“Where can we go for romantic getaways in New England?”
I get this question all the time, often from fellow parents who find themselves with a precious weekend of: “Family is in town to help watch the kids, so my partner and I can finally have some quality alone time together!”
Unfortunately, many of these couples are like us: So multi-tasking and harried that we haven’t even had time to research WHERE we might go with this unexpected weekend! Never fear, friends: I’ve been asked this question enough that I have been hard at work researching a list for you of towns, activities, and hotels for delicious, delightful quality time with your sweetie.
Weekend Getaways in New England for Families and Kids, Too!
Even if you’re traveling with kids, however, this list is still relevant, as each of the destinations listed have plenty of activities for children and adults, alike. But first… which state should you pick for the perfect New England getaway?
Getaways in Vermont, NH, and Maine
There is something magical for couples about Vermont travel: The rolling green hills, closeness to nature, relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, plus cheese and maple syrup are perfect for love and connection. Below, find ideas about Woodstock, Brattleboro, and WHEN to visit Vermont. If you haven’t yet tried VT for romantic getaways, do consider it!
Meanwhile, Maine boasts passionate rocky seashores and a blossoming foodie scene in Portland, while NH has lakes and mountains galore. If you’re traveling from Boston, parts of both ME and New Hampshire can be reached with shorter drives than getting to Western MA! This is an excellent and convenient region for couples to visit for romance.
Though some of the featured articles contain kids, every spot listed below is good for couples-only trips, too. Enjoy my romantic state, lovebirds!
South of MA, the Ocean State of Rhode Island gives me tingles of historic excitement. From the Newport Mansions and Cliff Walk to the spiral staircase of the Block Island Lighthouse, Rhode Island offers nautical bliss for couples.
How to Use this List of Getaway Ideas
This list of New England getaway ideas for couples flows by region, moving from VT, to ME, to RI, to NH and CT, then through the regions of MA. Simply click through the linked title for the full details on each trip idea. May this list facilitate more love, connection, and happiness all around.
Weekend Getaways in New England: Romantic or Family Trip Ideas
From romantic getaways in New England to weekend trips from Boston or other cities, here are tons of delicious ideas for destinations, hotels, and activities for couples, families, and solo travelers in Vermont, Maine, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Massachusetts!
Vermont Getaway Ideas
Green mountains beckon! Here are a few specific towns to check out.
Venturing north of Stowe, VT brings you to this idyllic vineyard. We had a phenomenal time sampling their unique wine and spirits (maple creme and apple brandy?!) while reconnecting on the shady outdoor patio overlooking nature. Highly recommended!
This article has tips and photos from Brattleboro, which is a shorter drive from Boston than Woodstock. Regarding when to visit, remember the two somewhat awkward, brown-colored seasons in VT are "Mud Season" (April) and "Stick Season" (November). That said, this is when we have done most of our Vermont travels, because the charm is still there, and prices are great!
Our first couple's getaway after our son was born was to Portland, and we couldn't have picked a better spot. It is walkable, artsy, and boasts one of the best food scenes in New England. Check out this article for ideas on fun things to do in Portland.
One of the best romantic getaways we've taken was to this dog-friendly, oceanfront spa resort on Cape Elizabeth, near Portland, Maine. The food is so good, too! A perfectly relaxing and luxurious environment to reconnect with your love.
Want more proof of the romantic Portland, Maine food scene? Drool over these tasting menu photos! (Don't worry... Portland has meals for all budgets, but it is fun to splurge for "food theater" sometimes.)
The Ocean State! While RI has plenty of excellent towns and beaches, I have a particular fondness for Newport and Block Island.
Love luxury? The opulent Newport Mansions are for you! You and your love can stroll the Cliff Walk along the ocean to ogle the mansions from the outside, or enter to tour the gold-plated Great Gatsby wonder.
Newport, RI was one of the first romantic getaways my partner and I took before we were married, and it was perfect for giving a sense of adventure and exploration, in part because of its long and rich history, but also because of its surprising international flavor.
If you want to feel like a king or queen, the Hotel Viking is the place to stay in Rhode Island. It is right in the center of Newport, so you can ditch the car and walk to all the fun... or just stay in the amazingly decorated hotel!
There are so many things to do in Portsmouth, NH -- both in and near the NH Seacoast town. This sweet red brick spot is just an hour north of Boston, and feels a little like Harvard Square, Cambridge with its bustling shops and great food options.
Moving on to my state! Let's start our romantic tour of Massachusetts in the west, then work our way east. In fact, let's start at the highest point in MA: Mount Greylock! This is a doable, fun hike (well, you can just drive up) to get some couple bonding time.
Though Williamstown and Stockbridge are great, also consider staying in the smaller towns like Great Barrington or Egremont. While there, check out the delightful and doable hike to see Massachusetts's tallest waterfall: Bash Bish Falls. Just read this warning, first...
Central MA and Hampshire County
The middle of Massachusetts has mountains and artsy, fun towns with plenty to do.
Headed further east towards Central Massachusetts, consider the often-overlooked town of Southbridge, and check out the description here of how to cross south into a great hiking trail in Connecticut for a day trip.
Now we head over to the tip of Cape Cod to explore getaways there! We loved Wellfleet, but Provincetown is the spot to go for bursting color, food, and nightlife. If you want a more tranquil getaway, stay in a smaller town and hit up P-Town for a day trip.
Hungry? P-Town has a shockingly wide variety of places to eat, spanning a range of cuisine... but always offers a lobster roll when your romantic getaway needs one (and when doesn't one need a lobster roll???).
On the southwestern point of Cape Cod sit these delicious towns: home to one of the best French bakeries outside of Paris, plus locally-sourced oceanfront fine dining! When you're hungry for even more adventure, walk to the ferry terminal at Woods Hole to take a boat to...
This famous vacation island is easily reachable from the Woods Hole ferry. Like the Cape, it requires careful planning to avoid crowds and secure a spot to stay.
The author, Lillie Marshall, is 6-foot-tall National Board Certified Teacher of English, fitness fan, and mother of two who has been a public school educator since 2003. She launched Around the World “L” Travel and Life Blog in 2009, and over 3.7 million readers have now visited this site. Lillie also runs TeachingTraveling.com and DrawingsOf.com. Subscribe to her monthly newsletter, and follow @WorldLillie on social media!
Thanks, Alyson! Still playing with ways to make the structure as useable as possible, but I've certainly been hankering for a while for a clear round-up structure to answer the travel questions I get most often!