I hate to use this word, but Gilmanton is the quintessential New England village. You need only to come into town during the holiday season and see the “Corners” decorated and lit up – it is a true “Currier and Ives” postcard. There are two sections of town; the Corners and the Iron Works. The Corners is located at the intersection of Rt 140 and Rt 107 where you’ll find the Town Offices in the old Academy building, the newly opened Gilmanton Cafe, the Temperance Tavern (you won’t be able to get a drink there—it is a bed and breakfast) and beautiful white historical homes. Here, you will also find the Four Corners Brick House antique shop which is great place to visit with some very unique offerings from dozens of vendors!
Just west of the Corners on Rt 140 is the post office and a new safety building which houses the police and fire department. There is also an old fire station that is also becoming the new home of “Gilmanton’s Own” a market of local producers.
Head east on Rt 140 from the Corners for about 10-15 minutes and you’ll come to the Iron Works where you’ll find a country store and a post office.The Town Hall is located in the Iron Works (big white building with the words “Town Hall” on it) which used to be the police station and now houses the historical society. There is also another fire station thereto serve that end of town.
Just before you get to the Iron Works you’ll see Crystal Lake Rd which leads out to a hidden treasure of a lake by the same name. You’ll find a town beach and boat launch just at mile or two up the road.
Gilmanton is a really laid back residential community, no Wall Marts and no Rite-Aids here. There are about 3,500 residents and the town spreads out over almost 60 square miles. But the location makes it an easy commute in any direction if you need to find one. There are picturesque back roads, beautiful farms, and stunning mountain views. Gilmanton is definitely a town that you need to take some time and explore. It’s a perfect place to take your motorcycle or convertible for a Sunday afternoon drive during foliage season.
You’ll find some other smaller lakes and ponds in Gilmanton; Sawyer Lake, Shellcamp Lake, Manning Lake, and Loon Pond. These water bodies offer great summer fun and affordable lakeside living at far more reasonable prices then the bigger lakes like Lake Winnipesaukee or Winnisquam.
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