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5 Ideas Every New Englander Should Have On Their Summer Bucket List

Aug 05, 2019 11:08AM ● By Gabrielle Varela

New England may be known for its picturesque winters but we wait all year for summer’s sunshine and heat. So what do we do once it’s finally here? Here are five ideas every New Englander should have on their summer bucket list.

Pick Your Own Farms and Farmer’s Markets

Nowhere beats New England bounty come summertime in the land of literal farm-to-table dining. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, cherries, blackberries are all available to collect yourself or grab on the go at farm stands. Weekends you can find many New Englanders at their local farmer’s market scouring heaps of unbeatable fresh produce, coolers full of butcher’s best cuts, enjoying the sun and their community. Find one near you.

Ski Mountain Adventure Centers 

With so many resorts in the Vermont and New Hampshire area, you can be sure skiing isn’t the only activity these hot spots have to offer. Once the snow melts, the mountain turns into high energy adventure parks used for ziplining, hiking, mountain biking, obstacle courses, bungee trampolines, tubing lanes, and even alpine water slides! Bretton Woods Canopy Tour descends over 1000 feet of elevation, the 3-hour tour takes nature-lovers and thrill-seekers across a series of tree-top zip lines through a network of platforms. Killington’s WreckTangle, an outdoor ninja obstacle challenge serves up nine different sections of unique and fun-filled obstacles to conquer. Complete with cargo nets, balance beams, rope swings and more. There is plenty of summer fun to keep the business and the adrenaline going all year long.

Our Favorite Swimming Spot

New England does have some legendary beaches (um, hello, JAWS!) but skip the deadlocked traffic for some summer camp vibes and hit the wealth of secluded spots only offered to visitors upon request. With endless rivers, quarries, lakes and ledges, you can kayak, canoe, climb, picnic, float, or jump. These locations are passed around and passed down and come summer everyone is on the hunt to hit all the best spots. Kayaking at Lake Willlouhby, cliff jumping at Warren Falls or a low key wade around the Quechee Gorge, these locales serve up real mountain people living with excellent views. Check local websites or even better ask a local where they like to swim. They may not give you their secret spot but they will definitely give you plenty of options! 

Iconic Pit Stops

Lobster rolls, fried clams, soft serve, burgers. Nothing beats these old school snack shacks that set the New England summer scene. Order at the window then find a place to picnic and chow. Most of these joints still have that whimsical vintage feel and darn fine deep-fried fare like the famous burger at The White Cottage Snack Bar in Woodstock, VT or piled high lobster roll at Markey’s Lobster Pool in Seabrook, NH. These roadside hot spots are nostalgic of and necessary for New England memories. Hit them after the beach and before the drive-in. 


Barbecue, bonfires, and beer. New Englanders love craft beer which is why we are home to pioneers like The Alchemist’s Heady Topper, Lost Nation, and Upper Pass Beer Company but also major players like Harpoon, Long Trail Brewery, Sam Adams and Allagash. Microbrew vacations and road trips are popular among the curious and connoisseurs but most breweries offer tastings and some summer fun like Harpoon BBQ Festival or the New Hampshire Bacon and Beer Festival. Near or far, breweries always have something going on and usually a patio to enjoy a cold one on!

Share some of your favorite ways to enjoy summer in New England with us in the comments below!

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