Summer's arrived. Masks are off. It's time to explore. If you're like me and you like a bit of everything- mountains, beaches, drinks, food, cute towns, big cities- New Hampshire is the place for you. With the motto Live Free or Die, this tiny northern state really does pack quite a punch. And you don't even have to wear a helmet or seatbelt while you're here, but of course you will because you are just looking to live free, right?
This town of 22,000 is a day tripper's paradise. 5 minutes from the beach, water everywhere, the best bars and seafood in the state, you'll be full up on everything from beer to clams to art before noon arrives. My favorite pick is Liar's Bench Brewery, a local spot in a tourist town.
The White Mountains
The White Mountains, or the Whites, as the locals call them, are the tallest mountains on the east coast and home to over 5,000 miles of hiking trails. You can spend a day, week or month climbing all over them. And with 59 5,000 foot peaks to hit, make sure you bring some oxygen. The Whites do get crowded during the summer so I recommend hiking early in the morning or later in the afternoon.
But Jacob, you say, why are you talking about Maine when we've barely begun with New Hampshire? That's the beauty of this part of the country- the two states tend to meld together and you'll inevitably find yourself criss-crossing your way between the two, so why not just get it out of the way now? If you're looking for a more upscale day trip, Ogunquit's the place. Close to the summer home of former presidents Bushes, this quintessential Maine village is perfect for wasting away on a beach then paying $18 for a gin and tonic. My favorite spot after I've picked up my paycheck is Crew Restaurant and Bar. These are more words to make this a 600 word post but it might be fewer! Please don't judge me.