MERRIMACK VALLEY REGION
Off N.H. Rt. 111-E, North Salem • (603) 893-8300
You'll be amazed by these stone-age monuments: walls and roofs constructed from slabs of stone weighing 4 to 11 tons and a calendar circle of standing monoliths, all built without tools by an unknown culture thousands of years before any known European descendants of "the other Stonehenge" builders arrived on the scene. Take a self-guided tour, watch the informational video and visit the museum. It's open special hours on astronomical dates such as equinoxes and solstices.
Hours: This site is open year round: from February 1st to June 19th from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; from June 20 to Sept. 4 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; from Sept. 5 to Oct. 31 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and from Nov. 1st to Jan. 31st, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. They also open for celestial events during winter: winter solstice in December and spring equinox in March. Call for details of those observances. The attraction also opens its trails and rents snowshoes during the winter.
Prices: Admission is $8 for adults, $7 for seniors (older than 65), $6 for teens ages 13 to 15 and $5 for children ages 6 to 12. Children younger than six are admitted free.
Amoskeag Fishways/Fish Ladder
Fletcher St., Exit 6 off I-293, Manchester • (603) 626-FISH
Because the Amoskeag dam prevented fish from swimming upriver to spawn, Public Service Company constructed a fish ladder here — really a series of "water elevators" that carry the migrating fish up and over the dam. An underwater window allows visitors to watch as hundreds of fish, mostly alewives, swim past. Keep an eye out for the occasional Atlantic salmon (pictures painted on the wall will help you identify species). An audiovisual show and guided tours explain both the historic significance of the site, where native Americans came to fish each spring, and the waterpower generating plant still operating today. In recent years the Fishways people have joined forces with New Hampshire Audubon to run workshops on watershed protection and wildlife restoration, including monitoring the peregrine falcon now wintering in Manchester. Call for schedule.
Hours: The fishways are open Monday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. except when the fish are running (April 30th to mid June); then they're open seven days a week 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Prices: Admission is free.
Anheuser-Busch Brewery Tours, Clydesdale Hamlet
Rt. 3, Exit 10 off Everett Tpke., Merrimack • (603) 595-1202
One-hour tours of the brewery end with the opportunity to sample the best-selling beer in America (soft drinks are also available). The Bavarian-style hamlet is home to the famous eight-horse hitch, and the Clydesdales welcome visitors. These truly impressive animals are worth the visit.
Hours: Open all year. Tours available Jan-Apr, Thurs-Mon, 10 a.m.-4:00 p.m. May, Sept-Dec, daily tours available, 10 a.m.-4:00 p.m. June-Aug open daily 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tours are given on the hour. It's closed major holidays.
Prices: Tours are free.
Canobie Lake Park
Exit 2 off I-93, Salem • (603) 893-3506
First opened in 1902, Canobie still features an antique carousel, a 1936 (but more recently rebuilt) roller coaster, and a paddle-wheel boat ride. But there's plenty of zoom for today's thrill-seekers too, with four roller coasters and more than 75 games and attractions. The Corkscrew is 73 feet high, and Insider kids report it's awesome! A scaled-down section of the park enables younger visitors to enjoy themselves without scaring their parents to death. Fireworks in July and August, clowns and other acts, swimming and food galore round out the fun. Hours: The park is open from late April to late September. It is open weekends only until Memorial day and daily from Memorial Day to Labor Day, noon to 10 p.m. It closes Sundays at 6 p.m. Prices: Adult tickets are $22, children less than 48 inches tall get in for $15, and there's no charge for children younger than 2. Enter the park after 5 p.m. for just $15.
Canterbury Shaker Village
Exit 18 off I-93, Canterbury • (603) 783-9511
The Shakers were a religious community that thrived throughout the eastern United States during the late 18th and 19th centuries. Although their numbers have dwindled (there are a few Shakers still living in Maine), they left a legacy of simple living, simple pleasures and simple joy, which are reflected in the architecture, furniture, recipes and music we still value today. The Canterbury Village, once home to as many as 300 people, is now open to visitors. The last Shaker to live here, Sister Ethel Hudson, died in 1992. Experts on Shaker traditions explain the community lifestyle and demonstrate traditional crafts. Light lunches are available from the Summer Kitchen. (See our Restaurants chapter for fine dining at The Creamery.)
Hours: The village is open weekends only in April, November and December, and daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May through October.
Prices: Admission, including the guided 90-minute tour, costs $10 for adults, $5 for children ages 6 to 15 and free for children younger than 6. Family ticket's are available at a discount.
Rt. 27, Candia • (603) 483-5623
Visit the largest collection of agricultural animals & North American wildlife in NH. A visit to our 180-acre farm is affordable, educational, and exciting for children and adults. The farm is home to over 200 animals consisting of 30 different species.
The barnyard area includes all the traditional agricultural animals you would expect to see on a farm. Children especially enjoy our "hands-on" petting area. Follow the paths leading into the woods and you will encounter our wildlife exhibits, here you will find many of North America's greatest predators.
Throughout the day various demonstrations, presentations and activities are offered. Pony rides and horse-drawn hayrides are offered. So be sure to pack a picnic lunch and spend the day at the farm.
Hours: May 2, to Oct. 14, 2001 10a.m. to 4p.m. Weds, Thurs, Fri, Sat. & Sun. No Reservations Required (weather permitting).
Prices: $7.50 per person Children 12 months and under FREE.
