While New Hampshire’s seacoast may be small, don’t underestimate it! Our 18 miles of coastline are jam-packed with summertime hotspots that locals and visitors flock to in the warmer months. Between clean, sandy beaches, a bustling oceanfront boardwalk, a port city steeped in rich history, and a downtown with some of the best cuisine in the state—there’s something to enjoy around every corner.
Summer is the time to take advantage of warmer weather, sunny skies, and inviting waters. This season, why not set sail on a whale watching or deep sea fishing adventure? Or, paddle the waters for a surfing or sea kayaking experience. If you’re not keen on the ocean, there’s plenty of nature walks and walking tours throughout the cities and towns to please everyone in your crew. Plus, don’t forget about Water Country for splashy adventures or the Seacoast Science Center to learn about the state’s diverse marine life!
If you’re spending the day lounging on Hampton Beach, you’ll have a wide variety of local seafood shacks, clam stands, ice cream shops and fried dough joints all at your disposal lining the boardwalk. Spend the evening exploring Portsmouth's lively downtown for culinary excellence where you can choose between nationally-recognized restaurants and dozens of local favorites.
As New Hampshire’s oldest city and one of America’s earliest, Portsmouth is full of fascinating historical sites dating back to the 1600s. The people, places and events that shaped the seaport can be explored along the Harbour Trail, at the Strawbery Banke Museum where dozens of historic houses and actors portray early American life—and the Portsmouth Black Heritage Trail, which dives into African American history and culture in the state. Lighthouses and the Isles of Shoals are also popular attractions.
Exploring the splendor of shops on New Hampshire’s seacoast is a treat. And tax-free shopping is the cherry on top! Pop into the souvenir shops lining Hampton’s boardwalk, or head to Portsmouth’s boutiques for locally made products, home goods, stylish clothing, and more! The best part? It’s all tax free.
Remember when we said the seacoast was jam-packed with summertime hotspots? Well, we would be remiss to leave out the thriving arts and culture scene which draws in visitors all year long. Scope out some live music at Jimmy’s Jazz & Blues Club or The Music Hall, catch a theatrical performance at the Seacoast Repertory Theater, or explore the treasure trove of other performance centers on the coast!
After a long day exploring the seaside attractions and land adventures on the coast, there’s nothing better than capping the day with a refreshing, locally-brewed beer. Head to Smuttynose in Hampton where you can enjoy a tasting flight and play disc-golf on the brewery’s grounds. Or try out the Portsmouth Brewery where you can sample uniquely crafted brews in a central location. Or scope out one of the many other breweries lining the coast!
With so much to see and do, one thing is clear: The seacoast is just begging to be a part of your next summer getaway!