Top-Rated Things to Do in Kennebunkport, ME

Maine

By Christine Hitt

Kennebunkport, Maine is a charming coastal town with a rich history and plenty of attractions to explore. Whether you’re a nature lover, history buff, or foodie, this quaint New England town has something for everyone.

One of the top-rated things to do in Kennebunkport is to explore the stunning coastline. Take a leisurely stroll along the sandy beaches and enjoy the picturesque views of the Atlantic Ocean. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even try your hand at kayaking or paddleboarding in the calm waters.

For history enthusiasts, a visit to the historic Kennebunkport’s Dock Square is a must. This vibrant area is filled with charming shops, art galleries, and restaurants. Take a guided tour of the town’s historic landmarks, such as the Nott House or the Wedding Cake House, to learn about Kennebunkport’s fascinating past.

No trip to Kennebunkport would be complete without indulging in its delicious seafood. From lobster rolls to freshly caught fish, the local culinary scene is a food lover’s paradise. Be sure to visit one of the many waterfront restaurants to sample some of the best seafood the town has to offer.

Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or simply a relaxing getaway, Kennebunkport has it all. With its stunning coastline, rich history, and mouthwatering cuisine, this charming Maine town is sure to leave you with unforgettable memories.

Best Attractions in Kennebunkport, ME

If you’re visiting Kennebunkport, ME, there are plenty of attractions to see and explore. From historic landmarks to breathtaking natural beauty, this coastal town has something for everyone. Here are some of the best attractions in Kennebunkport:

1. Walker’s Point – Take a stroll along the scenic coastline and visit Walker’s Point, the summer home of former President George H.W. Bush. Enjoy stunning views of the ocean and see the famous Bush compound.

2. Dock Square – Head downtown to Dock Square, the heart of Kennebunkport. Explore the charming shops and art galleries, grab a bite to eat at one of the local restaurants, or simply sit back and people-watch in this vibrant area.

3. Goose Rocks Beach – Spend a day at Goose Rocks Beach, a pristine stretch of sandy shoreline. Relax on the beach, take a refreshing swim in the ocean, or go for a scenic walk along the coast.

4. Cape Porpoise – Visit the picturesque village of Cape Porpoise, located just a short drive from Kennebunkport. Explore the quaint shops and enjoy fresh seafood at one of the charming restaurants overlooking the harbor.

5. Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge – Nature enthusiasts will love a visit to the Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge. Take a hike on the trails, observe a variety of bird species, and immerse yourself in the serene beauty of the wetlands.

6. Franciscan Monastery – Explore the stunning architecture and peaceful grounds of the Franciscan Monastery. Take a guided tour to learn about the history of the monastery and its significance to the local community.

7. First Families Kennebunkport Museum – Discover the rich history of Kennebunkport at the First Families Kennebunkport Museum. Explore exhibits showcasing the town’s maritime heritage and learn about the influential families who have lived here.

With its charming coastal beauty and array of attractions, Kennebunkport, ME offers a memorable experience for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re interested in history, outdoor activities, or simply soaking in the seaside charm, this enchanting town has something to offer.

Explore the Beautiful Beaches

Kennebunkport is home to several stunning beaches that offer visitors a chance to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the area. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful spot to read a book or a place to play beach volleyball with friends, Kennebunkport has something for everyone.

One of the most popular beaches in town is Gooch’s Beach. This wide sandy beach stretches for over three miles and offers plenty of space to spread out and soak up the sun. You can go for a swim in the clear blue waters or take a leisurely stroll along the shoreline.

If you’re interested in wildlife, make sure to visit the Kennebunkport Conservation Trust’s Beach Avenue trail. This trail provides access to several secluded beaches where you can observe coastal birds, seals, and other marine life in their natural habitats. It’s a great spot for nature lovers and photographers to explore and capture the beauty of the area.

For those looking for a more active beach experience, Colony Beach is a great option. This beach is known for its excellent surfing conditions, so grab your surfboard and catch some waves. If surfing isn’t your thing, you can also try your hand at paddleboarding or kayaking in the calm waters of the beach.

Finally, no visit to Kennebunkport would be complete without a trip to Goose Rocks Beach. This picturesque beach offers sweeping views of the ocean and the opportunity to search for seashells along its sandy shores. It’s the perfect place to relax and enjoy the tranquility of the Maine coast.

So, whether you prefer a peaceful day by the water or an active beach adventure, Kennebunkport’s beautiful beaches have something for everyone. Make sure to explore these stunning coastal destinations on your next visit to the area.

