It’s that time of year… the kids are headed back to school which signals the end of summer! Here are our summer highlights:
We made the drive up to Jefferson, NH for a day of fun at Santa’s Village. It’s one of the most unique amusement parks I’ve ever been to. In case the name didn’t give it away, it has a Santa and Christmas theme. The park has plenty of rides for toddlers to grade school children which was neat because there aren’t normally a whole lot my 5 year old and toddler can ride together. We opted to skip Santa’s house due to the line (blasphemous, I know) but spent some time feeding the reindeer and decorating our gingerbread man cookie. My older son focused hard on the Elfabet University challenge where kids wander through Santa’s Village on the hunt for elves holding letters of the alphabet. The food was very reasonably priced for a park, and we were able to bring in our own mini cooler with snacks and drinks to keep us going. The highlight of the park was the Ho Ho H2O water park!
York’s Wild Kingdom
A zoo, ride, and beach combo makes this a great family outing! We started at the zoo which is on the smaller side but has a lot of great features such as an extensive petting zoo that includes deer, a rare white Bengal tiger, a butterfly house, and camel and paddle boat rides. Outside the zoo is a small amusement park with lots of choices for little ones as well as a ferris wheel overlooking the beach. Right outside the gates of York’s Wild Kingdom is York Beach which has a lot of great little shops and restaurants as well as an arcade and bowling. And then of course, the beach!
We opted to skip the more popular beaches this year (Hampton, York, etc), mostly because I hate dealing with the parking, but still wanted to have the fun beach day experience so we headed up to Weir’s Beach on Lake Winnipesaukee. The beach itself tends to be less busy and great for kids as the water is warmer and there are lifeguards on site. Weir’s Beach is a port for the Mount Washington cruise ship and a station for the Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad. The ship and train both make frequent passes which the kids loved! Across the street from the beach is a little strip of shops, restaurants, and a few arcades to check out once you’re all beached out.
I feel like Hilton Park is a pretty underrated spot on the Seacoast. Hilton Park is right off of the Spaulding and Rt 4 in Dover Point, NH. The playground of the park is pretty dated but if you like the nostalgia of an old school teeter-totter; this is your place. The park has incredible views of the Piscataqua River into the Great Bay and is the perfect spot for a family picnic. Down near the fishing pier is a rocky area you can go down to get closer to the water (be careful!) and go shell and sea glass hunting. We spotted several little crabs scuttling about so watch your step!
It turned out to be a wonderful summer! We will be sneaking in a few more weekend outings before summer is truly over.
Hi there! I'm Breanna, social media + event coordinator for the New Hampshire Seacoast. I am a New Hampshire transplant and have lived here for 6 years and have fallen in love with the seacoast. I love spending time with my husband and 2 rowdy boys. I am constantly plotting my next meal and love trying new places, especially if there will be dessert! I love baking, shopping, playing tourist in new towns, and coffee dates. I am excited to meet you all at our next GNO and start connecting!