The 25 Best Beach Towns in New England from Yankee Magazine
Home to historic mansions, the International Tennis Hall of Fame, and Touro Synagogue (oldest existing synagogue in America), Newport has more than enough diversions for those who want to step away from the shoreline. Add strolling atop the rugged shoreline along the Cliff Walk and sailing on Narragansett Bay, and you’ve got a world-class summer getaway. One quirk: The area’s best beach, Second Beach on Sachuest Bay, is actually in neighboring Middletown. Don’t miss: Alloy Gallery, now on Bellevue Avenue, owned by a Rhode Island School of Design–trained jewelry artist who displays contemporary wares created by herself and her peers.
See Yankee‘s recommendations for the best places to go, eat, and stay in Newport, Rhode Island.
Veer left (south) in New Shoreham’s Old Harbor after the hour-long ferry ride from Galilee, and you soon reach the red-brick Southeast Lighthouse and dramatic Mohegan Bluffs, where sea-gouged cliffs drop precariously to the water 200 feet below. Head to the right (north), across from a small strip of stores, restaurants, and inns, and you arrive at the glorious three-mile-long Crescent Beach, packed with daytrippers in the summer months. Old Harbor is as simple as that—and that’s the reason why people make the trip year after year. Don’t miss: Rent a bike and take a 13-mile loop around the island, stopping at the many lemonade stands—or hike the Greenway walking trails.
See Yankee‘s recommendations for the best places to go, eat, and stay in Old Harbor, Rhode Island.
Amble along the sidewalks of this Martha’s Vineyard town, laced with whaling captains’ homes from the 18th and 19th centuries. Then take your bikes on the two-minute ferry ride over to Chappaquiddick and remote Cape Poge Wildlife Refuge, a long coastal stretch that you can call home for the rest of the day. If you feel like getting even closer to the sea, the Trustees of Reservations offers guided kayaking tours on Cape Poge and Wasque Reservation waterways. Don’t miss: A cone at Mad Martha’s and the requisite stroll over to the docks.
See Yankee‘s recommendations for the best places to go, eat, and stay in Edgartown, Massachusetts.
Most people associate Kennebunkport with the shopping at Dock Square. That’s a shame, because the true joy of visiting Kennebunkport is driving on backcountry roads to find the lobster traps stocked high on Cape Porpoise, the small strip of sand at Goose Rocks Beach, and the many favorite local eateries in between (like Nunan’s Lobster Hut and The Ramp). Don’t miss: One of the best meals in New England, the four-course prix-fixe menu at The White Barn Inn, west across the river in neighboring Kennebunk Beach.
See Yankee‘s recommendations for the best places to go, eat, and stay in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Neighboring Gloucester boasts two of the finest beaches on Cape Ann, Good Harbor and Wingaersheek, but you’ll want to spend most of your evening hours in Rockport. Bearskin Neck, with its collection of boutiques, ice-cream shops, and restaurants, juts out into Sandy Bay, ending at a rock jetty. Front Beach, a two-minute walk from Bearskin Neck, will suffice for sand-castle building and a swim. Don’t miss: The new Shalin Liu Performance Center, a classical-music venue whose floor-to-ceiling stage window overlooks the Atlantic.
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.