New Hampshire

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About New Hampshire

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New Hampshire may be a small state but it's tough, rugged and, above all, bewitchingly scenic. From jagged mountains to forest-fringed lakes, lush valleys to lovely beaches, this is a place that cries out to be explored and enjoyed in the big outdoors. Of course there’s also an urban scene, such as colonial Portsmouth, for a bit of sophistication. Our guide to the best places to stay in New Hampshire ensures you can find somewhere to stay to enjoy whatever activity takes your fancy.

At the heart of the state is the Lakes Region where Lake Winnipesaukee, dotted with islands, is a popular place for canoeing and fishing. Or you can take it more leisurely with a cruise.

Holderness straddles the Squami lakes at the base of the White Mountains and offers year round fun from sailing, fishing and hiking to skiing and cross-country skiing in winter months.

In the north, explore White Mountain National Forest, great for hiking and berry-picking in summer, fabulous autumn colours in the fall, and skiing and snowshoeing in winter. Here you can climb Mt. Washington, the region’s highest peak. If you’re short on time (or energy) take the steam-powered, cog railway to its summit.

Stalk moose in the Great North Woods or be amazed by the giant boulders in Pawtuckaway State Park, one of New Hampshire’s numerous state parks.

For a bit of culture, head to pristine colonial settlements like Portsmouth or Canterbury Shaker village, a living-history museum just north of the capital, Concord, whilst a tour of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Zimmerman House is worth the trip.

Prefer to take it easier? Head to Hampton Beach or go on the Ice Cream Trail around 47 dairy farms. Those with a sweet tooth should come in March; the best time to visit the sugarhouses where the famous maple syrup is made. And don’t forget to sample a fried-clam platter or a lobster roll.

Choose what you’d like to do and then use our selection of the best places to stay in New Hampshire to plan your trip.

The best New Hampshire hotels with spas

  • Modelled after ocean liners the majestic,19th century Wentworth by the Sea is a classic grand coastal hotel with fabulous sea views, pool and spa.
  • A country manor-house, set in 13 beatuiful acres with views of lake and the White Mountains, The Manor on Golden Pond offers stately bedrooms - some with fires or jacuzzis - a smart restaurant, tennis, croquet, cooking lessons as well as a spa.

The best New Hampshire hotels for foodies

  • In the heart of the White Mountain National Forest, with hiking, fishing and skiing on tap, the charmingly rustic Notchland Inn offers superb five-course dinners to look forward to after a day’s exertions.
  • Complimentary afternoon tea is offered at the Adair Country Inn, whose nine rooms are charmingly decorated in country-house style. Evening meals showcase the best of New England cuisine.

The best New Hampshire hotels in towns

  • In the small coastal town of Durham, Three Chimneys Inn offers elegant rooms, many with four-poster beds and fireplaces, and a more rustic restaurant serving honest, hearty cooking.
  • In the middle of lively Keene, Fairfield Inn & Suites is a historic building - a former department store - converted into a boutique hotel with contemporary style rooms, some with exposed brick walls. Although there’s a cocktail bar, there’s no restaurant but it’s walking distance to a wide choice of eateries.
  • The historic Hanover Inn - a late 18th century inn - is at the heart of Dartmouth College campus and offers jaunty, spacious rooms with smart creamy colours and clubby, leather furnishings. There’s also a gym and a restaurant that focuses on local sourcing.

For more ideas, browse our list of the best places to stay in New Hampshire or contact one of our friendly gurus for advice.

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Best Hotels in New Hampshire

  • Exeter Inn Exeter NH (Exeter) 46 rooms from £86

    Families  -  Great for families, with cots and extra beds available, kids meals, and a relaxed quiet atmosphere
    Country Escape  -  Escape to the quiet town of Exeter, a charming gateway to the rolling hills of Rockingham County
    Value chic  -  The Inn is attractive in its appearance, history and pricing
    Great walks  -  The town of Exeter boasts great walks through the town's parks and forests

    This Georgian Inn offers comfortable rooms with excellent amenities in a regal, town centre setting. The handsome town-house boasts pleasant gardens, an on-site restaurant and bar, and a well-equipped fitness suite. Ideal for both families and couples with a range of attractively priced rooms. See More

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  • Three Chimneys Inn Durham, New Hampshire 23 rooms from £93

    Views  -  Located on a hill overlooking beautiful gardens, the Oyster River and Old Mill Falls.
    Sights nearby  -  Just 10 minutes' walk from the University of New Hampshire
    Fishing  -  Excellent fishing nearby.

