Canobie Lake, New Hampshire, USA

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Canobie Lake — things to do, where to stay, fun facts, history, stats and more. Let’s dive in!

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Looking for Canobie Lake cabins or other accommodations? Save time and use this interactive map to find, compare and book at the best rates. Or explore our comprehensive list of favorite travel partners.

All About Canobie Lake

A pair of loons glide across the surface of Canobie Lake in the Merrimack Valley region of southeastern New Hampshire. Although treasured, it is not that unusual a sight for a New England lake. What is unusual, however, is the silhouette of a Ferris wheel and roller coaster in the background. Canobie Lake Park sits on the shores of Canobie Lake. Established in 1902, it is just one of the things that have been drawing visitors to the lake for over a century. The clean, clear water, abundant fishing, and over a mile long stretch of water for boating combine to make Canobie Lake a great destination for the entire family.

Primarily spring fed, Canobie Lake covers 375 acres with a maximum depth of 40 feet and an average depth of 28 feet. The lake runs a mile and a half long and is just under half a mile wide, although in one location two of the lake’s arms are nearly opposite each other making the lake approximately one mile wide at that point. Policy Brook is the lake’s outflow which joins the Spicket River and then the Merrimack River.

A dam in the town of Salem controls the water levels on Canobie Lake. The lake supplies drinking water for the town which controls the lake’s levels. No swimming is allowed in the lake, and Canobie Lake is classified as oligotrophic with very clean water. In 1980, the Canobie Lake Protective Association was formed to preserve the lake. Although road salt from nearby Route 93 is occasionally an issue, the primary threat to Canobie Lake is falling water levels. Canobie Lake first became a water supply source for the town of Salem in 1903. At that time the lake was serving 600 customers. Demand is much larger today, but careful management should ensure Canobie Lake’s clean spring water continues to be available far into the future.

Boating is allowed on Canobie Lake, but there is no public access. A municipal launch at the north end of the lake is available for residents. Canobie Lake is considered a good fishing lake with healthy populations of pickerel, yellow perch, black crappie and rainbow trout. Occasionally the lake hosts bass tournaments, and anglers can challenge themselves against the lake’s largemouth bass and smallmouth bass. A variety of waterfowl including herons, osprey and cormorants also make their homes on Canobie Lake.

Canobie Lake is in Rockingham County and borders the towns of Salem and Windham. There is residential development scattered along the shore of the lake with both year round homes and seasonal vacation rentals. There is real estate available for sale on the lake and in both towns. Amenities are very accessible, and guests shouldn’t have any trouble finding anything they might need. The clean fish-filled water along with its proximity to local attractions makes Canobie Lake a fantastic Merrimack Valley destination and a great getaway for the entire family.

Things to Do at Canobie Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Fishing Tournaments
  • Boating
  • Birding

Fish Species Found at Canobie Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Black Crappie
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Perch
  • Pickerel
  • Pike
  • Rainbow Trout
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Trout
  • Yellow Perch

Find Places to Stay at Canobie Lake

If you’re considering a Canobie Lake lake house rental or hotel, we’ve made it super easy to find the best rates and compare vacation accommodations at a glance. Save time using this interactive map below.

Recommended Sites to Book a Canobie Lake Vacation

If you want to take a deeper dive to find waterfront lake cabins, cottages, condos, hotels or resorts, check out our favorite Canobie Lake lodging partners.

  • VRBO – Use VRBO to find the perfect lake rental home, condo, cabin, cottage or other vacation property.
  • – One of the world’s leading digital travel companies, connects travelers to everything from cozy B&Bs to luxury resorts.
  • Expedia – Expedia is a popular online travel agency with more than 140,000 lodging properties worldwide.
  • – With more than 325,000 hotels in 19,000-plus locations, is an industry leader in online accommodations.
  • TripAdvisor – Read traveler reviews and compare prices on hotels, vacation rentals and more at TripAdvisor.
  • Trivago – Trivago helps travelers compare deals for hotels and other accommodations from a variety of booking sites.
  • KAYAK – KAYAK scours hundreds of other travel websites at once to find the best deals on hotels and other travel-related services.
  • RVshare –RVshare connects travelers interested in renting a motorhome with owners who have RVs to rent.
  • CampSpot – Campspot offers premier RV resorts, family campgrounds, cabins and glamping options across North America.

Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.

Canobie Lake Statistics & Helpful Links


Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed

Water Level Control: Town of Salem

Surface Area: 375 acres

Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 219 feet

Average Depth: 28 feet

Maximum Depth: 40 feet

Trophic State: Oligotrophic

We strive to keep the information on LakeLubbers as accurate as possible. However, if you’ve found something in this article that needs updating, we’d certainly love to hear from you! Please fill out our Content Correction form.

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On Lake Time Custom Coffee Mug – 11oz or 15oz


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