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Escape to Canobie Lake

"New England's Best Family Value"? Yes!

During a recent family trip to Lake Winnipesaukee, my boys discovered numerous attractions that they were desperate to try: go karts, bumper boats, rope courses, and zip lines, to name a few.

But when my husband and I started adding up the cost of admission ($50 per person for just 2 hours on that rope course!), in an all-too-rare state of fiscal conservatism, we decided to get the heck out of Dodge and head for home a day early.

That's when we remembered that we'd drive right past Canobie Lake Park on our way home - exit 2 off I-93 in NH. A quick look-up on the trusty iPhone revealed a world of fun we just couldn't pass up. Canobie Lake Park has been entertaining families for over 100 years.

In the early 1920s, visitors enjoyed canoeing, sporting events, the "circle swing," picnics, and the penny arcade. Today, as most area residents know, Canobie offers over 85 rides, games, and attractions. From fast and furious roller coasters like the Yankee Canonball (which reminds me of my childhood fav, the Blue Streak, at Cedar Point in Ohio) to the small but fun and refreshing Castaway Island water park, Canobie has something for everyone.

Most appealing: it's all included in the price of admission! Parking is free. No additional charge for the water park. And while you can't bring food into the park, they'll gladly stamp you hands for readmission, so you can head back to you car and your coolers for lunch.

Full price tickets are $32 for adults and $23 for anyone under 48 inches, but check their web site for special discounts and where you can pick up coupons for a few dollars off.

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