Hotel at a Glance: Mountain View Grand Resort & Spa
Though it’s tucked into 1,700 forested acres in New Hampshire’s gorgeous White Mountains, the AAA Four Diamond Mountain View Grand Resort & Spa still finds a way to stand out. It was originally a simple country inn built on these slopes in 1865. But after many additions and a complete 21st-century renovation, the colonial-revival building has become a massive resort sprawled out like the magnificent peaks surrounding it.
- Award-winning spa: Decompress with a massage or immerse yourself in the 252-jet, mountain-water-filled soaking tub.
- Wine Cellar restaurant offers gourmet dishes and an extensive selection of wine to pair with them.
- Casual eats: Head to the Harvest Tavern for pub fare and local draft beers.
- Make a splash in the indoor pool, which stays open year-round.
- Kids will love the in-house movie theater—pick a flick from a video library with more than 500 titles.
White Mountains, New Hampshire: Soaring Peaks Surrounded by Historical New England Towns
There are 48 peaks that rise more than 4,000 feet in the White Mountains National Forest, making them New England’s tallest mountains. The 6,288-foot summit of Mount Washington is the tallest in the entire Northeast; from the top, you can get amazing views of New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts, New York, and, on especially clear days, Canada. To get to the top, you can either attempt the challenging hike up or take a scenic drive along the Mount Washington Auto Road. For a less daunting climb, there’s Crawford Notch State Park, where you can hike the Mount Willard trail. It climbs 3.9 miles to a summit with gorgeous vistas. Some ski resorts also make their home in the park, including the popular Wildcat Mountain near Mount Washington.
A handful of small historical towns dot the surrounding lowlands, and they all serve as excellent gateways to rugged adventure in the national forest. Many became popular vacation spots during the railroad era, when Bostonians and New Yorkers flocked here to exchange stifling city streets for mountain air. Whitefield preserves this history through its proud Victorian houses, and dozens of Gilded Age mansions stand just south in Bethlehem.