Visit the Walker’s Point

One of the must-see attractions in Kennebunkport is the Walker’s Point. This stunning location is the summer home of the Bush family, and it offers breathtaking views of the coastline.

Take a tour of the compound to learn more about the history of this famous family and their connection to Kennebunkport. You might even catch a glimpse of one of the family members as they enjoy their time at the estate.

While you’re here, make sure to take a walk along the rocky shores and soak in the beautiful scenery. The crashing waves and fresh sea air create a truly peaceful and rejuvenating experience.

Don’t forget to bring your camera, as the views from Walker’s Point are

Take a Scenic Harbor Cruise

One of the top-rated things to do in Kennebunkport is to take a scenic harbor cruise. This activity allows visitors to experience the beauty of the town from a unique perspective while enjoying the peaceful waters of the harbor.

During the cruise, you’ll have the opportunity to see stunning views of Kennebunkport’s coastline, dotted with charming historic homes and scenic landscapes. The knowledgeable guides on board will provide interesting commentary and point out notable landmarks, giving you a deeper appreciation for the area’s history and culture.

Harbor cruises in Kennebunkport typically vary in length and itinerary. Some tours may explore the entire harbor, while others may focus on specific areas of interest, such as Walker’s Point – the summer retreat of former President George H. W. Bush. Regardless of the route, you can expect to be treated to breathtaking views and ample photo opportunities.

In addition to the beautiful scenery, many harbor cruises offer additional amenities to enhance your experience. Some boats have onboard bars or snack options, allowing you to enjoy a refreshing drink or snack while you take in the sights. Others may have open decks or observation areas, providing unobstructed views and the opportunity to feel the gentle sea breeze.

Tour Company Duration Price
Kennebunkport Harbor Tours 1 hour $25 per person
First Chance Whale Watch 2 hours $40 per person
Scenic Lobster Boat Tour 1.5 hours $30 per person

When planning your visit to Kennebunkport, be sure to include a scenic harbor cruise in your itinerary. It’s a wonderful way to relax, take in the sights, and create lasting memories of your time in this picturesque coastal town.

Discover Historic Sites

If you have an interest in history, a visit to Kennebunkport is a must. The town is rich in historic sites that offer visitors a glimpse into its past.

One of the most famous historic sites in Kennebunkport is the Walker’s Point, the summer home of the Bush family. This beautiful estate has been in the family for generations and is now a historic landmark. Visitors can explore the grounds and learn about the family’s history.

Another notable historic site is the Nott House. Built in 1853, this Greek Revival-style house offers a fascinating look into life in the 19th century. Visitors can take guided tours and see the original furnishings and decor.

For a taste of local history, be sure to visit the First Families Museum. Located in a historic captain’s house, this museum showcases the history of the town’s early settlers and their maritime heritage.

Lastly, a visit to the White Columns is a must for architecture enthusiasts. This stunning building was built in the late 1800s and features a mix of Victorian and Colonial Revival styles. Visitors can take a self-guided tour and admire the beautiful craftsmanship.

Whether you’re a history buff or simply curious about the past, Kennebunkport’s historic sites offer a unique glimpse into the town’s rich heritage.

Shop at Dock Square

If you’re looking for a unique shopping experience, Dock Square in Kennebunkport is the place to go. This picturesque square is located in the heart of downtown and is home to a variety of shops that are sure to appeal to every taste and interest.

From charming boutiques to art galleries, Dock Square offers something for everyone. You can browse through the latest fashion trends, shop for handmade jewelry, or discover one-of-a-kind home décor items. The shops here are known for their high-quality merchandise and friendly customer service.

One of the highlights of shopping in Dock Square is the opportunity to support local artisans and makers. Many of the shops feature products that are made in Maine, including handcrafted pottery, unique artwork, and gourmet food products. It’s a great way to bring a piece of Kennebunkport home with you.

In addition to the shops, Dock Square also has a number of quaint cafes and ice cream parlors where you can take a break and refuel. Enjoy a cup of freshly brewed coffee, indulge in a delicious pastry, or treat yourself to a scoop of homemade ice cream. The square’s vibrant atmosphere and charming surroundings make it the perfect spot to relax and unwind.

Whether you’re looking for a special souvenir or simply enjoy browsing through local shops, a visit to Dock Square is a must-do when in Kennebunkport. Take your time exploring the area, and you’re bound to find something that catches your eye.

