Kennebunkport is the center of Maine’s most usable oceanfront. Located where the Kennebunk River empties into the Atlantic Ocean, the coast is alternately rockbound headlands and sandy beaches backed by gentle forested hills. The village, and Kennebunk across the river, were settled by the mid-17th century, and prospered from shipbuilding. By the turn of the the twentieth century, artists, writers and wealthy summer visitors began to discover the area’s appeal for creativity and leisure.
Today, much of the venerable architectural legacy is on the National Register of Historic Places. Around Dock Square, proudly maintained remnants of the maritime past now serve as studios and galleries, regional specialty shops, and waterfront restaurants featuring Maine lobsters and other Down East seafood. Numerous mansions retain their genteel spirit while serving as bed-and-breakfasts. Several major ocean-view inns combine the nostalgic aura of Victorian grand hotels with a full complement of contemporary facilities.
For more information, check with the local Chamber of Commerce.
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