Christa McAuliffe Planetarium
3 Institute Dr., Concord • (603) 271-7827 or 271-7831
This state-of-the art planetarium is dedicated to the memory of New Hampshire teacher Christa McAuliffe, who died in the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger. Hands-on exhibits about the history of space exploration are informative and pass the time while you wait to "board" a spaceship for your show. The shows involve viewers through interactive technology — everyone votes at crucial points in the narrative, and the outcome determines what planets or solar systems the spaceship will visit next. The story lines are a bit farfetched, but kids enjoy the game. (There are different shows recommended for different ages; see our Kidstuff chapter for details.) The photography, including shots from the Hubble telescope, is truly exceptional. Walk-ins are usually seated without trouble, but reservations are accepted and a good idea if your group is large. The planetarium also sponsors free Skywatch events and celebrations of astronomical events. To get there, take Exit 15E off I-93, then Exit 1 off I-393.
Hours: Open year round, Mon-Wed 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Thurs-Sat 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sundays noon to 5 p.m. It is closed Memorial Day.
Prices: Admission is free. Planetarium shows are $7 for adults and $4 for seniors and children.
Currier Gallery of Art
201 Myrtle Way, Manchester NH (603)669-6144
Painting, decorative art, sculpture. A reservation tours of a Frank Lloyd Wright home. Concerts, Family day, educational programs, and special events.
Admission - $5-adults, $4-senors/students, under 18-free
Folsom Family Sugar House
130 Candia Rd., Chester, NH 03036 (603)887-3672
Visitors welcome! Free samples. Wood fired evaporator. Syrup, cream and candy available.
Please call ahead for boiling times.
New Hampshire Historical Society Museum
Eagle Sq., Concord • (603) 226-3189
The museum moved into this renovated factory/warehouse in 1995, preserving the historic building and providing for display of the many artifacts in the society's collection. Gather around the campfire and hear an Abenaki tale, see an ancient dugout canoe and a historic Concord Coach, and climb the replica fire tower for an eagle's-eye view of Concord.
Hours: The museum is open year round, Tuesday through Saturday 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m., Sunday 12 to 5 p.m. and Thursday evening until 8:30 p.m. It closes on holidays.
Prices: Admission is $5.00 for adults, $4 for adults 55 and up, $2.50 for 6 to 18 year olds and free for children younger than 6. Family admission is $15. Parking is free; have your ticket validated at the desk.
New Hampshire State House
107 N. Main St., Concord • (603) 271-2154
New Hampshire's State House is the oldest state capitol in which a legislature (the country's largest) still meets in its original chambers. Monuments and statues on the grounds honor New Hampshire natives, notably Daniel Webster, John Parker Hale (the first person ever elected to the U.S. Senate as an abolitionist), Franklin Pierce and John Stark. A self-guided tour shows you 150 portraits of major political figures, the Hall of Flags, murals and documents.
Hours: The visitors center is open weekdays 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is closed on the weekends on major holidays.
Prices: Admission is free.
SEE Science Center
200 Belford Street Manchester, NH (603) 669-0400
The SEE Science Center has re-opened in a new location and now features some exciting new attractions. Your visit will include an interactive tour of the major exhibits with time afterward to explore the other exhibits. During the tour, guides will ask questions appropriate to age level to stimulate scientific thinking. Using group members as demonstrators, the scientific principles behind the exhibits will be demonstrated in a fun and exciting manner. The tour may include special demonstrations of the Van deGraaf generators and for those visitors under 80 lbs, the MOONWALK which simulates the moon's gravity! Admission is $4.00 per child and with every 4 (four) students, 1 (one) adult is admitted free. There is a minimum of 10 students (or a minimum $40 charge) for tours.
The Chemistry Room will be open by appointment for student groups. Each lab activity, although self-directed, will feature a related demonstration performed by a SEE staff member, provide suggested discussion to introduce and wrap-up the experiment, step-by-step instructions for the students, all lab equipment and materials needed, and a handout to take back to the classroom for further exploration. Other mini-courses are in the works.
A scheduled visit to the Chem Lab for your students will be $4 per student. There is a minimum of 10 students (or a minimum $40 charge) for labs. This fee also includes time for the students to explore the rest of the science center. Approximate time for the Chem Lab and exploration of SEE is 1.5 hours and can be reserved by calling the SEE office at (603) 669-0400.
Silk Farm Audubon Center
3 Silk Farm Road Concord • (603) 224-9909
Interpretive trails, nature store, live birds, discovery room, and seasonal exhibits are all part of the Silk Farm Audubon Center, headquarters for the Audubon Society of NH.
Hours: Open year round Mon-Sat, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Prices: Admission Free.
Stonyfield Farm Yogurt
10 Burton Dr., Londonderry • (603) 437-4040
From cow to incubator to cooler, learn how yogurt is made. Try a sample and take home some "moo"chandise (attention, cow fans).
Hours: The factory is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with tours every hour on the hour.
Prices: Tours are $1.50 per person.
Taylor Up and Down Sawmill
Island Pond Rd., Derry • (603) 271-3556
This 19th-century completely restored sawmill is a wonderful peek at the history of an industry that is still a critical part of the New Hampshire economy. You can picnic on the grounds or take a tour.
Hours: The sawmill is open for tours on Saturdays beginning June 30th and will be open until August 3rd. It will be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Prices: Admission is free.
288 North Broadway, Salem, NH (603)898-2080 www.vintagevending.com
This is a store of memorabilia, but the items sold are displayed in their original settings, such as a Vintage Texaco Station and a Soda Shop. There are no tours and no fees.
WMUR VIRTUAL TOUR