Defined by its vast expanses of pristine wilderness, quaint, charming towns, rugged Atlantic coastline, and densely forested mountains presenting ever-changing autumn foliage, New Hampshire has some of the most beautiful landscapes in the country. Numerous state parks, nature preserves and recreations areas around the state offer visitors the chance to soak up this natural beauty, which include the region’s highest peak, Mt. Washington. Saint-Gaudens National Historic Ssite in Cornish is the only park operated by the National Park Service, the rest are state parks.
1.Bear Brook State Park
Bear Brook State Park is a 10,000-acre preserve in Allenstown and one of New Hampshire's largest state parks. The natural reserve and state park is named after the Bear Brook stream that runs through the park and is home to beautiful Northeastern coastal forests and other landscapes. The park features a variety of points of interest and attractions such as the Old Allenstown Meeting House, the New Hampshire Snowmobile Museum, and the Richard Diehl Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum, all of which are located in historic buildings that were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps. Amenities at Bear Brook State Park include over 40 miles of hiking trails, an archery range, picnic areas with tables, camping sites, swimming and fishing ponds, a ball field and children’s playground, and a physical fitness course.
157 Deerfield Rd, Allenstown, NH 03275, Phone: 603-485-9874
2.Coleman State Park
Coleman State Park is a state park on Little Diamond Pond in Stewartstown that offers activities such as camping, hiking, picnicking fishing, and ATV riding. Located 12 miles east of Colebrook in New Hampshire's remote north country, Coleman State Park is an excellent spot for fishing with Little Diamond Pond and nearby streams packed with trout and other fish. The campground at Coleman State Park offers 25 campsites, including sites for ATV camping with direct trail access, and several hiking trails connect with the 1000 mile of trails for snowboarding, cross-country skiing, and OHRV riding.
1166 Diamond Pond Rd, Stewartstown, NH 03576, Phone: 603-237-5382
3.Crawford Notch State Park
Crawford Notch State Park is a 5,775-acre park at the center of Crawford Notch, a major pass through the White Mountains in northern New Hampshire. Nestled between Bretton Woods and Bartlett, the park includes the Willey House historical site and is home to the Dry River Campground with 36 sites, fire rings, picnic tables, restrooms, showers, toilets, and laundry facilities. Activities include hiking, mountain biking, backpacking, and nearby points of interest include the Mt. Washington Cog Railway and Auto Road and the Storyland theme park. Several hiking trails lead to Arethusa and Ripley Falls.
1464 US-302, Hart's Location, NH 03812, Phone: 603-374-2272
4.Echo Lake State Park
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Echo Lake State Park is a state park in North Conway that is home to the 15.7-acre Echo Lake and offers a wide range of activities for the whole family to enjoy. The park and lake lie at the base of the Cathedral and White Horse Ledges, two rock ledges with scenic panoramic views, and features a one-mile hiking trail around the lake, and a small swimming beach. Activities in the park include hiking, picnicking, fishing, swimming, non-motorized boating, and rock-climbing and several hiking trails lead to Cathedral Ledge State Park which boasts spectacular views of the Saco River Valley.
68 Echo Lake Rd, North Conway, NH 03860, Phone: 603-356-2672
5.Ellacoya State Park
Located in Gilford on the southwest shore of Lake Winnipesaukee, Ellacoya State Park is a 65-acre state park with 600 feet of beautiful beachfront. The 600-foot long sandy beach boasts breathtaking views across the lake to the Sandwich and Ossipee mountains and features an accessible bathhouse with showers, a changing area for swimmers, and a pavilion. The beach and surrounding park is ideal for picnicking with families, and the park has campsites with three-way hook-ups, and a small park store selling refreshments and souvenirs.
280 Scenic Dr, Gilford, NH 03249, Phone: 603-293-7821
6.Franconia Notch State Park
Nestled in the heart of the White Mountain National Forest in northern New Hampshire, Franconia Notch State Park passes through Franconia Notch, a mountain pass between the Kinsman Range and Franconia Range. Once the home of the famous Old Man of the Mountain, the park is home to several attractions including the Flume Gorge and its visitor center, the beautiful lakes of Echo and Profile, and the historic site of the Old Man of the Mountain. Activities in the park include hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, and snowboarding in winter, fishing, ice-fishing, and pleasure boating. The park is also home to the 1930s state-owned ski resort of Cannon Mountain.
