State Parks and Outdoors

  • New Hampshire Department of Parks and Recreation,
  • New Hampshire State Parks Opening/Closing Schedules,
  • Gardner Memorial Wayside Park, Route 4A, Wilmot, NH, 603-485-2034, Memorial Wayside Park is part of Gile State Forest, which spans 6,675 acres. The Wayside includes a memorial to Walter C. Gardner II, whose father established Gile State Forest. In addition to the scenic picnic area with picnic tables, it is also a popular place for hiking. Gardner Memorial Wayside Park is unstaffed but is open to the public year-round at no charge. There is no winter maintenance.
  • Rollins State Park, Route 103, Warner, NH, 603-456-3808, in the town of Warner, Rollins State Park is situated on the south slope of Mt. Kearsarge.  A 3-1/2 mile long scenic auto road rises from the park entrance through woodlands to the parking and picnic areas. The picnic area, located in a natural wooded glen beneath granite ledges, is historically referred to as the”Garden.” It affords views that stretch from Mt. Monadnock to the hills of New Hampshire’s coastal plain. The summits of Pack Monadnock, Crotched and Uncanoonuc Mountains, the hills of central Massachusetts, and the Boston skyline are visible on the horizon, while the Mink Hills and Merrimack River Valley can be seen nearby. A one-half mile trail to the summit of Mt.Kearsarge leaves from the picnic area. The Park is open daily from mid-June to late October, and weekends only from late October to November 11.
  • Sunapee State Beach and State Park, Route 103, Newbury, NH, 603-763-5561, major recreation area in the Dartmouth-Lake Sunapee Region offers year-round activities. In the winter, alpine skiing is available at Mt. Sunapee Resort, owned by the state of New Hampshire and managed by the Okemo Mountain Resort. Enjoy hiking, swimming, picnicking, boating, fishing and swimming in the summer/fall months. The campground now offers 5 lean-to sites for family camping. Sunapee State Beach is situated about a mile from the campground and offers many amenities. Sunapee State Park is open daily from mid-June to Labor Day. The 4,085 acre lake at Sunapee State Beach is an ideal spot for family and group outings – enjoy fishing, boating, swimming and picnicking. The Beach has a store, canoe and kayak rentals, a playground, and a new bathhouse. A boat launch is available with some restrictions. Pets are not allowed on the beach.
  • Wadleigh State Park, Route 114, Sutton, NH, 603-927-4724,
  • Wadleigh State Beach offers swimming on beautiful Kezar Lake. Tall pine trees shade the picnic sites located adjacent to the beach, making it an ideal location for families and group outings. Amenities in the park include a bathhouse, picnic tables, and playing fields. The park is open weekends only from mid-May to mid-June, and daily from mid-June to Labor Day.  The admission fee is $3.00, children 11 and under are admitted free.
  • Winslow State Park, Route 11, Wilmot, NH, 603-526-6168, State Park is located on the northwest  slope of Mt. Kearsarge in Wilmot, New Hampshire. The picnic area is on an 1,820-foot plateau with outstanding views of the White Mountains to the north and the taller of the southern and central Vermont peaks. Mt. Sunapee, Ragged Mountain, and Pleasant Lake dominate the closer landscape. A one-mile foot trail leads from the picnic area to the summit of Mt.Kearsarge. A 1- 3/4 mile trail offers a loop possibility. The Park is open weekends from mid-April to mid-June, and daily from mid-June to early November. Admission to the Park is $3.00; children 11 and under are admitted free of charge.