Take a classic New England town, perch it on the banks of New Hampshire’s largest lake, add spectacular views of mountain ranges across the water, surround it with fabulous hiking and cross country ski trails, sprinkle in some beaches, museums, concert venues and shopping, and the result is Wolfeboro, NH.
Known as “America’s Oldest Summer Resort,” Wolfeboro sits on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee, the third largest lake in New England. During the off-season, Wolfeboro is a cozy community of a little more than 6,000 year-round residents. When the weather warms up (or the ice fishing derby is happening!), the population swells five-fold as second homeowners return to their vacation properties and visitors come to enjoy the area’s stunning beauty and plentiful activities.
Whether you enjoy arts and culture, outdoor activities, or shopping and dining, the perfect adventures await in the Wolfeboro area. We’ve shared a few suggestions at the links below. When you are a guest at Pickering House Inn, we look forward to helping you plan the perfect visit and assisting with any reservations or recommendations you may require.
Browse the eclectic shops lining the main streets in downtown Wolfeboro (you’ll find everything from fine art and upscale gifts to scuba and fishing gear), grab a bite to eat, or just watch the boat traffic come and go from the downtown docks. In warm weather, you can catch free concerts in the lovely Cate Park on the waterfront.
Don’t miss the amazing ice cream at Bailey’s Bubble, a Wolfeboro institution
LAKE WINNIPESAUKEE & LAKE WENTWORTH
At more than 70 square miles, Lake Winnipesaukee is the largest of New Hampshire’s many lakes – and the focus of recreational fun in the region. Boating, fishing and swimming in warm weather gives way to ice fishing and snowmobiling in the winter. Of course, just gazing at the lake’s beauty keeps many a visitor and resident occupied year-round! Wolfeboro’s Lake Wentworth is a perfect spot for kayaking or spending a day at beautiful Albee beach.
Ride the Millie B, a 28-foot, mahogany, triple cockpit “woodie” operated by the New Hampshire Boat Museum
Wolfeboro offers sandy beaches with mountain views on Winnipesaukee and Wentworth. Let the Inn pack you a beach bag and picnic lunch so you can soak up the sun effortlessly. The Kingswood Golf Course up the street from Pickering House Inn beckons golfers to its classic Donald Ross (18 hole – par 72) championship course open to the public, and The Nick Recreation area offers a full track for that work-out you crave.
Winter is magical in Wolfeboro. The town’s Abenaki Ski Area was founded in 1936, making it the oldest small ski area in America. It offers affordable downhill skiing on seven trails from green to black diamond, glade skiing, night skiing, a terrain park, and miles of Nordic trails. The adjacent Pop Whalen Ice & Arts Center is a favorite skating venue when conditions for outdoor skating are not ideal.
Enjoy spectacular views of the White Mountains, rolling grass pastures and beautiful woodland trails on horseback at High Meadow Farms
Soak in the stunning scenery and get a great workout on the area’s wonderful hiking, biking and cross country ski trails! Enjoy breakfast at the Inn then walk downtown to hop on Bridge Falls Path, which connects you to the 11-mile Cotton Valley Rail Trail. The Lakes Region’s Ossipee mountain range offers an extensive network of trails, many of which offer gorgeous views of the lakes below.
Hike, bike, snowshoe or ski from Wolfeboro to Wakefield on the rail trail from downtown Wolfeboro
ARTS & CULTURE
The Wolfeboro area is home to many artists, musicians and performers who are drawn to the tranquility and inspiring scenery of the region. Works from local artists are often displayed in downtown galleries and nearby Gilford, Laconia, and Plymouth are popular spots to catch both local and national musicians. The free concerts at Cate Park in downtown Wolfeboro are a summer tradition, as is the Great Waters Music Festival, which attracts outstanding performers of jazz, folk, classical, popular and Broadway music. During summer evenings, you can even enjoy music from the Cate Park concerts while relaxing on the porch of Pickering House Inn!
Local Tip: The Village Players Theater brings community theater productions, hosts monthly classic movies on the Big Screen, and is frequently the trying ground for productions that go on to the Big Apple. You can say you saw it here first!
Wolfeboro’s natural beauty is its calling card, but there is much more to the area than meets the eye. Fascinating museums including the Wright Museum of World War II, the Libby Museum of Natural History, the NH Boat Museum and the Clark Museum complex of historic buildings are tucked throughout the area.
Visit all four museums, plus travel by antique boat and Molly the Trolley for local tours!
MARKETS & FESTIVALS
Farmer’s markets, music festivals, antique boat and car shows, pond hockey tournaments, fishing derbies, a legendary 4th of July parade and a full calendar of other special events keep the New Hampshire Lakes Region hopping. Check our Pickering events calendar to see what’s happening at the Inn during your visit.
Local Tip: Vintage Fairs, engaging lectures, Walking Tours and special events bring New Hampshire history to life at the nearby Clark House Museum.
Wineries and breweries are tucked throughout the Lakes Region. If you are craving a great craft beer, you need look no farther than Wolfeboro’s own Burnt Timber Brewing, The Lone Wolfe Brewing Company and the tap room at Beveridge Craft Beer & Soap right downtown. New nano-breweries are sprouting up in the area and the nationally recognized Tamworth Distillery is a short drive away (watch for tasting events at Pickering House Inn!)
Tamworth Distilling in nearby Tamworth, NH offers a wonderful retail space and tasting bar. Taste the full line of spirits , shop for cocktails and unique gifts.
EASY DAY TRIPS
Wolfeboro is ideally located in the heart of the Lakes Region, within an easy drive of New Hampshire’s White Mountains to the north or the New Hampshire and southern Maine seacoast to the east. Of course, there is so much to do right here in the Lakes Region, you may not want to roam farther afield. No matter the season, you can’t beat a leisurely drive all the way around Lake Winnipesaukee. The 60+ mile drive is a great way to explore all the Lakes Region towns along the way!
Tour, hike and eat at Castle in the Clouds, an Arts and Crafts style estate built in 1913 on a mountaintop with stunning views of the lakes below. The mansion is surrounded by 28 miles of hiking trails on more than 5,300 acres. If hiking is not your style, you can always relish the view from a lovely dining patio.