Enjoy Local Seafood

When visiting Kennebunkport, you can’t miss the opportunity to indulge in the local seafood. With its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, the town offers a variety of fresh and delicious seafood options. Whether you are a fan of lobster, clams, or oysters, you’re in for a treat.

One of the best ways to enjoy local seafood is by visiting the many seafood shacks and restaurants along the coast. These establishments serve up tasty dishes made with locally caught fish and shellfish. From classic lobster rolls to clam chowder, there’s something for everyone’s palate.

If you’re feeling adventurous, consider going on a lobster boat tour. Not only will you get an up-close look at lobsters being caught, but you’ll also have the chance to enjoy a freshly caught lobster right on the boat. It’s an unforgettable experience that seafood enthusiasts won’t want to miss.

For those who prefer a more hands-on approach, you can try your hand at lobstering. Many local companies offer lobstering excursions where you can learn how to catch, cook, and eat your own lobster. It’s a fun and educational activity that allows you to truly appreciate the taste and effort that goes into preparing local seafood.

Another must-try seafood experience in Kennebunkport is a visit to the local oyster farm. Here, you can learn about oyster farming and even shuck your own oysters. It’s a unique opportunity to taste the freshest oysters while learning about the local oyster industry.

So, if you’re a seafood lover, make sure to take full advantage of Kennebunkport’s local seafood offerings. From traditional seafood dishes to hands-on experiences, there’s no shortage of ways to enjoy the abundance of fresh seafood that this charming coastal town has to offer.

Attend the Kennebunkport Festival

One of the top events to attend in Kennebunkport, ME is the Kennebunkport Festival. This annual event celebrates art, food, and culture in the vibrant coastal town. From art shows to food tastings, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

The festival showcases the work of local artists, giving visitors the chance to admire and purchase beautiful pieces of art. The art shows feature various mediums, including painting, sculpture, photography, and more. Whether you’re a seasoned art collector or just appreciate the beauty of creativity, the festival offers a unique opportunity to discover new talent and add to your collection.

In addition to the art shows, the Kennebunkport Festival also highlights the town’s culinary scene. Local restaurants and chefs participate in food tastings and cooking demonstrations, showcasing their creative dishes and use of local ingredients. From fresh seafood to farm-to-table creations, the festival allows you to indulge in the flavors of Kennebunkport and experience the town’s unique culinary offerings.

Aside from art and food, the festival also features live music performances, cultural events, and interactive workshops. Whether you’re interested in learning a new skill or simply want to enjoy some live entertainment, there are plenty of activities to keep you entertained throughout the festival.

Attending the Kennebunkport Festival is not only a great way to support local artists and businesses, but it also provides a memorable experience in one of Maine’s most picturesque towns. So, if you find yourself in Kennebunkport during the festival, make sure to block out some time to immerse yourself in the art, food, and culture that the event has to offer.

Take a Bicycle Tour

One of the best ways to explore all that Kennebunkport has to offer is by taking a bicycle tour. Whether you are a casual rider or an experienced cyclist, there are plenty of options for you to choose from.

You can rent a bicycle from one of the local shops and set off on your own adventure, or you can join a guided tour that will take you to the most scenic spots in the area. There are several tour companies that offer guided bike tours, with knowledgeable guides who can tell you all about the history and culture of Kennebunkport as you pedal along.

On a bicycle tour, you can visit places like Walker’s Point, the summer home of George H.W. Bush, and see stunning views of the coastline that are only accessible by bike. You can also explore the charming downtown area, with its shops, art galleries, and restaurants. And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even ride out to nearby attractions like the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge or the Kennebunkport Marina.

Tour Company Description
Kennebunkport Bicycle Company Offers guided tours for all levels of riders. Tours range from 1-3 hours and cover various parts of Kennebunkport and the surrounding area.
Port City Bikes Provides both guided and self-guided tours. Guided tours include popular routes like the Cape Porpoise Lighthouse Ride and the Goose Rocks Beach Ride.
Coastal Maine Kayak & Bike Offers a combination package that includes a guided bike tour and a kayak tour. The bike tour takes you along scenic coastal routes, while the kayak tour allows you to explore the beautiful rivers and marshes.

Before you start your bike tour, make sure to check the weather forecast and dress accordingly. It’s also a good idea to bring along some water, snacks, and sunscreen. And don’t forget to bring your camera, as there will be plenty of photo opportunities along the way.

So why not hop on a bike and discover the beauty of Kennebunkport on two wheels? It’s a fun and eco-friendly way to explore the area and make the most of your visit.

