New England one month
Replies: 20 - Last Post: Nov 3, 2012 2:43 AM Last Post By: frede
Oct 28, 2012 11:37 AM
New England one monthHi
I'm a Dane travelling with my wife and 2-year old son next July to New England and would like some feedback on my itinerary. We're interested in a bit of everything but history, beer, food, shorter hikes and culture are up there. Would like a good mix of coast/beach, city and mountain. Not too much driving. Toddler friendly activities are of course a must to factor in. As Europeans we need to spend a day or two at an outlet mall shopping for clothes at a fraction of the cost at home. We're starting with 4 nights in Boston and then a 5 day cruise to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick in Canada. After that we're renting a car Boston-Boston and this is where your help would be appreciated:
Kittery 1 night - for the outlet
Portland 2 nights (visiting places like Old Ochard and Kennenbunkport on the way)
Franconia, White Mountains 3 nights
Stowe, Vermont 2 nights
Area around Mount Snow (West Dover), 2 nights
New Haven, 2 nights
Mystic, 1 night
Newport, 2 nights
Cape Cod, 4 nights
Plymouth, 1 night
Area around Wrentham for outlet mall, 1 night
Thanks for any ideas you might have.
Oct 28, 2012 11:47 AM
1Have you considered Acadia? I'd take that over the Cape, unless you want long, sandy beaches.
Oct 28, 2012 1:00 PM
2Hi Dane, We had a vacation condo in Campton NH for a few years while our boys were young and it was a wonderful place to get in touch with nature so to speak. Campton is about 1/2 hr south of the Franconia area where you are planning to visit. One of the nicest things we ever did was rent kayaks (or canoes) and spend the afternoon paddling down the Pemi river. Truly gives you the sense of how beautiful NH really is with the huge pine trees lining the shores and little rocky beaches to stop and have a picnic. We rented from Ski Fanatics in Campton and they drive you up river 6 or so miles and dump you in...there is no rush, go at your own pace, just need to be at the pick up point by a certain time. If you are into nature and want a way to truly relax I would highly recommend it. You would need to do it in a canoe since you have a little one. There are also many beautiful waterfalls in NH. Enjoy your travels!
Oct 28, 2012 1:22 PM
3Boston is a pretty big history town. Watch the first tow episodes of this mini-series http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0129692/ and take a self-guided tour by walking the freedom trail.
I’d consider buying the 2-day $40 trolley tour tickets, http://www.trolleytours.com/boston/
Two years old is probably too young for the Science Museum but you might enjoy the Aquarium if you pick a day when it’s not too crowded. (They day my family went the place was PACKED with kids on a school field trip.)
The downtown of some American cities has so many offices and so few resident they are a little like a ghostown. Not so with Boston. Enough people live there that there are supermarkets every couple of blocks allowing you to save money by avoiding restaurant meals.
Samuel Adams beer is practically synonymous with Boston Beer. I’m sure they have micro-breweries there too but Samuel Adams is the micro-brewery that made it big. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Adams_(beer) I didn’t take the brewery tour. But I hear it’s worthwhile.
All of costal new England is known for its lobster and other seafood. Boston is known for its clam chowder and canollis (although personally we found the canollis so sweet we threw them away after a couple of bites.)
I thought Plymouth was GREAT but my son was around 10 at the time and had been learning about “the Pilgrims” since before kindergarten. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0493146/
We stayed at a reasonably priced motel out of town on Samoset Dr (ave.?) took a walking tour of “downtown” (Leyden St. and environs). Then we drove about 2 miles south and spent an extended afternoon at the re-enactment village (very nicely done.)
On our return we took a slow drive up Leyden St. and the whole thing just sort of “popped.” My son practically squealed with delight as he pointed and said “That’s Miles Standish’s house! That’s where they kept their cattle!” etc.
I don’t know a lot about New England. I’ve heard that North of Cape Cod you have to choose your beaches carefully because some of them are rocky rather than sandy.
Trails.com is a great place to find hiking opportunities. It’s not super easy to use, but it has a LOT of information.
If your cruise allows you the flexibility you might want to witness the extreme tide changes at the Bay of Fundy. The tide rises or falls as much as 55 feet in a single 4-6 hour period. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bay_of_Fundy
enjoy your trip.
Oct 28, 2012 1:33 PM
Oct 28, 2012 1:39 PM
5Oh, in Maine there is a place called Baxter State Park, it's home to a lonely mountain known as Katahdin. Katahdin is a very rough climb. If it got any rougher they’d call it mountain-climbing instead of hiking, so you probably won’t make it to the top with a 2-year-old, but there are a few easier trails near the foot of the mountain.