Flume Gorge, Daniel Webster Hwy, Lincoln, NH 03251, Phone: 603-823-8800
7.Hampton Beach State Park
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Hampton Beach State Park located on a peninsula where the Hampton River meets the Atlantic Ocean on the southeastern edge of New Hampshire. Set within the community of Hampton Beach, the 50-acre state park is bordered by Ocean Boulevard and has a large beach with lifeguards, a first aid and comfort station, public restrooms, an amphitheater, a pavilion, a children’s playground, and general information services. Activities in the park include swimming, sunbathing, beach-combing, picnicking, fishing, and RV camping with full hook-ups in the campground.
NH-1A, Hampton, NH 03842, Phone: 603-926-3784
8.Jericho Mountain State Park
Tucked away in the White Mountains in Berlin, the Jericho Mountain State Park, also referred to as Jericho Lake State Park is a 230-acre park is centered around the 7,200-acre Jericho Lake to the south. The lake offers an array of activities ranging from boating and fishing to kayaking and swimming to land-based recreation around the lake like hiking, mountain biking, ATV and UTV trail bike riding, picnicking, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, and camping. There is a ride-in/ride-out campground, overnight cabins, a clean bathhouse, and a modern Visitors Center and the park hosts the Jericho ATV Festival every year.
298 Jericho Lake Rd, Berlin, NH 03570, Phone: 603-752-4758
9.Milan Hill State Park
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Tucked into the Great North Woods, less than three miles off the Androscoggin River, the Milan Hill State Park is a 102-acre state park in New Hampshire that features camping and a 1932 fire tower. Located in the town of Milan, the park makes an excellent base for enjoying all the great outdoor activities in the area such as hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing, ATV riding. The campground features standard tents, as well as four yurts, which offer a little more comfort than regular camping with bunk beds and furniture. Just a short drive away, the Jericho Mountain State Park provides world-class hiking with trails for backpacking, walking, trail running, off-road biking, and mountain biking.
427 Milan Hill Rd, Milan, NH 03588, Phone: 603-449-2429
10.Miller State Park
Located in the towns of Temple and Peterborough, the Miller State Park is the oldest state-run park in New Hampshire. Set on the 2,290-foot Pack Monadnock mountain, the 533-acre park was established in 1891 and named for Peterborough native and brigadier general in the US Army, James Miller. The park offers good hiking with the Wapack Trail crossing over Pack Monadnock and passing through the park, along with other activities such as cross-country skiing, backpacking, picnicking, camping, and wildlife watching.
13 Miller Park Rd, Peterborough, NH 03458, Phone: 603-924-3672
11.Monadnock State Park
Monadnock State Park is a 1,017-acre state park located on and around 3,165-foot Mount Monadnock in Jaffrey. Surrounded by thousands of acres of protected highlands, the park offers a wealth of year-round outdoor recreational activities, including hiking, backpacking, picnicking, camping, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. There are two campgrounds in the park for tents and pop-ups, along with five isolated hike-to sites and basic facilities such as a bathhouse with showers and playground. Several longer hiking trails lead to the summit of Mount Monadnock, and there are plenty of shorter hikes around the state park.
169 Poole Rd, Jaffrey, NH 03452, Phone: 603-532-8862
12.Moose Brook State Park
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Moose Brook State Park occupies 755 acres at an elevation of 1,070 feet in Coos County and offers unparalleled scenery and a variety of outdoor activities. Built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the Great Depression and opened to the public in 1936, the park is tucked away in the White Mountains Region just north of the Presidential Range and boasts pristine landscapes of forested valleys and rugged mountains, and the meandering Peabody and Moose Rivers that flow through the park and into a shallow pool. The park is home to many hiking and mountain biking trails, and swimming can be enjoyed in the pool which is full of clear, cold mountain water. Moose Brook State Park also features plenty of campground sites at Moose Brook State Park makes it a great destination. The campground opens for walk-in camping beginning on May 5th.
30 Jimtown Rd, Gorham, NH 03581, Phone: 603-466-3860
13.Mt Sunapee State Park
Mount Sunapee State Park is a popular recreation area in the Dartmouth-Lake Sunapee Region that offers a range of year-round activities from hiking to cross-country skiing. The park features the 4,085-acre Lake Sunapee which has a beautiful beach where visitors can enjoy sunbathing, swimming, boating, fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. Situated about a mile from the beach, a seasonal campground offers lean-to and platform sites for family camping in a charming natural setting, and other activities in the park include hiking, mountain biking, and cross-country skiing in the winter. A winding road leads up to Mount Sunapee, and the state park's extensive trail system is used in all seasons for hiking and winter for snowshoeing.
