This region of rolling farmland and small towns takes its name from the towering Mount Monadnock, which, at a height of 3,165 feet, looms above the countryside and can be seen from almost everywhere. Mount Monadnock is believed to be the most frequently climbed mountain in the world. Henry David Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Mark Twain, and others hiked this mountain and wrote about it as a symbol of spiritual and environmental awareness. The mountain has 40 miles of foot trails , many of which lead through alpine vegetation to the rock summit. From the top, hikers can see magnificent views in all six New England states.
The region has seven state parks where visitors can hike, camp, fish, ski, and snowmobile. Among these, notable spots are Chesterfield Gorge State Park, where a wilderness loop trail winds along a deep glacial stream; Pisgah State Park, a 13,500-acre wilderness area that offers hiking, hunting and fishing, ski touring and snowmobiling; and, for people who love flowers, Rhododendron State Park, with more than 16 acres of wild rhododendron that bloom about mid-July. People who love swimming will find public beaches at many of the 200 scenic ponds and lakes scattered throughout the region.
For kids and families, Friendly Farm in Dublin and Stonewall Farm in Keene are places to visit and pet farm animals, and to indulge in hay rides, sleigh rides, nature walks, and other outdoor fun. For cultural attractions in a small-town setting, visit the well-known summer Monadnock Music Festival and Apple Hill Summer Festival, or take in a play at the Colonial Theatre in Keene or the Peterborough Players Summer Theatre. Travelers will find welcoming B&Bs and inns tucked into the many small, pretty towns of the region.