Boating in New Hampshire
Please note that boat registrations are issued by the N.H. Department of Safety, Division of Motor Vehicles (click to learn more about registering your boat).
New Hampshire is a boater's paradise!
You're never more than a short drive away from a boatable lake, pond or river in the Granite State. There are more than 400 public federal and state-owned launch sites where you can get your motorboat, kayak or canoe into the water, not to mention town-owned ramps that you can check out.
If you're a paddler, you'll find hundreds of great destinations in New Hampshire -- some whitewater for the adrenaline-rush crowd, some glassy expanses for the stereotypical Sunday driver, and lots and lots in between. Bring your binoculars, because many of the most fantastic waterbodies are inside of state parks and NH Fish and Game-owned Wildlife Management Areas; depending on the season and time of day, you may find more than just a nice place to launch your people-powered craft. And, of course, don't forget your fishing rod and tackle box!
Public Access Sites
Stop by your nearest NH Visitor Center to pick up a copy of the NH Boating & Fishing Public Access Map!
General Boating Info
For general boating information, contact:
Marine Patrol Headquarters
(603) 293-2037 or https://www.nh.gov/safety/divisions/nhsp/fob/marine-patrol/contactus.html
Motor Restrictions - Division of Safety Services
(603) 293-2037 or https://www.nh.gov/safety/divisions/nhsp/fob/marine-patrol/restricted.html
Boating Safety Courses from NH Marine Patrol
- Boater Education: Click here to sign up for a class or find online study materials.
- Many locations throughout the state.
- Open to any boater over 14 years of age.
- NASBLA approved.
- Satisfies requirements of mandatory boating education law.
- For class schedule, call NH Marine Patrol at 1-888-254-2125.
- Be smart: Boat safe!
Click here for information on registering your boat, or phone Marine Patrol at (603) 293-2037.
- Which boats? All motorized vessels of any size must be registered, in addition to sailboats and sailboards 12 feet or longer. (Unmotorized canoes, kayaks and small sailboats do not need to register.) You can register at many marinas and sport shops, town halls and Department of Motor Vehicles offices.
- New boat: The boat owner must register in person at any NH Department of Motor Vehicles substation. Some marinas, sport shops and town halls also can provide boat registrations; call first. The owner will be asked to show proof of ownership (such as a bill of sale) and a photo ID.
- Renewal: Once a boat is registered, registrants will receive a renewal form in the mail in subsequent years; boat registrations may be renewed by mail or in person.
Any vessel that is registered in another state or Canadian province may operate on New Hampshire waters for 30 consecutive days or less without a NH boat registration. Operators must have the appropriate Safe Boating Certificate.
Important Boating Information
Aquatic Nuisance Species in New Hampshire
BOATERS take note - Lake Winnipesaukee speed limits (RSA 270-D:2 X and XI):
- 25 miles per hour during the period from one-half hour after sunset to one-half hour before sunrise; AND
- 45 miles per hour at any other time