A Winter Wonderland in the White Mountains!
It’s hard to imagine a better place for a winter getaway than the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Quaint small towns, gorgeous scenery, and world-class skiing make this area of New England a perfect picturesque getaway. With just a few days to explore, it can be overwhelming to plan an itinerary in this expansive region, but never fear – we have a winter getaway for couples, families, outdoor enthusiasts, and furry friends alike. Check out this three-day winter itinerary to make the most of your snowy escape in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
Day 1: Outdoor Adventures For All
Morning: Hit the Trails
Start your winter vacation with a hike in the White Mountain National Forest. For a family-friendly winter climb and an amazing view, try the 3.1-mile out-and-back trek up Mt Willard. Hikers should park at the Crawford Trail Depot near the town of Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. This dog-friendly trail is a steady but moderate climb to a cliff overlooking Crawford Notch State Park and the surrounding mountains. For most of the winter, hikers should wear insulated winter boots and pack traction devices (like snowshoes or ice cleats) for the trek. In addition, bring extra warm clothing layers, food, water, and warm hats/mittens, and make sure you give yourself enough daylight for the hike. Up for a bigger peak? Start across the road at the Crawford Path trailhead to hike the 6-mile out-and-back trek up to the summit of Mt. Pierce. On a clear day, this 4,000-footer peak will reward you with beautiful views of the Presidential Mountains, including Mount Washington. For even more ideas, check out our blog on the best White Mountain hikes for kids and dogs!
After working up an appetite, head out to lunch! If you are staying near Bretton Woods, try Fabyan’s Station. This historic train station-turned restaurant serves everything from hearty burgers to vegetarian options. In winter, Fabyan’s is usually open Wed-Sun for lunch and dinner. If you’re staying closer to Franconia or Bethlehem, head into the town of Littleton for a beer and tasty lunch at the Littleton Freehouse Taproom & Eatery.
Afternoon: Sleigh Ride
For a magical experience, book a sleigh ride! In the Bretton Woods area, you can book this excursion at the Omni Mount Washington Resort. In Franconia, the Franconia Notch Stables is another great choice for this memorable outing. Whether a romantic couple ride or a family-friendly attraction, everyone will enjoy being covered in blankets and being pulled by horses through the snow. Dress warm and book your ride in advance.
Evening: Cozy Up by the Fire
Wind down your day at your accommodation, ideally a cozy cabin or house. Bretton Woods Vacations offers many pet-friendly accommodations, ensuring your furry friend feels right at home. Warm up by the fire and relive the day’s adventures.
Day 2: Hitting the Slopes
All Day: Hit the Slopes
If weather permits, visit a ski resort! New Hampshire’s White Mountains offers multiple options for great skiing and snowboarding. Some great options include Bretton Woods, Cannon, Loon, Attitash, and Wildcat Ski Resorts. For a comparison of what they each have to offer, check out our blog post where we give all the details you need to book at the perfect resort for you. With a variety of resorts and trails catering to all levels, these ski areas are a great place for kids to learn or improve their skiing skills. For those looking for a challenge, there are plenty of challenging runs and new trails to explore- so there’s something for everyone!
Not into alpine skiing? No problem – you can still enjoy the mountain resorts by snow tubing, fat tire mountain biking (yep, in snow!), or Nordic skiing on the cross-country trails. It’s recommended that guests book their lift tickets and lessons at these resorts online before arrival.
Evening: Game Night
Cook up dinner open a bottle of wine in your accommodation and settle in for the night. The Franconia Market and Deli can hook you up with groceries or some deli takeout for your night in. Bring out the board games or a deck of cards. This is the perfect way to unwind and create lasting memories.
Day 3: Indoor Fun and Relaxation
Inside Fun: Spa Day or Living Shores Aquarium
On those chilly mornings or days with less-than-ideal weather, treat yourself to a day of relaxation. For this day of indoor indulgence, check out one of the day spas in the area including the Bretton Woods Spa, Mountain Times Spa in Lincoln, or the Viaggio Spa in Lincoln. Relax with a massage, manicure, or facial as a way to treat yourself!
For family-friendly indoor fun, take the kids to the Living Shores Aquarium in Glen for the hands-on experience of petting stingrays, befriending lorikeets, and being tickled by nibble fish.
Early Dinner Out
Before heading back to your rental, grab an early dinner. For fine dining and gourmet food, the rustic White Mountain Cider Company in Glen or Tim-Bir Alley in Littleton are excellent choices for a top-notch meal. While the towns of the White Mountains are small, the opportunities for amazing cuisine is impressive. For a more family-friendly air – check out Tuckerman’s Tavern in Intervale for American classics or One Love Brewery in Lincoln. These spots are just the right hearty choice to hit the spot on a cold winter day.
Evening: Movie Night
Wrap up your Bretton Woods adventure with a cozy movie night in your accommodation. Pop some popcorn, gather blankets, and enjoy a film together.
Memories to Treasure
The White Mountains of New Hampshire offers a diverse range of activities to suit everyone. Whether you’re on a romantic getaway, family vacation, or friends retreat, a three-day trip will give you and your party an epic taste of what this region has to offer. From exploring the trails to hitting the slopes, or indulging in indoor relaxation – this winter wonderland promises memories that will last a lifetime.