The 5 Best Ski Resorts Near Boston UPDATED 2018/19

From small ski areas just outside Boston to larger resorts in nearby New Hampshire, these destinations offer beginner lessons, night skiing, tubing, family-friendly atmospheres and even shopping in quaint New England ski towns. Whether it’s an afternoon or an easy weekend getaway you’re after, check out one of these top 5 ski areas near Boston.

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5. Blue Hills Go to resort

Trail Map View Packages

Pros

  • Closest ski resort to Boston
  • Great for Saturday afternoon trip
  • Night skiing available

Cons

  • Not much challenging terrain for intermediates or advanced
  • Small ski area
Known for:  Beginner terrain, day trips, value for money
Blue Hills Lodge at the end of Lower Big Blue trail
Blue Hills' Lodge at the end of "Lower Big Blue" trail

Drive From Boston: 40 minutes

On The Slopes: Blue Hills’ claim to fame is being the closest ski area to any major US city, and at just under 40 minutes drive from Boston, it can’t be beat for accessibility. Yes, at 24 ha skiable terrain, it’s tiny, but for a quick getaway or Saturday afternoon fun with beginners, this ski area is ideal. Night skiing is available on 80% of terrain. Blue Hills offers affordable ski lessons, and is especially suited for beginners because of the mellow terrain and small size.

Around Town: Blue Hills isn’t exactly a tourist destination, and is most popular for afternoon or single day trips from Boston. That said, if you wish to cruise around the town of Canton, expect small-town restaurants and shops, as well as charming downtown areas in nearby Dedham and Norwood.

Location: Canton, Massachusetts

1 Day Adult Lift Ticket: $47 USD ($64 AUD)

4. Wachusett Mountain Go to resort

Trail Map View Packages

Pros

  • Ideal terrain for intermediates and beginners
  • Good snow coverage with updated snowmaking system
  • Value for money

Cons

  • Lack of challenging advanced terrain
  • Small ski area
Known for: Family-friendly, group trips, cheap lift tickets
Wachusett Mountain
At the highest peak of 611 m

Drive From Boston: 1 hour

On The Slopes: Small but mighty, Wachusett offers skiers and riders 42 ha of mellow terrain serviced by 6 lifts and 19 trails. Terrain is mostly intermediate, while a magic carpet services a beginner learning area and an express quad offers more beginners a chance to rack up their ski laps. Much of the ski area is surrounded by old growth forest, and it overlooks the beautiful Wachusett Lake. 2016 marked the beginning of an updated snowmaking infrastructure, so despite temperamental New England weather, skiers can expect good coverage on the slopes.

Around Town: The ski area is located between the towns of Princeton and Westminster; other nearby towns also offer lodging and dining options. Some chain hotels – like DoubleTree by Hilton – offer ski and stay packages, while B&B options are well-suited for couples getaways. Family-friendly events like magician visits and “Science on the Slopes” are offered throughout the season at the ski area. Head into town areas for quaint New England shopping.

Location: Princeton, Massachusetts

1 Day Adult Lift Ticket: $69 USD ($94 AUD)

3. Pats Peak Go to resort

Trail Map View Packages

Pros

  • Good gladed terrain
  • Plenty of terrain for beginners
  • Night skiing available across all terrain

Cons

  • Advanced terrain not very challenging
  • Small ski area
Known for:  Night skiing, day trips, quaint downtown
Pats Peak night skiing
Ski into the night at Pats Peak

Drive From Boston: 1.5 hours

On The Slopes: Pats Peak boasts 28 trails serviced by 11 lifts, which have been spinning since the late 1960’s. Beginner terrain dominates 50% of the trails, while a surprising 30% are rated for advanced and expert skiers. While you won’t find the steeps of the Rockies at Pats Peak, the ski area is dedicated to maintaining good gladed areas for New England thrill seekers, and for this we are grateful. 3 terrain parks are built for varying abilities, and kids love to test their skills progressively through the parks. Other perks include night skiing on all terrain, and free wifi in both lodges.

Around Town: The town of Henniker is picturesque and charming – a postcard of rural New Hampshire. A friendly community is complemented by a private college and downtown with local businesses. Stay at the inn, B&B, and motel options in Henniker for closest access to the resort, or in nearby Weare and Hopkinton for a more remote getaway. Activity options besides skiing include snowshoeing and tubing. A bus service from Boston on Saturday afternoons is a great option for those who don’t want to stay overnight.

Location: Henniker, New Hampshire

1 Day Adult Lift Ticket: $68 USD ($93 AUD)

2. Mount Sunapee Go to resort

Trail Map View Packages

Pros

  • Exceptional grooming
  • High elevation compared to other resorts near Boston
  • Moguls and glades for advanced skiers

Cons

  • Further to get to compared to other resorts on this list
  • Small size
Known for: Varied terrain, grooming, surrounding towns and attractions
powder trees Mount Sunapee
Powdery trees

Drive From Boston: 1 hour 45 minutes

On The Slopes: Mount Sunapee just snagged the #1 ski area for grooming in the East by Ski Magazine, and this is one of the perks of travelling just a bit farther from Boston to hit the slopes. 66 trails span across 94 ha serviced by 10 lifts, 2 of which are high speed quads. Higher elevation than other Boston area resorts means better snowfall – about 254 cm per year. Intermediates will appreciate the excellent grooming quality, while advanced skiers can hit the moguls and glades.

Around Town: New London is the closest major town, which features a range of lodging and casual eateries, as well as an historic downtown. We recommend a stroll down Main Street for photo ops and artsy shopping before grabbing dinner at one of the locally-run restaurants. Colby-Sawyer College also borders the town, which offers a fresh, young vibe to the area.

Newbury itself is home to historic buildings and attractions, as well as the John Hay National Wildlife Refuge along the shores of Lake Sunapee.

Location: Newbury, New Hampshire

1 Day Adult Lift Ticket: $84 USD ($115 AUD)

1. Gunstock Mountain Resort Go to resort

Trail Map View Packages

Pros

  • Family-friendly
  • Ideal resort for intermediates
  • Night skiing available

Cons

  • Old lift infrastructure
  • Small ski area
Known for: Family-friendly, activities and shopping
Gunstock mountain
Hop on New Hampshire's 3rd longest chairlift to the top of Gunstock Mountain!

Drive From Boston: 1.5 hours

On The Slopes: Gunstock is a mom-and-pop style resort that’s known for its family-friendly atmosphere, activities, and steep pitch. For a small mountain of 92 ha, it boasts an impressive quality of trails for varying ability levels. Intermediates will find the most suitable slopes. The lift infrastructure is less modern than some other New England resorts (there’s only one high speed quad), but with few crowds – even on holidays and weekends – the slower pace doesn’t present an issue. Night skiing is a favourite here, and the new 2016-2017 Flex Pass offers frequent visitors flexibility in terms of how long and often they ski.

Around Town: From the slopes you’ll see views of Lake Winnipesaukee, and around the town of Gilford you’ll find various lodging and dining options. Gunstock partners with nearby resorts, B&B’s, and country inns that boast a certain New Hampshire rustic charm. Restaurants are largely of the bar and grill variety, with more upscale options available in nearby Laconia. Because New Hampshire has no sales tax, it’s a hot spot for outlet shopping. The Tanger Outlet Centre is a short drive away, while downtown Gilford boasts a gourmet food shop and antiques.

Location: Gilford, New Hampshire

1 Day Adult Lift Ticket: $86 USD ($118 AUD)

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