Wander Always & Stay Wilde


1 Day in Moultonborough and Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire

As part of the Lakes Region, Moultonborough and the nearby Lake Winnipesaukee are must see locations if you are in the White Mountains area of New Hampshire. With lodging in the nearby town of Plymouth, this proved to be a great location to stay – close to the White Mountains, but also in very close proximity to the Lakes Region. Also, although this visit was in the middle of the summer a visit to this area of New Hampshire would be a sight to see at any time of year- especially in the fall for views of the stunning foliage!


ust north of Lake Winnipesaukee in the town of Moultonborough, New Hampshire is the mountaintop estate of Lucknow, also known as the Castle in the Clouds. This stunning estate and grounds are the perfect day trip if exploring the area!

Overlooking Lake Winnipesauke, the stunning estate of Lucknow dates back to 1914. After earning his fortune in the shoe industry at the turn of the twentieth century, Thomas Plant and his wife, Olive, focused their attention on the Ossipee Mountains in New Hampshire to build a home. Today, the mansion known as the “Castle in the Clouds” is open to the public for tours, dining, weddings and exploring the surrounding hiking trails. Tours are offered every hour of the interior of the mansion. While there, definitely do not miss exploring the Brook Walk trail, a 1.2-mile trail with views of seven waterfalls!

Lucknow originally comprised 6,300 acres featuring the 16-room mansion, a stable and garage, two gatehouses, a greenhouse, an 18-hole golf course, a tennis court, a man-made lake, and 45 miles of carriage trails!

With architecture and design exemplifying the Arts and Crafts movement, its handcrafted aesthetic is inspired by Norwegian, Swiss, Norman, and Japanese architecture. Though its construction used modern materials like steel beams and terra cotta blocks, the exterior was created with hand-cut stone and hand-scalloped timber framing. For the time it was built, the owners selected furnishings from the best artisans and had state-of-the-art appliances and technologies throughout the house.

The photo above was taken from the patio of the Carriage House on the property. The outdoor seating offers stunning views of Lake Winnipesaukee and a perfect spot to catch a sunset! A quick-bite meal option on the Castle in the Clouds grounds is Café in the Clouds, located in between the trailhead of the Brook Walk (more of that trail later!) and Shannon Pond. They offer salads, wraps, pretzels, and ice cream. I opted for a delicious chicken salad wrap and some mint-chocolate chip ice cream, of course. This was the perfect fuel for the next stop on the day trip in Moultonborough- the Brook Walk.


Located on the grounds of the Castle in the Clouds in Ossipee Mountain Park are over 30 miles of trails and carriage roads. The most popular trail is the Brook Walk, a 1.2-mile out-and-back trail that leads to the viewpoints of seven spectacular waterfalls. Much of the trail follows the route that led visitors to these points more than a century ago at Lucknow’s inception. If just visiting Castle in the Clouds to hike the trails on the property, parking is free of charge, making this the perfect day trip if visiting or a local to the area. There are signs along the trail that provide the history of each waterfall as well as an old image that provides an idea of how the falls appeared to visitors many years ago.

The Brook Walk begins at the upper bridge crossing Shannon Brook below Shannon Pond. The bridge is accessible from the Shannon Pond kiosk or the Brook Walk kiosk. From this bridge, the path descends for 0.3 miles, passing 7 waterfalls, and then passing the lower bridge and climbing steeply for 0.2 miles to the Shannon Brook Trail.

#1 Roaring Falls

Roaring Falls is the first waterfall on the Brook Walk trail downstream from Shannon Pond. Located nearby on the property, Shannon Pond did not exist when the Brook Walk was constructed in the 1880s. The rushing water from the Roaring Falls flows from a small flume and the water feeds into a small pool before the next waterfall called “Pewee’s Pool,” named after the small woodland birds that visited it for a drink of water.

#2 Twin Falls

Also known to some as the “Seven Cascades,” Twin Falls is made up of a series of small falls flowing over 90 90-foot area of rough ledge. There are three sets of falls that each made two separate small falls, side by side and equal in size, a series of “twins.”

#3 Whittier Falls

Named after John Greenleaf Whittier, one of the most celebrated American poets of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Whittier Falls consists of two sets of falls. Born in Massachusetts and a native to the area during this life, Whittier was recognized as a poet of everyday life in rural New England. This set of falls was one of Whittier’s favorite resting spots in Ossipee Mountain Park.

#4 The Cascades

The Cascades of Brook Walk consist of a series of low falls flowing into pools. A bridge once crossed the stream of the Cascades, named Harriet’s Bridge, with a path continuing along the opposite side of the bank. It has been since washed away by floodwaters. It was rebuilt a second time in the 1890s but also did not survive the floodwaters. The path was relocated to the side of the bank in which the photos below were taken.

#5 Emerald Pool Falls

The Emerald Pool Falls were named for the mosses on the rocks at the bottom of the falls, which in the right light can create a vivid emerald color. There was originally a bridge across these falls that was washed away, much like The Cascades, and with the bridge much substantial rock and soil were lost in the floods. The pools created today are much smaller in comparison to when the Brook Walk was created, but still nonetheless beautiful!

#6 Bridal Veil Falls

Also known as Upper Ossipee Falls, Bridal Veil Falls can, under the right conditions, have a “lacy” appearance like that of a bride’s veil. Time has not affected these falls much, other than a relocation of a large boulder at the fall’s base, and the fall’s beauty is timeless.

#7 Falls of Song

Formally known as Ossipee Falls, the Falls of Song is the largest and most spectacular waterfall in the Brook Walk at 50ft in height. This waterfall can also be accessible with a 0.1-mile hike from the Auto Road up to the Castle in the Clouds. At just 0.8 miles of Brook Walk, it is worth it to hike the extra mileage to pass along the other six beautiful waterfalls!


Located at the foothills of the White Mountains, Lake Winnipesaukee is the largest lake in the state of New Hampshire and the third largest in New England. It is approximately 21 miles long and between 1-9 miles wide and 180 miles deep. The lake contains roughly 264 islands and several peninsulas, offering 288 miles of shoreline. The driving distance around the lake is 63 miles, taking 2- 2.5 hours to drive around its perimeter.

After the Brook Walk hike in Moultonborough, a drive around Lake Winnipesaukee was the perfect way to spend the afternoon. A few notable stops in the area are Wolfeboro, known as the “oldest summer resort in America,” and Weirs Beach. Although numerous residential areas occupy the shoreline, there are plenty of areas around the lake that are open to the public. Driving around the lake in the late afternoon was quite busy since the weather was rather warm. Parking lots and public parking areas were filled with cars and the lakes were filled with boats and people swimming in the lake enjoying the weather.

The boardwalk, beginning on Lakeside Avenue, runs the full length of Weirs Beach and connects to the Winnipesaukee Pier where you can find some restaurants and shops as well as boat rentals for the lake. Parallel to the tracks of the Lake Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad, the view of the mountains and lake can be seen with every step from the boardwalk. Along the boardwalk, there are five different areas to access the beach and/or docks while you are walking. There are benches along the way for you to stop and rest or just enjoy the view.

Have you ever been to Moultonborough or Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire?

Comment below!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *