Southern Seacoast Maine - Maine: Eliot, Kittery, York, South Berwick, Ogunquit and New Hampshire: Portsmouth, Dover, Somerswort
The Yorks, ME

The Yorks - Composed of what were once four smaller communities, the towns of Cape Neddick, York Harbor, York Village and York Beach formed under one government to create this beautiful and diverse town of York. It is famous for its long sandy beaches, and safe, family-friendly beach-town atmosphere. As each year passes, the area becomes more of a destination for weddings, family reunions, or just a place to get away. Once a summer-season-only resort area, York has become a year-round vacation destination.

Positioned where the York River meets the Atlantic Ocean, about 7 miles north of New Hampshire, York, Maine retains the look and flavor of an 18th-century village. Four small New England communities including Cape Neddick, York Harbor, York Village, and York Beach unite to form the beautiful and diverse town of York. From the old-time carousel and arcades of York Beach to the tranquil headwaters of the York River and the stately mansions of York Harbor, York truly is an ideal place to live or vacation--for all reasons and in all seasons. York boasts miles of sandy beaches, rocky cliffs, and boating anchorages, all just an hour from Boston yet almost a world away. The York area has righteously earned its 2002 Money magazine title as "one of the 10 best places to vacation in North America", and invites you to spend a day, spend a week, or spend a lifetime! The proximity of the Yorks to the cultural centers of Boston and New York City continue to make it one of the most sought-after places to live in southern Maine.

Things to do in York
1. Cape Neddick “Nubble” Lighthouse
2. Long Sands Beach (York Beach)
3. Short Sands Beach (York Beach)
4. Wiggly Bridge and Steedman Woods (York Harbor)
5. Museums of Old York
6. George Marshall Store Gallery
7. York's Wild Kingdom Zoo and Fun Park (York Beach)
8. Old Gaol
9. Elizabeth Perkins House
10. Jefferds' Tavern

Kittery, ME

Kittery is Maine's oldest and southern-most town, and includes the residential area of Kittery Point. Located in York County, and bordered by Portsmouth, NH, York, and Eliot, Kittery is a community of contrasts with a quiet waterfront community, Naval Shipyard, major retail center, and a variety of cultural and recreational opportunities. Kittery boasts a rich history. The Naval Shipyard, active to this day, has been building ships since the early 1 800's, including the 74-gun ship Washington, launched in 1815, and the Kearsarge, famous for sinking the Confederate raider Alabama during the Civil War.

Kittery is bordered by the Piscataqua River and the Atlantic Ocean, providing protected anchorages and unspoiled beaches. With its rural, maritime flavor, Kittery is a peaceful oasis just a few minutes from bustling downtown Portsmouth. The real estate market in Kittery Point, a community within Kittery, offers some of Maine's finest oceanfront, ocean view, waterfront, and other distinctive properties and estates. Today downtown Kittery, sometimes known as Kittery Foreside, has become a gathering place for artists, specialty shops, and fine dining.
Things to do in Kittery

1. Kittery Outlets
2. Fort Foster
3. Fort McClary
4. The Kittery Town Forest
5. Rogers Park
6. Seafaring Adventures
7. Rachel Carson Preserve
8. The Kittery Historical and Naval Museum
9. Seapoint and Crescent Beach
10. Chauncey Creek Lobster

Eliot, ME
Eliot, an old New England town with a rural landscape, is ideally located along the northern shore of the Piscataqua River opposite the cities of Portsmouth and Dover, New Hampshire. Eliot is surrounded by Maine's southern most town, Kittery, the quickly growing town of South Berwick, and the stunningly diverse town of York. Eliot retains the flavor of a classic New England village, offering a charming village green, excellent schools, and relatively low taxes.

Eliot was once a part of Kittery known as the Upper Parish but incorporated as an independent town in 1810. The 747-ton Elizabeth Hamilton, and the clipper ship, The Nightingale, were launched from Eliot’s shores, as were numerous smaller craft. Eliot was the site of the first Quaker Meeting House in 1776, and it is also the international home of the Baha’i faith. Primarily a farming community in its earlier years, Eliot was also known for its brick-making industry.

Eliot has its own unique style with many fine examples of New England architecture among its homes and public buildings. Buildings of historical interest include the William Fogg Library, the William Fogg House, the Dr. Willis Homestead (1725) and the 1768 Libby Home, a former roadside tavern. Most of the beautiful, natural features of the town are still intact and the citizens of Eliot acknowledge their good fortune to have inherited such a beautiful environment and often express their sense of responsibility to preserve it.

