Few towns transform in summer like hyperactive Hampton Beach. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a day (or an evening) when something special isn’t planned: concerts at Hampton Beach State Park’s beautifully re-designed Seashell Stage complex (part of the park’s newly completed $14.5 million redevelopment), movies on the beach, fireworks, beach-volleyball tournaments, even beach soccer (who knew?). With all that action come a lot of people and traffic along the road that carries them to the sand. Once you find a parking spot, you’ll quickly find a place to plant your towel on this long stretch of beach and sparkling sea. Across the street is everything you always wanted in a beach town when you were 10: soft-serve ice cream, fudge, snow cones, pizza. Don’t miss: The fun annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Competition, with world-class builders.
See Yankee‘s recommendations for the best places to go, eat, and stay in Hampton Beach, New Hampshire.
The Bay State’s favorite seaside “let’s go meet and hang out” getaway is Hull’s three-mile stretch of Nantasket Beach. Swim to your heart’s delight; then walk across the road to the strip of waterfront restaurants, arcades, historic Paragon Carousel, B&Bs, and beach resorts. At the tip of Route 228, Hull is tucked away on a spit of South Shore land jutting into Massachusetts Bay. Don’t miss: Fried clams and cedar-plank roasted salmon at Jake’s Seafood, in operation since 1949.
Brewster’s bayside beaches, including Paine’s Creek, have far less surf and are warmer than the Cape’s Atlantic-side beaches, thus attracting younger families. Add the Cape Cod Rail Trail, which slices through town, top-tier resorts such as Ocean Edge, and restaurant fare including the acclaimed Chillingsworth’s French cuisine, and it’s earned a spot on this list. Don’t miss: Fried seafood at Cobie’s Clam Shack, dishing out the onion rings since 1948.
Want more info on how we selected the 25 Best Beach Towns in New England? View the chart on how we rated them and our recommendations for the best things to do, places to eat and lodging for all 25 towns.
Please Note: This information was accurate at the time of publication. When planning a trip, please confirm details by directly contacting any company or establishment you intend to visit.
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In this issue:
- 80 Gifts New England Gave to America
- 7 Scenic Wonders of Fall
- The Mother of Good Cooking: Fannie Farmer
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