Go Whale Watching

Experience the thrill of witnessing magnificent whales up close by going on a whale watching excursion in Kennebunkport, ME. This exciting activity allows you to observe these majestic creatures in their natural habitat and learn more about their behaviors and migration patterns.

There are several reputable companies that offer whale watching tours in Kennebunkport. These tours are usually led by experienced guides who have extensive knowledge about the local marine life. They are trained to provide informative and engaging commentary throughout the tour, ensuring that you have an educational as well as enjoyable experience.

Company Price Duration Features
Kennebunkport Whale Watch $50 per person 3 hours Comfortable seating, onboard naturalist guide, snacks and beverages available
Atlantic Whale Watch $60 per person 4 hours Spacious viewing decks, expert marine biologists, complimentary binoculars
Maine Whale Watching $75 per person 5 hours GPS tracking, hydrophone for listening to whale songs, light lunch provided

During the tour, you may have the chance to see various species of whales, such as humpback whales, finback whales, and minke whales. These magnificent creatures often put on a show by breaching, tail slapping, and spouting water, creating lasting memories for all passengers on board.

Whale watching tours in Kennebunkport are usually offered from May to October, which is the prime time for whale sightings in the area. It is recommended to make a reservation in advance, as these tours are popular and tend to fill up quickly.

So if you’re looking for a thrilling and educational adventure during your visit to Kennebunkport, don’t miss the opportunity to go whale watching. It’s an experience that will leave you in awe of the beauty and splendor of these magnificent creatures.

Explore the Art Galleries

When visiting Kennebunkport, make sure to take some time to explore the art galleries in the area. The town is home to a vibrant arts scene, with several galleries showcasing a wide range of artistic styles and mediums.

One of the most popular galleries in Kennebunkport is the Maine Art Gallery. Located on Dock Square, this gallery features works by local and regional artists, with a focus on landscapes, seascapes, and traditional New England scenes. The gallery also hosts regular exhibitions and events, making it a must-visit for art enthusiasts.

If you’re looking for contemporary art, the galleries in the Lower Village area are worth checking out. The galleries here showcase a variety of styles, from abstract and modern to figurative and experimental. Visitors can browse through unique pieces and even meet the artists behind the works.

Another notable gallery in Kennebunkport is the Northlight Gallery. Situated in a charming historic building, this gallery specializes in fine art photography. Visitors can admire stunning images captured by renowned photographers, as well as purchase prints to take home as a lasting memory of their time in Kennebunkport.

For those interested in local art and crafts, the Mast Cove Gallery is a must-see. This gallery features a wide selection of handmade jewelry, pottery, woodworking, and other artisanal products. Visitors can find unique souvenirs or one-of-a-kind gifts to take back home.

Exploring the art galleries in Kennebunkport not only allows visitors to appreciate the local talent and creativity but also provides an opportunity to take a piece of the town’s artistic spirit home with them.

Gallery Name Location Specialty
Maine Art Gallery Dock Square Landscapes, seascapes, New England scenes
Galleries in Lower Village Lower Village Contemporary art
Northlight Gallery Historic building Fine art photography
Mast Cove Gallery Address Handmade jewelry, pottery, woodworking, artisanal products

Visit the Seashore Trolley Museum

One of the top attractions in Kennebunkport is the Seashore Trolley Museum. Located just a short drive from the town center, this museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in the history of public transportation.

The Seashore Trolley Museum is the oldest and largest electric railway museum in the world. It houses a collection of over 250 trolleys and other electric railway vehicles from the United States, Canada, and around the world. Visitors can explore the museum’s expansive grounds and see beautifully restored trolleys, many of which are still in working condition.

One of the highlights of a visit to the Seashore Trolley Museum is taking a ride on one of the vintage trolleys. The museum offers scenic rides on the restored trolley cars, allowing visitors to experience the thrill of riding on an authentic electric railway. The rides take passengers through picturesque Maine countryside, offering stunning views and a unique perspective on the area’s history.

In addition to its impressive collection of trolleys, the museum also features exhibits on the history of electric transportation, including interactive displays and artifacts. Visitors can learn about the development of trolley systems and the impact they had on communities around the world.

The Seashore Trolley Museum is a great destination for families, history enthusiasts, and anyone looking for a unique and educational experience. Whether you’re a trolley fan or just curious about the history of public transportation, a visit to this museum is sure to be a memorable one.