86 Beach Access Road, Newbury, NH 03255, Phone: 603-763-5561
14.Mount Washington State Park
Mount Washington State Park is a 60.3-acre area of land on the summit of Mount Washington, the summit of the Northeast's highest peak, and is surrounded by the magnificent 750,000-acre White Mountain National Forest. Spectacular views from the 6,288-foot summit extend as far as 130 miles to Vermont and New York on a clear day and a modern summit building known as Sherman Adams building houses The Sherman Adams Visitor Center, the historic Tip-Top House, the Mount Washington Observatory and its museum, as seasonal cafeteria, gift shop, and restrooms.
1598 Mt Washington Auto Road, Sargent's Purchase, NH 03589, Phone: 603-466-3347
15.North Hampton State Park
North Hampton State Beach is a small state park in the town of North Hampton that has a sandy beach with a bathhouse. Overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, the park’s lovely sandy beach offers swimming and picnicking, and water-based activities include boating, fishing, sea kayaking, and sailing, and metered parking is available.
27 Ocean Blvd, North Hampton, NH 03862, Phone: 603-227-8710
16.Northwood Meadows State Park
Northwood Meadows State Park is a 675-acre state park in the town of Northwood that has a beautiful wilderness setting and offers a wide variety of activities such as hiking, nature walks, backpacking, horseback riding, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing. The wooded park has a vast wetlands area and a pond created by a dammed brook and swimming, non-motorized boating, fishing, and canoeing can be enjoyed on the water.
755 1st New Hampshire Turnpike, Northwood, NH 03261, Phone: 603-485-1031
17.Odiorne Point State Park
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Odiorne Point State Park is a state park on the seacoast in Rye near Portsmouth that features several attractions like the Seacoast Science Center and the remains of the World War II Fort Dearborn. Named after the Odiorne family, who settled on the land in the mid-1660s, the park is the site of the first European settlement in New Hampshire known as Pannaway Plantation and is commemorated by a memorial in the park. The park has sweeping panoramic views of the ocean and rocky shore and offers charming spots for picnicking and an extensive network of trails wind through the dense vegetation and traverse the park. The Sunken Forests of New Hampshire is close to Odiorne Point in the park.
570 Ocean Blvd, Rye, NH 03870, Phone: 603-436-7406
18.Pawtuckaway State Park
Pawtuckaway State Park is one of the largest state parks in southeastern New Hampshire and is named after the Pawtuckaway Lake and the Pawtuckaway Mountains which form part of the park. Extending from the west shore of the lake to the west side of the mountains, the 5,000-acre preserve offers a wide range of recreational activities such as boating, fishing, swimming, canoeing, paddle-boarding, hiking, orienteering, and mountain biking. Thirty-two miles of hiking trails lead up the 900-foot summits of North and South Pawtuckaway mountains and to the 783-acre lake which has many coves and little islands. Park amenities include five overnight cabins, nearly 200 campsites, a boat launch, a ball field, a playground, and plenty of picnic areas with tables.
128 Mountain Rd, Nottingham, NH 03290, Phone: 603-895-3031
19.Pillsbury State Park
One of the more primitive and lesser known gems of the state, Pillsbury State Park is home to a diversity of beautiful landscapes ranging from dense forests, lush wetlands, and tranquil ponds, and an array of wildlife including loons and moose. Located mainly in Washington and partially in Goshen, the park is also home to the headwaters of the Ashuelot River and offers a variety of recreational activities such as hiking, mountain biking, rustic camping with no electricity and limited running water. Mount Sunapee in the northern section of the park is connected to Mount Monadnock via the famous 51-mile Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway hiking trail.
100 Clemac Trail, Washington, NH 03280, Phone: 603-863-2860
20.Pisgah State Park
Pisgah State Park is a 13,668-acre woodland in Cheshire County and the largest state park in New Hampshire. Home to a complete watershed north of the Ashuelot River, as well as lush wetlands, several ponds, four highland ridges, and a 20-acre parcel of old-growth forest, the park offers a range of outdoor and recreational activities including hiking in one of six trailheads around the park, mountain biking, ATV riding, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing. Lying in the west of the park, the 120-acre Pisgah Reservoir/Round Pond offers fishing, swimming, non-motorized boating, and canoeing.
520 Old Chesterfield Rd, Winchester, NH 03470, Phone: 603-271-3254
21.Rye Harbor State Park
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Boasting beautiful views of the Atlantic Ocean, the Isles of Shoals, and the town’s Rye Harbor, Rye Harbor State Park is a small state park on a grassy peninsula that offers activities such as picnicking, sea kayaking, and saltwater fishing and picnicking. Other amenities include picnic tables, benches, a small pavilion, and modern restrooms. The park is home to the Seacoast Region headquarters office.
