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Hotels in Portsmouth, New Hampshire

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Best hotels in Portsmouth

Portsmouth Introduction

Portsmouth is one of New Hampshire's signature cities, anchored by a charismatic historic center filled with colonial architecture and leafy maple trees. Set on the Piscataqua River, the fishing town was incorporated in 1653, which makes it one of America's oldest settlements. A cluster of museums and heritage houses recall Portsmouth's centuries-old narrative, while independent galleries and an award-winning theater bring a dash of contemporary allure. Trendy cafes and excellent seafood restaurants have earned Portsmouth its stripes on the New England foodie circuit.

Hotels in Portsmouth

Today, many of the town's 18th-century buildings have been reimagined as luxury hotels in Portsmouth. Popular with couples, they offer boutique decor and an intimate atmosphere. You'll also find a fantastic selection of international brands offering spacious rooms and breakfast buffets. Top-tier properties raise the bar with extras, such as swimming pools, sun terraces, and fitness centers. Discount hotels in Portsmouth cater to budget travelers, with most operated by well-known chains. If you're traveling with kids or like to enjoy the creature comforts of home, consider upgrading to a family room or suite. Most offer added space and self-contained kitchenettes.

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Where to stay

It's hard to resist the appeal of Portsmouth's historic district. Most of the action is centered around Market Square, which is home to many of the city's top drinking and dining options. You'll also be within walking distance of shops and art galleries. Cheap Portsmouth hotels can be found outside the historic center, along major I-95 exits and around the traffic circle. For sea views and a lively atmosphere, consider staying in nearby coastal towns like York Harbor or Cape Neddick. Motorists can unlock access to characterful hotels and inns strung along the New Hampshire and Maine coasts.

Things to see

On a sunny day, it's easy to spend hours relaxing at open-air cafes and watching street buskers in Market Square. Spotlighting local artists, Portsmouth's independent galleries showcase everything from watercolors to woodcarvings. In the evenings, many lure patrons with wine and nibbles. For a taste of the city's cultural scene, enjoy a night at Music Hall, a small theater that hosts an eclectic mix of dance performances, opera recitals, comedy acts, and more. History buffs shouldn't miss the Strawbery Banke Museum, an open-air attraction dotted with 17th-century homes. Costumed guides bring the experience to life. The magnificent Wentworth-Gardner House is another historical gem, built in 1760 by one of Portsmouth's wealthiest residents. Today, you're welcome to tour the elegant Georgian manor, which is filled with gleaming antiques. Thanks to its proximity to the North Atlantic, Portsmouth reels in a bounty of seafood. Save your appetite for freshly shucked oysters, smoked mussels, clam chowder, and, of course, lobster rolls.

How to get to Portsmouth

Portsmouth is in Rockingham County, a 1-hour drive from Concord and Portland. Road access to Portsmouth is via the I-95. Domestic flights arrive at Concord-Padgett Regional Airport, 5 miles west of downtown. For more choice, look to Portsmouth International Airport, which offers flights to a handful of North American cities. Boston Logan International Airport, a 1-hour drive south, is another popular gateway. Daily buses run to and from Boston, Portland, and Bangor.