Hotel at a Glance: Thayers Inn
Thayers Inn has been a central part of downtown Littleton since it opened in the 1840s. It has hosted a wealth of famous guests, including Ulysses S. Grant, Henry Ford, Bette Davis, and Jimmy Carter. None of the inn’s guest rooms are the same, and its museum rooms give visitors glimpses into the town’s history. The Pollyanna room is a re-creation of the beloved character’s childhood bedroom, complete with an open trunk and spinning wheel. The character’s creator, Eleanor H. Porter, once called Littleton her home. Step back in time in the 1843 room, which reflects what a guest room would have looked like 170 years ago.
- Room options: Classic rooms are a romantic option for a couple’s getaway; choose a family suite for room for four people.
- Enjoy the country air on the inn’s back porch or one of its balconies.
- Grab a bite at the onsite Grille One Eleven, which offers pesto salmon and lobster mac and cheese, among other entrees.
- Take in 360-degree views of quaint downtown Littleton and the countryside from the inn’s cupola.
- Get active: The White Mountains area features many hiking trails ranging in difficulty from beginner to expert.
- Record setter: The candy counter at nearby Chutters is listed in Guinness World Records as the world’s longest. It’s been featured on Food Network’s Unwrapped and in the New York Times.
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. Among these towns is Littleton. The shops, inns, and restaurants lining its quaint main street all do business behind historic façades, giving visitors a glimpse into old-fashioned small-town life. Beyond this strip are towering mountains, and the town offers easy access to skiing, hiking, and mountain biking.