The Mount Washington Hotel at Bretton Woods draws on more than a century of holiday tradition for an annual family gala Dec. 18-29. The Omni Mount Washington Resort welcomes winter with sleigh rides, snowshoeing, skiing, stories with Santa, and holiday refreshments in front of the fire with eggnog or cider.

The grand resort hotel also offers one of the finest views in the Northeast of Mount Washington, highest peak in New England, always snow-covered in winter.

Jackson, at the other end of Crawford Notch, epitomizes the small New England towns of memory and legend, with a quiet village center, traditional homes, several large inns, and a sense of community which has slipped away from so many people caught up in a fast-moving world.

Jackson is nestled in the Mount Washington Valley of New Hampshire's White Mountains.

Residents transform their town into a festival of lights for the holidays, welcoming visitors to share a vision from the past.

The Jackson Ski Touring Foundation offers one of the very best networks of cross-country ski trails to be found anywhere, with 148.2 kilometers of trails running through town and up through forest into the surrounding high country.

The town also is a pretty good place to find a great meal, although in truth it's hard to find a bad Christmas dinner at the many inns for which New England is justly renowned. The Christmas Farm Inn in Jackson comes particularly well-recommended.

The dining room at the Omni Mount Washington Hotel also is famous for its cuisine.

More information: Omni Mount Washington Hotel, or call 800-314-1752; Jackson, or call 603-383-9355.