While many Kennebunkport residents call it home year-round, this pretty village on the tidal Kennebunk River is one of Maine’s most beloved summer communities.
Two centuries ago, shipbuilding and fishing were the dominant industries, but by the late 1800s the town’s status as a vacation destination was already firmly established. Affluent summer visitors built sprawling shingle-style homes overlooking the ocean, and a cluster of shops and restaurants grew up around Dock Square. Today, Kennebunkport still teems with visitors between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The most famous summer residents are former president George H.W. Bush and his wife, Barbara, who have entertained numerous heads of state at their family compound at Walker’s Point. Kennebunkport is also home to a wide variety of inns and hotels, ranging from luxury properties to quaint bed-and-breakfasts. Other sections of town include Cape Porpoise, a quiet village with a small fishing fleet and an old-fashioned vibe, and Goose Rocks, known for its nearly three-mile long white-sand beach.