Get us in your inbox

Photograph: Visit New Hampshire
Photograph: Visit New Hampshire

A guide to camping in New Hampshire

Whether you’re an extreme adventurer or heading out on a family vacation, these camping spots have all the amenities and activities you’ll need

Written by Gerrish Lopez in association with Visit New Hampshire

When it comes to the great outdoors, New Hampshire is near the top, with breathtaking scenery and access to all types of outdoor activities. The best camping in New Hampshire can be found in towering mountains, along pristine lakes and near gorgeous scenic drives. From forested parks not far from civilization to the iconic White Mountains, the Granite State has plenty of opportunity to get away from it all and reconnect with nature. These camping spots provide a perfect base for exploring the wonders of the state’s natural beauty. And because this is New Hampshire, you’ll never be too far away from some great places to eat and cool things to do.

Discover more about New Hampshire

Swell Oyster: part of the 'How I Live Free' series by Visit New Hampshire.

This large campground is the only one in the White Mountains on a lake with a swimming beach. Many of the 200+ campsites have lake views. Boat rentals are available for fishing, and there’s a trail through the pine forest surrounding the lake, perfect for wildlife-spotting. Families can head to the nearby White Lake Speedway for activities like bowling and laser tag, while beer enthusiasts should check out Tuckerman Brewing Company.

Part of Franconia Notch State Park, this campground is located in one of the state's three mountain passes. It’s the perfect base for hiking the Appalachian Trail, or exploring the Flume Gorge, the Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway, the New England Ski Museum, swimming at Echo Lake, fly fishing at Profile Lake, cycling trails and waterfalls. Free interpretive nature programs offer information on the region’s natural environment. Tent sites and RV parking are available.

Though equidistant from Concord and Manchester and near the seacoast beaches, this peaceful state park has plenty to keep you occupied. Families will enjoy the large campsites with easy access to lake swimming. The park has several trails, canoe and kayak rentals, a beaver marsh and a boulder field strewn with glacial rock deposits. Nearby you’ll find the New England Dragway, Flag Hill Distillery and Winery and Candia Springs Adventure Park.

Not ready to rough it? Huttopia in Albany is the place for glamping in New Hampshire. Canvas platform tents are set up and furnished—some have food prep areas, some even have a bathroom—so you can focus your energy on enjoying the surrounding nature. The campground has a heated pool, games and treats served from an Airstream trailer, but you’ll want to swim in Iona lake, go tubing on the Saco River or drive the Kancamagus scenic byway.

Deep in the White Mountain National Forest along the banks of the Zealand River, Sugarloaf campgrounds I and II are popular with hikers. Sites are large and secluded. They have fire rings and water access but no showers. A hike up Sugarloaf Mountain offers amazing 360-degree views, while a family-friendly hike along the river leads to an AMC hut. The Mt. Washington Auto Road and Cog Railway are just a few miles away.

This Great North Woods park is a favorite of fishing enthusiasts as well as kayakers and canoers. Paddlers can explore the 200-acre lake itself, as well as a string of Connecticut Lakes that stretch north to the Canadian border and the upper part of the Connecticut River. ATV camping is available as well, and ATVers can access 1,000 miles of off-highway trails right from the campsites.

Another popular White Mountains campground, this one gives you access to gorgeous vistas of the Presidential Mountain Range and Mount Washington. There’s plenty of hiking and biking trails along the river as well as fishing spots. Great for families, the campground has a pool, hot tub, playground, restrooms, showers and a general store. It’s also close to Santa’s Village and Bretton Woods.

Bear Brook is the largest developed state park in New Hampshire. Campsites are situated in the woods around Beaver Pond, where you can rent canoes and boats. There are plenty of amenities from showers and laundry to firewood and ice. Forty miles of trails wind through forest, bogs, ponds and hilltops, with hiking, biking and horseback riding available. Don’t miss the Richard Diehl Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum, in one of the country's most intact remaining CCC camps. The depression-era camp also houses the New Hampshire Antique Snowmobile Museum.

These two campgrounds are about six miles apart along the Kancamagus Scenic Byway, situated in dense forest along the Swift River. Here you can hike trails up Mt. Chocorua and several other peaks, and hike to beautiful Sabbaday Falls. Nearby sights include the Russell-Colbath Historic Site and the Albany covered bridge.

This campground is close to shopping and restaurants in Woodstock and major attractions like the Kancamagus Scenic Byway and Lost River Gorge, yet still feels isolated. There are plenty of hiking options nearby, and kids will love the on-site activities like paddle boat and kayak rentals, tennis and badminton courts, basketball and a playground.

Campers at this state park in the southwestern part of the state have exclusive access to a swimming beach on Otter Lake. Canoe, kayak and boat rentals are available, and the lake is great for fishing in the summer. Explore ponds and bogs along woodland trails through the park, or head out to climb nearby Mt. Monadnock.

    You may also like
    You may also like

    The best things in life are free.

    Get our free newsletter – it’s great.

    Loading animation
    Déjà vu! We already have this email. Try another?

    🙌 Awesome, you're subscribed!

    Thanks for subscribing! Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon!