Portsmouth, NH

Travel Guide
Portsmouth showing a bay or harbor

Visit an elegant seaside city at the mouth of the Piscataqua River that excites with its maritime past, historic buildings and scenic walking trails.

Settled in 1623, Portsmouth lays claim to being one of the oldest cities in the United States. With a rich shipbuilding heritage, a working port and a large waterfront park, there is much to fascinate the visitor. Cruise through its waterways, learn about maritime history and explore hundreds of years of Portsmouth’s past in its old homes.

The Portsmouth Naval Shipyard was founded in 1800 and for much of its history was a major shipbuilding center. One of the many submarines to roll off its launchpad was the USS Albacore, now a floating museum. Walk through the vessel on a guided tour to find out about its years of service.

There is more history at the Strawbery Banke Museum, a 9.5-acre (3.8-hectare) site with 42 historic buildings. The oldest structure dates back to 1695. Tour these old properties, which contain artifacts that reveal aspects of everyday life from different eras.

Leave the car behind for a walk through Portsmouth’s tree-lined streets. They will take you past beautiful colonial houses. Shop in upscale boutiques, stop by a cozy café or restaurant and visit more historic homes. Step inside the Richard Jackson House, built in 1664. This is believed to be the oldest surviving wood frame home in New Hampshire.

For a pleasant change of scenery, head to the waterfront Prescott Park. Relax in the flower gardens and enjoy gorgeous views of the Piscataqua River.

A delightful way to see the city is from the water. Go for a cruise onboard a reproduction of the flat-bottom wooden barges that were once a regular feature on Portsmouth's waterways.

Take a short boat trip or drive across the bridge to the 27-acre (11-hectare) Pierce Island. The former site of Fort Washington is now known for its scenic walking trails and outdoor swimming pool.

Portsmouth is roughly halfway between Boston and Portland, Maine. The drive from either of these places takes little more than an hour. Both are also a little over an hour away by bus. Once you are in Portsmouth, many of the historic and waterfront attractions can be easily reached on foot.

Where to stay in Portsmouth

Hampton Inn & Suites Portsmouth Downtown
Hampton Inn & Suites Portsmouth Downtown
3 out of 5
23 Portwalk Pl, Portsmouth, NH
The price is NT$3,040 per night from Feb 10 to Feb 11
Located in the heart of Portsmouth, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Music Hall and Market Square. Portsmouth Brewery and Kittery Premium Outlets are ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (1,082 reviews)
"Loved the amenities and walking distance to downtown area - shops, restaurants. All you need for a perfect weekend getaway!"

Reviewed on 2022/1/18

Hampton Inn & Suites Portsmouth Downtown
Hilton Garden Inn Portsmouth Downtown
Hilton Garden Inn Portsmouth Downtown
3 out of 5
100 High St, Portsmouth, NH
The price is NT$3,288 per night from Feb 7 to Feb 8
Located in the heart of Portsmouth, this hotel is steps from Moffatt-Ladd House and Market Square. Portsmouth Brewery and Music Hall are also within 2 mi (3 ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (978 reviews)
"We were disappointed the hot tub was not accessible and the pool shown on line is misleading- it’s one very small pool. We booked this hotel specifically so there was a hot tub, well my husband do he loved to soak. We were there for bureaucratic reasons but the downtown area that is directly outside ..."

Reviewed on 2022/1/3

Hilton Garden Inn Portsmouth Downtown
Residence Inn by Marriott Portsmouth Downtown/ Waterfront
Residence Inn by Marriott Portsmouth Downtown/ Waterfront
3 out of 5
100 Deer Street, Portsmouth, NH
The price is NT$3,565 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Located in the heart of Portsmouth, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Moffatt-Ladd House and Market Square. Portsmouth Brewery and Music Hall are also within ...
4.6/5 Wonderful! (987 reviews)
"Great overall!!! The staff was nice and friendly. Hotel room clean, cozy and cute. Location is one of the best, surrounded by restaurants, shop, bars. The breakfast was better good too."

Reviewed on 2022/1/10

Residence Inn by Marriott Portsmouth Downtown/ Waterfront
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Homewood Suites by Hilton Dover
Homewood Suites by Hilton Dover
3 out of 5
21 Members Way, Dover, NH
The price is NT$3,150 per night from Feb 9 to Feb 10
Situated in Dover, this aparthotel is 2.3 mi (3.7 km) from The Children's Museum of New Hampshire and 2.7 mi (4.4 km) from Woodman Institute. Vaughan Woods State ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (449 reviews)
"We had a very enjoyable experience at the Homewood suites! The kitchen had everything we needed, the room had ample space for our baby, toddler and 2 adults. Next time, I will reserve a suite with a seperate room for my baby can nap without my toddler waking her, which is a great option. We had to ..."

Reviewed on 2022/1/18

Homewood Suites by Hilton Dover
Homewood Suites by Hilton Portsmouth
Homewood Suites by Hilton Portsmouth
3 out of 5
100 Portsmouth Blvd, Portsmouth, NH
The price is NT$3,509 per night from Jan 27 to Jan 28
Situated in the business district, this aparthotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Albacore Park, Market Square, and Portsmouth Brewery. Music Hall is 2.1 mi (3.4 km) ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (868 reviews)
"Excelent hotel! I liked everything, the rooms are perfect for family and dogs."

Reviewed on 2021/12/29

Homewood Suites by Hilton Portsmouth
Great Island Inn
Great Island Inn
3.5 out of 5
3 Walbach St, New Castle, NH
The price is NT$3,288 per night from Jan 27 to Jan 28
Offering direct access to the beach, this New Castle apartment building is in the city center and within a 10-minute walk of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse and ...
4.9/5 Exceptional! (77 reviews)
"I had the best stay at Great Island Inn and I look forward to my return again in the near future. I live in Maine and this was the perfect little getaway for me. Thank you Doug for taking such great care of my reservations. Don’t miss out on this coastal gem."

Reviewed on 2021/11/10

Great Island Inn
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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