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Cruising to Kennebunkport


Kennebunkport, Maine is almost like a mini-Newport, with an upscale downtown packed with tourists during the summer and featuring amazing restaurants, marine facilities with impressive yachts, and a coastline dotted with beautiful houses and stately mansions.

Located on Maine’s southwest coast, Kennebunkport is conveniently between Portland, Maine and Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The approach to Kennebunkport is the Kennebunk River, roughly two nautical miles southwest of Cape Porpoise Harbor. The river’s leading buoy is green flashing bell “1” off Cape Arundel. Stone jetties are on each side of the river’s entrance, and you’ll see Kennebunkport Breakwater Light 4 on the end of the eastern jetty. A dredged channel leads roughly one mile up the river to just before the Taintown Bridge.

Kennebunkport is a popular destination during the summer, so make sure to make reservations at a marine facility well in advance. Chicks Marina (207-967-2782; VHF 9) is a full-service marina with transient slips, fuel, and it is within walking distance of downtown. Another marina close to downtown, Kennebunkport Marina (207-967-3411; VHF 9), has transient slips, fuel, repair services and kayak rentals. The Yachtsman Lodge and Marina (207-967-2511; VHF 9) is a luxury resort and marina with onsite accommodations and a restaurant. Boaters can also anchor in the Kennebunk River or near Cape Porpoise, but both places are often crowded with other boats, so it’s wise to set two anchors to keep from swinging. For information on the area, contact the harbormaster (207-205-0991).

While visiting Kennebunkport, you’ll want to stroll downtown to explore the area’s many interesting shops selling everything from antiques and artwork to T-shirts and lobster magnets. To get familiar with the area, take the Intown Trolley (207-967-3686) for an hour-long tour of the entire Kennebunkport region.

Kennebunkport is known for its spectacular restaurants and seafood. A must-stop for anyone visiting the area is The Clam Shack (207-967-2560), which is famous for its fried clams. Federal Jack’s Pub and Restaurant (207-967-4322) has freshly brewed craft beer and a menu with Maine seafood, delicious burgers, vegetarian dishes and more. On the Edge Restaurant at the Edgewood Inn (207-967-3315) offers an elegant breakfast and brunch, plus gourmet backpack meals. Alisson’s Restaurant (207-967-4841) is a casual, comfortable restaurant downtown.

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