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Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Wichita, Kansas
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Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Hi folks

I am hoping for some help planning a weekend in NH.

We live in Quebec, and are collecting a car from Keene, NH. We want to spend the rest of the weekend in NH, and would like suggestions on places between Keene & Canada that would be worth a visit. I require a hotel with an indoor pool for the kids, and an area with something of interest to visit.

I would also like to do some shopping - but do not want to go North Conway if possible.

Until now we have only ever visited the White Mountain area & I think it's time to see a little more of NH!

Many thanks

Becky

Baltimore, Maryland
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for North Conway
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1. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Look in the Lincoln area. That is your best bet but is still in the mountains, just the western side. Plenty to do from cannon tram to ziplines. Not familiar with the hotels but if you check the TA hotel guide, you should get some ideas. You don't say when the visit is but Lake Winni is another suggestion for you.

Wichita, Kansas
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2. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Thank you!

New Hampshire
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3. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Wow are you planning a trip for the right time. Come to Keene for the annual pumpkin festival on October 16. Not only is Keene a nice location with lots of small shops, and well worth your time, the pumpkin festival is amazing. It is a wonderful treat for kids, and simply astounding to see the massive display of lit jack-o-lanterns. If you are coming, bring some pumpkins and carving tools with you, have the kids carve them in the hotel the night before, and bring them with you to check-in. They'll get to log in their pumpkin, place it where they want it, and can watch as thousands more join it. It's a wonderful kid-friendly event the parents will enjoy as well.

If not that weekend, depending on where your travels take you, there are lots of shopping options. If you are looking for outlets, but don't want to go to North Conway because of the distance or location, Tilton, NH and Kittery, Maine (just over the border from Portsmouth, NH) have outlet areas as well.

If instead you are looking for sidewalk shopping, or antiques, there are lots of options: Concord NH has a great downtown area, as do Portsmouth, NH, and Newburyport, MA. Route 4 in New Hampshire is known as "antique alley."

If you provide a little more detail (how old the kids are - what kind of shopping - kinds of things you want to see) we can probably fill in the blanks a little more for you.

Edited: 24 September 2010, 04:32
Wichita, Kansas
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4. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Hello again, and thank you.

We will be in NH next weekend, October 2nd & 3rd for the whole family, and i will have a coule of hours to shop (alone!) on the Monday before heading home with the new car (you can't import a car to Canada at the weekends!!).

My boys are 8 & 11.

Such a shame it's not the right time for the pumpkins at Keene, as we have to go to Keene to collect the acr.

Hollis, New...
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5. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Check out Colony Mill Marketplace in Keene for some nice shopping:

www.colonymill.com

Antrim, New...
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6. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

A couple of comments in response to your query and to some of the replies.

Keene, as was said, is a great place. There is a very vital Main Street and the box plaza on the western edge of the city with many of the usual box suspects. But Main Street has some great shops, cafes, restaurants, etc. And a great chocolate shop. Sadly, the Colony Mill, as was suggested by wpsaukee, is not what it used to be. They have been going through some tough transition times and have a high vacancy rate. However, the Toadstool Bookshop, which occupies about half of the upper floor, is an awesome bookstore that the whole family will enjoy browsing. So, do go to Colony Mill (down West Street from Main).

There are a number of hotels in Keene. The Best Western probably has the best pool. I have not been there, but I know that it functions as a community pool with memberships. So it must be reasonably substantial. Other chains also have pools. I think there is Holiday Express, Courtyard, and I forget what else. Easy to Google.

Keene has a good skate park, if this is your boys' interest. Stonewall Farm, an educational and experiential working farm has programs including hay rides. Keene State College is in Keene. Check out Red Fern Arts Center, as well as the Colonial Theater on Main Street. You might catch a soccer game, if that interests you and the boys.

From Keene, I would head up Route 10 or 12 to the Lebanon/Hanover area. This is a beautiful drive through some very picturesque little towns and a couple of small older cities - Claremont, Newport. You might want to check the Newport Opera House and the Lebanon Opera House for their performance schedule. They do all kinds of entertainment - plays, musicals, bands, etc. The drive from Keene to Lebanon on Rte 10 or 12 would be about an hour and a half without stops. So you are not looking at a large distance.

Hanover is the home of Dartmouth College. Downtown there is very nice, small and vibrant with the college green right there. You might be able to catch a football game on Saturday. Excellent museum and performing arts center there, too. I think the college does a fall carnival, but don't know when. The Montshire Museum in Norwich VT is right across the river. Great hands on science museum. Lebanon is the neighboring city to Hanover. I would recommend The Fireside Inn, which is right off I-89 at Exit 19 I think it is. They have a large kidney shaped pool with some other entertainment that the boys will enjoy. Also offer a nice breakfast buffet. Lots of shopping along the road by the hotel, too. Look for a very large and cool pet shop on the north side of I-89.

Continue up Rte 10 along the Connecticut River through some lovely small towns. Check out the Country Store in Bath. Then continue up to Littleton and walk its very nice Main Street. The kids will love Chutters Cnady Shop, which boasts the longest candy counter in the world. They were in Guinness Book.

All of this may be too much. I know I have missed many attractions in each of the areas. You could easily spend the weekend in any of the locations.

Wichita, Kansas
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7. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Thank you - your post has pointed otu a lot of great things for us to visit, many of which I never would have found myself.

Antrim, New...
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8. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

By the way, one more place along that general corridor:

St. Gaudens National Historic Park is the home, studios and gardens of the sculptor Augustus St. Gaudens. It is located in the town of Cornish. Beautiful setting and so much of his artwork.

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9. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

The Fells, the former Hayes estate on Lake Sunapee is also a great spot.

Wichita, Kansas
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10. Re: Looking for a weekend getaway - with kids

Thanks again folks.

We are going to be staying in Lincoln, lots to do & keep the kids busy!