New England?


Jun 6th, 2013, 08:59 PM
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New England?


I want to go on a 5 day vacation in the first week of July. We want to stay away from beaches.

Want this to be a nice relaxed time with my family - Wife and 2 girls (10.5 , 2.5) I am in Raleigh NC.

I was wondering if New England is a good destination and if so, how do I plan the itinerary? Was quite confused by the time I read up on Maine, Vermont and NH.

Any help is truly appreciated.

pras1973 is offline  
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Jun 6th, 2013, 11:05 PM
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What were you looking at doing?
sparkchaser is offline  
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Jun 7th, 2013, 03:24 AM
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First week in July is obviously July 4th holiday - so availability and quietness may be limited. Does 5 days include really long full-day drive from NC in each direction (we drove Boston-Greensboro area several times/year and it was very long day - with kids, might be even longer).

A lake cottage in NH or VT might work for you - but most rentals are Sat-Sat for full week. You might also try some of the ski areas in NH and VT - many have condo-style rentals available year round

But basic question was asked above - what do you want to do. I am guessing you and wife want to relax - but there will be no relaxing if the kids have nothing to do.
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Jun 7th, 2013, 11:18 AM
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Try the North Conway area - I would recommend staying in Jackson...for kids there is Storyland & Conway Scenic Railroad, lots of kid friendly hikes, waterfalls, etc. Santa's Village is nearby as is Clark's Trading Post (trained bears and cute park with water gun bumper boats, fun house, etc.).

Outlet shopping and cute village shops for mom, lots of kid friendly restaurants - if you will be there July 6th, Jackson has it's annual Wildcat River Duck Race (they throw about 3,000 rubber ducks into the falls and give out about 200 prizes - lots of kids activities too).
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Jun 7th, 2013, 12:29 PM
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If you are not flying, I think New England is too far for a five day vacation. Maybe a good children's museum and a condo with good kids pool and play area in VA?

Should you decide to go to VT both Brandon and Bristol have nice parades. Norwich has a terrific science museum with outdoor water play (Montshire).
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Jun 7th, 2013, 01:20 PM
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Thanks. I am planning on flying to someplace in VT/ME/NH and then driving around. Want it to be a relaxed holiday....a few hours of kids activities, a little souvenir shopping and a whole lot visiting places with good views or historical significance..

I know I am being vague. Want to catch a little bit of the important places in one or more of these states while not trying to cover "everything".
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Jun 7th, 2013, 03:59 PM
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What are the dates, exactly? Where you fly in and out of might depend on this. Getting up in and out of Maine over the 4th of July weekend can be a nightmare depending on what time you're arriving into New England and what time you're leaving. In fact if you want "relaxing" and "no beaches" you might want to skip Maine. Are you interested in lakes? Or are you looking more for walkable cities/downtowns etc?
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Jun 9th, 2013, 06:58 PM
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I have decided to skip first week of July. I will be going first week of August.

Lakes are fine...we are open to scenic views / drives, good history, light walking / shopping (with a 2 years old, we want to limit walking but can manage a few miles I suppose)

Hope this helps.
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Jun 9th, 2013, 07:41 PM
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Wentworth by the Sea if you want to spend money at a beautiful place.
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Jun 10th, 2013, 10:07 AM
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Well, Portsmouth is a good recommendation. There's Strawbery Banke historic area, boat trips around the harbor or inland rivers, Science center at Odiorne Point, Children's Museum in Dover. Events at Prescott Park. Nice downtown shopping area. Rt 1B thru Newcastle is a wonderful drive. Also the drive out to Kittery Point. There's a nice children's park near the water across the street from where the farmers market is held. It was mobbed with families on a Sat morning last summer.

It would probably be easiest to fly into MHT because it's a smaller airport but Boston is also an option. If you fly into MHT a gps will tell you to go to Portsmouth via Rt 101 which is a limited access boring hwy. The alternative is to head north to Concord NH and drive via I93 to I393 to Rt 4 to Portsmouth. This will take you thru Antique Alley of Northwood so beware of sudden stops. We have had no trouble driving this route pulling a camper but another Fodorite said they almost had an accident. You'll be going thru semi-rural area then it will bypass Durham and the University of NH. Then you go thru some beautiful country and the Dover Point area and drive over the bridges that cross Great Bay. You'll connect with I95 and the Portsmouth traffic circle.

Or you can stay in the Concord NH area and visit Shaker Village in Canterbury NH. If you wait until later in August you could go to Old Time Farming Days at Musterfield Farm in North Sutton NH (3rd weekend?). Beech Hill Farm is a fun place to take kids for ice cream (there's a huge sand pile with toy trucks and some farm animals to visit). Concord has several playgrounds and a nice walkable downtown. First week of August is generally the time of the League of NH Craftsmen's Fair in Sunapee. Very upscale crafts. Some children's activities. Visit their website. NH Audubon sometimes has some events and are located on the outskirts of Concord. We haven't taken the GDs to Project See in Manchester yet but it's supposed to be popular with kids. In nearby Warner NH there's the Kearsarge Indian Museum (haven't been to it) and Telephone Museum (small but quaint) and you can go to the top of Mt Kearsarge. If you go to the other side there's a nice drive/toll road from Wilton to the state park near the top. Nice views. Not as dramatic as going to the White Mountains but a good place to picnic. The independent bookstore in Warner has speakers scheduled but you might want to look into something simple like library story hours during the summer. Different towns have different summer concerts usually on a weekday evening. Bring lawn chairs and a picnic lunch kind of thing.

Or stay in NH's White Mountains and do all the tourist activities like Polar Caves. Ski area condos should be easy to find and more comfortable for a family.
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Jun 16th, 2013, 05:36 PM
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Do you want to stay away from beaches or coast? The Maine "lakes" region is beautiful. Check out Rangley area for lake rentals, small town feel and daily canoe rides. I also would recommend the White Mountain region if you are interested in hiking. The town of North Conway offers a variety of activities including great tax-free outlet shopping, alpine slide/adventure parks, movies, museums, and access to the White Mountain National Forest. If you are looking for a good family hike, check out my suggestions here: http://thefreelanceadventurer.blogsp...mountains.html
If you are change your mind about the beaches, the Maine Coast has some wonderful options including Acadia National Park in the Mid Coast and the Southern sandy beaches of Ogunquit, York, and Kennebunkport.
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Jun 17th, 2013, 07:51 AM
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you could go to Vermont, and stay someplace near Burlington/Lake Champlain. There are cute towns with shopping and antiquing. There are lakefront beaches, scenic hikes in the Green Mountains, and a surprising amount of historical sites.
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