The White Mountains of New Hampshire and the Coast of Maine

 

From the top:   Crawford Notch Train Station; Squam Lake Boat House and Squam River Covered Bridge

From the top:  Squam Lake Dock; Portland Head Light and Crawford Notch

            Our trip to New Hampshire and Maine and incorporated a visit to the White Mountains and then a trip south along the southern coast of Maine.   Arriving at the Manchester Airport in New Hampshire, we spent our first night at Squam Lake, the site of the filming of the movie, “On Golden Pond”.    In fact, the name of our B&B was “The Inn on Golden Pond”……not quite on the lake, though it was close to Squam Lake. 

            The next day we headed north to the White Mountains and began our stay at the Notchland Inn, an excellent location for room and meals while surrendering to the extraordinary surroundings of Mother Nature.  Hiking is quite plentiful throughout the region and a visit to The Flume Gorge, just off I-93, is an absolute must.    The Conway Scenic Railroad is a neat experience, a rail trip that takes you through the forested countryside from Conway to Fabyan’s Station, and the Crawford Notch train depot is a true classic.    

            In Littleton, NH we visited Chutters candy store, one like we might have been to when we were young.  But it was there today, but this candy store has a one-hundred and twelve foot counter full of candy jars and it is recognized in the Guinness Book of Records.     

Sadly, after leaving the White Mountains we drove to the Maine Coast through the towns of Lewiston and Auburn on our way to Brunswick, Maine.   These New England towns reveal a unique charm with their quaint small town atmosphere, old-style architecture and the opportunity for personal interactions with the locals.  

The Flume Gorge in the White Mountains....spectacular hike through the gorge on boardwalks and trails
Above: Brunswick, Maine Rail Bridge; Ogunquit Bay at the Beach Above:  Squam Lake and Saco Lake at Crawford Notch

Above: Saco Lake at Crawford Notch and  the Marginal Way in Ogunquit, Maine

Above: Squam Lake Boat House and Kennebunkport, Maine

             In Brunswick, a town that is truly there for the locals, we visited both the well known and highly acknowledged Bowdoin College and the Gelato Fiasco ice crème parlor.   Both are very special and neither is disappointing.   I had visited Brunswick in the past, when the U.S. Navy maintained a presence that is gone today and missed as well.  

            Traveling along the Maine coastline south to Freeport, we stopped briefly at the shopping “Mecca” that is anchored by the widely recognized L. L. Bean store, but has grown by hundreds of other shops just trying to get these suck…, shoppers into their stores.    Fortunately, we soon drove south to Portland, the biggest city in Maine, with a neat downtown harbor area that is designed for tourists with many shops and restaurants.    Portland also has an excellent art museum and the Victoria Mansion that is quite exotic and has a wonderful story about times gone by.   

            Our last destination on our trip was Ogunquit, Maine, a small and picturesque village on the ocean, which lives by its tourist trade.  Restaurants and little shops line the few streets of the village that lead to the beaches including Perkins Cove where we met friends, Mike and Barbara for lunch.    They came up from Boston for the afternoon….a wonderful visit.   Perkins Cove is home to maybe the only “walking draw bridge” in the country….well, that is what I was told.     

            Our visit to Ogunquit was made ever more pleasant by our stay at the Gazebo Inn, a well appointed and pleasant place that catered to our every need.     An easy ride on our last day from Ogunquit, Maine to the Manchester, New Hampshire airport concluded a great trip.