    Enjoying beautiful surroundings in the small coastal town of Durham, Three Chimneys Inn is a gateway to New Hampshire's Seacoast region. Interiors are elegant and timeless, with four-posters, fireplaces, rich carpets, floral motifs and saturated autumn colours. The Sawyer Tavern serves local fare. See More

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  • Fairfield Inn & Suites Keene Downtown Keene, New Hampshire 40 rooms from £116

    Great walks  -  Hike Monadnock Mountain, which inspired the likes of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau.
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    Private Hot Tub

    Historic redbrick hotel in central Keene. Interiors feature bold patterns, exposed brick in some rooms, queen or king beds. Delicious continental breakfast is served free of charge every morning. The hotel offers fitness facilities and cocktail hour in the bar. Close to restaurants and cafes. See More

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  • The Hotel Portsmouth - Downtown Portsmouth NH 32 rooms from £126

    Value chic  -  An historic and lively hotel offering vibrant interiors, luxorious bedding and a downtown location at a very reasonable price
    Great walks  -  The stunning Prescott Park is just a five minute walk away, wander the ten plus acres of waterfront parklands
    Sights nearby  -  Centrally located within walking distance of Portsmouth's best bars, restaurants and historic sites
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.

    A beautiful Queen Ann building, masterfully restored, in the heart of Portsmouth. The sharp interiors are modern and indulgent while nodding to the building's rich history. An excellent breakfast is served each morning and helpful staff will guide you to the best dinner spots. Warm and welcoming. See More

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  • The Inn at Pleasant Lake New London, New Hampshire 10 rooms from £148

    Foodies  -  There is a special wine and dine package which includes a 5-course tasting menu and wine and cheese on arrival
    Active Holiday  -  From skiing to cycling or kayaking, this is the perfect destination for adventure seekers
    Kayaking  -  Kayaks, canoes and row boats are avaliable to guests (life jackets and paddles are included)
    Views  -  Rooms offer stunning views of the Lake and Mount Kearsarge

    A stunning waterfront inn in New London. Rooms and suites are spacious and traditional with mahogany beds, whirlpool tubs and magnificent views. Guests have access to the tennis courts, canoes, kayaks, rowboats and a private beach. Gourmet meals at the award-winning restaurant complete the picture. See More

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  • Chesterfield Inn West Chesterfield, New Hampshire 15 rooms from £151

    Romantic Break  -  Couples can enjoy a romantic weekend with whirlpool tubs, beautiful scenery and delicious food
    Active Holiday  -  From kayaking and hiking to skiing, adventure seekers will not be disappointed
    Kayaking  -  Rent a canoe or kayak and take a paddle on the Connecticut or West Rivers in Brattleboro, Vermont
    Spa  -  Guests can book luxurious spa treatments in the privacy of their room

    An idyllic inn in Chesterfield. Rooms feature spindle poster beds, floral wallpapers, antique furnishings, fireplaces and bathrooms with whirlpool baths. Indulge with an in-room spa treatment and relax on an Adirondack chair on the lawn. A charming stay, completed by the superb regional restaurant. See More

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  • The Sailmaker's House Portsmouth NH (New Hampshire) 10 rooms from £155

    Local exploring  -  Set close to the harbour and heritage Portsmouth, this hotel is perfectly place for local exploring in New Hampshire
    Romantic Break  -  Couples love the luxury finish at this boutique guesthouse; book a deluxe room for a private living area and patio
    City Style  -  Located in a heritage property in the heart of Portsmouth's old district, this hotel has lots of local city charm
    Great walks  -  Explore historic Portsmouth on a long walk; head to the harbourfront Prescott Park for pretty marina views

    Nestled on Portsmouth's Seacoast, this renovated sailmaker's house has been transformed into a boutique inn. Behind the wooden facade, a spiral staircase leads to cosy guestrooms with original brick fireplaces, sink-in rugs and bespoke fittings. Maritime accents run throughout; a stylish guesthouse. See More

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  • The Notchland Inn New Hampshire 12 rooms from £155

    Outstanding location  -  Deep in the White Mountain National Forest
    Views  -  The inn rests atop a knoll at the base of Mount Bemis & looks out upon Mounts Hope and Crawford
    Great walks  -  Hundreds of miles of hiking, including the Appalachian Trail, and the Crawford and Davis Paths
    Full of character

    A beautiful romantic inn in the heart of the White Mountain National Forest. A cosy paradise for those active, nature-loving couples. The rooms are comfortable, welcoming and full of character. The superb 5 course meal served in the restaurant will be deserved after the day's outdoor activities! See More

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  • Adair Country Inn Bethlehem, New Hampshire 9 rooms from £155

    Back to Nature  -  If your interests include skiing, hiking or cycling in one of America's areas of natural splendour, then you are well kept here.
    Hideaway  -  Perched atop a hillock in 200 acres of forest you can truly retreat into a private heaven!
    Local markets  -  Bethlehem has a Saturday farmers market in summer months.
    Restrictions on children  -  Children older than 12 years are welcome

    Quaint country inn set amongst hundreds of acres of ancient woodland. Interiors are traditional without seeming dated, and offer a glimpse into classic small-town New England charm. Huge variety of summer and winter activities on offer. Fresh, local ingredients are served up in the restaurant. See More

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  • The Manor on Golden Pond Holderness (New Hampshire) 24 rooms from £204

