Just about 11 miles south of Londonderry, in Salem, NH, sits an amusement park that’s survived depression, hurricane, fire, and robbery. Started as a “pleasure resort,” Canobie Lake Park began by a trolley car company to help attract customers. More than 100 years ago, families would dress in their best clothing to enjoy a “botanical garden atmosphere” which included activities like canoing, sporting events, a Penny Arcade, and picnics. Throughout the years, the park has been managed under a few different owners, each time changing for the better. More rides have been added, newer construction built, and roads paved.
Today, Canobie Lake Park has over 85 rides, games, and attractions. From thrill rides for those young at heart, to kid’s rides for those just plain young, Canobie has something for everyone. Start off slow with a family trip on the carousel, then work on your driving skills (or whiplash) with the bumper cars. Take a walk through the Tiki Maze, where windows look like passageways; experience 3 G’s from the Turkish Twist, until you can’t feel the floor. Take a twenty minute scenic tour of Canobie Lake with the Blue Heron boat ride, or cruise around the park on the Canobie Express train.
Get cooled off by the water rides on a hot, sunny day, with the Boston Tea Party or Castaway Island. The Island, Canobie’s newest water addition, boasts more than 180 ways to get wet and is the largest water park of its kind in New England. And it’s included in general admission! The Boston Tea Party hosts a fifty food drop and almost 250,000 gallons of water. If lines are long, just stand on the bridge as a boat drops over the edge of the ride. The forward splash of the water is enough to soak innocent bystanders.
For those families with small children, the kid’s area is perfect. There are rides that are toddler sized, but just as thrilling for them as the big ones are for adults. From the Mini Skooter, a smaller scale version of bumper cars, to the Alpine Swing, a smaller version of DaVinci’s Dream.
While outside food and drink are not allowed in the park, Canobie offers a variety of concessions. Options like Starbucks Coffee, Fried Dough with all the toppings, Pizza and hot dogs are available. Pepsi beverages, beer and wine, hot chocolate, and iced tea and coffee are also sold. Ice cream and cotton candy are a perfect desert!
Check out Canobie’s website for more details!
For detailed directions, browse this map.