Bordering Mount Sunapee and Lake Sunapee, our quaint little town takes advantage of all four New England seasons.
The Town of Sunapee was first established as "Saville" in 1768, changing to Wendell in 1781 and then , through legislature in 1850, became known as "Sunapee" - an Algonquin word meaning "Goose Lake".
There is a long history of tourism in the Lake Sunapee area which began in the mid-1800's with the introduction of steamboats and trains. During this time there were many Grand Hotels and a few private residences around the lake, catering to the city people who arrived on the shores with their steamer trunks to spend the summer on Lake Sunapee.
Sunapee Harbor and the Sugar River have played a major role in the town's history and development. Although Sunapee's earliest occupation was agriculture, manufacturing sprang up along the Sugar River falls to harness the water's power. Today, the newly created Riverwalk offers an interesting and scenic stroll. Beginning at the Harbor, a natural path passes the Old Town Hall (now known as the Harbor House Livery) which dates back to the 19th century, and forms the rushing falls downhill to Coffin Park, next to the new Town Hall.
Sunapee Harbor is a pleasant place to be on a summer's day. It features a lively collection of shops and restaurants. Live music is regularly scheduled on weekends and two cruise boats offer a scenic trip around the lake. For lodging, there are a number of waterfront cottages, as well as some charming inns and bed and breakfasts.
Known mostly for the 6th largest lake in the State, Lake Sunapee, the Town has a four season draw. Visitors come not only for lake activities in the summer, but also foliage in the fall, skiing on nearby Mt. Sunapee in the winter and hiking and biking in the spring.
To find out more about the town of Sunapee and the activities offered, please contact our Information Booth at 763-2201.