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Things To Do In Franconia Nh

Where To Stay Nearby

Attractions & Things to do in Franconia, New Hampshire

You’ll find a full range of lodging options in the New Hampshire towns that bookmark Franconia Notch State Park: Lincoln to the south and Franconia to the north. Because these are well-known ski destinations, there are many extended-stay options for families, rentable via resorts like Loon Mountain or on your own through sites like VRBO and Airbnb.

If you’re looking to stay at a property that is a bit more memorable and distinct than a motel or chain hotel, consider:

Scenic Views Near Franconia Notch State Park

Hiking in Franconia Notch isnt the only way to take in the beautiful White Mountain views! There are incredible views that can be seen from driving around.

  • Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway brings you to the summit of Cannon Mountain where you can take in the incredible mountain views! No hiking is required for these views except a short walk up to the fire tower on the summit.

  • Time needed: 1 hour

  • Echo Lake is a beautiful place to have a picnic or spend the day boating. You can rent a boat in the summer months and take in the views of Mount Lafayette and Cannon Mountain from the water.

  • Time needed: 1-2 hours

  • Although it is not in Franconia Notch, the beginning of the Kancamagus Highway is only a short drive away and is one of the best things to do in Franconia Notch State Park! The beautiful 34-mile scenic byway weaves through the beautiful White Mountain National Forest and offers many overlooks to take in the breathtaking views. This is one of the most beautiful foliage drives in the world, so I highly recommend driving the Kancamagus Highway during the fall.

  • Time needed: 1-2 hours

  • New England Ski Museum

    Overall Ratings

    4.5 based on 69 reviews

    New England Ski Museum collects, preserves and exhibits objects and memorabilia about the history of skiing. A permanent exhibit has elements such as 5 Olympic medals won by Franconia native Bode Miller, objects from the WWII 10th Mountain Division, material on the National Ski Patrol and more. Temporary exhibits change annually. Print journals of ski history are available free to visitors and members.

    Reviewed By nhlefty – Ocala, United States

    Wonderful spot to view old equipment and history of the New England ski areas The Bode Miller Medals and ski suits really add to the experience.

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    Learn About Ski History

    Americas ski history has strong ties to Franconia. Thats why the area is home to the New England Ski Museum. Its a small, but fun, museum, and well worth a visit.

    Learn about everything from the evolution of the equipment in the sport, to how it gained traction in the U.S. The museum is free, and its well worth spending in the gift shop, as theres fantastic things on offer.

    135 Tramway Dr, Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-7177

    Franconia Notch State Park Franconia New Hampshire

    Franconia Notch State Park

    Tucked away in the heart of the White Mountains, Franconia Notch State Park stretches from Echo Lake to Flume Gorge, and it’s a wonderful destination for outdoor recreation. The lake is perfect for swimming and boating in the summer, and canoes and paddle boats can be rented on-site. Visitors who would rather stay on dry land can cycle along the Franconia Notch Bike Path or visit the beautiful Flume Gorge, and if you want to spend the night in the park, there are also several small campgrounds, including one right on the shore of Echo Lake.

    260 Tramway Dr, Franconia, NH 03580-4402, Phone: 603-823-8800

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    Hike The Frost Place Trails

    Did you know that famous poet Robert Frost lived here for 5 years from 1915? The Frost Place is now a nonprofit center dedicated to poetry, in his memory. If youre of a poetic mindset yourself, theres a retreat for poets.

    Most of you will want to head to the museum, however, to explore more about Frosts life. But the biggest drawcard of all is a beautiful half-mile nature trail. Keep an eye out for the poems lining the route on your way!

    158 Ridge Rd, Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-5510

    Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway

    The only Aerial Tramway in the area, this was also the first to be built in North America. If climbing the brutal 4000-ft of Cannon Mountain isnt for you, soar in style to the summit. If youre lucky, you can see 4 states and into Canada with clear weather.

    Enjoy the walking paths, be awed at the views on the observation deck, and snack at the cafe. Its only open from May to October, but its a must-see.

    260 Tramway Drive Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-8800

    Outdoor fun is simply the name of the game here. Theres plenty more to do if youre in an adventurous spirit, so dont hold back!

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    Hike The Basin Cascade Trail

    Last but not least is one of the other best things to do in Franconia, hiking the Basin Cascade Trail. At about 2.5 miles long, this trail is moderate level and is located in Franconia Notch State Park. Despite being in the park, the trailhead is closer to Lincoln instead of Franconia.

