Top Recommended Layover Activities:
1. Zimmerman House
223 Heather St, Manchester, NH 03104 · 603-669-6144-108
This residence is the only one in New England designed by renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright and open to the public. Emphasizing horizontal lines, natural materials, and utilitarian designs, the Usonian home was completed in 1950 for Isadore and Lucille Zimmerman. Among its more unique features are built-in furniture and Wright-designed gardens. The home is administered by Manchester's Currier Museum of Art. Reservations are required for house tours.
2. Anheuser-Busch Brewery
221 Daniel Webster Hwy, Merrimack, NH 03054 · 603-595-1202
Have you ever wanted the lowdown on how they brew a cold one? Take the Anheuser-Busch Brewery Tour (about 30 minutes), and find out how the company's popular beers are made. You'll get firsthand knowledge and step-by-step instruction on the beer-brewing process. The tour includes a visit to the complimentary beer-tasting room. Stop by the gift shop for Budweiser merchandise of all forms and fashion before you leave. Self-guided or guided tours.
3. Amoskeag Fishways Learning and Visitors Center
Fletcher St, off I-293, Manchester, NH 03102 · 603-626-3474
Open all year, this unique learning center on the Merrimack River allows folks to learn much about the waterway's plant and animal life. One of the center's featured attractions is the fish ladder, an underwater migration route that springs to life – quite literally! – each April when salmon return upstream to spawn. In addition, Amoskeag boasts interactive exhibits aimed at teaching kids more about the importance of protecting streams and rivers.
4. Currier Museum of Art
201 Myrtle Way, Manchester, NH 03104 · 603-669-6144
One of Manchester's – even New Hampshire's – top attractions, the Currier is world-renowned for its extensive collection of original European and American art. Among the prized holdings are Albert Bierstadt's "Moat Mountain, Intervale, New Hampshire," Andrew Wyeth's "Spindrift," and Claude Monet's "The Seine at Bouqival." Also prominently featured at the Currier are New Hampshire-made furniture and paintings. In addition, the museum runs the Zimmerman House, the only home in New England designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and open to the public.
5. Millyard Museum
Pleasant St at Commercial St, Mill #3, Manchester, NH 03101 · 603-622-7531
Located in what was referred to as "Number 3" when the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company led the world in cotton textile production, this museum chronicles the history of Manchester's old millyard area and its lifelong ties to the textile industry. On exhibit are items manufactured during the mills' heyday, old looms, and even a replica of how Elm Street looked in the early 20th century, right down to the cobblestones. A terrific place to learn more about the history of the region.
Top Weekend Getaways And Day Trip Excursions:
Known as one of the top celebrations in the state, Manchester's Riverfest is held each fall. More than 100,000 people flood into the Queen City to enjoy great food, live entertainment, fun and games, and dazzling firework displays. Terrific for the entire family.
2. Chamberlain Bridge
Since way back in 1806, a bridge has stood on this spot, connecting the rocky Souhegan River's north and south banks. The arched stone structure visitors see today was completed in the 1920s by a local granite company – the original bridge was wooden. In July of 2003, Merrimack's Chamberlain Bridge was placed on the state's Register of Historic Places.
3. Olde Kings Highway
Gerard Dr, Merrimack, NH 03054
This historic route, part of which runs through nearby Merrimack, once connected the towns of Keene and Portsmouth and was highly traveled in Colonial times. Today, large sections of the original trail have been paved over to make way for automobile routes, but a few segments are still visible. Efforts are also underway to post signage on remaining parts of the original trail, making it more accessible to the general public and preserving it for future generations. Portions of the Kings Highway do cross over private property, so do your research before exploring.
4. Robert Frost Farm
Rockingham Rd, NH-Rte 28, Derry, NH 03038 · 603-432-3091
American literary figure Robert Frost and his family lived on this quiet farm outside of Derry during the first decade of the 20th century. The white clapboard home, built in 1884, has been carefully restored and refurnished to look much as it did when the Frost family resided in it. In fact, the home's caretakers enlisted the poet's family when decorating it, using their childhood memories to make things look as authentic as possible. On display in the dining room are china pieces that actually belonged to Frost and his wife. Surrounding the home is an extensive trail network that leads hikers to nearby woods – perhaps this is the road less traveled?
5. McIntyre Ski Area
Kennard Rd, off Rte 93, Manchester, NH 03104 · 603-624-6571
Boasting a vertical drop of nearly 170 feet, McIntyre Ski Area is a terrific place to get your bearings before taking on larger, steeper slopes up in the White Mountains. Seasoned pros, too, appreciate the park's convenience, which gives them a place right in town to hone their skills. For those who don't care to try on the skis, McIntyre offers areas to snowboard and tube. Ski and snowboard lessons are available for folks of all ages.
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