Experience Local Wine and Beer Tastings

When visiting Kennebunkport, Maine, don’t miss the opportunity to sample the local wine and beer offerings. The region is known for its craft breweries and wineries that produce unique and flavorful beverages.

Craft Beer Tasting

Beer enthusiasts will enjoy exploring the local breweries that offer a wide selection of craft beers. From IPAs to stouts, these breweries pride themselves on using high-quality ingredients and innovative brewing techniques. Visitors can take guided tours of the breweries to learn about the brewing process and sample different beers. Some popular breweries to visit include Kennebunkport Brewery and Federal Jack’s Brew Pub, both known for their award-winning beers.

Wine Tasting

If wine is more your style, you’re in luck. Kennebunkport has several wineries that produce exceptional wines using grapes grown in Maine’s unique climate. Visitors can take tours of the wineries and learn about the winemaking process from grape to bottle. Tastings are available to sample the different varieties of wines, including whites, reds, and even fruit wines made with local ingredients. Some popular wineries to visit include Maine Mead Works and Cellardoor Winery.

Whether you’re a beer lover or a wine connoisseur, experiencing the local wine and beer tastings in Kennebunkport is a must. It’s a great way to support local businesses and indulge in the flavors of the region. Cheers!

Stay at Charming Bed and Breakfasts

If you’re planning a trip to Kennebunkport, ME, consider staying at one of the charming bed and breakfasts in the area. These cozy accommodations are perfect for those looking for a unique and personalized experience during their visit.

One popular bed and breakfast in Kennebunkport is the Captain Lord Mansion. This historic inn offers luxurious rooms with elegant furnishings and modern amenities. Guests can enjoy a gourmet breakfast each morning and relax in the beautiful gardens surrounding the property.

Another great option is the Maine Stay Inn and Cottages. This bed and breakfast offers a range of accommodations, including traditional rooms and private cottages. Guests can take advantage of the inn’s complimentary beach chairs and towels to enjoy a day at the nearby beach.

The Waldo Emerson Inn is another charming bed and breakfast in the area. This historic property dates back to the 18th century and offers beautifully appointed rooms with antique furniture. Guests can relax in the inn’s cozy sitting room or take a stroll through the lovely gardens.

If you’re looking for a pet-friendly bed and breakfast, consider The Green Heron Inn. This inn welcomes well-behaved pets and offers comfortable accommodations for both you and your furry friend. Guests can enjoy a delicious homemade breakfast each morning and explore the nearby hiking trails with their pets.

No matter which bed and breakfast you choose, you’re sure to enjoy a warm and welcoming stay in Kennebunkport. These charming accommodations offer a unique glimpse into the historic charm and natural beauty of the area.

Bed and Breakfast Features
Captain Lord Mansion Luxurious rooms, gourmet breakfast, beautiful gardens
Maine Stay Inn and Cottages Range of accommodations, beach chairs and towels
Waldo Emerson Inn 18th-century charm, antique furniture, lovely gardens
The Green Heron Inn Pet-friendly, homemade breakfast, nearby hiking trails

FAQs

What are some of the top-rated things to do in Kennebunkport, ME?

Some of the top-rated things to do in Kennebunkport, ME include visiting the beautiful beaches, exploring the historic Dock Square, going on a lobster tour, and visiting the Bush family compound.

What are the popular beaches in Kennebunkport, ME?

The popular beaches in Kennebunkport, ME include Goose Rocks Beach, Colony Beach, and Gooch’s Beach. These beaches offer beautiful sandy shores and stunning ocean views.

Can you provide some information about the historic Dock Square?

Historic Dock Square is the heart of Kennebunkport, ME. It is a charming area filled with shops, art galleries, restaurants, and historic buildings. It’s a great place to explore, shop for unique items, dine at local eateries, and immerse yourself in the town’s rich history.

What is the Bush family compound and can visitors go there?

The Bush family compound refers to the family estate of the Bush family, which includes former President George H. W. Bush and his family. The compound is located in Kennebunkport, ME. While the compound is mostly private property and not open to the public, visitors can catch glimpses of it from a distance while taking boat tours or exploring the coastline.

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Top Things to do in Kennebunkport :: Back to the Kennebunks Time Travel

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Christine Hitt

Christine Hitt, a devoted Hawaii enthusiast from Oahu, has spent 15 years exploring the islands, sharing her deep insights in respected publications such as Los Angeles Times, SFGate, Honolulu, and Hawaii magazines. Her expertise spans cultural nuances, travel advice, and the latest updates, making her an invaluable resource for all Hawaii lovers.

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