whether you are a fishing novice or pro, sight-seer or enthusiast, Eastman’s Docks in Seabrook has the tour adventure for you. The family-run business offers fishing tours, deep sea fishing, whale watching tours, firework cruises and even private charters for a memorable birthday celebration, family reunion or company outing. Don’t forget to stop by their restaurant, The Tuna Striker Pub for fresh seafood, steaks and chicken to close out your day at sea.


Readers’ Poll Winners

Bed and Breakfast

Inn at Ellis River


Family-friendly Resort

The Inn at East Hill Farm


Golf Course (Private)

Laconia Country Club



Golf Course (Public)

Sagamore Hampton Golf Club
North Hampton


Ski Resort

Loon Mountain


Summer Outdoor Attraction

Overall winner
Santa’s Village

Summer Outdoor Attraction Dartmouth/Lake Sunapee Region
Mount Sunapee Resort


Summer Outdoor Attraction Great North Woods
Bear Rock Adventures


Summer Outdoor Attraction Lakes Region
Gunstock Mountain Resort


Summer Outdoor Attraction Manchester Area
Canobie Lake Park


Summer Outdoor Attraction Monadnock Region
The Inn at East Hill Farm


Summer Outdoor Attraction Seacoast Region
Hampton Beach


Summer Outdoor Attraction White Mountains Region


Categories: Best of NH Winners