1730 Ocean Blvd, Rye, NH 03870, Phone: 603-227-8717
22.Umbagog Lake State Park
Umbagog Lake State Park is a 1,360-acre park on the southern shore of Umbagog Lake Coös County that offers activities like swimming, boating, fishing, camping, canoeing, picnicking, hiking, and wildlife watching. The Errol-based park includes a campground with electrical and water hook-ups, three overnight cabins, along with remote campsites and cabins in isolated locations around Umbagog Lake that are accessible only by boat. Visitors to the park can see a range of wildlife including deer, moose and several bird species, and other facilities in the park include a boat launch and fuel sales.
NH-26, Errol, NH 03579, Phone: 603-482-7795
23.Weeks State Park
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The Weeks State Park is centered around the historic country estate set at the very top of Mt. Prospect in Lancaster. Built in 1912 for U.S. senator John Wingate Weeks, the 446-acre John Wingate Weeks Historic Site's Mt. Prospect estate is surrounded by spectacular gardens and grounds and boasts 360-degree panoramic views of magnificent mountains like the Presidential Range of the White Mountains. The park and estate complex feature several hiking trails, a small museum in the main estate house, and expansive views of the countryside from the stone observation tower. Visitors to the park can explore the John Wingate Weeks House Museum on guided tours during the operating season and climb the old stone fire tower for magical mountain views.
200 Week's State Park Rd, Lancaster, NH 03584, Phone: 603-788-4004
24.Wellington State Park
Wellington State Park is a 204-acre state park surrounding Newfound Lake in Bristol that features the largest freshwater swimming beach in the state and offers a variety of activities including swimming, sunbathing, pleasure boating, fishing, canoeing and kayaking, and picnicking. Peninsula hiking and nature trails provide spectacular views of the crystal-clear waters of the lake and provide access to points of interest such as Welton Falls, Goose Pond, Bear Mountain, Mt. Cardigan, and the Sugarloafs. Other facilities in the park include volleyball and horseshoe courts, picnic tables and gas grills, a snack bar selling picnic essentials and simple fare, and a boat launch for year-round access to Newfound Lake.
614 W Shore Rd, Bristol, NH 03222, Phone: 603-744-2197
25.White Lake State Park
White Lake State Park is a state park on the shore of the White Lake in Tamworth that is open year-round and offers a variety of outdoor and recreational activities such as hiking, mountain biking, backpacking, camping, picnicking, non-motorized boating, fishing, swimming, hiking, and winter sports. Resting along the shores of White Lake, a typical glacial lake with cold, gin-clear waters, White Lake State Park offers some of the best swimming in the White Mountain region. There is plenty of wildlife in the park to see such as beavers who build their homes on the lake, and many bird species and the lake is stocked with trout providing excellent fishing. The park has a day-use area and a campground with family campsites.
1632 White Mountain Hwy, Tamworth, NH 03886, Phone: 603-323-7350
25 Best New Hampshire State & National Parks
- Bear Brook State Park, Photo: jonbilous/stock.adobe.com
- Coleman State Park, Photo: smiltena/stock.adobe.com
- Crawford Notch State Park, Photo: elrepho/stock.adobe.com
- Echo Lake State Park, Photo: Michael Shake/stock.adobe.com
- Ellacoya State Park, Photo: GCapture/stock.adobe.com
- Franconia Notch State Park, Photo: catuncia/stock.adobe.com
- Hampton Beach State Park, Photo: SEL Photography/stock.adobe.com
- Jericho Mountain State Park, Photo: javarman/stock.adobe.com
- Milan Hill State Park, Photo: Subbotina Anna/stock.adobe.com
- Miller State Park, Photo: NorthEastPhotog/stock.adobe.com
- Monadnock State Park, Photo: jpeacockcad/stock.adobe.com
- Moose Brook State Park, Photo: Farknot Architect/stock.adobe.com
- Mt Sunapee State Park, Photo: Yuri/stock.adobe.com
- Mount Washington State Park, Photo: tiancaiyan8/stock.adobe.com
- North Hampton State Park, Photo: sphraner/stock.adobe.com
- Northwood Meadows State Park, Photo: kichigin19/stock.adobe.com
- Odiorne Point State Park, Photo: Dariia Chernenko/stock.adobe.com
- Pawtuckaway State Park, Photo: Colby/stock.adobe.com
- Pillsbury State Park, Photo: ant/stock.adobe.com
- Pisgah State Park, Photo: illustrissima/stock.adobe.com
- Rye Harbor State Park, Photo: Paul Lemke/stock.adobe.com
- Umbagog Lake State Park, Photo: milosz_g/stock.adobe.com
- Weeks State Park, Photo: Francesco Scatena/stock.adobe.com
- Wellington State Park, Photo: Eugenie/stock.adobe.com
- White Lake State Park, Photo: Simon/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: haveseen/stock.adobe.com