A couple of friends and I visited Laconia, New Hampshire for a Harry Potter convention called MISTI-Con. We took some time to break away from the convention and check out the local area, as well as take a day trip to the White Mountains. Here are a few highlights from our visit that we suggest you check out.
#1 Cider Bellies Doughnuts at Moulton Farms
They sell these doughnuts made with apple cider at Moulton Farms. Make sure you check times for Cider Bellies Doughnuts as the hours and days are seasonal. The mouth-watering doughnuts are made fresh on site and served hot! You can choose between Maple, Cinnamon Sugar, and Plain. Maple was my favorite! They also had something called a belly flop which she told us was a smaller version (I’m thinking donut holes) but they were sold out. We also got a great tip from a couple local ladies that told us to ask for the messed up doughnuts as they sell them for cheaper and they taste just as good!
Moulton Farms has scenic views, a cute farm house across the street and all the fresh fruits, veggies and local baked goods you would expect from a farm stand. Plus they have local honey, maple syrup & candies and even maple cream. This is a must stop!! I could tell by the amount of people I saw buying doughnuts in the short time I was there that this place is very popular.
#2 Weirs Beach
We just did a quick stop at Weirs Beach in between panels, and it was gorgeous. You get a great view of Lake Winnipesaukee, old houses and really cool old sign at the entrance. They have a bunch of cute restaurants and shops up the street that we didn’t have time to stop in. You should definitely check it out.
#3 Sawyer’s Dairy Bar
Homemade Ice Cream and Lobster Rolls are what Sawyer’s is known for. They also had some fun appetizers including corn nuggets served with maple syrup, mac & cheese bites and fried pickles. I tried my first Lobster Roll and it was overflowing with lobster meat. The roll was buttered and I’m honestly not sure if the lobster was dressed at all. It was very good.
Even though it was a quick service ordering system, the server was super friendly and offered to bring our orders over to us. The owner also came by and asked how everything was, I mean how often does that happen?! Even though we were full, we had to try the Ice Cream. They had classic and fun flavors. The girl at the window suggested Moon Drop. It was marshmallow ice cream with dark chocolate truffle candies mixed in – it was delicious! It was such a great small town place. You have to stop here if you are in the area.
#4 Drive through the White Mountains
My recommendation is that you must drive through the White Mountains on your trip. We drove up 93, then onto 3 then south on 302 and stopped in the cute town of North Conway. There are beautiful mountains all around you, great views of the granite and lots of State Parks and hiking trails to stop at. If you see any signs that say scenic view during your drive be prepared to pull over and make a stop to get photos. This how we found the Silver Cascade waterfall, a 250ft waterfall on the side of the highway! We had to run across the highway to get to it but, no hike necessary, there it was with a sign that said Silver Cascade. We were able to climb up the rocks to get some great photos and see some breathtaking views.
#5 Lost River Gorge and Boulder Caves
On our drive through the White Mountains, we stopped at Lost River Gorge and Boulder Caves. The hike distance is short, but it is a ton of steps so be prepared if you have any issues with stairs. First, you have to walk down before you start walking back up the gorge. Once you hit a certain spot the temperature drops and it feels great!
On your way back up there are a series of caves you can crawl through. Be forewarned the caves are very small. There is a description for each one so you know whether or not you have to crawl and/or climb. I definitely got dirty on my knees because the Lemon Squeezer cave floor was wet and I had to crawl through. It was so fun crawling through and not knowing what was around the next corner. You can go around the caves so you can easily opt out. The only cave I didn’t do was the one that said you have to army crawl through. There was also a suspension bridge and a covered bridge. It was really fun. We got some great photos crawling around the caves, which is something we don’t get to do in Florida.
Overall we had such a great trip. The locals were so friendly and welcoming, even the employees at the airport. I definitely would recommend New Hampshire as a great place to visit.