Things to do in Eliot

1. Dead Duck Boat Launch
2. William Fog Library
3. Eliot Fire Department Pancake Breakfast
4. Take River Road for scenic views of the Piscataqua River
5. Frost Tufts Park and Ballpark
6. Eliot Festival Days (last weekend in September)
7. Annual Octoberfest
8. Walking trail at Douglas Memorial Woods
9. Shipyard Brew Pub

South Berwick, ME

Home of the oldest power mill in America, this community has had a diverse economy that included textile and shoe manufacturing, farming, timber and fishing. South Berwick is a vibrant mid-size Maine community located on the New Hampshire border. With a population of 7,000 plus, South Berwick has experienced almost a 50% growth in population since 1980, making it one of the fastest-growing towns in Maine. With its rural New England flavor and proximity to Boston, MA, Portsmouth, NH, Portland, ME, and the stunning Maine coast, South Berwick is truly a great place to call home. South Berwick comprises 35 square miles, with 70 miles of road. The Town is on the fringes of the expanding Boston/Southern New Hampshire Metropolitan area which has brought many jobs within commuting distance of the Town. The quaint downtown has a variety of year round fine dining and delightful shops. Outdoor concerts on the town hall lawn are a common summer occurrence. South Berwick and Eliot share a public school district, but South Berwick is also home to Berwick Academy, a highly respected college preparatory day school. Route 236 is the main artery connecting Kittery, Eliot and South Berwick.

Things to do in South Berwick

The Links at Outlook
Vaughan Woods
Hamilton House
Sarah Orne Jewett House
Hot Summer Nights Concert Series
Strawberry Festival
Pumpkinman Triathlon
Mt. Agamenticus

Ogunquit, ME

Ogunquit is essentially a tranquil, small village where you can enjoy the simple pleasures at a peaceful pace, no matter how crowded it may become at times. It offers almost everything to almost everyone as perhaps nowhere else in the country can: the finest stretch of pristine beach whose glistening white sand flows wide and long; a picturesque small harbor, with its fishing and pleasure boats moving easily at their quiet moorings and crowned by a unique draw-footbridge; the quaint New England flavor of the Village Center with its countless restaurants, art galleries, gift shops, inns, hotels and guesthouses; awesome views of high waves crashing against rocks, and soothing views of gentle waters easing up onto clean white sand; kayaking, paddle-boarding and fine golf courses nearby; the Ogunquit Playhouse, movie theaters and small repertory companies; boat rides, either for sightseeing or for trapping Maine’s famous lobster or for fishing in the deep dark sea; the exceptionally stirring and exhilarating Marginal Way footpath which winds along a craggy promontory shadowing the vast Atlantic for a sandpiper’s view of the famed rocky coast of Maine. Over the past 100 years, this attractive seaside village has evolved without losing any of its charisma or endearing quaintness. When you see the powdery stretch of white sand curving in to a backdrop of rugged cliffs, you’ll understand why Ogunquit has been drawing admirers for so many years. This site called “beautiful place by the sea” is suitably named, and the bountiful beach is a special treasure in Maine whose rockbound coastline yields few such vast, open places.

Things to do in Ogunquit

1. Marginal Way
2. Ogunquit Beach
3. Perkins Cove
4. Footbridge Beach
5. Ogunquit Museum of American Art
6. Ogunquit Playhouse

Wells, ME

The town of Wells is the center of coastal southern Maine, north of Ogunquit and just south of Kennebunk. Wells Maine was founded in 1643, when it became the 3rd established town in Maine, and has since transformed into the ultimate vacation destination. Visitors can find many things to do in Wells, from beaches and shopping along Rt 1, to nature trails and dining at casual clam shacks and diners to gourmet restaurants.

Wells Harbor is home to boats from lobster fishermen to pleasure yachts and fishing charters. Within Wells Harbor you can canoe or kayak up the Webhannet River, or paddleboard around the calm waters, or venture out to see through the Wells breakwater. Wells Harbor is also home to Wells Harbor Park where concerts in the Gazebo are free in summertime, and special events like craft fairs, Chilifest and Harborfest take place every year.

There are miles of beaches in Wells comprised of Moody Beach, Crescent Beach, Wells Beach and Drakes Island Beach. Each beach is worth a visit and all of Wells beaches offer soft sand and refreshing salt water for swimming and surfing. Learn more about Wells Beach.

Things to do in Wells

1. 7 miles of beaches with public parking areas: Drakes Island Beach, East Shore Beach, and Wells Beach, as well as the privately held Moody Beach.
2. The "Antiques Mile" - dozens of antiques vendors lining Post Road between Wells Corner and the Wells/Kennebunk town line
3. Division 9 Schoolhouse Museum
4. Historical Society of Wells & Ogunquit - Maine Diner
5. Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge
6. Wells Farmers' Market
7. Wells Harbor Community Park
8. Wells Harbor Summer Concert Series
9. Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve
10. Historic Laudholm Farm
11. Wells Public Library
12. Wonder Mountain Fun Park

Dover, NH

CNN/Money and America’s Promise Alliance ranked Dover as one of the top 100 communities in the United States and one of the nation's top communities for young people. Dover is a great place to live, work, and play. It is conveniently located in the seacoast area of New Hampshire. Settled in 1623, Dover is the oldest permanent settlement in New Hampshire and the 7th oldest in the United States.

The city of Dover has a long and colorful history spanningn early four centuries. Its earliest days as a colonial seaport led to a successful shipbuilding industry in the 1700s, and it flourished in the 19th century as the nation's leading manufacturer of cotton goods. The development of a brick industry spanned decades of successful mill operations through the middle of the 20th century. Dover's renaissance as a thriving, competitive community continues today.

