Imagine a place where the salty sea breeze mingles with the scent of fresh lobster, where the horizon is dotted with lighthouses and sailboats, and where the charm of small-town America is alive and well. Welcome to Kittery, Maine. Nestled at the southernmost tip of the Pine Tree State, Kittery is a vibrant coastal town that offers a unique blend of natural beauty, rich history, and a thriving food scene. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, an outdoor enthusiast, or simply looking for a relaxing getaway, Kittery has something for everyone. Let’s embark on a journey to unveil the charm of this lively hub of coastal adventure.

A Brief History of Kittery

Established in 1647, Kittery is the oldest town in Maine. Its strategic location at the mouth of the Piscataqua River made it an important naval and shipbuilding center. The town is home to the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, the oldest continuously operating shipyard in the United States. Kittery’s rich maritime history is evident in its well-preserved 18th and 19th-century architecture, historic forts, and maritime museums.

Exploring Kittery’s Natural Beauty

Kittery’s coastal location offers a plethora of outdoor activities. From kayaking and paddleboarding on the Piscataqua River to hiking and birdwatching in the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, nature lovers will be spoilt for choice. The town’s scenic beaches are perfect for a leisurely stroll or a refreshing swim. For a unique experience, take a boat tour to the Isles of Shoals, a group of small islands located about six miles off the coast.

The Lighthouse Trail

Maine is famous for its lighthouses, and Kittery is no exception. The town is home to two iconic lighthouses – the Whaleback Light and the Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse. The latter offers guided tours that provide a fascinating insight into the life of a lighthouse keeper. The lighthouses are also part of the Maine Lighthouse Trail, a must-do for any lighthouse enthusiast.

A Foodie’s Paradise

Kittery’s food scene is as diverse as it is delicious. The town is renowned for its seafood, particularly lobster and clams. From upscale restaurants to roadside shacks, you’ll find a variety of places to satisfy your seafood cravings. Kittery is also home to a number of craft breweries and distilleries, making it a great destination for beer and spirits lovers. Don’t forget to visit the Kittery Outlets for some retail therapy after your meal.

Where to Stay in Kittery

When it comes to accommodation, Kittery offers a range of options to suit every budget and preference. From charming bed and breakfasts and historic inns to modern hotels and vacation rentals, you’re sure to find the perfect place to rest after a day of exploring. Many accommodations offer stunning views of the harbor or the river, adding to the overall charm of your stay.

Events and Festivals

Kittery has a vibrant community spirit, and this is reflected in its calendar of events and festivals. The Kittery Block Party is a summer highlight, featuring live music, food trucks, and family-friendly activities. In the fall, the Kittery Art Association hosts the annual Art on the Hill, showcasing the work of local artists. The holiday season is marked by the Festival of Lights, a magical event that lights up the town with festive decorations.


From its historic landmarks and stunning natural beauty to its lively food scene and community events, Kittery, Maine, is a coastal gem that promises an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, Kittery is a destination that will captivate you with its charm and leave you with lasting memories.

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