1. Marginal Way (Ogunquit, Maine)
The Marginal Way in Ogunquit, Maine gets our top position for New England walks. It probably helps that we don’t live very far from this trail, but if you do some research, you’ll find that it is indeed a destination worth your time. The Marginal Way is a mile-long trail that starts at downtown Ogunquit’s main street—Shore Road—and ends at the docks of Perkins Cove, a small resort community bordering Ogunquit.
There’s typically ample parking near the Ogunquit Police Station and you’ll find the trail head near the hotel Sparhawk—one of the most prestigious hotels in Ogunquit. Even though the trail lacks adequate signage, you can typically “follow the crowd” and you’ll end up on the trail with a view of the nearby beaches and cliffs. As soon as you start making your way along the coast, you’ll realize by the smiles of passerbys that you’ve wandered onto something special. The grassy knolls that ring the grand hotels, the wide and expansive sandy beaches that extend to the horizon and the craggy cliffs and coves that litter the trail from one end to the other. This trail is quintessential coastal Maine and the smell of ocean salt only reinforces the sense that every new turn of the trail makes the walk well worth the effort. On a sunny day, sailboats will glide by as the ocean magnifies different shades of green and blue. For the less prepared walker, numerous breaks are in order as benches along the way provide respite and panoramic pleasure.
2. Lincoln Woods Trail (Lincoln, New Hampshire)
3. Diana’s Baths (Bartlett, New Hampshire)
This wildly popular swimming hole becomes an icy, sparkling jewel in the winter. While it’s a relatively short walk to Diana’s Baths—a stunning series of waterfalls—hikers should come equipped with proper footwear, as the packed snow can be slippery.