    The best part of this trail is the waterfall, hence the word cascade in the name! Its a family-friendly trail, and dogs are welcome to go on the trail. Parking is available on the premises if you are driving your car to the area.

    With so many things to do in Franconia, New Hampshire, it can be hard to choose! Hopefully, this post has helped you whittle down exactly what to do during your next trip to Franconia.

    Have you been to Franconia before? What would you most like to do from this list?

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    Franconia Inn Franconia New Hampshire

    Things to Do at Franconia Notch State Park

    Constructed in the late 1930s, the Franconia Inn is a three-story colonial inn surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of the White Mountains. The property offers plenty of excellent hiking and cross-country skiing trails for visitors to enjoy, and the elegant dining room serves as the property’s social hub, welcoming anyone who wants to come enjoy a dinner of gourmet American cuisine by candlelight. The inn also offers 35 charming rooms and suites, and guests who stay the night will have access to amenities like an outdoor hot tub, a games room, and a seasonal swimming pool.

    1172 Easton Rd, Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-5542

    “Best Things to Do in Franconia, New Hampshire for Locals & Tourists – Restaurants, Hotels” Back to Top or Beautiful places near me, what to do, restaurants for breakfast, travel guide, nearest beach

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    The Coppermine Trail And Bridal Veil Falls

    Overall Ratings

    5.0 based on 1 reviews

    This is an Excellent Hiking trail that ends at a Watefall. Surprised that TA does NOT feature it. The trailhead is at Coppermine Road, just off Hwy 18. Trail starts out among birch trees . After about half a mile, you can hear the brook/river from the water fall all the way along, as you hike the trail. At the end of the trail, is a ‘shelter’ & a beautiful falls!

    How To Get There

    Franconia Notch State Park is about a two-hour drive from Boston, and it’s just over three hours from Hartford, Connecticut. Driving your own car is optimal, but Concord Coach Lines does have bus stations in Lincoln and Franconia, New Hampshire. The primary entrance for Franconia Notch State Park is at Flume Gorge, located at 852 Daniel Webster Highway in Lincoln. Flume Gorge, the Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway, and Echo Lake all have their own admission fees.

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    Franconia Notch State Park: The Complete Guide

    Often named the best state park in New Hampshire and even one of the top state parks in all of America, Franconia Notch State Park is a can’t-miss destination in the rugged and scenic White Mountains. These 6,440 acres, tucked in the “notch” or mountain pass between the Franconia and Kinsman mountain ranges, abound with natural wonders. Even a summer drive through the park on I-93 will fill you with awe for this landscape of granite and green. And in the fall, when green turns to scarlet, coral, and gold, you’ll understand why people from all over the world travel here just to leaf peep.

    The discovery of a distinctive rock formation on the side of Cannon Mountain in 1805 sparked the first wave of tourism to this gap in the vaulted terrain. Long before Instagram, descriptions of this “Great Stone Face” published by luminaries like Nathaniel Hawthorne and Daniel Webster got curiosity seekers on the move, and while the Old Man of the Mountain is no more, his 2003 disappearance has not diminished his stature as a symbol of New Hampshire’s individuality. Today, Franconia Notch State Park visitors find myriad attractions, hikes, and opportunities for adventure, including new ways to visualize and appreciate the legacy of the Old Man.

    Canoe At Profile Lake

    Trails &  Parks

    If you love getting outdoors, head to Franconias Profile Lake. Its located right among the White Mountains and is super serene if you visit in the early morning, especially in the summer. Its located right underneath a rock called the Old Man of the Mountain which unfortunately collapsed in the early 2000s.

    Grab your canoe to enjoy the beauty of this lake. You could even pack yourself a lunch to have out on the water in the middle of your trip if you want. Kayaking is another option if youd rather boat solo.

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    Camping Sites In Franconia

    Weve mentioned some fantastic campsites in our list of 15 fun things to do near Franconia, NH. So dont forget to enjoy them too. But I have to give a shout-out to Lafayette Campground.

    Smack-bang in the middle of the Franconia Notch State Park, you can spend a night in some of the most beautiful wilderness youll ever experience.

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    Have Breakfast At Pollys Pancake Parlor

    With a name like Pollys Pancake Parlor, how could you go wrong? This is another place that is technically located in the Sugar Hill/Bethlehem area, but its a short drive from Franconia. Therefore it deserves a spot on this list of the best things to do in Franconia.

    This place has been open for the past 75 years and counting, and its quickly become a favorite among tourists and locals. They have tons of different flavors, and each dish is served with fresh New Hampshire maple syrup.

