It’s been unseasonably warm here. Well not warm. Hot. It’s been hot. I think we had one quick minute where the temperature felt cool enough to wear actual closed toe shoes and jeans and flannel. But it IS the south, and we live in flip-flops here pretty much year-round. My brother moved to New Hampshire not long ago, and we jumped at the chance to visit him, in the hopes we would also be able to experience fall in the northeast, as well as tour historical sites we had only read about. And maybe wear shoes other than flip flops.
Here’s a quick look at our fun fall getaway!
- My brother picked us up from the airport and whisked us away to the Portland Head Lighthouse. Oh my goodness, it did not disappoint! As we neared the lighthouse, it was clear we weren’t in Louisiana anymore! It was windy and brisk and extremely foggy, which added to the perfect lighthouse ambiance! The light cut through the thick fog, and we imagined what it must have been like in January of 1791 when it was first lit. The landscape is rocky and the cliffs surrounding the lighthouse are amazing. After touring the lighthouse we drove into Portland and ate at Liquid Riot, a “resto-bar”. We noshed family style on several of their delicious menu items, but my hands down favorite was the Northspore Mushroom Toast. I’m now on a mission to recreate this menu item. I think I could eat it every single day of my life. So good!
- On Day 2 of our trip we visited Boston, which will now be added to my list of favorite cities. It is spectacular! So much history and life and food and vibrancy. It had a hustle-bustle feel, but with a friendly vibe. We toured the Charleston Navy Yard, which features the USS Constitution, a 200 year old ship, as well as the USS Cassin Young, a World War II era battleship. My husband totally geeked out on those ships! We enjoyed a delicious lunch of avocado toast, burgers, pizza and cider at Brewer’s Fork. It’s a good thing we took over 15,000 steps that day! After leaving there we began following the Freedom Trail and walked over to the Bunker Hill Monument (more geeking out by my hubs) and then into the North End of Boston. We visited the Old North Church and the Paul Revere house and enjoyed delicious cannoli and espresso at one of the millions of Italian restaurants along the way. Fun fact I didn’t know, this historical side of Boston is also a “little Italy”! I never knew that! Did you?
- Day 3 took us to Salem, Massachusetts. I was curious about Salem, after reading and studying the Salem Witch Trials for years. I’m going to be honest here, Salem was quite disappointing, and a little too touristy. It’s unfortunate that ugly modern building and kitchy shops are cluttered among the historical sites, including the Burying Point, Witch Museum and Witch Trial Memorial. The Witch Trial Memorial is beautiful, and the cemetery was very interesting. We wandered away from that area into the harbor area, and were pleasantly surprised by the charming old homes and shops. We also saw Hawthorne’s House of Seven Gables. Much better! We devoured the clam chowder at Finz. (Have I mentioned that it was a good thing we walked so many steps???)
- On Day 4 we decided to stay close and hiked around Durham, New Hampshire. I was desperate to see some fall color, so we hiked the Sweet Trail and enjoyed the spectacular views of rock walls, beaver dams and beautiful leaves. The hike along the trail was invigorating and so good for my soul!
- Day 5, our last full day in New England, took us to beautiful Portsmouth. I would call Portsmouth a kinder, gentler Boston. Lots of Federal and Colonial architecture, cute shops and amazing restaurants. We tried the curried mussels and flatbread and sipped the dangerously delicious cider at The Portsmouth Brewery. (and added more necessary steps!) I loved Portsmouth, and will definitely add it to our next northeast travel itinerary.
So there you have it! Our trip to New England in the good old USA. We’ll definitely be heading back, hopefully soon. I hope to add Vermont to our next itinerary. As much as I loved it there, I know I would have difficulty weathering the harsh winters. After all, I’ve gotten used to wearing flip-flops all year long!
I hope you enjoyed my little travel blog. Where have you been lately? Have you taken any fun fall trips that you’d recommend?