Whether your travels take you along the White Mountains Trail National Scenic Byway, the Northern Loop, or the Southern Loop, you're in for a treat. Along the way, you'll discover spectacular scenery, covered bridges, historic sites, picturesque towns and villages, and friendly people.
The White Mountains have long been known for natural splendor, cultural richness, historical charm and stimulating recreation—as well as some of the most beautiful scenery in the eastern United States. The White Mountains Trail, designated a National Scenic Byway, encompasses all these aspects over the course of its 100-mile route. The Trail is a loop tour that winds through sections of the 800,000-acre White Mountain National Forest and past many of the region's most popular attractions. It can be driven in a day or can be the object of an entire vacation's worth of relaxation, exploration, and discovery. The Northern and Southern Loops are fascinating routes to explore, affording a unique look at life in and around the White Mountains.
Parts of the Trail have been used by travelers for centuries. In the early 19th century, the works of Nathaniel Hawthorne and landscape painter Thomas Cole, among others, drew attention to the White Mountains. In short order, visitors in search of wilderness adventure and glorious scenery began to arrive in significant numbers. Many vistas we admire today along—and near—the White Mountains Trail are little changed since then. Since many visitors enter the region on I-93, we'll begin this tour a bit south of where the Trail actually begins. The route boasts some spectacular mountain vistas, which are just a hint of things to come.
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