Top 10 Things ... to do by boatMay 18. 2018 12:34PM
Lighthouses at Sunset
Join Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses for one of their popular sunset lighthouse cruises. The 2½-hour trips leave from Rye Harbor and include expert narration, passing close to Harbor Lighthouse, Whaleback Lighthouse, and White Island Lighthouse in the Isles of Shoals. Cruises on June 15 and 22 are aboard the M/V Granite State. Cruises on July 7 and September 1 are aboard Granite State Whale Watch’s new smaller boat, the Uncle Oscar. Both boats serve snacks, sodas, wine and beer.
Rent a Boat
No boating license? No problem. New Hampshire offers a 14-day Temporary Boating Safety Certificate that some boat rental places will will administer onsite, including Wolfeboro Corinthian Yacht Club, Winnisquam Marine in Belmont, and Lakefront Landing in Ossipee. Be sure to study up before taking the 25-question online test. You will likely have to pay for it, pass or fail.
Don’t Miss Massabesic
Enjoy a peaceful paddle on Lake Massabesic, without the heavy lifting, by renting from Massabesic Canoe and Kayak in Auburn. They will deliver your rental to Clair’s Landing boat launch in Auburn. Because the lake is a source of drinking water for much of the area, there is no swimming, jet skiing, or other activities that involve human contact with the water, and the shore is largely undeveloped. This creates a pristine environment that is home to loons, herons and other wildlife. The fishing is good, too.
Contoocook by Canoe
The Contoocook River Canoe Company is a family owned and operated business specializing in sales, rentals, instruction and guided trips for those interested in kayaking, canoeing and stand up paddle boarding. They offer a 9-mile down river trip that begins in Contoocook Village and ends at their shop. Along the 3-to 5 -hour trip you will spot lots of wildlife and find places to picnic, swim, and fish.
More Than a Museum
Wolfeboro’s New Hampshire Boat Museum is an experiential attraction with exhibits, collections, programs, and events for all ages. Learn basic sailboating or sailboat racing through the Community Sailing Program, or enjoy all the benefits of having your own sailboat, minus the hassle, with the museum’s Sailboat Sharing Program. Kids can enroll in Lake Discovery Camp and the Family Fun Center, and all ages will love to see the fleet of model yachts operated by the Back Bay Skippers. Annual events include a boathouse tour, boat show, a vintage boat and car auction, regattas, and races.
Enjoy a 45-minute narrated tour of the most beautiful part of Lake Winnipesaukee on the Millie B, a 28-foot mahogany, triple cockpit “woodie” that is a replica 1928 Hacker-Craft, accurate down to the seat colors. You’ll see spectacular scenery, magnificent homes and boathouses and hear fascinating stories from your boat captain about the lake’s history, geography, wildlife, and the more interesting people who live on the lake. You might even see a loon at the Loon Sanctuary. The Millie B can seat eight adults.
M/S Mount Washington
M/S Mount Washington Cruises will begin offering cruises leaving from Weirs Beach on Lake Winnipesaukee on May 19. During the day, the first-class, 230-foot excursion ship offers 2 ½ hour roundtrip cruises to a variety of ports that change throughout the week. In the evening, set sail on a dinner cruise that includes a buffet and live music. Sunday brunch cruises are also offered.
Kids and first-timers should try a guided rafting trip with Northern Waters Outfitters. Trips takes place on a quarter-mile section down the Androscoggin River in Errol, with Class II and III rapids. Each trip consists of four runs of about 15 minutes each. A shuttle and guide, paddles, helmets, and life jackets are included. Duckies, which are inflatable kayaks, are available for the more adventurous rafters after the first two runs. Tubes are available to use after a rafting trip at no extra cost.
Tim Moore Outdoors, New Hampshire’s only full-time kayak fishing guide service, offers fresh and saltwater experiences. Fish for striped bass, northern pike, largemouth and smallmouth bass, and black crappie from their Old Town Predator pedal-driven kayaks. Four-person trips are four hours long and include two guides. You bring your own food, appropriate clothing, and fishing license. Tim Moore will take care of the rest.
Join Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses for one of their popular sunset lighthouse cruises. The 2 ½- hour trips leave from Rye Harbor and include expert narration, passing close to Harbor Lighthouse, Whaleback Lighthouse, and White Island Lighthouse in the Isles of Shoals. Cruises on June 15 and 22 are aboard the M/V Granite State. Cruises on July 7 and September 1 are aboard Granite State Whale Watch’s new smaller boat, the Uncle Oscar. Both boats serve snacks, sodas, wine and beer.
SUP - Stand Up Paddloarding
Full Moon Paddleboard in Wolfeboro offers paddleboards and accessory sales and rentals, lessons, paddleboard yoga, and a paddleboard academy for kids. Register for a moonlight outing on Lake Wentworth, held during full moon evenings in the summer. Participants don headlamps and sometimes glow sticks to light up the night as they cruise across the water on a leisurely two-hour paddle. Don't forget your glow sticks! Makes for a memorable glowing full moon SUP party!