Fun Family Fall Activities in the Seacoast Area
Here in New England, it is slowly but surely starting to feel like fall. The lingering warm days seem to be coming to an end, and we’re beginning to gear up for several cold months ahead. Whether you’re a fan of the cooler temperatures or not, you’ve probably already started transitioning your wardrobe, digging out your heavier jackets and favorite fleece flannels, and decorating your home with pumpkins and gourds.
But have you started making plans to fully embrace this season yet? There’s truly no better place to enjoy fall than in the Seacoast area of New England! If you’re looking for some fun activities to enjoy with the entire family, hopefully, this list can provide some inspiration and help get you in the spirit.
- Let’s start with the obvious – apple picking!
Just over the New Hampshire line, you will find Cider Hill Farm in Amesbury, Massachusetts. This 145-acre farm offers everything you could possibly want or need in one quintessential location and was recently named the best apple picking spot in the United States! Trust us, this farm is worth the short drive.
Start the day off by picking your own apples and pumpkins, followed by taking the kids on a hayride. Hungry? Swing by the food truck for a bite or stop at the hot cider and donut bar on the weekends from 9 to 4. If you’re looking for something a little different, every weekend in October, the farm will be providing a hard cider bar and live music from 11 to 4.
Be sure to end the day by picking up some fresh produce, freshly baked pies, or other local goodies to bring home at the farm store. No matter your family’s needs, Cider Hill Farm will not disappoint!
- Ghosts, goblins, and ghouls, oh my!
As we get closer to Halloween, don’t forget to stop by one of the many haunted houses in the New Hampshire and Maine area (if your kids are brave enough, that is!) Here’s a list of some of our favorites:
- Haunted Overload in Lee, NH
- Spooky World in Litchfield, NH
- Fright Kingdom in Nashua, NH
- Haunted Grandview Manor in Lebanon, ME
- Haunted History of Portsmouth
Did you know that the historic town of Portsmouth, New Hampshire has a haunted past? If not, be sure to head to New England Curiosities to learn all about it by experiencing one of their ghost tours all around the city. This will be a lot of walking, so be sure to dress appropriately.
Once the tour is over, you can head to one of Portsmouth’s many fun restaurants for a delicious meal. If you’re a bit apprehensive about groups right now, New England Curiosities offers virtual tours, too, which is a great way to get the experience without leaving the comforts of your home.
- Get Spooky in Salem
Sticking with the spooky theme, Salem, Massachusetts is another historic town that’s only an hour’s drive from Portsmouth. Luckily for us Seacoast residents, we can experience all that Salem has to offer in a simple day trip, whereas others travel from all over the country to experience the magic of this city. Some things not to miss in Salem:
- Walking tours to learn about the history of the Salem Witch Trials
- The Salem Witch House and other haunted houses
- Visit scenes from the Hocus Focus movie on the Hocus Pocus Tours
- Calling all Leaf Peepers!
For families looking for something a bit more adventurous, be sure to head a little further north for amazing hiking and leaf-peeping. Our top choice for hiking is Mt. Chocorua (in Eric Wasson’s hometown!) and leaf-peeping via the Mount Washington Cog Railway.
- Corn stalks and farm animals? Yes, please.
Corn mazes are another fun fall activity, especially for younger kids. You’re often greeted by farm animals before entering, which is an added benefit. Wander around the twists and turns of the well-thought-out designs, get lost, and take lots of photos between the stalks. (Don’t worry, you can’t really get lost for too long, and adult supervision is required for this one). Here are some of our favorites in the area:
- Scamman Farm in Statham, NH
- Zach’s Corn Maze in York, ME
- Coppal House Farm in Lee, NH
- Sherman Farm in East Conway, NH
- Haunted Festivals
This year, York, Maine is hosting the town’s annual Harvestfest & Kidsfest at Short Sands Beach on October 16th. With any luck, the sun will be shining for this outdoor event filled with live music, local food vendors, storytelling, interactive activities, and face painting. This is sure to be a day that will be perfect for the whole family.
- Scary Movies
For the entire month of October, you can catch a spooky movie at The Strand in Dover, New Hampshire nearly any night of the week. Costumes are encouraged at this theater! Hocus Focus, a personal favorite, will be playing on Sunday, October 10th from 2 to 4:30.
- Fall Festivities in Your Backyard
For those who don’t feel like straying too far from home, you can easily make a full day and night out of pumpkin carving and scary movies right in your own backyard. Get your friends together for this one, gather and roast the pumpkin seeds, play some music, and end the day watching scary movies on an outdoor projector while filling up on candy corn.
No matter your budget, hopefully, this list has inspired you to get out there and take full advantage of this magical season! The season may be short, but there’s still plenty of time to soak it all in.