    Local markets  -  Visit local craft and antique stores
    Cooking classes  -  Fine Cooking Program
    Restrictions on children  -  No children
    Kayaking  -  Squam Lake
    Recommended by  -  Small Luxury Hotels, Fodors

    A fine New England country manor house set in idyllic grounds with sweeping views of the nearby lake and surrounding hills. Bedrooms feel stately; some have cosy fireplaces and private hot tub baths. The hotel has a sophisticated dining room as well as a more relaxed bar area. Quiet and secluded. See More

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  • Lake House at Ferry Point Sanbornton, New Hampshire 10 rooms from £164

    Active Holiday  -  Explore Gunstock Mountain Resort with summer and winter activies ranging from hiking, skiing, ziplining and biking
    Back to Nature  -  Relax and unwind by the lake and relish the serenity
    Sights nearby  -  Visit Franconia Notch State Park with camping, swimming, hiking, picnicking, fishing, boating, biking and skiing offered
    Kayaking  -  Kayak the lake with the B&B's complimentary kayaks

    A charming B&B on Lake Winnisquam. Rooms are classic and comfortable with wooden bed frames, cosy chairs and expansive views of the lake. A breakfast of local produce is served outside under a gazebo and guests have access to paddleboards and kayaks for lake fun. A laidback base in nature. See More

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  • Hancock Inn and Fox Tavern Hancock, New Hampshire 14 rooms from £179

    Country Escape  -  Set quaint and tranquil village and surrounded by beautiful countryside, this is an idyllic rural escape
    Active Holiday  -  From kayaking and fishing to skiing and biking, there is something for everyone throughout the seasons
    Historic  -  New Hampshire’s oldest inn, the Hancock Inn circa 1789
    Fishing  -  Go fly-fishing on the Androscoggin, Connecticut or Pemigewasset Rivers

    A historic and charming inn, set in a quintessential New England village. Rooms are cosy and traditional with antique furnishings, gas fireplaces and spacious bathrooms with whirlpool tubs. Breakfasts are a highlight with pancakes and local maple syrup. A homely spot for a rural escape. See More

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  • Hanover Inn Hanover, New Hampshire 93 rooms from £187

    Sights nearby  -  Montshire Museum of Science is 1km away, while Hopkins Center for the Arts and the Hood Museum neighbour the hotel.
    Outstanding location  -  Situated at the center of the Dartmouth College Campus.
    Traditional

    Located at the heart of Dartmouth College campus, Hanover Inn is an attractive neo-Georgian property with character and charm. Rooms feature dark hardwood furniture, and draw on Ivy League style with creams, plaids and leather. Restaurant serves farm-to-table fare sourced locally in New England. See More

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  • Inn by the Bandstand Exeter NH 8 rooms from £194

    Local exploring  -  Discover the museums and shops of Exeter or explore the local natural attractions such as the beach or beautiful walking trails
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the Odiorne Point State Park, one of the most beautiful and diverse natural settings along New Hampshire’s coastline
    Great walks  -  The town of Exeter offers numerous hiking/snowshoing trails like the Henderson Swasey Town Forest and Oaklands Town Forest
    House party feel  -  Be prepared to meet people.

    A charming boutique inn, in the heart of historic downtown Exeter. Rooms are elegant with antique furnishings, precious artworks, brick fireplaces and spacious bathrooms with white-tiled showers. The restaurant serves delicious modern American fare made with locally sourced ingredients. Super! See More

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  • Sugar Hill Inn Sugar Hill, New Hampshire 14 rooms from £215

    Active Holiday  -  With all sorts of activies avaliable, such as skiing, hiking and kayaking, this is a great choice for an active break
    Romantic Break  -  Romantic extras such as flowers in room, champagne and chocolates, or wine and cheese can be prearranged
    Kayaking  -  Echo Lake offers views of the mountains, boating, kayaking and swimming
    Views  -  Take in the breathtaking vistas of Cannon Mountain and Mt. Lafayette

    A romantic luxury inn situated in Sugar Hill with breathtaking White Mountain Views. Rooms are spacious and comforting with queen/king-sized beds, gas fireplaces, private porches and bathrooms with large whirlpool tubs. Cocktails are served in the garden and the restaurant is award-winning. See More

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  • Wentworth by the Sea Portsmouth NH 161 rooms from £218

    Landmark  -  Known as the "Grand Dame by the Sea", this hotel is a beloved jewel on the New Hampshire coast.
    Spa  -  The coast inspired the spa, a tranquil sanctuary dedicated to health and wellbeing.
    Sailing  -  Guests enjoy access to the privately-operated Wentworth by the Sea Marina.
    Traditional  -  A traditional eye for interiors creates a cosy space for relaxation.

    A stalwart landmark of the New Hampshire coast, this gleaming white and splendid hotel has stood the test of time to become a paragon of hospitality. Interiors are classic and traditional with floral patterns, neutral colours and panoramic sea views. Restaurant, pool, spa, gym, golf, marina, bar. See More

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