December 03, 2021 5 min read

Paddle Board in New Hampshire, US

The North American state of New Hampshire is a fantastic destination for stand up paddle boarding (SUP) thanks to its wide variety of waterways. Beautiful lakes, rivers, and a slice of Atlantic Ocean shoreline give you the option of paddling in slow or fast-moving water, all with incredible views and truly unique experiences. 

We will cover 10 of the best places to paddle board in New Hampshire, that are perfect for both beginner and experienced paddlers. 

North New Hampshire

Umbagog Lake

Colorful leaves near Umbagog Lake

Umbagog Lake, found in Coös County straddling the border of Maine, was made a state park in 1998 and has become extremely popular for kayaking and SUPing ever since. 

The lake itself is shallow but deep enough for a swim, and is surrounded by an abundance of breathtaking wildlife and nature. Osprey, moose, and bald eagles are just some of the commonly sighted wildlife at Umbagog Lake. 

The state park has many campsites and cabins dotted around the lake, making it a great destination for those wanting a weekend SUPing adventure. If you’re looking for something less crowded, they also have remote camping locations only accessible by boat. 

Connecting with nature is incredibly easy at Umbagog Lake, and if you’re new to SUPing, the still water is a great learning ground. 

Squam Lake

Tranquil clear water of Squam Lake

Squam Lake was made famous by the movie On Golden Pond. With its tranquil clear waters, it’s no surprise it is a popular paddle boarding destination in New Hampshire. 

30 named small islands can be found throughout the lake that are both fun to explore and popular nesting spots for many bird species in the summer months. 

Squam Lake is also a fantastic fishing spot. SUP anglers can fish for trout, salmon, and whitefish, all while taking in the picturesque surroundings. 

White Lake

clear flat water of white lake

White Lake offers some of the best swimming in the White Mountain region. It’s a typical glacial lake with clear flat water and amazing SUPing conditions. 

The 125-acre lake is open year round and offers non-motorized water sports and fishing. Additionally, campsites are available around the lake for multi-day SUP trips. 

Androscoggin River

Androscoggin River New Hampshire

The Androscoggin River is a notable place for paddle boarding, especially in the summer months when the water is gentle and slow moving. Faster rapids can also be found on the Androscoggin, providing a challenge for experienced paddlers. 

The river eventually meets the Kennebec River and empties into the Atlantic Ocean. Easy access boat launches are spread out along the river for your convenience. 

South New Hampshire

Spofford Lake

Crystal blue water of Spofford Lake

Spofford Lake is relatively small and is one of the cleanest lakes in New Hampshire. Its crystal blue waters make it an amazing spot for paddle boarding, especially if you’re a SUP angler looking for bass, trout, or pike. 

There is a public beach and boat launch in which you can set off SUPing, with local paddle board rental companies nearby. 

Lake Winnipesaukee

Church beside lake winnipesaukee

Lake Winnipesaukee is located at the base of the White Mountains and is the largest lake in New Hampshire. Its crystal clear waters and mountain surroundings make it a well-liked place to relax and partake in watersport activities. 

Mount Washington, the highest peak of the White Mountains, is visible from Lake Winnipesaukee and locals say the best views are from a paddle board or kayak

Lake Winnipesaukee is another popular fishing location because of its huge selection of fish species. 

Great Bay

Great bay new hampshire

Great Bay is a tidal estuary in southern New Hampshire that spans over 6,000 acres. Before heading out on the water, you need to pay close attention to the tides as they affect the currents and could make your trip slightly more challenging.

The Great Bay is an amazing place to experience wildlife of all kinds because of its wide-open waters and surrounding habitats of forests, marshes, and grass banks. 

Pawtuckaway Lake

Greeny forest of pawtuckaway lake

Pawtuckaway Lake, also known as Pawtuckaway Pond, is a natural pond that has been enlarged by the construction of four dams. 

There is a large family beach that is a perfect beginning ground for newbies to SUPing. The beach makes getting on and off your board easy, and the shallow waters provide safety for those just starting out. 

Many coves in the pond are inaccessible to powerboats and can only be explored by kayaks or stand up paddle boards

Hampton Beach State Park

White building near Hampton Beach

Hampton Beach offers a different type of paddle boarding experience that will appeal to all types of paddlers that visit the New Hampshire coast. 

If you stay close to the shore, you will enjoy small waves, and an even calmer SUPing experience can be had in the Hampton River. 

For bigger and more challenging waves, you can head out further and test your balance and paddling abilities. 

Wellington State Park

Wellington State Park

With the largest freshwater swimming beach in the New Hampshire State Park system, Wellington State Park is one of the deepest and clearest lakes in the state. 

Picnic areas and hiking trails surround the lake, making it ideal for families wanting a long day trip SUPing. 

Paddle Board Rentals in New Hampshire

There are many stand up paddle board rental stores throughout New Hampshire and finding one close to your SUP location won’t be a difficult task. 

We’ve provided some paddle board rental store recommendations to help you out:

Interactive Map


🏆 Where can I SUP in New Hampshire?

With waterways spread out throughout New Hampshire, you can find SUP locations in both the north and south of the state. Here are some recommended locations that are must-sees in NH. 

  • Umbagog Lake
  • Squam Lake
  • White Lake
  • Androscoggin River
  • Spofford Lake
  • Lake Winnipesaukee
  • Great Bay
  • Pawtuckaway Lake
  • Hampton Beach State Park

👍 Can you stand up paddle board anywhere?

Stand up paddle boarding is possible on all bodies of water, but you need to take into consideration weather and water conditions. 

Rivers, ponds, lakes, and oceans are the most popular places to stand up paddle board because the waters tend to be calm and flat.

Experienced paddle boarders take to whitewater and ravines to provide more of a challenge. 

🏝️ Where can I find paddle boards for rent?

Paddle board rental stores can be found throughout NH. Here are some stores to help you along:

❓ Where is the best place to stand up paddle board?

Your experience as a paddler will ultimately decide what types of water you’ll be comfortable paddling on. Beginners are better suited to calm water and more experienced SUPers can try conquering faster-moving water.

For beginner paddlers: 

  • Umbagog Lake
  • Squam Lake
  • White Lake
  • Spofford Lake
  • Lake Winnipesaukee
  • Pawtuckaway Lake
  • Hampton Beach State Park (close to shore or in Hampton River)
  • Wellington State Park 

For experienced paddlers:

  • Androscoggin River
  • Great Bay
  • Hampton Beach State Park (further away from the shore)

📦 Can you paddle board on Lake Winnipesaukee?

Yes! Lake Winnepesaukee is the largest lake in NH and is a great place to enjoy SUPing. Surrounded by mountain peaks and different wildlife species, it’s a fantastic destination to relax, paddle, and enjoy the environment.

Megan Bryant
Megan Bryant

Based in Bali, her favorite SUP spot is the GILI Islands themselves. Travel is another passion of hers - she dreams to see the entire world one day.

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