Five Ports on Lake Winnipesaukee
Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire's Largest Lake, covers 72 square miles.
Winnipesaukee (win-e-puh-saw'-kee), New Hampshire's largest lake, (named for a Native American word meaning "smile of the great spirit" or beautiful water in a high place) is glacier formed and spring fed. Surrounded by 3 mountain ranges, the lake is 504 feet above sea level. It is approximately 25 miles long 15 miles wide, covers 72 square miles and contains more than 240 habitable islands. The lake's wooded shoreline and crystal clear water makes it a popular summer resort. Visitors from all over the world come to rest and relax in its beautiful surroundings. Lake Winnipesaukee also hosts numerous winter events.
Weirs Beach, Laconia
Weirs Beach represents its own era in American history. It has a certain amusement park nostalgia, right down to the blinking neon sign on Rt.3 that directs you to the beach itself. We love this sign, you just can't miss Weirs Beach. Here you can stroll the boardwalk while enjoying the beautiful views of the lake. As the name implies there is a public beach, town docks, arcades, waterslides, and the area's only Drive-In theater, specializing in double-features. At the center of the boardwalk is what looks like a railroad station, although it is really the building that houses the M/S Mount Washington ticket office, gift shop and snack bar. Notable events for Weirs Beach are weekly fireworks displays throughout the summer. Mount Washington Cruises has 3 boats and numerous cruises from Weirs Beach each day.
Read about the Weirs Beach reconstruction project. Weirs Beach Project
Wolfeboro prides itself on being the oldest summer resort in the country. It was the vacation spot for colonial Governor John Wentworth in 1764, and today Wolfeboro is one of the lake's busiest ports. A lovely little town full of galleries, stores and restaurants, it's been said that there is something for everyone in Wolfeboro. Wolfeboro is also the home of Brewster Academy, one of the regions most prestigious private schools. Overlooking Wolfeboro Bay, Brewster Academy has been open to students since 1818 and has taught a number of successful individuals, including a U.S. Vice President.
The quaint village of Meredith, also called the "Latchkey to the White Mountains," is home to the famed Mill Falls Marketplace with its many unique shops and restaurants. Located at the intersection of Routes 3 & 25, the marketplace overlooks picturesque Meredith Bay and has its own waterfall, brick walkways, shaded benches and beautiful flowers. Many more shops line Main Street and there are more than a dozen local restaurants, all a convenient walk from the town docks. Notable locations in Meredith include the Inns & Spa at Mill Falls (four wonderful country inns surrounding the Meredith Bay shoreline all with their own restaurant), Hart's Turkey Farm, the Annalee Dolls Gift Shop, and the Town Docks Restaurant, where you can sit outside by the lake and eat in a casual atmosphere while the little kids play in the sand. The MOUNT stops in Meredith on Mondays and the smaller vessel, Doris E. offer several cruises from Meredith each day.
Alton Bay, a township located at the southern extremity of Lake Winnipesaukee, reflects back over 175 years and is considered one of the oldest ports of shipping on the lake. A special feature is the bandstand, which is located in the middle of the bay. Alton Bay is also the birthplace of the Mount Washington Cruise Ship as the side-wheeler was launched here in 1872. The MOUNT will be stopping and taking on passengers in Alton Bay every Sunday. There will be a Sunday Brunch buffet available on board.
Located in a beautiful setting on Lake Winnipesaukee's northern shoreline. Center Harbor is home to the world renowned "Keepsake Quilting". This famous catalog store is located in a charming little marketplace on Rt. 25 on the Moultonboro line by the only traffic light in town. Across from this marketplace on Lake Street is the winter home of the M/S Mount Washington, located adjacent to the town docks and beach. Throughout the holiday season the Mount is an attraction at her dock, where she is decorated for the season with festive holiday lights. The Mount will be stopping in Center Harbor to take on passengers every Monday at 11 A.M. during July and August.