The quality of life in Dover is unmatched. Dover boasts an exceptional school system, outstanding parks and recreation services, as well as premier medical facilities. The downtown area reflects the city's mill heritage. The Cochecho River graces the banks of the downtown. Members of the community hustle by on shopping or business trips.

Dover is nestled between the mountains and the ocean. The community is close to the University of New Hampshire, Pease International Tradeport and harbors a local airport. The city is a short drive to the Port of New Hampshire, the state's only deep water port, scene to industrial barges escorted by tugs, importing and exporting goods to and from the Granite State. Dover is a quick commute to the metropolitan area of Boston, and less than an hour's drive to Boston's Logan International Airport. In addition, there is easy access to rail and highway transportation routes.

Things to do in Dover
1. Children's Museum of New Hampshire
2. Henry Law Park
3. Apple Harvest Day
4. Cochecho Arts Festival
5. Irish festival
6. Pet-A-Palooza
7. Rotary Arts Pavilion
8. Garrison Hill Tower
9. Willand Pond
10. Woodman Institute Museum

Portsmouth, NH

Portsmouth, N.H., a city of roughly 21,000 people, sits near the mouth of the Piscataqua River, a short, wide river that divides New Hamp shire and Maine. The city also is at the hub of a metropolitan region that includes the cities of Rochester and Dover, N.H., and many towns – Exeter, Hampton, Greenland, Stratham, Newington, and Rye, N.H.; Kittery, Eliot, South Berwick and York, Maine; and others.

Settled in 1623, Portsmouth claims to be the nation's third-oldest city. It served as a focal point on the Eastern seaboard until the late 1800s when rail travel did in the shipping industry. John Paul Jones' ship The Ranger was built in Portsmouth, and the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (which lies across the river in Maine) was established in 1800 as the country's first Naval shipyard.

The geographic location, historic past and cultural strength of Portsmouth regularly lands it on various "best places to live" lists. Prevention Magazine named Portsmouth one of the top 100 walking cities in the America for 2008. Also in 2008, the National Trust for Historic Preservation named Portsmouth to its list of America's Dozen Distinctive Destinations, calling the city "one of the most culturally rich destinations in the country "with a stimulating mix of historic buildings, sidewalk cafes, great restaurants, art galleries, jazz clubs and distinctive artisans' boutiques." In 2009, Forbes Traveler listed Portsmouth as one of America's Prettiest Towns.

The quality of life in Portsmouth is unrivaled - with hundreds of fine restaurants, art galleries, theatres, outdoor recreation, a walk-able historic downtown, and much more. It is no wonder Outside magazine ranked Portsmouth #4 on its list of the "Top 20 Towns in America" in 2008.

As the city has grown, great care has been taken to preserve its history, culture and quality of life. The National Trust for Historic Preservation verified these efforts when it named Portsmouth one of its 2008 Dozen Distinctive Destinations®.

Things to do in Portsmouth

1. USS Albacore Museum & Park
2. Buckminster House
3. The Music Hall
4. North Church
5. New Hampshire Theatre Project
6. Pontine Theatre
7. Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse
8. Prescott Park Arts Festival
9. Seacoast Repertory Theatre
10. Strawbery Banke

Rye, NH

The Town of Rye, New Hampshire is located on the Atlantic Coast, a one hour drive by car from Boston, Massachusetts; Portland, Maine or the foothills of the White Mountains. Although Rye has a total area of 35. 5 square miles, 64.45% of it (22.9 square miles) is wetland or marsh. The Town of Rye has the longest stretch of coastline of any New Hampshire coastal town and also contains four of the nine islands known as the Isles of Shoals which lie approximately ten miles off the Rye shores.

Rye Beach, New Hampshire, the quiet family getaway, has the historical distinction of being the site of the state’s first settlement. Originally called Pannaway, the settlement was established in 1623 at Odiorne Point. The settling group was commissioned by the Laconia Company of England to found a plantation.

Odiorne Point itself is the largest undeveloped stretch of shore on New Hampshire’s 18-mile coast. Located three miles south of Portsmouth on Route 1A in Rye, Odiorne offers an extensive array of habitats for visitors to explore the local flora and fauna. The south side of the park is home to numerous sheltered tide pools and an exposed rocky shore. To the north a pebble beach shelters a fresh water marsh. Sand dunes and marshland are also featured within the state park. To the south lies the famed Rye Beaches and shore offerings of Jenness and Wallis Sands beaches, both of which offer the visitor what locals have known for years, an expanse of sandy beach to surf, swim, play volleyball, bocce ball or Frisbee and the area’s favorite summertime activity, relax and soak up some rays.

Things to do in Rye

1. Granite State Whale Watch, Inc.
2. Odiorne Point State Park
3. Wallis Sands State Beach
4. Atlantic Whale Watch
5. Seacoast Science Center
6. Rye Harbor State Park
7. Atlantic Queen II Deep Sea Fishing
8. Island Cruises
9. Summer Sessions Surf Shop