Good food and outdoor adventure are just a few of the reasons to visit the White Mountains town of Woodstock, New Hampshire.
By Ian Aldrich
Jul 21 2022
Hiking in the western White Mountains | Guide to Woodstock, New Hampshire.Photo Credit : Courtesy of Western White Mountains Chamber of Commerce
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Packed in around the impressive peaks that make up New Hampshire’s White Mountains are a scattering of small towns that aren’t afraid to embrace their village size and vibe. One of the most charming of these is Woodstock, which sits just south of Lincoln, a tourist hub as well as the western terminus of the famously scenic Kancamagus Highway.
Outdoor adventure is, of course, front and center in Woodstock, which sits within easy distance of popular hikes up Mount Lafayette, Cannon Mountain, and Bald Mountain. But for visitors just looking to be near the woods on vacation, this region also delivers, offering attractions such as a top-notch brewery and a head-turning antique car collection.
Ready to pack your bags? Then read on for our guide to Woodstock, New Hampshire.
This natural funhouse in Kinsman Notch was created millions of years ago when glaciers melted and created a flow of debris-filled water that eroded the rocks. Today you can climb through the gorge, following the brook through narrow passages to see it burst out in waterfalls and swirl in huge potholes, as your kids learn about glaciers and geology and even, for a small fee, pan for gemstones and fossils in the Lost River mining sluice. Named a 2018 Yankee Editors’ Pick for “Best Family Adventure.”
A fully informed White Mountains adventure begins at this center, which offers free brochures and maps and sells recreation passes. You can bone up on regional wildlife at the center’s interpretive facility, and even find something to take home at the gift shop.
Gifts and souvenirs abound at this one-of-a-kind shop (T-shirts, sweatshirts, candy, etc.). But the real stars here are the rare vehicles — the many, many rare vehicles — you can see here, from Model A’s to classic roadsters to a Crosley car that was once sold at Macy’s.
All aboard for one of the most scenic experiences in the White Mountains. This two-hour journey through the heart of the region includes a five-course dinner served on 1950s restored vintage rail cars. Named a 2014 Yankee Editors’ Pick for “Best Train Dining.” (Note: In the fall, they also offer one of our favorite Foliage Train Tours.
Is it a brewery? A restaurant? A hotel? Actually, it’s all three — and after a day of playing in the woods you’ll be happy to make this your landing spot. Plus, the chance to sample from nearly 30 homemade brews with decidedly New Hampshire names like “Live Free or Die” makes this a bucket-list White Mountains destination.
Wings, chowder, an assortment of nachos, killer burgers, and other casual-dining classics fill the menu at this North Woodstock eatery. Forget the carb diet, and make sure to try Pemi’s flatbread pizzas.
A sprawling deck on the Lost River is a perfect place to kick back after a day in the wilderness. Refuel with hearty pub food, from pizzas to wraps to seafood entrees.
Since it opened in 1985, this family-owned eatery in nearby Lincoln has been a popular stop for all manner of White Mountains visitors, from presidential climbers to Kanc drivers. The centerpiece of the menu is comfort food, including mac and cheese, meatloaf, and a roasted half chicken.
The Notch was born in 2015 when Serena and Justin Walsh, both serious outdoor enthusiasts, left their city lives in Boston to convert an 1890s farmhouse into an affordable lodging option for fellow hikers. Apartments, private rooms, and bunkhouse-style accommodations are all part of the mix, while amenities include cozy common spaces, a fully equipped kitchen, and a sauna.
A lumber baron built this 1912 Arts and Crafts home within earshot of the Lost River’s rushing waters. Now it’s a charming inn, run by Karen and Alan Trudell, where guests can choose from nine rooms and suites (and even a romantic separate cottage) and enjoy a gourmet breakfast every morning.
Have you ever visited Woodstock, New Hampshire? Tell us about it!
This post was first published in 2019 and has been updated.