I mention it because in some ways, it outranks Patagonia (in Chile) and Nepal as the Mecca of hiking. It is the northern terminus of a 2,000-mile trail that begins in Georgia. See Appalachian Trail http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appalachian_trail.
Every spring more than a thousand crazy hikers start off in Georgia (Edit) attempting to walk the entire 2,000 miles to the summit of Katahdin.
More than one tear of joy has been shed at the top.
If you’re a hiking family it would be a shame to be in the area and not at least see it from the base.
Edited by: LongIslandBob
Oct 28, 2012 6:07 PM
6I was thinking Baxter State Park in Maine, too. If you go to that part of Maine, I'd recommend getting a cabin on Moosehead Lake (we stayed at a place called the Birches and had a great, rustic cabin on the lake) .. really quite beautiful. From there, you could do a day trip to Baxter and hike a portion of the Appalachian trail. Acadia would be wonderful, too, if you make it up that far in Maine.
Boston would also be great for culture and history ... walk the Freedom Trail through the city.
If you're in Connecticut and have a few extra hours, the Mark Twain House and Harriot Beecher Stow House are next door to each other in Hartford. The Wadsworth Atheneum is a nice Art Museum also in Hartford.
Also in CT, if you need another Outlet 'fix', you could check out Clinton Crossing ... probably around 1/2 hour from New Haven.
Enjoy your trip!
Oct 28, 2012 6:31 PM
Oct 28, 2012 7:19 PM
8You mention ...."Not to much driving"
but you then outline your planned trip
which is anything but.
1st use Google MAPS to get an idea of distances involved.
Shopping Outlet malls are not always the cheapest option
don't ignore the regular malls ....see SIMON.COM / ....."SIMON MALLS"
the regular malls have to compete with the likes of Wrentham Village.
Massachusetts, there no sales tax on clothing.
New Hampshire, has no sales tax but does have taxes for
hotels and eating in restaurants.
Not far from Portland, ME is Freeport, an outlet town ( Directions ....I -295 toll-free, exit 20 )
make sure you visit the LLBEAN flagship and outlet store.
to the White Mountains from Portland take route 302 all the way
stopping in North Conway N.H. another outlet town.
further west is the town of Brettton Woods stop by the Mount Washington hotel
you can drive up to the hotel and have a look inside, famous for the "BRETTON WOODS AGREEMENT"
see WIKIPEDIA.ORG for info.
as seen on Youtube now ..."Stephen Fry in America episode 1 New World"
Franconia NH, for breakfast try POLLY'S PANCAKE PARLOR on route 117
enjoy your trip.
Oct 28, 2012 11:48 PM
Oct 29, 2012 5:23 AM
10I also recommend the outlet mall in Freeport, Maine. Abercrombie & Fitch and other top brands have outlet shops there. Nearby, I recommend visiting Cabella's Sportsmen's Store with its huge dioramas of the wild animals (hunters' trophies) and fish. Its almost like a natural history museum.
Acadia National Park, on Mount Desert Island, is easy to get to. Straight north on Highway #95 to Bangor, then Alternate #1 to Mount Desert Island. Or, along the Maine coastline from Portland and Freeport along Highway #1 to Ellsworth and then the turnoff to Mount Desert Island. Ellsworth and Highway #1 is just 100 miles drive from the Canadian border and New Brunswick. Almost 2 hours' drive past Maine's fishing villages. Take the detour over the bridge to Campobello Island, New Brunswick, where President Franklin D. Roosevelt spent his childhood summers -- tour his mansion home and museum. Go out to the lighthouse to see the Bay of Fundy high tide rolling in -- I saw a whale surfing the waves on the high tide. It is the highest tidal change in the world. I was told that the drive along the New Brunswick coast is spectacular. I don't know if the ferry between Nova Scotia and Portland, Maine, still operates, so that you could take the ferry with your car back south.
Oct 29, 2012 5:30 AM
Acadia is about an hour shorter drive to Franconia as well.
This is why it's silly to recommend Baxter while saying Acadia is "too far away."
Oct 29, 2012 5:52 AM
Oct 29, 2012 5:54 AM
Oct 29, 2012 6:00 AM
14#6 recommended Baxter, then said Acadia also if you make it that far north in Maine. (Acadia is of course not as far north as Baxter.)
Bags feeling light?
Coffee table looking bare?
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