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    The Basin At Franconia Notch State Park

    4.5 based on 990 reviews

    This 20-foot-wide natural granite abyss is probably one of the largest “potholes” you’ve ever seen.

    Reviewed By 979jessicao – Bretton Woods, United States

    Dos and donts – DO expect a beautiful, serene, calm trail that is well marked, and an overall easy walk. Paved in some parts. Great for kids, families, and those that love beautiful water, waterholes and picturesque views. DONT expect a difficult hike or climb up the side of a mountain. DO expect plenty of gram moments. The scenery is gorgeous and plenty of picnic and chill out spots. We spent a couple hours meandering there and it was wonderful!

    Old Man Of The Mountain Profile Plaza Franconia New Hampshire

    6 Things to do near Franconia New Hampshire (White Mountains) [ep 32]

    The Old Man of the Mountain was one of New Hampshire’s most iconic landmarks until it collapsed in 2003, and although the original rock profile can no longer be seen, the Old Man of the Mountain Profile Plaza was created to pay tribute to the incredible formation. A viewing platform overlooks the now featureless cliff face, and visitors can see historic photos and informative exhibits in the on-site Visitor’s Center. As an additional special touch, the plaza also features a unique art installation that allows visitors to see how the Old Man appeared before the cliff collapsed.

    Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-8800

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    Spend The Day At Franconia Notch State Park

    Located right in White Mountain National Forest is none other than Franconia Notch State Park. This beautiful park is filled with epic things to do in Franconia, from going on a hike to kayaking in the lake. Its an amazing place to go no matter the time of year.

    The park covers about 6,500 acres of land, so its quite large in size. Head to Cloudland Falls for an amazing view of a waterfall with only a 1.5-mile hike, or spend the day hiking to the top of one of the mountains if youre feeling up to it.

    Lovetts Inn Franconia Nh

    Formerly known as the Lafayette Brook Farm, Lovetts Inn is a welcoming country inn with a full-service pub and restaurant. The family-friendly dining room features a cozy fireplace, and the menu features tasty home-cooked dinners made by one of the owners, who focuses on using fresh, seasonal ingredients whenever possible. Both the pub and restaurant are open Wednesday through Sunday, and live music is held in the pub every Saturday evening. The space can be booked for weddings and other special events, and the grounds feature a heated pool and access to miles of beautiful trails.

    1474 Profile Rd, Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-7761

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    Eat At Iron Furnace Brewing

    If you love checking out local breweries, you have to head to Iron Furnace Brewing. This Franconia brewery is genuinely a bit of a hidden gem. They make all of their beer right on site, so its a great way to support a local business if youre looking for things to do in Franconia.

    In addition to their beer, they also serve food if youre hungry and need something to pair with the drink. You can find common brewery foods like sandwiches and pizza on their menu, which is excellent after a few drinks!

    Where Should I Stay In Franconia

    Franconia Notch, New Hampshire

    Franconia doesnt have the most variation in places to stay, as its a small town and slightly off the ski circuit. Youre bound to find a place you love. however. At all budget points, too. Cute B& Bs and places a little different from run-of-the-mill are the name of the game.

    Some places will require a 2-day stay before you book in.

    Sugar Hill has some lovely places, as does the Notch, and areas close to the White Mountains, so be sure to look there. Heres a few places that get consistently recommended, but dont be afraid to explore!

    • The Franconia Inn
    • Franconia Village House Restaurant

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    The Frost Place Franconia Nh

    Housed inside a historic farmhouse that was inhabited by the famous poet Robert Frost between 1915 and 1920, The Frost Place is a nonprofit center proudly dedicated to the art of poetry. Part of the house is used as a private writing retreat for emerging poets, but the other part has been converted into a small museum that offers a nostalgic look at Frost’s life and work. Visitors are also welcome to stroll along the half-mile nature trail meandering through the property, which is dotted with plaques displaying poems Frost wrote during his time here.

    158 Ridge Rd, Franconia, NH 03580, Phone: 603-823-5510

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    Ski Or Rock Climb On Cannon Mountain

    Head to Cannon Mountain if youre looking for things to do in Franconia! You can do stuff no matter the time of year at this mountain, including skiing or rock climbing. The mountain is about 4,000 feet high and makes up part of the fantastic New Hampshire White Mountains.

    Cannon Mountain Ski Resort is an amazing spot for skiing, with ten lifts and more than 250 ski acres inside Franconia Notch State Park. There are even easy ski trails for those who dont have as many skiing skills.

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